Quote of the Day: “Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn’t know you left open.” John Barrymore
Nate is a little concerned that my blog has turned into a diet blog but I assured him it has not. I really just need the support to lose these 7 lbs. and public humiliation seems to work for me but also I think there are so many good hints in this article from Runner’s World I keep quoting and I want to share.
RULE # 6 ALWAYS HAVE A PLAN “Set aside one hour every weekend to map out your meal plan for the coming week. Then create a shopping list for the ingredients you’ll need. Stock up on quick-and-healthy staples,… for busy days. You’ll notice when you take the time to plan meals, one thing will be missing from your grocery cart- junk food. If you’ve got produce, dairy, lean meat, and whole grains in there, … then the Cheetos, cookies, and soda become the top-off instead of the major component. There just isn’t room for the bad stuff.”
So I have 30 Service Scholar portfolios sitting in my living room just waiting for me to open and look inside. I really do enjoy reading the portfolios and learning what these amazing students from Skyline have accomplished during their high school years, they have to complete 170 hours of documented service for this award, but somehow, it’s like starting a term paper, it’s hard to begin. That’s why I’m at my computer blogging, I’m just not complete if I haven’t blogged for the day. Outside my window, winter has arrived. It’s a dusky blue outside and the snow is falling lightly. It’s one of those nights where I don’t have to go anywhere and I love that. I can just stay home!
When I was in New Orleans, I spent the first day of the USTA conference at a fabulous workshop that took place on the tennis court. We were taught by a master teacher how to teach children 10 and under to learn tennis and to have fun playing tennis. Statistics show that most of us stop participating in sports around the age of 13 due to parental and coach pressures. We were previously told to wear our tennis clothes and to bring a racquet because everyone knows you learn better and retain more if you actually do the drills yourself. How true, I loved playing the games we will eventually teach our students. Last week at Tennis & Tutoring, we employed some of the techniques and it really worked. We got the students playing games, before we were just instructing and teaching stroke formation but by using this method, you can take a short amount of time and teach stroke technique and then you get the kids playing. I was so excited after the workshop because it gave me so many great ideas for the TNT program. The next night, Joe and I went to the USTA award’s banquet and I got to see how a few programs like TNT were changing children’s lives for the better. Tennis is an amazing teacher, it’s like life in a game- you call your own lines so you have all these opportunities to chose honesty, or not. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose so how are you going to act? Good loser, good winner? Bad loser, bad winner? But here’s what I learned about me. As I watched these other programs, I realized that’s what I really want to do- teach at-risk children tennis so that the “playing field” becomes a little more even. I mean really get a large program going. At TNT, I’m getting attached to some of the kids who really try hard, listen and want to learn- we’re even talking about coaching a summer league.
As an added bonus, yesterday, after dinner, I started to throw some foam balls with Maggie and Kate. Maggie doesn’t like to catch balls, she turns her head even though she knows it won’t hurt her but Kate, yes little miss 1 and 1/2 year old actually catches the foam ball like it’s no big deal. But Maggie and I started playing a tennis game where she could volley the ball with the racquet and she had such success. She made me throw balls to her for a long time. I finally worried that her hand would be permanently sore, the next day. The best part, though, is that she loved it and felt so empowered by what she had learned. She kept saying “I’m a tennis player!” and “I’m good at this!”