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Archive for March, 2012


Our First London 2012 Purchase

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Team GB London 2012 drawstring bag

I was in Ireland last week which means I had a layover at London Heathrow airport which means I got to do some shopping! The buzz for the London 2012 Olympic Games has definitely begun – from billboard ads to keychains, the Olympic logo is everywhere. I had wanted to go to the London 2012 store at Heathrow but it was in Terminal 3 and I was in Terminal 1 and if you have ever been to Heathrow you know that its not like you are going to just pop over to another terminal.

Luckily lots of stores had London 2012 souvenirs and I knew my girls would love something with the London Olympics logo on it. They both are bag girls – the love bags, they swap them out all the time and they use them, too. I found Team Great Britain London 2012 drawstring bags that were perfect.

You don’t have to go all the way to London to get your 2012 Olympic gear, plenty of souvenir options are already available – take a look at our Olympic gear page for the latest choices.

Categories : Olympics
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Maude Aimee Leblanc Canadian GolferMaude-Aimée LeBlanc, a Montreal native, is gearing up for her second tournament as an LPGA rookie today in the Kia Classic in Carlsbad, Calif.

She is one of only two Canadian rookies on the LPGA tour this year. But she took a decidedly American route to the professional golf circuit: She played collegiate golf at Purdue University where she helped the Boilermakers win the 2010 NCAA team championship.

To truly grasp the determination and zeal that this rising young golfer brings to the game, an anecdote from her Purdue days is revealing. To prepare to compete with golfers from southern universities where golf is played year-round, Maude-Aimee would practice in the snowy Indiana winters by driving shots from inside a garage out into the snow and then pull on her boots and winter coat to go out and retrieve the balls. That inventive persistence combined with a disciplined practice ethic and schedule makes LeBlanc a tremendous competitor.

Last week, she finished 51st in the RR Donnelly LPGA Founders Cup. After getting over the minor jitters of her first professional start, LeBlanc settled in to shoot an even par for the tournament. 

“My game is as good as any out there,” she said. “It’s a matter of consistency and experience.”

LeBlanc felt good about her long game, driving the ball off the tee in the 290 yard range. She has been working on her putting, which is improving and will only get better as she feels more comfortable, she said.

Getting her first LPGA tournament under her belt definitely helped bolster her confidence. LeBlanc feels like she’s on her way with her good showing last week. With Garda as her main sponsor, and Callaway and RBC, LeBlanc says she can put all her attention to her golf game. 

At the Kia Classic, she took a couple of practice rounds on the course before hitting the ball for real today to help her feel more comfortable out there. One thing Maude-Aimee LeBlanc knows for sure: She’s ready for the LPGA on her drive to the top.

For complete coverage, visit the LPGA Kia Classic website.

Categories : Golf
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Field Hockey

Yesterday was the first day of spring field hockey practice for my 10 year old and she was so excited, she could hardly stand it! She had her new cleats on, new field hockey bag with sticks, ball and mouth guard ready to go. As we pull in to the parking lot it begins to rain – yet the sky is blue and the sun is shining – weird weather, but she doesn’t care, it is time to play field hockey.

We found her field and a few parents confirmed that yes, we were in the right place. I made a comment inquiring if the coach was there yet, only to get an immediate negative response from the mother standing next to me about how the team got assigned high school girls as coaches and then she went on and on about how they have never had a good experience with high school students as coaches. SERIOUSLY? She hasn’t even given these two a chance and could she have waited until I sent my child out onto the field before she unleashed her bitterness? After all, it is a Parks & Rec league you paid $50 for the season to play!

Every great coach was a new coach ONCE! (I sure was! I started coaching when I was 14 and still coach to this day, almost 30 years later.) Many great coaches started out just as these girls are – as high school students giving back to a sport they love – either as a part time job or for community service hours. Our Parks & Rec department doesn’t exactly pay its coaches, so it is not like the experienced adult coaches are flocking to the program to coach! A Parks & Rec season is the perfect opportunity for young coaches to get started!

Even though the rain was coming down, the two coaches had the girls start workout, did an organized run and stretch then started some drills. They broke up the practice, alternating between drills, basic conditioning and even a little game at the end to help the girls get to know each other. It really bothered me to listen to these two moms questioning why the coaches decided to have the girls do jumping jacks in the middle of practice or to listen to them belittle them for doing the name game at the end. It’s not like either one of them stepped up to the plate and volunteered to coach the team – and it was very evident that one of them had the experience to do it!

At the end of practice the coaches collected money for matching green socks, high fived the girls and did so with a smile on their faces. When I asked my daughter how she liked it, she said she had a great time and kept going on and on about how her coaches were nice, the drills they did and how playing in the rain at first just didn’t bother her. Personally, I think it is going to be a fun season – and I am looking forward to watching the athletes and the coaches grow together as a team!

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