Tuesday, March 23, 2010


When discussing with my Dad what to do for our kill winner, we thought a t-shirt would be cool.  Now what to put on it?  Stinks t hat Kill is such a negative word.  We came up with a few good ones, Killer (across the back of the shirt), Ball Killer, just to name a few.  More appropriately we decided on Crusher Kill Champ.  So off I go on Sunday to Michaels in hopes to find the perfect shirt and iron-ons.  Found it!  Also found a 'setter' award, since a Kill does not happen without the perfect set.  That award would be a necklace with a volleyball charm on it.
I have to admit I had doubts that the would think this is stupid.  They are mostly 13 and at that age when things that were 'cool' a year ago are so dumb now.  So at our tournament wrap up meeting we did our normal talk about what was good, what we need to work on and finished with the girls going around and saying something good about each player.
Presentation time!  So to hype up the awesomeness of this award we went through all the prospective receipiants.  The girls did a drumroll on the floor and the winner was announced! 

Success! They loved the prizes and even put them on right then and there.  And for the rest of the girls, they can't wait to win their own!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

I cried, I yelled, we almost won...

As my Dad referred to a Katy Perry song last year during one of our team meetings, "You're hot then you're cold your yes then your no"  How funny but true at the same time.  Last year our team was that song, they were all over the place we had no idea what team we were going to get on the court.
This year the team has been fairly consistant, until yesterday.  The past few weeks of practices girls have been missing here and there.  They are in 8th grade so most of them are getting Confirmed so this is taking up some time away from Volleyball.  Much better excuse than Softball or Dance, but still it bugs me, and they know. 
Yesterday we were in Lancaster for a tournament, got up at 5:30 and all that fun stuff, got home around 7, made for a long day.  The first match we played should have been our 'easy' one of the day.  Turns out my team must have still been at their dance the night before....errr....what they weren't visualizing themselves winning games?!?!  So we lost to a team we should have creamed...not one... but two games.  Of course this type of playing deserved a team meeting...So we took the girls outside, since it was an absolutely too beautiful to be stuck in a gym with a poor playing team kind of day.  From my Dad's stat's, we noticed we had about 6 hits then entire match, this along with the missed serves probably cost us the game.  My Dad the awesome thinker he is, came up with an incentive.  The Crusher Kill Champ award, he would keep track of the kills in a game and we would vote on the winning 'kill', those who assisted and they would receive an award.  For those that aren't used to the v-ball lingo a kill is defined as an awesome hit that cannot be touched by the opposing team, straight from the hitters hands to the floor. Complete Awesomeness.  Honestly we didn't think it would be hard to track since there was only 6 hits in the first game....yes I ALMOST cried, okay maybe a tear did come out, why?
I occasionally cry throughtout the season usually behind the scenes of course.  This time was because I KNOW they can do better, they work so hard at practice and deserve to play well.  So frustrating!
Next game...still not great but our hitting improved!  We lost and had another team talk.  I know the opposing teams coach, he actually coached me way back, it never feels good to a coach you know. err...
3rd match, not too shabby, we hung with Norlanco which we have a history of losing too, but the score wasn't embarrassing and our hit statistics went up dramatically, I think we were at about 44 in the match.  Compared to 6 in the first match!? now you understand why I was crying.
And then I yelled...this was not a normal yell that I will do at practice, this one sounded different when it came out.  As we are walking off the court, I caught one of the girls looking so depressed you would have thought she broke her ipod.  So I yelled "Everyone in the corner NOW".  One thing bugs me more than playing poorly and that is ATTITUDE.  I review this several times during the season, this is a team, whether you are on the bench or on the court positive attitude is key.  If I see them pouting on the bench, they don't go in, end of story and THEY KNOW THAT.  So I yelled, that if I see it again this person will sit the bench the rest of the touranment.  Afterwhich I said, "that put aside, nice effort on the court." and continued to encourage them to be aggressive, especialliy against the next team. 
And then we almost won... Valley Forge is a tough team, we played them last weekend too, and lost.  Games go to 25, and I don't think we broke 18.  We played AWESOME, that is the team I have at practice working hard and not letting anything touch the floor.  We were up at several times throughout the match.  However we did end up losing 25-27 and 22-25.  Not too shabby. It felt like we won.  And as we told the girls in our first meeting, winnning the game is not everything but playing your best at all times is.  They played their best those two games and won in our eyes.
We ended up not getting into the playoffs since we lost every game but one.
As for the Crusher Kill Champ winner, one of my setters will be the proud winner for having an awesome Kill!  I will be making  some killer t-shirts as the prize fo sho.

