Monday, August 24, 2020

eLearning begins

 August has been a long, long month. The girls were supposed to start golf and swim practice at the beginning of the month. Their coaches sent email after email after email trying to keep us informed. Finally the IHSA decision came out. The coaches could schedule practices and competitions. One puzzle piece fell into place.

School was another situation. The school board decided to start with either a fully remote or a hybrid schedule. The hybrid model had one quarter of the students who chose the hybrid model in the school one day a week based upon last names. 

Students had to choose how to attend. We talked to the girls about each option. They went back and forth about what they wanted to do. 

I reminded them that they were living through history and it might be a good idea to go to school one day a week. The reality was that the schools were not going to be open for a whole semester. They might was well go while they could.

Both girls were still going back and forth when the district decided to go fully remote. The rumor was that some staff tested Covid-19 positive. 

We were not sure how this affected their sports. There were some changes, but not as many as there might have been. We were grateful for this sense of normalcy.

The teachers worked hard to make sure parents and students were kept informed. The girls were excited about the first day of school, even though it was online. We took a traditional first day of school picture on the front porch. Holly joined them as she had every other year.

There were some first day glitches, but overall it went well. The girls were happy to be back with their friends, even if it looked different than expected.

Sunday, August 16, 2020

First in class

Both girls are participating in IEA this year. The blond twin reignited her horseback riding interest during quarantine. Horseback riding was one of the few activities available when other interests shut down. It is good for a lot of things, including social distancing. 

The girls' barn has a terrific IEA program. The barn hosts several competitions each year. Last year, the brunette twin did very well during her two IEA shows at her barn. 

This year, the Covid-19 restrictions meant the show would be very different. Visitors were limited. The teams were more separated and there was much less mingling among teams. Everyone wore a mask. Competitors were to ride and leave. 

It sounded harsh when we received all the restrictions. It turned out that we're much more resilient than we think. 

Both shows were held in the outdoor arena. The teams staked out part of the property, setting up picnics, chairs, blankets and umbrellas. Several teams had matching masks, which was something our team decided to do for the next competition. It was different, but it was still a great time.

The brunette twin won her first blue ribbon on a horse she had never ridden before. She said that she thought jumping was her strength, but maybe flat was her hidden talent. 

The blond twin placed in three of her four competitions. She was both pleased that she did so well and disappointed that she didn't place in all four. 

Overall the girls were very happy. They had plans to improve before the October show and set new goals. The barn did a wonderful job pulling off two days of shows under difficult conditions. It was a nice sense of normalcy in our crazy new world.