Monday, March 16, 2009

My First Visit to the Dean Smith Center for a Ball Game

I had been to the Smith Center before--saw Rod Stewart there (whew!-in a red leather suit!--
Whew!), visited my daughter at basketball camp there, went in simply to look around. But I had never seen the Heels play there. That was all about to change...

My friend Moneypenny was visiting her folks during February. I got a phone call from her asking if I wanted to go to the dook game. Knowing that we had already played dook at cameron, I knew exactly what game she was talking about. After hyperventilating for a minute, I assured her that if she got the tickets, I was there!

Her friend gave her the tickets. I bought an airplane ticket. It was a done deal. I didn't tell anyone in Raleigh except my sister, Jaymi. I flew in on Friday, and my friend Moneypenny picked me up from the airport. We had a lovely dinner at a beautiful restaurant in Cary, and then we were up and running the next morning. I was up at 6:00 a.m. to get dressed and drive to Wake Forest to see my niece Morgan before she left for school. After a lovely breakfast and delightful company, I drove out to my parents' home and surprised the heck out of them! They had no idea I was anywhere near the state, and I had a short, but great, visit with them. I get tickled every time I remember how surprised they were.

Finally, it was Sunday--the day of the big game. My sister and brother-in-law drove to Chapel Hill with my other niece for breakfast. Breadman's is ALWAYS a great choice. Moneypenny and I met up and shopped a little on Franklin Street, pointing out the changes since we were in residence. Then we trekked down campus to the Smith Center. We waiting in line to see the new museum (which was incredible, but too little history--a lot of current players' items and stats). Then, the game.

We arrived during warmups, which is always fun to watch. Everyone cheered as players came up from the locker room to warm up. I got a photo of Danny Green waving to me! We sat about 10 rows behind Michael Jordan (great seats!). Everyone booed as the dookies came in, especially the former players, I mean, the coaching staff. As the seniors were introduced, each got a round of applause. The most touching thing, to my mind: Marcus Ginyard is redshirted, so he will be back next year as a fifth-year senior. His recruiting class is graduating (on time, I might add!) this year. All the graduating seniors were on the floor enjoying their moment, when one of them (I think Mike Copeland) went to the bench and led Marcus onto the court. Then the game started. I think they scored first, but we led most of the way. I felt pretty comfortable after the 15-minute mark of the second half.

Postgame Senior speeches were fun and touching. Psycho T, the stoic, don't let anyone get in his way, cried during his final appearance at the Smith Center. It was adorable. I cried, and I am not even his mom! It was really wonderful to see ALL the players recognize the time and money and energy their families put into their basketball career.

What a great tradition we have. I know others feel the same way, and I know we all think that "our" tradition is more special than any other. It is, because it is ours. All the people in that gym had one thing in common, even the dookies: we love the game. And that game belonged to the Heels, all those before and all those to come. God bless those Tar Heel Boys!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Books, Book Clubs, and More Books

I have finally been invited to join a book club! I went 2 months ago to my first meeting (The Guernsey LIterary and Potato Peel Society), wherein I did NOT get to read the book (although I bought the book and will read it later). This past week was my first meeting for which I read the book, Away, by Amy Bloom. I loved the writing of Away, but did not much like the story. If the writing is that prosaic, I like the story to either be too unbelievable or very believable. The Hobbit (completely unbelievable, but beautiful) and Sophie's Choice (believable, and horrible, but beautiful) come to mind as examples.

As you can see by my sidebar, I love to read. I love books, and I love bookstores and libraries. I am grateful that my love of reading has been passed down to at least 2 of my children. Both of my daughters love to read, and hopefully my son will discover the joy as well.

This month, the book club will be reading The People of the Book, by Geraldine Brooks. It looks interesting, and I will post after I have read it.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Winners Again

Well, my beloved Tar Heel boys did it again last night--beating the blue devils in Durham. And for most of the game, they looked darn good doing it. Why is it that we, as fans, get so wrapped up in this? We have absolutely nothing, NOTHING, to do with winning, losing--we don't know these boys, will (most likely) never meet these boys, gain nothing but bragging rights (to what?!), waste hours thinking about or researching or writing about the game/rivalry, spend money to watch or commune during a game, and for what? The opportunity to align ourselves with winners. Or, in my case, with a premier program/university. If you have read my previous postings regarding Coach Smith, then you know the influence he has had on my life and my outlook on the world. That is where I come from.

So, here's to you, boys! Let's do it again in March. Show them who's boss.

God Bless those Tar Heel Boys!

Friday, January 2, 2009

New Quilts

This is Austin's quilt that I made for him for Christmas.

This one is for Taylor for her Christmas. It is classic Winnie the Pooh motifs.

This is a quilt I began about 7 years ago and have just gotten it quilted. I am binding it (soon) and will put it on my bed.

I really like the way this turned out, even though I amde so many mistakes on it.

Long Time, No Rants

Wow, has it really been since August that I posted?! So much has happened!

I completed 4 quilts, all of which have been given away as gifts. Kim just called yesterday to thank me for hers and the kids; they love them, and that is gratifying. Now, on to the 8 that I have waiting for me!

School started, and Kate is enjoying her senior year (I think!). She is off to Manhattan, which is making her dad crazy, and I am enjoying every minute of that!

Sam's grades are marginally better, but any improvement is good, right? He is proving to be a good kid, even though he makes his parents crazy.

Emma's one desire of the year was to see Tyler Hansbrough play in a Carolina uniform. To that end, we traveled to Chicago and watched the Valparaiso game. She got the other Tyler's autograph and her picture made with him, and she was happy.

I read several books that I didn't post, notably, Gods Behaving Badly. A memorable premise, but disappointing in the end.

I promise to post more in the future--especially as my beloved Tar Heels begin conference play on Sunday.