Friday, January 28, 2011 there more to life?

Ahhh Basketball.  It deserves to be capitalized.  In my life it is the best friend that your husband spends his time with.  I have loved basketball since I was little.  Playing at Central School, shooting in the driveway, refereeing youth, Bean Courts (playing for slurpees and crazy bread), Riley Hall side has always been in my life.  But it hasn't been my life.
My boys love basketball.  We have had a hoop in our house since JJ was born (thank you Heath and Andrea). Slam dunks, trampoline, off the ceiling, jumping over brothers, you name it and it has taken place in the front room.  There are at least 10 basketballs in our house, a couple we aren't allowed to touch, and a couple we can't shoot outside.  All different sizes, just in case we want a change.  We have a hoop in front of our house, with the key and 3 point line painting in yellow and green.  Again, my boys love basketball.
My biggest boy loves basketball too.  He has been coaching since I met him.  Do you know how long basketball season is?  Practice starts in October, games in November and it could run until mid March.   April-September is time for recruiting, open gyms, weight lifting, working on specific positions, etc.  The answer is, Basketball season is year round for a coaches wife and family.
Basketball is motivation at times
  • If you mess around in class and your teacher calls your mom to talk, there's a good chance you will be watching your next practice or a game.  Thankfully that has only happened twice in JJ's 8 years.  :) 
  • Getting your homework and reading finished correctly means you can play dunk hoops in in the living room.
Basketball is a distraction
    • The hoop is closed at 7:00pm.  Boys can focus on getting ready for bed.
    • I think the hoop calls out the boys every time they walk by it-"Come on boys, just one more shot!"
    Basketball is discipline
    • Ball bucket has been known to spend a night or two in the garage when boys are stinkers.
    • NBA or Duck Jerseys have been excused from the closets when listening ears aren't working
    Basketball is FUN!
    • It's fun to practice plays at recess.  
    • It's fun to attempt a behind the back pass.
    • It's fun to play Bump.
    • It's fun to make crazy shots in HORSE.
    • It's fun to play with your friends.
    I loved playing basketball in High School. Loved rebounding (I'm only 5'8"...I like to compare myself to a certain Round Mound of Rebound).  When high school was over, I was thankful to play for fun.  It' wasn't about winning, unless you are a guy who doesn't think a girl can beat you:).  

    I want my boys to work hard on the court, the field, the classroom, and the diamond.  To respect their coaches, referees and officials and teachers  To respect the game and their studies. Basketball has spoiled them.  They get to go to their daddy's basketball games, raid the snack bar, sit on the bench, get water and towel for the players, shoot for popcorn at half time, play under the bleachers, and stay up late.  What little boy wouldn't love that? 
    Basketball isn't Life. Basketball makes life a little better, even though sometimes I think of it as someone trying to steal my husband.   

    When you're shooting around....never end on a miss!

    Sunday, January 9, 2011

    My Grandpa

    Tuesday will be my Grandpa's memorial service.  He passed away in his sleep on January 6th at 89 years old.  This past weekend I spent with my Grandma, my Mom, my aunts, uncles and cousins, going through pictures, and remembering Grandpa.  I knew that this day would come, that my Grandpa would move on to greener pastures.  He was a cowboy...he liked greener pastures. I started writing my memories about Grandpa the night that he passed away.  My Grandma asked my to say something at the service, thank goodness I was prepared.    I hope that I can make it through and share my love for my Grandpa with our family and friends.  

    Here is my story...
    As the youngest granddaughter…I was his favorite.  Actually we were all his favorites.  Even if it took a couple tries for Grandpa to get our names right, he would get it.   After all there are too many of us to remember.  I've been looking through a lot of pictures of Grandpa and he is smiling in every single one.  Surrounded by his children, his grand children and his great grandchildren.   Surrounded by love.
    Grandparents with almost all the great grandkids
    I have great memories of my Grandpa.  He loved a garage sale.  When we were all little we used to go camping at Beverly Beach during the summer.  If there was a garage sale between Newberg and Newport, we would stop to find the next big bargain. 
    • Riding in the top of the truck camper while Grandpa was driving…a little crazy.  I can still see drivers faces coming at us with look of terror as we went around corners.  
    • Listening to “Counting Flowers on the Wall” on the 8 track in the camper while playing cards.  Every time I hear that song I think of arguing with my cousin Maggie over whose rules of rummy are correct.
    • Old Fashioned Days parade every summer, with the Yamhill Sheriff Posse riding their horses with the appropriate flags, Grandpa sitting proud on his horse in his yellow shirt.
    Grandpa and I at Old Fashion Days
    • Getting to go to the posse meetings in Mac, running around the grandstands, playing in the dirt, and getting to ride the horses after the meetings.  Julie, Roco,  Andrea,  Coco, Brandy, Frosty were a few of his horses and mules.   A cowboy hat and belt buckle were permanent fixtures on Grandpa. 
    Funny Face JJ and Grandpa
    Several of us grandkids had the pleasure of picking filberts and walnuts and bucking hay.  Every once in a while a filbert would go flying through the air, perhaps hitting a sibling.  Grandpa would yell at us to get back to work.   My job for bucking hay was rolling the bales in rows and spreading salt on the bales when they were being put in the barn.   Grandma was the driver of the big red truck. “Hit it Marge,” Grandpa would yell when it was time for the truck to move.  The truck would usually die and Grandpa would yell again, sometimes going to help Grandma get it started.
    Boys love John Deere...especially the gator

