Sunday, October 17, 2010

Visit to the corn maze

We had a great weekend last week.  We had NOTHING on the calendar.  So on Sunday we took a two-hour drive into the mountains and visited a wonderful corn maze.  We had a great time finding each pit-stop and checking off on our cards.  It was very interesting to see the girls sense of direction--or lack of.

After we found our way through the maze the girls jump and played on the hay bales.  We were a little concerned for both Grace and Sarah because of  their allergies, but all for nothing as they weren't bothered at all!

After the maze we stopped at road side store and bought some wonderful home-grown apples--Arkansas black--that were just delicious!  They were so much better than anything we could ever purchase at the grocery store.  We also bought a great pumpkin for a steal of a price!

We don't get many weekends that we have the luxury of taking a long drive (that doesn't involve getting to a meet or dance performance) and just enjoying our family.  I guess that what's makes the adventure even more enjoyable!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

TOPs National Testing

Grace had a wonderful time in Texas at the National Training Camp, otherwise known as the Karolyi  Camp.  She left, with her teammate, her coach and her teammate's mom, on Friday afternoon.  They tested on Saturday and Sunday and did a FANTASTIC job!!!!  Grace did her absolute best she has ever done on her Physical Abilities.  She held her handstand for 60 seconds, went up the rope in 8.6 seconds (that's 12 feet in a pike position!!!), did 8 press-to-handstands and sprinted so fast!  Her skills testing was awesome, even though she had two low scores--floor acro and vault were each a 7.0.

She took great photos of the signatures on the bunks--Alecia Sacramone and Courtney Kupets--were just two of the girls who slept in the same cabin.  Grace signed her name--both first and last--who knows, some little girl, years from now might be so excited to know that GRACE EVANS slept her in her cabin!!!

I know that you are being so patient, 'cuz  you REALLY want to know the outcome. Well, I'll tell you...Grace made B camp!!!!  That means she is not a member of the National TOPs team (that is A camp) but she has  been invited back to train with the National Training Staff!!!  She will return on Dec 5 and stay thru Dec 9th. So, I know you are wondering WHAT is the DIFFERENCE between the two camps??  Well, other than camp A invitees  being named to the National TOPs team, it's the cost.  Camp A is paid for by the USAG and camp B is paid for by the parents :(....

Everyone is SO, SO proud of Grace.  It is incredible what she has accomplished in two years!!  No one could have ever imagined that when she began with one gymnastics class that she would be invited to the National Training Camp!

From all accounts, Grace was not nervous and just enjoyed her experience.  She came home so animated, wanting to share everything!  She loved everything about the camp; the cabins, the Walk of Fame, the food, and the lake.  She didn't miss having her parents with her and for that we are so grateful!

Grace now will continue her training, and begin competing at level 7 in December. She has another year in which to train and try to qualify, once again, for National Testing.  For now, we excitedly wait for December for her return to Texas.

Oh, the highlight of the trip?  Meeting Bela Karolyi!!!  I was on the phone with Grace and she started screaming, "Momma, I gotta go, there's Bela!"   She was able to get her photo taken with him and just cherishes the picture.

Grace's goal?  To have a brick on the Walk of Fame.  Our goal?  To be able to continue to support Grace in this wonderful journey!

We are SO proud of her!