Well…

I think I have waited long enough to make my next post to this blog…Ya think?

Here is a recap of the summer so far…
May: The biggest event of May was Austin’s Dental adventure. He received what they (in the business) call a Baby Root Canal. It didn’t sound too bad when they explained it to me so I had no worries that Austin would do great. What a freakin parental nightmare that thing was. Luckily for Jenn I was the one that went with him to help/hold/pin. Austin did great for the first part which was actually a filling on the other side of his mouth. Everything was perfect until the dentist used the water rinse…OOOHHH, not good…From that point on he cried, wiggled and asked for his daddy, ROUGH!! That was the most exciting news of May. We also went to Las Vegas to celebrate my upcoming 30th birthday. We went with our friends Dave/Kristen Gervase and Kevin/Jen Thill. It was an absolute blast!! Jenn and I gambled mostly on sports and came away winners on most of our bets. Even Jenn’s spiteful bet against Kobe Bryant(she isn’t fond of him) was a big winner. Our last night there we had a great meal with my Uncle John, Aunt Vicki and cousin Erin. A few weeks later Jenn and I participated in USAV(olleyball) nationals as we have in most recent years. This time was New Orleans and I was unimpressed(not to sound insensitive but I heard this is as clean as it has been). The results? My team finished 5th in the Open division and Jenn’s team finished 4th in the A division. All in all a pretty disappointing trip and darn hard on the body.

On to
June: I started my summer’s adventures with beach volleyball. This summer would be an interesting one on that front, a new partner(the first of a few) and lots of travel. The first weekend brought me and Keith to Oklahoma City for a little warmup tournament to see how we would gel as a team together. It couldn’t have been any better, we didn’t drop a game as we went through the finals and won the tournament. Great start. Next stop was going to be the AVP qualifier in Hermosa Beach which I was not allowed to play in due to a little conflict with the AVP and EVP. So Keith and I played in the Santa Barbara EVP event and played really well. We went through the winner’s side of the tournament until the crossover semifinals where we met Mike Diehl and his partner for this event Josh Cannon. They just outplayed us by a few points in the end beating us and eventually taking the tournament. The next stop was going to be the AVPNext tournament in Milwaukee, winning that tournament would provide an automatic bid into the Chicago AVP. Once again I was denied from playing…Jenn and I decided to take the kids and spend the week in Chicago. The rest of the family(Jenn’s side) were they as well and it was great for the kids to play with their cousins. The first weekend we attended cousin Sophia’s birthday party/dedication which was an absolute blast…I thought the kids were going to explode from running and running and running. That leads us to the last weekend of the month and another volleyball tournament. This one was Jenn’s beach volleyball debut with her sometimes partner for this summer, Lorelee. they played great and ended up finishing in fifth place, the highest for her so far in EVP tournaments. Keith and I played once again and after struggling early(lost our first match) we made it back to the finals. Once again we faced Mike Diehl, this time he was paired with usual partner Mark Paaluhi. I lost to them plenty of times last year but this one was ours as we were able to take the finals in two games and win the tournament. Taylor and Austin were still taking their swim classes and doing awesome with it, we will have to get some video footage on here of them in the pool.

July: More volleyball. Off to Michigan City where I played with a new partner because Keith was in Las Vegas. A real windy day, which I loved and felt like it was an advantage for sure. Ryan and I rolled through most of the tournament playing pretty well. The finals were a little strange in that Ryan was cramping but so was one of the guys(Tom Mendoza) we played against(Dan Friend was his partner) . It was some bad volleyball but Ryan and I pulled out the victory. Jenn and her partner (Sonya for this event) had a little struggle early but rallied back to finish 9th. July 4th was a great time back here in town with the kids. They had a great time watching the fireworks from the back of the van. It is amazing how different it is in an area that allows personal fireworks, the show went on all around us for most of the night. We decided that this was the week we would start our fence also. With Jenn able to be home on the 4th we got to work…Wow what a pain in the a$$ this project was. The post hole digging was the most taxing part, I think I am just getting over the effects now!! We were able to get all the posts and rails up before the weekend. Jenn took the weekend off as I went to Santa Cruz for an event with Keith(it was on TV if you get Comcast Sports Net, Altitude Sports Network and several other stations). The whole tournament was a struggle, we got in real late Friday night and were up early for the tournament. Our first match was real close, a three gamer and not the way you want to start but we won…That kind of led to some more average volleyball and close games, but still winning. The sand got hot throughout the day and by the semis we were pretty toast…Obviously we bowed out there. Back to the midwest to Racine Wisconsin for a great event there. The set up was awesome and the city did a great job marketing and supporting the event. Jenn played with yet another partner and unfortunately didn’t improve upon her previous finishes taking another 9th. Keith and I kept up our sluggish play from the previous week struggling through a majority of our matches. We got back to the semis and hit a wall of another sort. Unable to blame our loss on anything but ourselves and our opponents we took another 3rd. A welcome week off followed that tournament and it was nice just to kick back and relax for a couple days. The last weekend we made a road trip to Grand Haven Michigan. Jenn again playing with a different partner, Karla. They played really well and just missed finishing 5th again falling in the end to take 7th. Keith and I played much better volleyball and got back to the finals. We won the first game pretty easily and thought we were cruising to the finish. Unfortunately I played poorly and forced into a game three where we squeaked out the victory 19-17.

August: Next stop St. Louis where this time I played with a new partner, Dan Schultz who I have known since high school. We played well all day and won in a two game final. Jenn once again played with Lorelee and repeated the same finish she had in their Chicago appearance taking 5th. The next weekend brought us back to Chicago for the EVP National Championships, another televised event which will air August 27th(I will look up and post the details later). Jenn played again with Karla and stumbled a bit. After battling closely with two good teams, they took 13th place. I played with Dan again with continued success. We struggled in our late matches but were able to pull out close wins. We met Diehl and Paaluhi for their chance at redemption. Fortunately after a rough start we stepped it up, mostly behind Dan’s great play. We finally finished off the match, playing one game due to time constraints and winning 25-23. This month marked the kids return to school and my return to work, ugh. The dream is over. Taylor has had a great time at school and she is showing off her smarts and artistic abilities. Austin on the other hand is just now becoming more comfortable with the idea. Nothing more heart-breaking than seeing the little man’s pouty face as you walk out the door. But he has gotten better and is ‘playing with friends’ and ‘coloring’. In this short time he has gotten much better with his colors, numbers and letters. Dear old dad just couldn’t get him to focus for learning time so it has been a blessing.

An hour of typing later…I am done.