    Barns.  Grandpa has a lot of barns, and they are filled with all his treasures from the garage sales.  When I wanted a camp stove, dad said ask Grandpa.  I did, he had several to choose from.  And the one we picked worked.  The boys have camping cots from one of Grandpa’s bargain hunts.

    I saw my first calf being born with Grandpa.   I am pretty sure it was my last. 

    The last several years, Grandpa and I had taken to talking about food and gardening.  He loved to order things out of crazy magazines that were delivered.  I think mom tried to recycle them before they made it to Grandpa’s hands.  Dutch oven recipes and ice cream maker recipes and mixes were some of his favorites.  Even though I’m pretty sure those items weren’t on his diet.
    Adrian and I with our kids and Grandpa and Grandma
    My boy’s memories of their great Grandpa are of riding in the gator to get the mail or paper.  Eating snacks with great Grandpa (great Grandma makes the best snacks).  The best summer birthday party ever when all the cousins come together to fish and go down the zip line. Getting to ride his stubborn mule and random horse shoes that he would give them.  My memories are those of Grandpa holding each baby boy and snoozing in the recliner with them.
    Grandma and Grandpa and the0ir kids
    In the words of the great John WayneCourage is being scared to death - but saddling up anyway." 
    My Grandpa was a proud and loving man.  He may have been scared when he it took him longer to remember which granddaughter he was talking too, or frustrated that Grandma wouldn’t make him scrambled eggs soaked in bacon fat.  But he didn't show it.  He saddled up every day and was the best Grandpa and great Grandpa that he could be.

    Thank you Grandpa.  I love you and you will be missed!

    Added notes...
    On the way home from our day, JJ (from the back seat) tells us that he's already forgetting what Grandpa's voice sounded like.  

    My cousin Tacie spoke today also.  She had letters form Mark and Wayne.  Both were amazing.  Friends of Grandpa's spoke too.  One brought up the pancake breakfasts at the posse. I had forgot about those.:)

    Monday, January 3, 2011

    Finally a Big Boy

    January 3rd is Cooper's 3rd Birthday.  The day the sippy cups disappear and my little guy becomes a Big Boy.  
    As I write this, he is resting his head on my shoulder and we are snuggling in bed. Jackson and his friend Luke are comfy in their sleeping bags watching a movie in the playroom and JJ is at Camp Gma and will be home this afternoon.
    Cooper is our bonus baby. I sent Corey back to the store at least 5 times to buy more tests because they kept being positive. 
    His birth story is a quick one. We went to our morning appointment and Dr. Betterton had us check into the hospital. With all 3 boys I was induced due to high blood pressure. They get me all hooked up to the bells and whistles, and pitocin drip.  We wait a bit, I get checked, nothing, pitocin seems to be taking it's own sweet time.  Couple hours go by, I am not sure the exact order but somewhere in there my parents arrive, Corey goes home to get the boys settled, nurse tells us it won't be until later in the night and then another nurse checks me. Woosh, she accidentally breaks my water.  The contractions begin and they are STRONG!  There is no stopping now. We get on the long list of people wanting epidurals, contractions are getting stronger and much closer.   Epidural guys arrives, I "talk" to Corey on the phone and strongly encourage him to speed back to the hospital or he may miss the birth. About 3:00 pm Corey and Dr. Betterton walk into the room and 11 minutes later out pops Cooper.   The epidural served no purpose.  Famous last words again from our doctor...."It really does get easier each time for you guys." 
    Cooper Alan Anderson made his grand entrance into the world January 3, 2008 at 3:11 pm weighing in a tad over 7 pounds and 20 inches tall.  He is my snuggler and ball boy.   He could shoot at the living room hoop for hours, as long as someone rebounded for him.  He loves oatmeal and rice milk.  Every morning when he wakes up, "Milk mommy, milk daddy."  His favorite songs are Return of the Quack and Call me a Duck.  Elmo is his favorite monster and anything John Deere puts a smile on his face.  He loves recycling and garbage trucks and tackling his brothers.
    Happy Birthday Cooper! Have an amazing day!