Saturday, January 31, 2015

Jackson is a tough customer

Jackson plays tough defense.  
Today was my first chance to watch him play basketball.  
He played hard and tried his best.  
His team lost the first game but lost the second game.  
Good sportsmanship and learning more about the game seemed to the theme of this competition.  
It was my pleasure to watch alongside his Grandparents on both sides, 
his little brother Jake, and also his Mom and Dad.

Here are a few photos from today's action.

Catching a pass

Going for that ball

On his man

Defending the inbound pass

Getting big on defense

Add caption

Forcing the jump ball

Team Profile

Team photo

Little brother Jake
It was a fun morning in Woodville watching Jackson.  
I also learned that his coach calls him "Big Joe".
This makes me smile as Dad was always called "Joe" by his Navy Seabee mates.
It's kind of nice to have another Joe in the family.

Life is Good.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

In Memory of Uncle Thorvald

Here is part of the story of my Uncle Thorvald's life.
His legacy is longer than an obituary can record.
Thorvald Hansen died on Tuesday, January 27, 2015 at the age of 98. 

He was born, the son of Peter T. Hansen and Jenny, Gary, on January 22, 1917, at Troy, New York. His mother died during the influenza epidemic in the fall of 1918. As a result he was raised to maturity by his paternal grandmother, through whom he also learned the Danish language and came into contact with the Danish Lutheran Church.

He received his early education in the public schools of Lansingburgh, the northern section of Troy, and graduated from High School there in 1935. He found employment in a local woolen mill and worked there for six years. In early 1941 he was examined for the draft and was rejected. As a result, later that year he enrolled in Grand View College and Seminary. Following the completion of his studies there he was ordained into the ministry of the Danish Lutheran Church.

In June of 1948, Thorvald was united in marriage with Johanne Johansen of Luck (West Denmark) Wisconsin, and together they served congregations in Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota. Meanwhile, three girls were born to this union.

Continuing his education he attended the University of Minnesota and Drake University, receiving his B.A. degree from the latter institution in 1951. Later, he received an M.A. degree in Government, following post graduate study at the University of South Dakota.

In the fall of 1965 he came to Grand View College as an instructor in History, an occupation which continued for some years. In 1972 he assumed a minor administrative position at the College and in 1979 was named part-time archivist and given the responsibility for the Danish Immigrant Archives at Grand View.

Over the course of many years, Thorvald has written five books, including the centennial history of Grand View College, and translated two others, all of which are on subjects related to the Danish immigrant. Also, during those years he compiled and had published the Danish Immigrant Archival Listing, which is a compilation of all the known archival materials related to the Danish immigrant existing in this country, Canada and a large block of such materials in Denmark.

He has written numerous biographical essays on persons prominent in the Danish Church and a large number of other articles on various topics, most of which have appeared in publications related to descendants of Danes and all are housed in the Grand View Archives. For 23 years, ending in 2006, he served as editor of Church and Life, a publication of the Danish Interest Conference. 

Thorvald is survived by Johanne, his wife of 66 years and by three daughters, Ellen (Steve) Hansen, of Austin, Texas, Barbara Miller, of Ft. Worth, Texas and Nancy (Patrick) O’Keefe, of Urbandale, Iowa. Six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren also survive.

A memorial service will be held at Luther Memorial Church on Saturday, February 7, 2015 at 2:00 p.m. The body has been cremated and the cremains buried at Glendale Cemetery in Des Moines.

Memorials may be sent to Church and Life, c/o Wanda Clark, 123 NW 7th Street, Grand Rapids, MN, 55744.
(Obituary from Des Moines Register)

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Girls can jump, and dribble and shoot!

I had a couple of opportunities to watch Alyxis play basketball with both the 7th grade team & the 8th grade team for Spring Valley.
She's a good player for that age and seems committed to the game.
Here are a few action shots of her.

Easily winning the tip off

Scrapping for the ball

Cousin Bryce (my great nephew)

Cousin Corde (my great nephew) and Grandma Kathy

The lovely Milli, my great niece and cousin to Alyxis

Alyxis is going to be good if she sticks with the game.
This is gonna be fun!

Friday, January 23, 2015

The Shot

I've been trying to catch a sequence of photos showing Jack,
 in the act of shooting and the ball in the hoop.  
Got it tonight!


Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Young people

A week or so ago, I was an interview judge in the Regional Wisconsin Academic Decathlon which was held here in Rice Lake.  It was my second year of judging and I really enjoyed it once again.
My partner this year was someone I had never met, we got along fine during our scoring sessions and rated the kids quite close in each criteria.  It's a great volunteer opportunity as it only takes the morning and meeting & hearing the kids answer the interview questions is a learning experience for me.  Of course the kids are savvy regarding social networking and pop culture, but some are also very interested in history and philosophy.   I am already looking forward to next year.

I might have mentioned my tutoring relationship with a young man through the Barron County Literacy Council.  I have been meeting with my student for a couple of years.  He is a 20 year old with some learning weaknesses and reading at about the 2nd grade level.
Weekly sessions of one hour were spent on a workbook designed for this type of tutoring.  Keeping these appointments was always a struggle for my student and his mother.  This past week, I was stood up again, and, unfortunately, that was the last straw for me.
I have notified my students mother that I am discontinuing working with her son as a result of the attendance unreliability.
It was not a decision I made lightly and I counseled with the Volunteer Coordinator for the Literacy Council before making my final determination.
I'm going to take a break from tutoring, but hopefully in the Spring, I will be matched with a new student who is a bit more motivated and reliable.
I enjoyed my sessions with my student, but since there was no followup at home, it was a little like taking piano lessons and never, ever practicing.  Any improvement is very very slow.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Girls and hoops

Today I took a drive to Elk Mound to watch Alyxis play basketball.  It's about an hour drive one way, but all freeway.  Since the weather was cooperating, I decided to go.  I'm glad I did, it was fun to watch her play two games and to see Andy, Michelle, Glenn & Kathy as bonus.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Go Pack Go

Big day in 'Sconny as the Packers play the Seattle Sea-hawks for a chance to go to the Superbowl.
Go Pack Go!
No Joy.
Football is over for another year, sigh.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Ups and downs

Just as I was about to leave home to go meet my reading student, I sat down in the living room to do a little task and looked up just in time to see two pileated woodpeckers fly in.
One perched out in a maple tree, but the other landed up on a flower pot on the deck railing.  I took these photographs through the  very dirty living room window.

So startling to see these big guys up close.
I always think of Woody The Woodpecker when I see them.

What a great cone head!

The truth is, I would prefer that these guys not get started drilling on my maple trees.
The can make sawdust out of a tree in no time flat.

The downer of my day was that my student was a no show.  After waiting 30 minutes at the library, I sent the mom a text and she replied that 'they forgot, sorry'.  So, I think I'm about at the stage where I have had enough of that, but maybe I'll give her one more chance, I have to think it over.

In the meantime,
Life is Good.


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