Friday, March 19, 2010

DOTW 3/19/10

This week I found lots of deals!  My goal each week has been to save 50% off my grocery orders.  This week I came in at 51% not too shabby.  I get such a high from watching my total go down when the cashier swipes my coupons!  Spending an hour a week sorting through and organizing and matching them up to sale ads is all worth it.  Why pay full price when you can walk away with a $60 order for $30?!?!
DOTW this week is Kashi cereal,

 a week ago I got coupons in the mail from Vocalpoint 4 coupons for $1.50 off 1 Kashi Heart to Heart Cereal, and 1 free box coupon!  First of all, love this cereal!  This week at Giant they had it on sale, buy 4 for $8.  So I walked away with 5 boxes of Kashi cereal for ...wait for it...wait for it... $2!!!!!!
Lovin' that deal!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Laundry Soap

So catching up...a few weeks ago I had 2 adventures for my free weekend.  Adventure 1 was my lotion, which I am beginning to love, especially in these cold dry winter days, it is super moisturizing!  Adventure 2 was going to be my laundry soap making...but I got sidetracked with a stomach bug.  So about 2 weekends ago I made my laundry soap here's the recipe...
1 bar Fels Naptha Grated
2 cups Arm and HAmmer Washing Soda
2 cups Borax
2 gallons water
1pt water
Bring 1pint of water to boil on stove, add grated Fels Naptha. 

Reduce heat and stir till soap is melted. 

Take 1 large bucket and pour 2 gallons of water, Borax and Washing Soda and stir, slowly add soap mixture.  And there is your soap!  Add a 1/4cup to load of wash.  I put it all in old washed out laundry soap bottles and back into the gallon water jugs.

This stuff is great, I truely believe it makes my clothes brighter and fresh smelling.  Not to mention much cheaper than the stuff in the store! Plus you know what is in it and the satisfaction of knowing you made it yourself :-)

Glad I'm not THAT coach

4 years ago I saw one of my long lost coaches that coached me during CYO Volleyball season 5th-8th grade at St. Anns School.  Her and my Dad coached our teams throughout the years, and I saw her occasionally.  So talking to her, she informed me they were looking for coaches at the Club I used to play for, Crosscourt.  Since Highschool, I really haven't played, and I was feeling the urge to pick up the ball.  With a bulging L-5 disc in my back I can't really play for long periods of time so  I thought coaching may be a way to get back into the sport.  Never coaching before I asked my Dad to be my assistant/mentor.  He accepted, I think he missed it too :-)  He coached my sister and I through club ball.
So my journey began as a Volleyball Coach, and now I'm into my 4th year.  My Dad is still my assistant, it's great to work together with him.  It really gives us a chance to do something together, and while playing volleyball offered a lot of life lessons, coaching volleyball also offers lots of life lessons.  I enjoy it, although it's a long 6 month season, and I want to run away sometimes, it's good for me and keeps me out of trouble.
What prompted this post?  The Olympics...The Dutch Speedskater who finished in first place but was later disqualified because his coach told him to switch to the inside lane.  I want to cry just thinking of this, I can't imagine what this coach is feeling right now.  His decision cost this young mans Gold Medal IN THE OLYMPICS!  One mistake that I'm sure with weigh on him for a long long time.  I am glad I'm not THAT coach!
As a coach for a 14 and under team, I often forget that they are 14 and under.  Always pushing them to their limits both physically and mentally to prepare them for the game and the real world.  Sometimes I wonder if I push to far...  This past weekend we had a tournament at Albright College.  They played Awesome.  They won every single game and finished 1st, they were unstoppable! If you knew the kind of season we had last year you would understand my shock and excitement.  We just won't talk about last season...and pretend it never happened.  Their hard work payed off, FINALLY!  And maybe my Dad and I are doing something right...Go Crushers!