Posts Tagged ‘soccer’

We stayed a few days with Aunt Susie and Uncle Dan in Charlottesville, and I think I can safely say we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. I hadn’t seen any of them in four years, so we had a bit of catching up to do. It was a little disconcerting to see how much Will and Matt had grown; I’m pretty sure Will at least will be taller than me next time I see him. On the flip side, their being older meant we actually have some things in common now. Namely, Will is now a huge Doctor Who fan, which pleases me greatly. 😀 Sandrine was amused to note that we have the same “geek-out” face. Well, I have been saying for years that Will is basically a male version of me, so really, that shouldn’t come as a surprise. And Matt is a male version of Sandrine (which she does not bother to deny).

Our visit was filled with errands, video games, ONE episode of Doctor Who (Will and I managed to behave ourselves), soccer games, a visit with Grandpa, and a trip to the Green Valley Book Fair (where I managed to not buy ALL the Doctor Who novels). Good times. 🙂

Will's soccer game

Will’s soccer game

Matt's soccer game

Matt’s soccer game


Yes, it says Stargate Lane

Yes, it says Stargate Lane

Visiting Grandpa

Visiting Grandpa

Uncle Dan, Aunt Susie, Matt, and Will

Uncle Dan, Aunt Susie, Matt, and Will


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On April 15th, we got to go see the Women’s Champions League semifinal (Lyon vs. Potsdam), which Lyon won 5-1. We were almost in the front row, so I managed to get some pretty decent shots. Not quite as many as I would have liked, since it was overcast and drizzling, but still pretty good:

Camille Abily

Goal! Group hug! 😀

A little blurry, but this gives you an idea of how wet it was

The following week my barn hosted a show:

Elisabeth and Palou, ready for his very first jumping competition

Ombeline and Venus

Séverine and Travolta got a nice compliment from the judges for looking extra snazzy 🙂

Doriane and Palou

Sophie and Radium, looking fabulous as usual 🙂

Doriane and Naika

Chloe and Lili

Victory lap for Elise and Leslie

Fleurine and Nénuphar showing off their first-place ribbon 🙂

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Alrighty, as promised, here is a sampling of my shutter-happiness from this fall:

Angel and Kevin at the river trail

Pics from Grignan (a village not far from here):

So much "artsy shot" potential here...

Castle entrance

Abbey courtyard

Side view of the castle

Pics from Toulon:

Toulon marina

View from the Mont Faron

Kevin, Angel and Audrey

Audrey and me


A few shots from the soccer game:

October pics coming up next!

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April in Pictures

Last month got off to a running start…

Or not.

On the 9th, we went to see Lyon vs. Arsenal in the Women’s Champions League semifinals (which Lyon won 2-0)

April 15th – two new ponies arrived at the barn:




Tip Top - "Ewwo!" 🙂

I think my picture-taking got on Lucy and Twilight’s nerves after a while:

"Do you mind? We're trying to sleep here!"

All right, putting the camera away for now…

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Don’t panic

Or, as a good friend of mine likes to say, “Everything’s going to be just fine.”

Or, as my very best friend likes to say, “There will be NO DYING today!”

So, in case you hadn’t figured it out from the long silence and the introduction, life has been, well, more than slightly insane, I guess you could say. Since my last post, my grandmother was hospitalized after a fall, returned home, then was moved to a nursing home due to her deteriorating health (I ended up doing most of the packing), and in the 3 weeks following that, I’ve played yet another round of Musical Furniture, been to a Women’s Champions League semifinal game, done battle with writer’s block and insomnia, and now I’m helping to prepare for this weekend’s seminar (or trying to). Did you follow all that? Good.

I really don’t have a whole lot to say about my grandmother moving to a nursing home, except it’s quite frankly a relief. Don’t get me wrong, I love her very much, but she really wasn’t doing that well the past few months and taking care of her was getting to be exhausting. Not to mention she wasn’t exactly a model patient. It was really in everyone’s best interests that she be placed in professional hands, so to speak. From what I’ve heard, she’s doing a lot better now.

It’s made life a lot easier for the rest of us now. We can actually all go somewhere for more than an hour at a time, for one thing. We took full advantage of that on the 9th when we found out that the OL women’s team was playing Arsenal at Lyon in the Women’s Champions League semifinals. I’d been wanting to watch a game there for years, plus it was a great opportunity to show some support for French women’s soccer, which is only just now starting to catch on. (Some of you may not know that I played recreational league soccer for 3 years before seriously getting back into horseback riding, and it’s still one of my favorite sports, both to play and to watch.) I was very pleasantly surprised at the crowd that showed up: the official tally was 20,123 people. Of course, the ridiculously cheap tickets might have had something to do with it. Not that anyone was complaining. Judging from the comments I heard around me, this was the first time many of them had ever seen a women’s game, and they were impressed by how good they were. After one particularly spectacular save, one guy even commented, “Wow, I don’t think even the guys could pull that off!”
The Lyon ladies earned themselves quite a few new fans that afternoon. The fact that they won 2-0 was really just the icing on the cake. 🙂

I’ve been attempting to unwind and, well, find myself again these past couple of weeks, and I’m not entirely sure I’ve succeeded yet. With the exception of the youth conference in February and a couple of really good riding sessions here and there, the past few months have been pretty rough, to say the least. I was not exagerrating when I said caring for my grandmother was exhausting, both physically and mentally. Add to that the fact that things at church weren’t going well, and you had a recipe for disaster. I was giving more and more of myself and getting very little in return. Not that the rest of the family didn’t sympathize – far from it – but they were just as worn out as I was. We’re all still incredibly tired.
Thankfully God did not let me break down and lose it, though I came close a few times. It’s a miracle I wasn’t a total wreck by the time it was all over. That being said, I’m still really not myself. In a way, I haven’t exactly been myself for years. I’m getting there, though, I hope. Some days I still feel like I’m just stumbling along, but as a good friend of mine said recently, the important thing is to keep putting one foot in front of the other and trusting God to lead me in the right direction.

In other news, I was finally able to start working again on a story I started about two years ago. Over the course of one year, I’d written and posted nine chapters and started the tenth. Then I got hit with what was probably my worst case of writer’s block ever. Once in a while (read: once every 3 or 4 months), I’d manage to add a couple of sentences, but I never seemed to really get anywhere. Finally, last week I sat myself down and made myself finish that chapter before going to bed (much like I’m doing for this blog entry, actually). I ended up going to bed at 3:30 am, but I did finally finish it. The chapter, that is; the story itself still has a ways to go. I’m not sure yet just how many more chapters are left or exactly where it’s going to end up, but I have a few ideas floating around in my head. After this weekend, I plan to start expanding on those ideas. In the meantime, if you’re interested in reading what I’ve written so far, here’s the link: Healing Haven

I mentioned earlier that we’ve got a seminar coming up this weekend. Getting ready for this one has been something of a challenge, but we’ve just about got all the details sorted out – I hope. I honestly don’t know what to expect this time around, but I’m sure it’ll be good. (I say that every time, don’t I?)

Oh, and on a totally unrelated note, we have two new ponies at the barn! They arrived last Friday. They’re both very young (3 years old and very recently saddle broke), but I think they’re going to fit in just fine. One of them is already showing signs of being a great kids’ pony; totally unflappable and he loves being petted and cuddled. The kids will be fighting over him in no time, I just know it. 😛

And that’s a wrap. For today, anyway. Should be pictures next time.

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