Saturday, December 16, 2017

Best tennis season ever

I love playing tennis. It is so fun for me to have an outlet for my competitive side, to get some regularly scheduled exercise (although it's doubles--so I could use more!), to spend time with friends and make new ones.

This fall I played on two teams. As I mentioned last post, I moved up to Division 2 in my Gate City league. That's the neighborhood team that I've been playing on for six years now. I was a little scared to make the move, but felt like it was the right time to go. I tried to mentally prepare myself for a higher level of competition, knowing I might get whooped sometimes.

Well, to my surprise and delight, I made a very smooth transition to my new team. I played a couple of times on court 5 with Angie. That's the lowest court on the team. Then the captain moved me up to play on court 4 with Kimmy. We had a great time playing together. I ended up winning eight of my nine matches! Yippee! AND, my only loss came on a week when the captain moved us to court 3 and we were totally out of our league. We did get whooped that day. I also subbed down to play in Division 3 twice and won both of those matches.

Our team also did awesome. We finished in third place out of sixteen teams. AND we beat both the first and second place teams this fall. So fun! We're hoping for first next year!

Felicia, Me, Maureen, Laura, Angie, Kimmy, Mary, and Stacey
Some of my teammates,
a great bunch of ladies.
I'm having fun getting to know them better.

I also played in a USTA 6.5 combo team. For combo teams, you play doubles and one partner is a 3.5 and the other is a 3.0--adding up to a total of 6.5 in your ratings. This was my first year as a 3.5, so I was now the higher ranked partner and again felt pressured. I wasn't sure how it was going to go. But we had some strong 3.0's on our team and it went so well! I went undefeated during the regular season. Our team won the daytime league and went to a playoff against the evening league to see which team could go to the State tournament. Unfortunately, it was on a Sunday, so I didn't participate. Our team lost the playoff in a super close match. However, the evening team couldn't get enough players to commit to playing in the State tournament, so our team got to go. Woo hoo! I'd never been to states with tennis and I had a fabulous time.

I don't usually get nervous when I play tennis, but I had butterflies in my stomach when we played at States. I won my first match in a tie break. That helped get the jitters out. In my second match, I played with our captain, Debbie. She is probably the strongest 3.0 on the team. We also went to tie break and came SO close to winning. We were up 9-7 in the tie break and I was serving. I thought we had it in the bag! But we made a couple of errors and ended up losing 11-13. Darn it! I still wish I could have a rematch against those ladies! I won my third and fourth matches pretty easily. Our team took second place in our flight, but we didn't have a good enough record to advance to the semifinals. I'm so glad I had the chance to go to states. Andrew was amazing to help out with the kids AND teach my seminary class while I was off playing with my friends. I'm very lucky to have such a supportive husband.

In the fall, state tournaments are held in Wilmington. Yippee! A beach trip!

Dinner at at yummy Italian place.
Brenda, me, Mary, Debbie, Vickie, Ann, Jennifer, and Lynette 

Our view during lunch one day.

I could kick myself for not bringing a swimsuit.
The weather was SO gorgeous (in the 80's!) that I could've used it.
But I still talked my teammates into walking on the beach 
with me after one of our matches. 

This was a parasailer powered by a huge fan.
I'd never seen that before. 

One morning I woke up early, 
so headed down to the beach by myself
to watch the sunrise.

Oh, how I love the beach.

Me and Ann after winning our last match. 

Before driving home, I made one last stop at the beach.
Such a great weekend.

So, between my teams and tournaments, I won NINETEEN matches this fall and only lost TWO. I will probably never have another season like that. I sure enjoyed it while it lasted. :)

Friday, December 8, 2017

What October Looked Like

General Conference!
I made homemade cinnamon rolls for the first time.

They were delicious!

I got to go to Colorado!
Tony was speaking at Time Out for Women right in Castle Rock,
where Amy and Dave live.
So all of the Sweat women congregated there and attended together.
It was such a fun weekend!
These girls wished I had brought Caroline along.

Amy and I got to play singles one morning.
She beat me, but it was close and we had fun.

We hiked the Castle Rock.

Such great views!

Fall was in full swing in Colorado.

We were treated to VIP status and got
reserved seats at the front. Oooh la la.

It happened to be the same weekend as Grandma's 65th birthday!
I was so happy we could be together to celebrate.

Tony, introducing himself.

Cafe Rio!!

Tony did a FABULOUS job. I love hearing him speak.
It's so fun that Lauren is an adult now and can hang with 
us old ladies. :)

Just missing ONE nine-year-old cousin. :(

Present time!
We all pitched in to get her a new phone.
It was so cute.

Cake time!

While I was away,
Whitney had her first ballet workshop.
They spent all day Saturday in intense classes,
then got to perform at the end.
Sad I missed that.

Happy to be back with my fam. :)

I took these girls (including Sarah, C's little bestie),
to watch the new My Little Pony movie.

Andrew got to go to Portugal for work!

This is where he stayed. Wow.
He was in the city of Porto,
home of Port Wine. He got to tour a winery,
learn all about the wine-making process, 
and hear authentic Portuguese guitar and fado music.

W got to go to L's hotel birthday party.

So fun.

A random pic of the marching band and cheerleaders.
I think it was from a pep rally.
B's all the way in the back, toward the middle.

I've been waiting months for this!
BYU's football team came to NC!
They played ECU!
I got tickets for the whole family months ago.
But then this season our team STINKS.
And Andrew said it would be torture for him to go.
And if he wasn't going, the girls didn't want to go, either.
But I REALLY wanted to go.

So I talked Brandon and Spencer into going with me.
We had a great time!
We got to tailgate with some yummy BBQ.

Hung out with Cosmo the cougar.

Got to see the cheerleaders.

Ran into Andrew's mission president.

College football is so fun.

I love the tunnel that the home team players 
come out of! Isn't that pirate awesome?

Random side note: my shoes fell apart while we were there.
It was hilarious and kind of embarrassing.
I looked homeless. Ha ha!
Every time I looked down at my feet, I would start laughing.
They looked like they were in such good shape 
when I left the house that morning...

We were surrounded by BYU fans.

Cosmo did headstands on the sidelines.
The marching band was fun to watch.

They had a school concert at Pilot.
They got to sing this song that we've known for years
in our house, "It's about respect. Check it out. Check it out."
Very catchy.

These beautiful young ladies performed for Young Women Excellence.
So talented.

I moved up to play in Division 3 for Gate City this year.
This is Kimmy, the partner I usually play with.
We have so much fun on the court.
And we won all but one of our matches together!

Trunk or treat at church.
A kitty and a dancer. 
Brandon was sick at home.

I gave a shout out to my Latina heritage.

And Andrew joined me. :)

Fun date night:

Trick or treating!

Care Bear went out with KK and her little sis.

Whit did another partner costume with Lauren.
Phantom of the Opera and Christine.

B was a sound cloud rapper.
I don't even know what that means.
But I got to braid his hair...
didn't think I'd ever be saying that about my son...

Andrew stayed home and handed out candy.