Living the Dream

Living the Dream

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Inside Out- My Review

Hallie and I took a mid-day break while sweating our faces off at the Universal Studios this past weekend, and found ourselves in the cool theatre, watching a little film called "Inside Out".

Lacey had seen it for her birthday, called it the "Most clever film ever", so I needed to see it for myself.


I'm not going to say it didn't lag in a couple of places.....but for the most part.....


Who thinks of these movies???

I urge you to go see it, your kids won't probably like it, because it's content is so clever and you really kind of need to be an adult to relate.....but DO NOT spend the money to see it in 3D.  And, it's even one that would be a good one to rent.

I for one, will be buying it, because it has soooo many quick witted one liners, that it's one I will enjoy again and again. 

The main point I took away from it was.... even though you would love only to experience JOY your whole life....sometimes sadness mixed with joy gives you the best kind of life. 

The dad "emotions" and the teenage boy "emotions" made me LOL, so just get ready.

It was really ironic that just that morning, Hallie had told me "Mom, you know, we were all so sad and disappointed in our regional loss....but without it, none of us would have been here, and we wouldn't have experienced all the incredible things we experienced here.  I met West Point and they want me, I played in the National Championships, on the computer TV,  and won a slick medal and we wouldn't have been here to play in the beach tournament and get a bid to go to the Junior Olympics in Hermosa Beach end of July!  Sometimes the hard stuff we don't understand, leads us to the very best things in our lives."

Whoa.  She's learning that at 16.  Every single  credit card I had to max out to take us, is worth it, to hear those words from my kid.  

Sometimes the Hard stuff we don't understand, leads us to the very best things in our lives. 

Sadness, mixed with's what our lives are all about.  Embrace them all.

Pass, Set, Kill - Volleyball Nationals 2015

Hallie has been super blessed to be on several incredible volleyball teams in her short career.

This year she played with Oklahoma Peak Performance (OP2) 16-1's team, AKA Peak Smack.
They are feared and revered in the Oklahoma volleyball world.  With good reason, as 6 of the 10 (wait, 11, more on this later) stand over 6 foot tall.

Yeah.  Hal is the shrimp.

Ok, maybe not the shrimp, but she fits right in like she's a small girl.  :)  It's terrific.

This past week, we attended the AAU National Championships in Orlando, FL.  It has been an intense, crazy week.  I fear going back and living a normal existence will be quit boring-ish.  We lived in a constant adrenaline rush (not so much the first day), for 3 solid days. 

For this old   Thankfully, my dear old friend, Melba Pulliam drove down from Georgia and hung out with me and Hallie and kept me calm and collected.....

She had NO idea how much her blood pressure was going to spike the 4 days I had her with us......I think she liked it, though.

Hallie and I counted and they played 34 sets of volleyball.  In 4 days.  That's a bangload of volleyball.  That's a bangload of elevated blood pressure.

They played 13 teams during those 34 sets.  It was exhilarating, exhausting and heart stopping.  I know we went in with high hopes for this tournament, but as days passed and we just kept winning... it looked like it could become a reality.

The one thing we absolutely have in spades, other than height, is heart.  And friendship.  There is no sniping on this team, no griping about other players....all of these girls truly adore each other.  It's beautiful to see.  They are all Volleyball driven, christian, SMART girls.  And their parentals ain't bad, either.

The girls only dropped one game the whole week (in 3, of course) but because they had such a huge lead in points, they always came out on top.  When we found ourselves going to the semi-finals at the very cool ESPN center on Friday, they were over the moon.  Their mantra was "One game at a time, one point at a time." and it worked for them big time.

Plus, their coach is awesome and had them playing hacky sac on the sidelines to keep them out of their heads.

Then it was time for quarterfinals.  And we beat them.  And the other's team parentals were floored, because they hadn't lost a set all weekend.   Until us.

Then it was time for semifinals.  Another team that hadn't lost a game all week....until us.  Yep, won that one too.  Hallie won $10 from one of the dads for smashing a ball in a girl's face.  That's how we roll.

Then it was time for finals.  Live streamed on ESPN, bright lights, announcers, big screens, jittery nerves.....National Championship.


