Thursday, June 30, 2016

Meet of Champs 2016!!!

Last night was our Division Meet of Champs and it is always a bit stressful but exciting. It was helpful that Addie wasn't swimming this year too because it gave us a little more time between events to go outside and sit a bit before filing back inside and trying to get a good spot to video the next race.
We came prepared with snacks and drinks and things to do and the kids did great both surviving the meet and swimming well in it.
Preston surprised us with a huge improvement and medal in backstroke and miss Ella, who we thought would do well, dropped way more time than we anticipated and is super excited going into All Stars tomorrow night!
As fun as summer swim can be, it is equally exciting to have the craziness over until the next year...one more meet to go ;-)!
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Preston's Free Relay
2nd/5 teams

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Ella's Free Relay
1st/5 teams

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just checking out what is under the mat before his race...that kid :-)
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Preston's Freestyle
10th/24
seed time: 29.36
this meet: 34.42

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Ella's Freestyle
1st/33
seed time: 30.81
this meet: 29.62

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This was such a shocker! After the coaches took the kids in to warm up Preston came running up to me excitedly telling me how he wished I had seen him warm up because he did backstroke PERFECT! I told him to do it again in his race so I could see, and at some point this week he must have figured out how to do it because it did look pretty darn good haha. He went from not even technically qualifying for his spot in this race to winning 4th overall. Silly guy! I hope he isn't too disappointed when he finds out his medal has a pink ribbon :-).
Preston's Backstroke
4th/15
seed time: 41.09
this meet: 31.87

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(I love this picture because it shows the size difference between Ella and most of the girls she swam against)
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So backstroke has long been Ella's worst stroke although recently it has been improving slowly but surely. Usually she makes up a lot of time on her flip turn so I thought it was weird when after the turn she came out further behind than she was going into the wall and afterwards she told me her foot had slipped during the push off. Despite only getting 2nd on this one she still qualified for the All Star meet so it will be interesting to see if she can drop more time with a good turn.
Ella's Backstroke
2nd/20
seed time: 37.42
this meet: 36.55

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Ella loves IM and we were expecting her to do well in this race, but she dropped almost 4 seconds! I couldn't believe it! I love watching her pull away on breaststroke.
Ella's IM
1st/15
seed time: 1:16.20
this meet: 1:12.91

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Right as the 15/18 boys were about to start their IM a huge storm blew in. It was POURING and there was continuous thunder and lightning for a good 30 minutes. Each time there was thunder or lightning it started the clock again to wait 30 minutes before the meet could resume. As it got later and later we were getting worried that we may have to finish the meet tonight. They ended up scratching the medley relays at the end (which Ella was really really sad about because her team has a great one) but on the bright side at 10:15pm we were able to start swimming again and quickly finished up the rest of the events.
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This is definitely the race Ella was most excited about! She has always loved breaststroke and recently she has been seeing big improvements in it. We were hoping for her to get in the 38's to get a good seed time for the All Stars meet but she blew us away!
Ella's Breaststroke
1st/19
seed time: 39.64
this meet: 37.24

Mike's dad was standing at the other end of the pool and from his view you can see just how great her 2nd pull out was.

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Ella's Fly
1st/20
seed time: 34.64
this meet: 33.11

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It was so fun to have Papa there to cheer on the kids and see their improvements! One more meet tomorrow night and then summer swim is officially over!
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Our Last Summer Meet

After an exciting Meet of Champs last night, blogging this feels a little anti-climatic :-). It was a hot and muggy meet with a short downpour partway through, but the kids had their best meet of the season...well aside from the practice meet. Addie and Preston both had their best times of all of summer swim at our practice meet. Mike and I laughed about this many times. Who practices another month and doesn't improve at all?! As a result of this they started out as top swimmers in their age groups and then were passed up by a lot of kids. Preston ended up still getting to go to Meet of Champs for freestyle and the free relay and then by default got to go in backstroke (he was 5th fastest but one of the other boys couldn't go so it bumped him into the 4th spot). Addie didn't get to go for anything and I was worried about how she would feel since the other two were going, but when I broke the news her response was pure excitement as she said, "YES!!!! That water is COLD!!!" She did get to swim the butterfly one more time and dropped 10 seconds on it, so that was a great way to end her little summer season. Go Crocs!
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Preston's Freestyle
seed: 29.36
this meet: 32.20

Addie's Freestyle
seed: 22.10
this meet: 22.61

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Ella's Freestyle
seed: 31.44
this meet: 30.81

Preston Backstroke
seed: 41.09
this meet: 43.86

Addie Backstroke
seed: 24.10
this meet: 24.51

Ella Backstroke
seed: 38.18
this meet: 37.42

Ella's IM
seed: 1:17.16
this meet: 1:16.20

Before Ella's breaststroke started, it randomly poured down rain on us for a good 10 minutes or so. The swimmers thought it was great :-)!
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Ella's Breaststroke
seed: 39.89
this meet: 39.64

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Addie's Fly
seed: 34.03
this meet: 28.56

Ella's Fly
seed: 35.55
this meet: 34.64

Addie did a great job on her backstroke portion of the medley relay every time and was always the first one from our team to touch the wall. Too bad she couldn't do this in her individual race and get bumped up to the better relay.


