Thursday, November 6, 2014
Welcome to Writer's Workshop, a weekly collection of posts by very creative bloggers who are inspired by prompts offered by Mama Kat. This week I was drawn to the prompt of "football." I used to be a die-hard Rams fan when they were in Los Angeles. However, when they moved...and I moved...ironically to the same new city...my interest wained and I found other outlets to replace the over-priced tickets, parking, snacks....etc.! I found that my kids loved sports and I could enjoy a good soccer or football game from the comfort of my beach chairs and blanket!
I was elated when my boys showed an interest in playing football. I grew up watching my brothers play and watching games on TV with my dad. I even dreamed of playing myself, but it was unheard of girls playing football back in the 60's! I still loved the game, just not the dog-and-pony show that it had become. My boys played through middle and high school, and that was enough for me. I knew that at some point, it would end...I thought.
It was then that Edwina, my middle schooler at the time, expressed an interest in playing football. She had played soccer, basketball, volleyball and took dance classes. The Mister and I talked it over and agreed to let her give it a try, but she had to agree to finish the whole season, even if she hated it! She was so excited, I thought she would jump out of her skin. We found a local football organization that had never had a girl play, but that had nothing in their charter that prohibited girls from playing. They let her register. I don't know who was more excited...Edwina or mom! I couldn't wait to watch another child of mine play the game!
The practices were grueling but she hung in there for all of them. The majority of her teammates treated her as an equal, although there were a few that just couldn't accept that there was a "girl" on their team! She was just as strong as any of the boys, but her conditioning was not on the same level. She never let them see her sweat and she never complained of pain!
The day of her first game arrived. It was August...hot and muggy! After the second play, she realized just how out of condition she was and asked the coach to take her out of the game!!! The coach made her stay in and told her never to make that request again! As the season progressed, Edwina gained the confidence, the strength and the determination of a true football player and could stand toe to toe with anyone...in her division! She became quick and agile, and even sacked a few quarterbacks.
Edwina understood the plays and strategies of the game and when asked questions by the coaches she was the first to get that hand up in the air. She could talk football with anyone (except her girlfriends...they just didn't understand...but they loved to come to her games and check out the "boy" players!) She managed to get through two seasons with no major injuries, just bumps and bruises. I was called into the school nurse's office to explain some of those "bumps and bruises."
By the time Ed reached high school, the boys on her team had grown into much larger players than when she first played with them. Her 5'3" stature, along with her lack of really, really large muscle mass, helped with the decision to not play another year. She legally could have joined the team, but my head and heart felt that she would either get hurt while playing, or get frustrated sitting on the bench. Thank God for Field Hockey!
Ed will always have those memories, and so will I! In a way, I finally got to experience playing the game through her. She taught me that sometimes dreams can come true if we are willing to work hard and be prepared for the best.
Thanks for stopping by today. Please drop by Mama Kat's Writers Workshop and enjoy the stories of other inspiring bloggers!
Sunday, November 2, 2014
Got me some good 'ole Southern hospitality recently. Mr. NE and I are fortunate to have friends who run a Bed and Breakfast in the city of Bardstown, Kentucky. Several years ago, we were guests at "Shadowlawn" (Bardstown) where we enjoyed the company of old and new friends, and soaked up the history of a part of the country we had never seen.
The house was built in 1815 and has a plethora of historical information. It has weathered many owners who have shared stories every time the house was sold. This house has charm and beauty no matter where you are standing or sitting. Oh, and did I mention that there are resident ghosts dwelling at Shadowlawn? It is both welcoming and eerie at the same time. The basement light must stay on 24/7. Yes, there is electricity, as well as, toilets that flush. A part of the attic has a locked door to a small area. My curiosity was not strong enough to find out what was on the other side of that door. Actually, I was plain gutless.
Downtown is small and charming. One can walk around and see original buildings that have been renovated to become restaurants, shops and other B&Bs. Houses that are on the National Historical Society list line each and every street. There are 100 year-old trees that line these same streets. Oh, to be a branch on one of those trees over time, and watch how life has changed!
The most popular beverage is Bourbon. We took a tour of a distillery and learned just how hard people still work to make a good product. I did not test a sample at the end of the tour, but my friends did. I enjoyed watching them smile as the velvet liquid worked its way through their system. No, they weren't drunk....just very happy.
What a wonderful weekend we had...away from the kids (the dog - the kids have been away from us for some time, now!). It's a 6-hour drive from Chicago...just enough time to listen to a thriller of a book on tape..."Hold Tight" by Harlan Coben.
I live in Chicago, Illinois...but sometimes I visit other places, like Bardstown, Kentucky! Welcome to my city!
Please stop by Unknown Mami's Sundays in My City (even though it's now Monday) and read about some very lovely places that you may want to visit someday.
Thank you for stopping by today.