Dave and Cathy's Family Blog

June 30, 2017

June 2017 – Family Updates

Filed under: Lilah and Luke,Mom and Dad,Uncategorized — dave9169 @ 9:42 pm

June Highlights:

A Month of Awards

This month we had another academic award added to the collection as Luke received an award for his 4.0 GPA during his school’s promotion ceremony. In addition to that Luke won a coach’s choice award for volleyball. Luke said he received the award for a combination of factors – his play, his ability to recruit other 8th graders to join the team, and his general overall positive spirit and presence, which coach Aquino really appreciated.

Lilah followed up her own academic achievement from last month with an athletic award of her own – most improved swimmer. She received this honor because her coach was impressed with her effort and the improvement she showed in taking nearly 4 seconds off her personal best time for the 100-yard breast stroke (missing a CIF consideration time by just about a second). At the year end championships the top four girls, which included Lilah, were separated by less than 4 seconds and Lilah’s coach reminded her that she definitely belongs in the top group. It will be interesting to see how Lilah uses that as motivation for next season. 

After last month’s grueling half ironman race in Sonoma, it was nice to do a sprint race again at Castaic Lake. This was my first time there and I had a great day, taking 3rd place in my age group. Really liked the contrast of doing a small race again. Instead of the hyper organized and complicated logistics of a half ironman, this was just a simple, small fund raiser race for the high school cross country team. There were no swim caps handed out, no numbers to affix to your bike or helmet, no timing chips to put on, and no goodie bag crap to throw away. Other notable differences: plenty of room to breath, as there were three waves separated by 10 minutes; there were no volunteers yelling at you to dismount your bike before entering the transition area (you were able to ride your bike all the way in); and they also allowed your visitors to hang out with you in the transition area — definitely not something you can do at a larger USAT race.

Obviously, bigger races need better logistics because of the sheer number of participants (otherwise there would be mass chaos), but this race was organized enough — traffic was well controlled by the local sheriffs, the race director was on top of every single detail to make it safe for everybody, and the swim was an in-water start which kept people from swimming on top of each other. Added pluses: the shortest run to T1 ever (20 yards top), plenty of regular bathrooms to do your business (no porta potties), hanging out with my dad (and listening to his new favorite song, “Despacito“), bagging a third place finish and getting a nice underarmour t-shirt as the sole giveaway all for $70. Great job on organizing this event #canyonXC(http://www.canyonxc.com). I think this is a nice simple race i can keep coming back to.  

Luke’s Promotion Ceremony

It seems like not too long ago (3 years to be exact), we celebrated Lilah’s promotion to high school. This month, we did the same for Luke, but the feeling during and afterwards was different. You see, we’ve been involved with this school for 12 years as both our kids have done their K-8 here. It’s weird to think we won’t be driving back there again to pick up the kids or attend their various special events. The other thing we learned earlier in the month is that the principal, Tom, whom I graduated from high school with, is leaving the school after 11 years to become the principal of another school. Aaah, so many transitions. The good news is that we were definitely lucky to have Tom be the leader of our school for as long as he was. Through his tenure, he instilled a culture of leadership, achievement and volunteerism that I think the kids will carry forward no matter what they do in their lives.

In putting together the photos for this month’s blog post, it was clear to see that Luke also went through the gamut of emotions. He was quiet, happy, thoughtful, but also definitely felt the sadness of things coming to an end. It’s funny, but I don’t think I would have ever noticed that, if I had not taken a series of rapid-fire photos of him as he walked down the aisle with his schoolmates. It is in that sequence where I noticed Luke trying to keep his emotions in check — I have not posted those photos as I don’t want to embarrass him. I’m just glad that he’s such an appreciative, kind-hearted kid in so many ways and that he cares so much even though he tries to act tough and stoic. I swear, seeing that sequence choked me up too though, proving we’re both made from the same mushy stuff.

Speaking of mushiness, Luke let me know that the school put together a ceremony to honor Tom’s contributions to the school. Part of that ceremony was a big surprise song that all the kids performed in front of Tom. The song was “You Got a Friend in Me” from Toy Story. Needless to say, there was not a dry eye in the house.

A Summer Snowboarding Trip to Mammoth with Grandpy

As I think I’ve mentioned before, snow much snow fell in Mammoth this year (618 inches) that they plan to be open until August (or through August, can’t remember which). We took advantage of the abundance by making two trips to Mammoth this month, one on our own and one with grandpy. This was my dad’s first time in Mammoth or traveling down the 395 highway. It’s an experience I’ve been telling him about for years so I was glad I was finally able to pull him away from his gardening, his dog walks, home projects and all his comfortable routines to show him a new world.

It was nice to also have him as company for the trip as the drive is usually pretty solitary with Luke sitting in the backseat watching his movies or listening to music on his head phones, while I listen to my stuff projecting on only the front speakers. On this drive, we played Spanish pop music from my dad’s favorite station K-Love, as well as a compilation CD of songs from Mana and Oreja de Van Gogh, two very well know groups in the Spanish pop scene. We also shortened the drive by just talking about the scenery and life.

My dad seemed to soak it all in and enjoy it. He was a little scared when I proposed taking him up to the top of the mountain on the Gondola at 11K feet, but he sucked it up and joined us anyway. There he saw Luke jump over the edge of a double black diamond run, keeping himself a good safe distance away from the edge in the process. He took some pictures of the two of us before taking the Gondola back down.   

On the way back back home, we stopped by Convict Lake, and finally hit the Copper Top BBQ place in Big Pine, a place we’ve been meaning to stop at for 5 years now ;). Having grandpy with us gave us a good reason to stop at new places and take more pictures. It was 102 degrees at the Copper Top and seating was in a covered barn with no air conditioning, but oddly enough, it was not uncomfortable and we enjoyed the food. Our final pit stop, before heading home, was McDonald’s in Mojave where we all had ice cream cones and got caught up on our messages with the free WiFi.  

Not sure when grandpy will come with us on another trip like this again, but having the three generations of boys together for a road trip was a perfect way to cap off the season. 

That’s all for now. More next month

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