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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Family Fun

With summer comes lots of family time, for better or worse ;-). In addition to our quality time going to swim meets we have also had some fun together going to the movies, watching shows at home and hitting the water park. Over the last week we also got to spend additional time with extended family on both sides which was a treat. My cousin Jack has been coming to town periodically for work and it gives us all a perfect excuse to get together for yummy food and to catch up. Mike's sister Brittany and her crew also came out to stay with us for a couple days and we had a lot of fun with them going to Typhoon Texas, eating yummy food and letting all the little boys be crazy together. Mike's cousin Spencer and his family stopped by on their cross-country mega road trip and the timing worked out perfectly to be when Brittany was here! We also celebrated Mike's birthday a little early with a selection of our favorite pies from Proud Pie on Sunday with my side of the family and Mike's dad who was in town just at the right time! It's so fun to get to see everyone more often than we do during the rest of the year!
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Ella helping make chili, Addie going to her first ever book club meeting (she loved it) and Preston taming spiders. He used to be terrified of them but Addie has somehow convinced him that they are amazing and now he picks them up and lets them crawl all over him...AAHHHH!!!
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Monday, June 27, 2016

Ella's Swim Meet at A&M

The weekend of June 17th Ella had a long course swim meet at Texas A&M. She was very excited about the meet and had high goals to get A times in most of her events because she wanted to qualify to go to the A Champs meet in July that her best friends would be swimming at. She woke up Friday morning not feeling her best and I think that rough beginning carried over for awhile.
She dropped just a second on her 400 Free and then the next day started out with 200 back. Backstroke is her least favorite (because it is her worst stroke) and she was frustrated by her time. Her next event was 100 Breaststroke which she was really looking forward to. She had literally NO time between the two races and she looked great but missed the A time by 0.24 seconds and was crushed. So frustrating to be so close!!!
She had a few hours before her 200 Fly and was pretty pumped up for the race. She had never done it but has been feeling confident about the improvement in her fly. She started out so strong but her cap fell off during the race, which is pretty much her worst nightmare. She finished it but was sobbing as soon as she got out of the pool. Her sweet buddies were all hugging her and comforting her and totally made me tear up from way up in the stands. We love Coach Val and it made me laugh to hear the exchange they had after this disastrous fly race. She asked Ella why she was crying and Ella told her because her cap came off so she didn't get her A time. Val told her she could have still gotten her A time with no cap :-) and then she told Ella a funny story about when her own cap had come off.
The last day of the meet Ella had 3 strong events to try for her A times, 200 Free, 100 Fly and 200 Breast. On the 200 Free Ella did amazing and got 2:37.85 and guess what the A time is? 2:37.59!!! She missed it by 0.26 seconds. 100 Fly was very soon after and Ella had another great race, but again just barely missed her A time by AGAIN 0.26 seconds! Poor Ella shed more tears at this meet over these close times than she ever has before.
She had a long break before her last race and we told her how great it would be to be at the BB champs meet instead with these times that were virtually A times because she will be able to do so well. Ella was so ready to kill it on her last race of the meet, one of her favorites, 200 Breaststroke. The A time cut off is 3:21.09 and she didn't even cut it close this time, getting 3:17.13 and 5th overall.
It was a fabulous way to end an emotional meet and now we get to see her rock it next month at the champs meet she qualified for!
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Ella at the same pool two years ago and now...it is amazing how far she has come in that time!!!
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400 Freestyle
11th/29
Seed: 5:35.80
This Meet: 5:34.92
(lane 6, 3rd from right)

SATURDAY
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200 Back
13th/26
Seed: NT
This Meet:3:09.94
(lane 8, very right)

100 Breast
10th/61
Seed: 1:39.49
This Meet: 1:34.03
(lane 6, 3rd from right)

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200 Fly
6th/7
Seed: NT
This Meet: 3:18.41
(lane 8, very right)

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SUNDAY
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200 Free
10th/32
Seed: 2:41.21
This Meet: 2:37.85
(lane 8, far right)

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100 Fly
8th/38
Seed: 1:27.60
This Meet: 1:22.15
(lane 3)

200 Breast
5th/24
Seed: 3:27.23
This Meet: 3:17.13
lane 8 again :-)

we survive these meets with electronics....especially when they can go sit in their own area to play them ;-)!
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