Thursday, October 20, 2011

On a "roll"

I have been working on the Adult Silver Moves on and off for about three years now. I hate the three turns, the eight step and LEFT backward power pulls. But last night, I kind of had a breakthrough of sorts. I think I might now truly understand how to do a forward outside three turn! I know - it is amazing. And the solution was so simple. Just skate forward and THEN turn. DUH! I felt accomplished, until the Boss asked me to do the Fiesta Tango.

You see, there is a mohawk in the end pattern in the Fiesta Tango. Darn - foiled again! So after being on a "roll" for the three turns, I returned back to Gamma level to relearn how to do a mohawk. Oh well, at least I had one triumph.

On a more exciting note, Muffet and I will be in Elite International Skating bliss this weekend as we have all event tickets for Skate America!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

It has been a LONG while

Last time I posted was right around Christmas last year. Wow - I guess I have been busy. I picked up another job to support the ice habit for Muffet and myself since I last wrote - so now I have three jobs besides being a wife and mother. I also "hung up" my freestyle skates and picked up solo ice dancing. Last season was tough, but I qualified for Solo Dance Nationals and got my butt handed to me by a bunch of teenagers and children. Oh well. I decided that my goal for the upcoming season (and probably into the next) will be to improve my overall skating skills, learn the Pre-Bronze dances (better yet, master them) and finally pass my adult silver moves in the field.

Right now I am back in what seems like Alpha or Snow Plow Sam class. Three turns - yep, that's right. I worked on outside left three turns on a straight line and then on a small curve for 30 minutes with my boss yesterday. That was after working on mohawks on the circle previously. I promptly caught my left blade inside my right one and fell hard. When a woman of a certain age falls on the ice, she HURTS for DAYS. Not minutes and then pops up to go again. No, she hurts for DAYS. I thought I would not fall as much switching to ice dance. BAHAHAHA - I can hear my coach laughing from here.

That is my plight. A sad and sorry tale of woe. My life will consist of three turns and mohawks along with an occasional new dance pattern here and there. I do love the Cha Cha (I don't have to go backwards) and spirals. Have I mentioned that I can't do backward power pulls on the left leg? Oh yeah, gotta work on that too. Ugh... wish me luck.

Friday, December 24, 2010

New Life through Ice Dancing

I just went to a Skating with the Stars taping this week with one of my followers and she told me to update the blog. I informed her that I needed inspiration in order to update and I had not had much lately. Fortunately for her and for me, I got a much needed dose of inspiration yesterday morning. I had my first private ice dancing lesson!

First off, I had ten minutes of bliss as I skated on an empty rink with my own iPod blaring through the speakers. Then my wonderful new ice dance coach arrived and we started working right away. He asked why I wanted to learn how to ice dance and I told him that I was hoping that it would help with my edges, my MIFs and lastly to do something new and fun. And fun it was!

We started with forward progressives (to figure skaters these are crossovers.) Interesting though - the look of a progressive is different from a typical crossover. Whereas the basic composition is the same, you have to "prebend" before you push off again. Hard to explain in words, but next time you watch ice dance, take a look at their crossovers!

Then we moved to swing rolls. Now, I have never been very good at swing rolls and was a bit intimidated with learning them. My coach had me do a very simple exercise (which killed my butt and thighs BTW) to work on the mechanics of the swing roll and then had me try them on my own. It was like magic! I was doing swing rolls!

The first dance I learned yesterday was the Dutch Waltz. Next week I will learn the Canasta Tango. It was so much fun to learn something new and have a fresh set of skills to work on.

So there you go Miss C - I was inspired enough to write. Happy Holidays :)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

"Adult" Synchro Team Dreams

About two years ago I was on a very fun ISI Adult Synchro team coached by one of my dear friends and coaches. I got to meet great skaters and have a blast on the ice with these folks. Unfortunately with adult skating comes adult schedules and after awhile kids, work and life just got in the way of consistency. I reluctantly backed out of the team when I realized that the ship was breaking up and I really didn't have the money to go down with it. With me not competing this season, I have been kinda ho-hum and working on MIFs and not much else. My eyes lit up when I received an email from another adult skater friend about a new adult synchro team starting up that would go to Sectionals in Feb. WOW! I have to be in Minnesota anyway for Muffet's synchro team - why not skate there too?!

My dreams came to a quick and crashing end when I attended the conference call this week with the coach and other skaters. Come to find out that this was not to be an "adult" team after all but rather a "Retired Senior MIFs and former Senior but aged out" Synchro team. POOP! Out of the 15 people interested, I was the lowest level skater with another gal who just passed Silver moves and another gentleman who is working on silver dance. Can you imagine? Me skating with former Senior level synchro skaters who can do outside spread eagles around me? Pish posh - I may be dumb but I am not crazy!

