Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Memorial Day memories

I thought you would enjoy this photo of the Hoop-lahs and their cousins (from top) Connor, Tori and Brody.

We met up in East Moline last weekend for a 50th anniversary party for Big Dog's parents. The last time we saw the cousins in Pennsylvania Tori was just a baby. Time goes by so fast.

We worked a lot into three days. Got our picture taken, ate at Hungry Hobo, Roy's Tacos (an old favorite of Big Dog's brother), Whitey's ice cream (twice!), and Happy Joes, where the kids played on the jungle gym and in game room. Probably the last time on the jungle gym for Riley. He is too big (surprise) to go down the slides anymore. A party, swimming at the hotel, hustling back for a baseball game yesterday . . . nonstop all weekend long.

Those kids are adorable. I enjoyed every minute of being with them. Well, except for the part where the photographer referred to me as Tori's grandma. Say what?

Here are a few more photos from the weekend.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

A walk down memory lane

My filing system is sort of lame. I take things downstairs, set them on the desk, where they remain for anywhere from 4-7 years before I figure out what to do with them.

But hey, I can usually find what I'm looking for . . . sooner or later.

Today I found this picture from the Elephant Bar, circa 2006. I think. I also found $25 hidden away in cards. Ka-ching!

Compare it to the picture from a few months ago. So what do you think? Do these Hoop-lahs look the same?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Driving me C-R-A-Z-Y

Someone asked me yesterday whether I have any pet peeves. Totally cracked me up. Let's just say I have a few. None of which have anything to do with me. I'm sure you knew that though.

Case in point, exhibit A. This is Big Dog's bathroom drawer with one, no two, wait a minute I see three, four, five, SIX tubes of partially used toothpaste.

All I want to know is why. I haven't been able to figure this out in more than 20 years. And it's only the half-used, travel-size tubes he hoards. Eventually, I will toss them out and he'll start over from scratch.

As annoying habits go, it's not bad. But it's always the ones that seem to be easy to solve that cause you to bang your head on the wall.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Random weekend musings . . .

Riley is in Kansas City for basketball. So far so good. 3-0 and the top seed in their pool for tomorrow's bracket play.

But someone in our house isn't very happy that he's away. Can you guess who? She keeps going to the window to look for him, which is what she does every day after school. When she sees him she goes crazy. But today she looks, then puts her head down. I've tried to get a picture, but each time she gives me a mournful look and steps away. Don't tell me that dogs don't love their people. That boy is her boy and she is waiting for him.

With no guys around, it was a good day for Carly and I to get our hair done. New highlights for summer. Remember how happy they made her last time? Hers look great. Mine look a little blonde. I may need a few days to get used to it. We also went shopping. We're having a family picture taken next weekend . . . do you know how hard it is to coordinate outfits? Especially when someone loves the brightest, most patterny things out there. But that is what makes her her.

My friend Tricia over at Three Men and a Lady had a garage sale last weekend. I picked up a copy of Here's the Story, an autobiography written by Maureen McCormick. You might remember her as Marcia, Marcia, Marcia of Brady Bunch fame. Just finished it today. Great book, well written. She had a tough go, but her story is one of resilience, which I am all about right now. Now I'm going to try and find a copy of Greg's (Barry Williams) book. And Rob Lowe. That one's on my list too. As is watching St. Elmo's Fire.

 It's no wonder I never get any housework done. I've got too many other things to do!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Setting an example . . . or not

Did you read the article in the Register today about the local dad being arrested for causing a ruckus at a kids' game? A game for six year olds. You can read about it here.

Regular Hoop-lah'ers know bad sportsmanship is one of my pet peeves, mentioned once, twice, three times. In general, I average six games a week and have seen adult after adult after adult act like jackasses. They question calls, they yell at their kids, they yell at other kids. They berate officials, coaches, other parents . . . It goes on and on and on.

And I always wonder how they conduct themselves in other parts of life when they are unable to control themselves at a kids' game. Key words there being kids and game. Because honestly, no matter how much of a superstar little Johnny or Janey might be now, chances are they're going to grow up and be working stiffs like everyone else . . . who have to know how to get along with others and persevere when life throws the occasional curve ball.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Paging Dr. Noah Drake

So I wound up with a splinter the size of a femur in my thumb. I know those visuals don't jive, but trust me. It was that big. A little yard work gone bad. Next time I'll stay on the couch like the rest of the Hoop-lahs.

You'd be impressed with my left-handed surgery skills. A safety pin, a quick shot of the "medicinal" variety and BOOM - as good as new. Except for a little swelling and redness. Maybe I should've cleaned off that safety pin first.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

What would you do?

We're back to basketball this weekend. Baseball too. That's a good thing because we're programmed to go a mile a minute all weekend long. Seven games over three days and interestingly the times don't conflict. Whoever planned those schedules gets a big kiss and a hug from me. LUCKY!

But here's the thing . . . as happy as we were to get back to business, my heart broke for a group of boys from Minnesota who were being berated by their basketball coach after a loss. In a parking lot next to the exit and witnessed by a stream of parents and players on their way out.

Not just berated. Public humiliation. Mean and loud and vulgar.

On the way home, I commented about how it felt like an episode of "What Would You Do?" The parents of those boys stood there and let it happen until finally one mom said something, only to have the coach turn on her. No one else intervened, parent or otherwise.

But we should have.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Back by popular demand

Even though we're a lovely looking bunch, my blog seemed to lose its edge when I changed the header picture. So I went back to the original. Sass and attitude. It's what the Hoop-lah house is all about.

Thanks Marti for the suggestion!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Much ado about nothing

Instead of a long and hilarious post like always, I'm shaking it up today with some quick observations, things you certainly need to know.
  1. By now you've heard that my friend Rick was arrested last week. You don't really believe he's guilty, do you? I am sure he was framed. He looks so sad in his mug shot. You know I was the first person he called...
  2. Turns out I was the 8 year old jacks champion during the 1975 Ankeny Centennial. Who knew? Certainly not me until I stumbed across my name and picture at the Ankeny Historical Museum. Where are my endorsement deals, my fame? Hmmm . . . there's got to be a reality show in there somewhere.
  3. Riley ran the mile yesterday in 5:41 - the fastest time among the 600+ kids in his grade. And he hit a home run Sunday. Obviously, he gets his athletic prowess from me (see above).