Monday, December 26, 2022

Nadel-A-Thon in N.C. ... And a New Gig for Coach Mike


Dec. 21 was the first day of winter, and we got an early blast of frigid weather in North Carolina. But we were fortunate that we had something to warm our hearts -- a first-ever Charlotte visit from our grand-twins Logan and Jack.

Here they are with Ruthie, their "cousin" hound.

LoJack (and their parents Sammi and Ben) spent much of their vacay with their Aunt Katie, Uncle Ben and cousins Owen and Piper (and the aforementioned Ruthie), who live just a few minutes away from Grandma and Grandpa.

Here are the four cousins (from left - Owen, Piper, Jack, Logan) at an indoor water park. You know how difficult it is to get four kids ages 3 and under to smile and look at the camera at the same time?!?!

We also had fun at the Carolina Raptor Center, looking at hawks, eagles, owls and other birds of prey. Here are the three boys in a small cabin on the site.

And "Lady in Red" Piper, all warm and happy!

After going for a "ride" with Grandma and Grandpa ...

... artist Logan proudly displayed his renowned work, "Portrait of Grandma." The resemblance is uncanny!

One afternoon, Robbie and I and our offspring even got to sneak away for an hour sans kiddos.

Katie and her family moved to Charlotte from Seattle in September, and it's been fantastic having them here. "Fantastic" also is a great word to describe the visit from the Chicago Nadels. Come back soon, y'all -- warmer weather next time, we promise!!



The few birds of prey we saw at the Raptor Center aren't the only Owls in my life these days.

After a two-year Covid hiatus, I'm coaching middle-school girls basketball again. My latest assignment is at Socrates Academy, a highly regarded public charter school only a few minutes from my house.

Hoo are we? The Owls, the mighty, mighty Owls!

We played 4 games before the holiday break. That we won 3 of them is great, because I'm told that there hadn't been a whole lot of winning 'round these parts. More importantly, though -- and I mean it -- is that these kids work so hard, they are so coachable, and they want to improve so much. 

And they have improved a ton in just the time we've been together so far. They're a real likeable group, too, and they support each other and the coaches so well. 

Coach Katie -- yep, Payton Prep's all-time 3-point shooter is my assistant -- and I are very grateful that we get to work with them. And we're excited about what the rest of the season will bring when school resumes in January.

Go Owls!