Here I am all broken hearted. But now I have launched another scheme! How about ice dancing? That helps with edges, right?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Winning and Losing

As we get deeper and deeper into serious competition season for the elite skaters, Muffet and I are in training mode. She had the axel and now is trying to get it back. Her double salchow seems as if it will be pretty easy for her to master and the Juvenile moves will not be a problem. She had a tough end of her season this year due to moving up to Pre-Pre mid-season and got her booty handed back to her big time. Therefore it is time to have the "discussion" with the Boss.

Now I knew this would happen eventually. Now that Muffet has far surpassed mom in the skating department, it is time for mommy to step aside and give her lessons to the little one. The Boss has a plan for me though - I don't get left out in the cold totally. Well, I do get left in the cold, on the ice, but not without the Boss helping me! I will get my lessons here and there, but the focus of the Boss's time will be with Muffet. Ah me, what beast have I helped make? Not only will she get more time with the Boss, but she will continue with her finesse coach, we will add a secondary jump coach, still on the Synchronized skating team, spin class and strength and conditioning class. No wonder dad and I have no money.

The winning is not for us but for a dear friend we have watched over the last five years we have been in this crazy sport. She has skated during the public. She has skated during the wee morning hours before school. She attends regular high school and is an AP/Honor student there as well. Miss Vanessa Lam won her first Junior Grand Prix event a few weeks ago in the Czech Republic and yesterday won as Pacific Coast Sectionals Seniors Ladies Champion. I am so incredibly happy for Vanessa as she has worked so hard and battled through pain and those hours on the ice. But mostly I am thrilled for Vanessa's mom and dad who sit with her in the cold day after day supporting her every move. They make and design her beautiful dresses. They sacrifice so she can reach her dreams. They give all of the little skaters "Good Luck" gifts before each major competition and always have a smile to share even if it is 5:00 in the morning.

So the losing is not that big of a deal for me because in all of this I skate because of my Muffet. I would sacrifice anything in the world for her to reach her dreams of skating on TV like Mirai or Caroline. I will lose so she can win.

Congratulations Vanessa, Dianne and Doug and the Lam family. We are so proud of your achievements and please know that you are an inspiration to many little skaters and their parents.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Can you tell I went back to work?

Obviously something has been keeping me from writing. I would love to tell you that it is my world travels on my yacht, but no dice... it is work. The good news is that I have not been kept from the ice and the hip flexor seems to be behaving lately.

Have you ever had one of those moments on the ice where you catch a glimpse of yourself doing something totally mundane (for me it is the three turns in the Silver MIFs)? I caught myself out of the corner of my eye in the reflection of the glass as I was coming out of a right inside three. Who in the heck is that? Where did the graceful Miss Hamill go? That woman looks like a 40 year old clod trying to skate - oh crap - that clod is ME!

So I started to mull all of this over and my mind drifted to competition. I think I am happy for the time being of looking like a clod to the handful of moms and skaters that inhabit my rink. I am fairly certain that my clod self will finally master those stupid three turns, power pulls and the outside mohawks on the eight step so I can finally show three other people (judges)just how graceful a clod can be. Now I know that my Boss will be mortified when she reads this because she never wants me to think this way - I love her so much for that. But I think I have come to terms FINALLY with how I look on the ice, and I am OK with that. I am just not ready to go show a bunch of strangers what I look like again. Maybe when I finally get that sit spin and lutz I will foray back into the throws of competition... maybe...

For now, I will putt around my rink. Get my butt kicked by the Boss and be the biggest cheerleader for my little Muffet I can be. Now for those MIFs... aarrgghh!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right

Remember the "Ouch!" post? Couple that with the "Type-A Disease" post and you will understand the title of this post. I have been working extra hard on my moves in the field and my loop jump technique for the past month or so. Being that I am a bit thick skulled, I usually don't "listen" too well to my body. In this case it is my right hip flexor saying, "Hello? Um, stupid? THIS HURTS SO KNOCK IT OFF!" Of course the hip flexor decides it has had enough in mid-air, leaving me to limp my way off of the ice. It was so bad on Tuesday night that I had to have my husband lift my right leg onto the couch so I could ice it. It hurt too bad to lift it myself.

After waiting for an hour and 15 minutes past my appointment time to see my doctor, today he told me to take 9 Advil a day, heat the hip before I skate, ice it after I skate and take it easy. I can do all of that except... you guessed it - take it easy. He asked if I was skating this weekend. I had to sheepishly admit that I was skating today, just hours after the appointment, and Friday for two hours. After shaking his head, he said for me to TAKE IT EASY and he would see me in 8 days.

I just yelled at Muffet to get ready to go to the rink, so I better get moving. I will keep you posted. As promised to the fine doctor, no loops today :(