day 2766: k’nex. the end of The Age of Legos?

day 2766: k'nex. the end of The Age of Legos? I.

odin got a k’nex rollercoaster kit for christmas and we finally got around to putting it together . the kit has hundreds of interconnecting plastic rods and connectors and it was pretty intimidating to get started but odin made short work of it after getting the hang of how to read the instructions.

a few hours later and it’s was all done, complete with a motorized conveyor for the rollercoaster cart and plenty of loops and turns.

day 2766: k'nex. the end of The Reign of Legos? II.

it certainly looked cool and it prompted me to wonder if i was witnessing the end of The Age of Legos which is pretty close to heresy in our house.

day 2766: k'nex. the end of The Age of Legos? III.

since i’m writing this post a month after building the coaster, i can tell you it definitely didn’t herald the end of legos. in fact, after a few hours of watching the coaster go round and round and round, odin abandoned it in favor of his beloved branded building blocks never to look back again.

i’m not sure why especially since odin claims to still like the toy even though he never plays with it. maybe because legos offer more open ended play?

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite hockey jamboree.

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. I.

in our continuing adventures as hockey parents, we spend many of our weekends at hockey games. this time it was the “mighty mite hockey jamboree” at Winter Rec-Fest in la crosse, wisconsin.

in the tournament, “mite” players from around the region get together and play each other in quick games, 20 minutes each, 3 games in a round, 2 rounds total ( got that? so they play 6 teams, total. ).

it’s a great way for the young players to build up confidence and play a variety of teams with varying skill levels.

odin did a great job playing defenseman and even managed to score a goal!

here, he’s skating away from the net in the blue and white jersey after scoring his second goal in a game, ever ( defense doesn’t get as many opportunities to score a goal as offense )!

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. II.

odin, sitting on the sidelines. they swap out players every two minutes. for this game, they split up the team into two separate teams playing “four on four”, allowing for two players to sit out every two minutes. if you think about it, it’s that’s a lot of skating over six twenty minute periods!

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. III.

while he loves playing defenseman, he’s also been enjoying being the goalie. at this level of play they don’t need all the gear and the, er, goal, is to just get them used to trying to keep pucks out of the net. odin stopped quite a few goals and let just a couple get past him. given his love of defense, i wouldn’t be surprised if he wants to be a goalie after he gets a little more confident in the position, though it’s hard to say if it’ll be his favorite position since the defenseman gets to skate around a lot more which is pretty fun too :-)

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. IV.

even when you handily beat a team, it’s important to give them an honest “great game” and a “high five”. ’cause, as odin already knows, it’s no fun to hear “you suck!”

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. V.

odin, right in the thick of the action! i have to admit that it’s big fun to hear other parents yell out his name when makes a great defense play ( he’s number ‘5’ ).

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. VI.

odin is all smiles ( through his mouth guard ) getting ready to get back on the ice after a break beating all three teams they played in the first round.

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. VII.

at the end of the tournament, everyone gets a medal.

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. VIII.

after all his games are done ( they beat five out of the six teams! ), of course, there’s no way odin will leave the tournament before catching the other half of his team play a period or two their last games from the top of the stands.

day 2765: scenes from the mighty mite jockey jamboree. XIX.

yeah. but what about screaming at the kids on the opposing teams :-)

day 2764: playing flute at school assembly.

day 2764: playing flute at school assembly.

odin’s school has a regular “all grade” assembly where the first through eighth classes perform a variety of artistic endeavors in front of the whole school and assembled parents. this week, odin’s class played an orchestrated flute song.

in addition to the general awesomeness of seeing him play orchestrated music, it struck what an ingenious trick the assembly is to get the kids used to thinking that it’s completely normal to play in front of an audience.

it’s such a great confidence builder that will certainly do them well later later in life.

day 2759: winter fun in wisconsin.

day 2759: winter fun in wisconsin. I.

odin has been cross country skiing for years and for years he’s been patiently waiting for us to get skis of our own. this year, he even wanted to visit santa to plea for him to bring us skis!

he delivered the skis, but didn’t bring any snow so it’s taken us awhile to get out and about.

how is it possible that i’ve never been cross country skiing before? it’s a lot of fun even though it seems to use muscles that have never been used!

day 2759: winter fun in wisconsin. II.

and there was time for some awesome sledding too :-)

day 2759: winter fun in wisconsin. III.

the case of the mysterious beams of light.

last night, around 11:30pm, kris and i were getting ready for bed and she looked out a west window and said, “wow, what in the world is that?” we watched as about 20 beams of light formed slowly along intersection of the street running north and south near our house ( the rusk and court intersection, for the locals reading this ). each beam was looked to be about a two feet wide and they were grouped in clusters of four ( so, five groups of four beams ). strangely, the beams appeared to start about 20 or 30 feet above the rooftops of nearby houses – i.e. they didn’t go all the way up into the night sky. they gradually got about as bright as a bright moombeam and faded away rather quickly after 5 minutes.

we moved around while looking out the window and they didn’t move around. they were not reflections in the window.

i made a joke about them being tractor beams from alien space ships in another dimension.

but seriously, we both saw them. what’s a reasonable explanation for the phenomenon? swamp gas?

day 2751: an away hockey game. or You Win Some and You Lose Some.

day 2751: an away hockey game. or You Win Some and You Lose Some. I.

today, odin had an away game in winona, minnesota which we knew it would be a tough game since those minnesotans take their hockey very seriously, even with the younger kids!

in past games odin has seemed to enjoy playing the defenceman position but this game he played center for much of the game which meant he did a lot more skating from one of the ice to other.

i think he enjoyed the “faceoffs” but he was pooped out at the end!

day 2751: an away hockey game. or You Win Some and You Lose Some. II.

each game, he gets a little more confident about getting in the middle of the action and going after the puck.

day 2751: an away hockey game. or You Win Some and You Lose Some. III.

is he smartly assessing the trajectory of the puck so he can intercept, or taking a breather? only he knows for sure :-)

day 2751: an away hockey game. or You Win Some and You Lose Some. IV.

d’oh! the final score, 7 to 2. the game was fairly close until the last 10 minutes of the final period. i think everyone just ran out of gas.

day 2751: an away hockey game. or You Win Some and You Lose Some. V.

odin was none to happy about the loss. maybe even just a wee bit sad ;-(

but he got over it quickly and i think understands playing a better team is a great way to learn how to become a better player.

they’ll play many, many more games over the years, so there will definitely be a re-match!

day 2751: an away hockey game. or You Win Some and You Lose Some. VI.

update:

bummed to learn today why odin was sad after the game. apparently, after the game when the kids line up to shake hands and say “good game!” some of the winona kids were saying “you suck!” to the viroqua kids. interestingly, odin didn’t say a word after the game. he casually brought it up today and later confessed it was why he was sad and wondered why they’d say such a thing and if he really was a bad player. coincidentally, an email chain started after odin told us what happened between the other hockey parents as word got out from their kids.

on the one hand, it’s sad to hear the doubt a few words can cause. on the other hand, it’s a great opportunity for odin to learn that he can’t control what others think and say and he certainly shouldn’t pay any mind to poor sports!