Monday, October 31, 2011

Saturday, October 29, 2011

It's all age related

Ex-model (Why do they always seem to be ex-models? Do they have super powers or something?) Phyllis Reffo walked on to the Pepperdine swim team after only swimming for 6 years. And she's 49. Stunning looks aside, this lady decided to pick up swimming to keep in shape and now competes with the team, attends classes and moms two girls.

And then there is Dara Torres, who just keeps coming back for more, including a run at the 2012 games. This is a great video of her speaking at an event.

My coach is much younger than I am, but it doesn't stop him from having more experience at this. Or knowing how to push my buttons.

"The water doesn't know your age." Right, and neither do your arrows. So, I guess it's off to the gym this morning for my weights class after seeing the Dara Gun Show.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Big Hat, No Cattle

It's 100 posts!! I was so excited, I almost forgot to add that this funny post is actually written by my sister, Jess. Some of you will sympathize with her situation...
My bad-ass sista
I am ill.  I have totally come down with the hunting bug. I don’t know where it came from.  I eat organic, take extra Vitamin C and get enough sleep.  Bam!  It just came out of nowhere.

Growing up in a pro-hunting area with venison lovin’ parents, and a seriously camo crazed husband, one would think I would have been vaccinated long ago.  I grew up shooting my Bear youth recurve, but never took it any farther than the hay bale.  I have tracked, hauled and processed my share of deer, all without ever wanting to fire a shot or arrow.  Ever.  Not even a little bit.

One can never be too sure how one gets infected.  It may have been designing my huge hunting room with floor to ceiling storage and camo hanging facilities with custom bow and gun case storage bins; yup, we have a lot of camo.  It may have been being around my teenage son as he and camo hubby watched The Hunting Channel 24/7.   It could have been watching my sister with Christmas morning type glee as she revealed her custom lucky cricket paint job on her new (now old) Hoyt.   

Whatever it is, I have battled my illness with my greatest resource  - - my Special Forces caliber shopping abilities.  I started out not being able to shoot a release, but ALAS!  They come in pink camo!  Ring one up and move over so I can try on those amazing hunting boots (Camo on the tred?!  Get Out!!)  Supportive camo hubby sits patiently by, listening to my reasoning on upgrading our optics (Swarovski sounds so sparkly!) to leasing hunting land in the most prolific areas.  All of the things he would never dream of spending money on, but hey, if he can share it with the wife, why not!  Camo hubby firmly believes combining my hockey mom status with my new found love for camo, the only thing now differentiating me from Sara Palin is that I believe dinosaurs actually existed.   So I shop for backpacks, warm weather gear, cold weather gear, scent sprays, ground blinds, special swivel seats for ground blinds, tree stands, car racks to carry the tree stands, uber cool bow cases, gloves made of NASA quality material so you can read braille in the tree stand….you get the point.  I am lookin’ super fly.  I am the Pam Greer of hunting.  Shaazam!

But let’s be clear.  I am actually a pretty good shot, even with my starter bow and especially considering I took 20 years or so off.  Probably because I learned to shoot with a finger release like the archer youth of purists are apparently supposed to.  The problem is that I have yet to see any actual, live deer to shoot my amazingly chic carbon arrow at.  It seems the thing I forgot to buy is a nanny, so that I can sit in the woods instead of in my car, chauffeuring endlessly back and forth to hockey practice, games, car pool, ballet practice and vet appointments.

So, we are heading to Michigan next week for some super rut, unadulterated stand time, complete with built in Grandma.  Yea!  Since I will be skipping the Illinois hockey scheduling meeting, I think I have figured out how to stealthily schedule an entire hockey season from a tree (God Bless Steve Jobs) and hope to find a cure for my illness.  Bring on the cattle, OK, deer….. my big camo hat is ready.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Countdown to 100...

Seriously, I can't believe that this is almost 100 posts!  Look for some more fun guest posts coming up to celebrate in the near future!

Thanks everyone for hanging in there with me :)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Another Girl with A Bow

Ok, enough about me for a bit. Time to take a closer look at another girl with bow.  

My friend Inessa Ellsworth has been in and out of the sport her entire life, beginning as a student in the USSR  system school program.  Since she has been shooting for 25+ years, her form is consistent, fluid and very elegant to watch. And, she’s good.  Don’t underestimate her on the line.  After taking the most of the summer off, she came back shooting 70m like she just did it yesterday. 

Inessa got her feet wet at about 14, and represented the travel team where the coaches were tough and you had to be tougher. If you didn’t keep your elbow up, there was a sharp pair of scissors under your elbow the next time to remind you.  Twice daily practice before tournaments is more than most of our kids do in football or basketball.  She picked up a good work ethic and tough mindset that’s worked in her favor since.
After coming to the US and putting her bow aside she started a web hosting company with her husband, Mike. After 18 years off, Mike bought her some equipment and she was on her way again. With multiple wins at the state level, their business keeps her close to home, but she has gotten the competitive bug again and so plan to see her out in 2012.

Archery seems to attract people with a creative bent and Inessa is an accomplished artist as well. She works easily in 3-D materials making all sorts beautiful, functional stuff. Chairs, leatherwork, mittens, felted wool, you name it. She’s also a great graphic designer.  Check out some of her work on Etsy

Saturday, October 8, 2011

What is the Point?

It's been a while since the last post. Less archery and more of everything else lately and it's starting to be sorely missed. This week included a work trip to Boulder, but I had today to play so I headed south to Colorado Springs in the first snowstorm of the year. Take a note upstate NY'ers. Maybe it's 'cause summers here are even shorter than ours, but Coloradoites don't lose their shit and forget how to drive the first time it snows. Especially when the first snow is 6". Ahh. Maybe I need to consider moving here.

Due to the low visibility, I missed the mountain view on the way down, but managed to catch four coyotes jumping mice in the snow and looking like they were happy to see the snowfall. Was reallly wishing I could snap a photo while driving of those guys. As soon as I arrived in town, the sky cleared, the sun appeared and Pike's Peak emerged on the edge of town. Was starting to think that the long drive might be worth it. Two big influences on my current archery situation have been very involved with the Coaching Program at the OTC and the traveling teams this year and I was curious to see where they went to learn the magic.  

Interestingly, my hubby's cousin Kristie posted on FB today, "What is the point of having goals if you are not going to truly work toward them? But what is a life without having goals to work toward??" This place is dedicated to that end. 

The tour started with an impromptu a capella version of the Star Spangled Banner with four talented Idahoans on the tour. One of the Resident Athletes toured us around, "All-American" would pretty much describe him. Being Saturday, the campus wasn't too busy, but we did see some uber-fit people in the gym. Strangely, elite athlete gyms don't smell any better than the Y. And, the group in there seemed like they were actually enjoying it. Go figure. 

One thing that really stood out was the indoor shooting range, and I'm not talking archery. I thought the FITA targets were challenging, whoo boy. There was a woman from Kentucky in head-to-toe leather chaps and weighted canvas practicing with a .22, with microphones and a computer system to sense how far from the X her pellet went. She was so still and stiff, one of the older ladies on the tour asked, "Is that a robot?" That's taking precision shooting to a whole new level and I was dying to go in there and watch without the safety glass.

To be able to immerse yourself in your sport of choice is a luxury to most of us, especially if you picked it up late. But can you imagine your life without it? As Kristie said so well earlier, what would be the point?