We lost the first set 25-20, won the second set 25-23, and the that THIRD SET.......


Usually we can yell and act ridiculous and it's NOT ON TV.  But it was one lousy call.

And in those clutch games, one point can change the momentum, and it did....and we lost 15-13 in the third.  So disappointing.

But HOW PROUD we were of our girls.  So was Minnie. 

Medal Ceremony.  Purdy Neat.

If you want to watch the game on ESPN, here is the link

It's really cool at the beginning, they talk about Hallie and then by the time she starts playing, they call her the wrong name over and over, and talk about the other teams when she makes her best plays.  All very upsetting to her sister watching in California...who text me  "These stupid announcers like the other team better".   But hey....we were on ESPN.  And an OPEN club team barely beat us.....that says A LO T.  Proud.  And West Point offered her a scholarship.   Not a bad week to be Hallie.

2nd place out of 102 teams, and that ain't too shabby.

It is not the size of a person, but the size of their heart that matters.  And in the case of volleyball, the size kind of matters, but the size of their hearts, in those big ole bodies??    Hearts of winners.

The end of a fantastic 16 year club season.


You know I always have a "Laura"ism for every single event of my life.  So I'm sharing.
When it rains in Florida, it doesn't just rain, it falls from the sky like a cow peeing on a flat rock.  Straight down, no mercy, soaks everything in its path.  We were in the middle of one of these rains, and are running to our car (after a long day of volleyball) in the semi-darkness.  I forgot in my rain washed state, that Melba's Tahoe has a 40 foot trailer hitch hanging off the back bumper.  (OK, I'm exaggerating for effect here).  (It's only 20 feet) .  Anyhoo...... I managed to catch my knee on the bumper, full tilt 40 mph, and threw myself in the wet grass, pretty much screaming..."I've broke my knee......I've broke my knee."   Of course, Hallie and Melba are NO help, as they are laying on the ground, rolling, laughing at me.....and they manage to pick my old butt up off the soaked ground, put me in the Tahoe, and laugh at me all the way back to the hotel.  Amazingly enough, my broken knee, after a good night sleep, and an 800 mg ibuprofen, was just fine the next day, and to my disappointment, nary a scratch nor bruise.  Like it didn't even happen.   Neat.

Monday, June 15, 2015

One month old.....what?

I haven't blogged in a while.

So much has happened.   My grandson, Deaton is here.

In fact, he's a month old.

  He has in a blink of an eye, gone from this precious little sleeping sac of yumminess.....

to this precious little dimpled ham.  He is loud, poops like a machine, eats like a lumberjack and has grown 3 pounds and 2 inches in 4 short weeks.

He is perfection. 

We got the wonderful pleasure of having him for 2 days, while his daddy went to a work retreat, and mommy didn't think she could do all nighters 2 days in a row.

After having that little cry bag, I have to agree.  If he is burped, full, and dry diapered, he is terrific.
If he is partially one of the above things, he is NOT a happy camper.  He doesn't like to be hot, swaddled in ANY way, and loves watching loud kids.  That works out, since I have 4 of those living with me.

Very fun.  Though I was so tired, I was cross eyed, the minute they left to go home, I started missing them.  He is just precious.

I've been putting a Daily Dose of Deaton  (DDoD) on Instagram, (when his mommy isn't too cross eyed to send me a daily pic) and I love these little drops of sunshine.  It's fun, it's exciting, and he really is the most precious grandson I have ever had.


In all of this perfection, though, I have such a deep depression going on inside, and I can't pinpoint why or where it is coming from.  The kids are all doing good.  Baby is healthy.  Work is good.

I can't pinpoint it, but when I figure it out, I will share because I think it's real courage to share the hard with the good.

And the hard is kicking my butt right now.  I will figure it out though.  Because there is so much wonderful out there in my life.....I have to find it.  I think God's timing is perfect, and it will all be good. 

So glad Kip got to come home and meet Deaton.  I had such a sick headache in this pic, I don't even remember that day very much, but it looks like everyone had fun.  :)  
God is good, even through times of extreme worry and sadness, All the Time He is Good.