I had my last gymnastics competition of the season.
With this long weekend officially over, our first camping trip of the 2018 season is under our belts. Way back when we were planning the trip, the first outing of the year is always somewhere close and only a weekend. The idea is that we’re always a little rusty going our first time, sometimes we even forget things and being somewhere close allows us to work out the kinks before we go out further and longer.
With Emelia’s final gymnastics competition slotted for the Victoria Day long weekend that threw a serious wrinkle into our plans. Initially I suggested we still camp and drive to and from the Pinery which is about 45 minutes north of us and would likely add an hour or more trying to get to and from the competition in Mississauga. The hope initially was that he would compete on the Friday and then we’d have the rest of the weekend to camp. But knowing that we typically don’t find out her schedule until very close to the weekend, we opted for the next best thing. About 20 minutes from where the gymnastics meet would take place there is a KOA in Milton. This allowed us to get our first camping trip of the year out of the way – not in a first choice destination – and in a place that wouldn’t impact Emelia’s competiton.
When the schedule finally came in, boy were we happy we went this route. Not only was she competing on the last day of the event on Sunday, but she still had a practice on Friday night when we’d already been away for the night. We kept our plans of heading down Thursday night because lets be honest we were chomping at the bit the get camping, and knew the down and back trip to London for practice Friday evening would be nice to come back to a campsite already setup—one where I could have a beer by the fire pit after all that driving! (And, I did!)
The week leading up, I actually had some vacation days leading into the weekend, so that allowed me to get Wolfie Too out of storage, de-winterized, and then a couple of upgrades that we wanted to do, done. Tuesday was the day we were doing all that, and I ended up back in the driveway way earlier in the afternoon than I anticipated. To say Danielle and I were giddy would be an understatement – we immediately got the awning and slide out and got inside the trailer. And before not long I immediately starting picking away impatiently at the things we thought we might start while we were camping. I got the peel & stick faux ceramic tile up in the kitchen backsplash and that went so fast I immediately moved on to the shower head upgrade and then onto the same faux tile in the bathroom as the backsplash there too. Before I knew it, I was done every one of the things we thought we’d see if we could get to this weekend.
Now, for the camping… We were loaded and out of the driveway 5:00pm on the nose like we planned and were pulled in and set up by 7:55pm. I had a cold beer and a BBQ’d hot dog in my hand and I was happy! It managed to put the shadow cast on our day when we found out our locked bicycles were stolen off of our trailer through the wee hours of the morning Thursday, long behind us. Certainly was not the greatest thing to find, but thankfully Emelia’s very new bike was found/stolen and in the grand scheme of things, not near as bad as what other people we know are going through.
Now as for our impressions of the campground… We knew that a KOA would not be like the Provincial Park Campgrounds we love. And we also knew that a Canadian KOA would just not be the over-the-top sensory overload like the one we’ve been to in the US at Port Huron. But, what we didn’t know was the sign for this campground that we’ve passed numerous, numerous times on Highway 401 was literally right where the campground was—perched atop one of the busiest sections of highway in one of the busiest cities in Ontario, if not Canada. We could hear and see cars from our campsite if we wanted to.
Now, as downer as that might sound to a family that loves nature and being in the thick of it, we knew that this camp trip was our dry run and the means to an end which afforded us the ability to kill two birds with one stone: be able to easily get to and from Emelia’s gymnastics competiton and to be able to do that while camping. And this gave us both of that. And truthfully after about thirty minutes of being there we stopped noticing the sound of cars going by and when we did we pretended they were ocean waves.
It was so unbelievably great to back out in Wolfie Too camping again. With the DJI Osmo Mobile 2 gimbal in hand we did some recording of our trip that will turn into our very first ever episode of our Bonne FiresYouTube Channel. We had some pretty great weather at times and weather that is to be expected for this time of year, but there was no shortage of smiles, laughter and just sheer happiness with being back at the camp life. Of course the weekend ended sooner than we would have liked, but we also know that in four, short weeks we’re headed back out, this time to a provincial park and for a week!
What a busy, crazy and amazing week. As John has chatted about the big work we had for the first part of the week was getting the trailer out of storage, get it de-winterized, cleaned, unpacked, reorganized, restocked and get the upgrades we planned over the winter done. We managed to get much of it done pretty quickly, the trailer came out of storage in great shape so there was little cleaning we had to do, it was still organized so we just had to add back in the bins we store inside over the cold winter. What this left was getting things restocked and projects done. John made quick order of the projects while we also made sure Emelia got back in the swing of school after being so sick. Back to her regular training and dance classes.
The busy week was a great distraction to keep our minds off the big event of the weekend. Emelia’s last competition of the season was yesterday and it is always nerveracking. We had assumed that this competition would be a little big smaller than her last one, since it wasn’t a qualifier for provincials we didn’t think it would draw the top ranked gymnasts like the last competition. Wrong! As we found out Emelia’s schedule I peeked on the app that parents use to see how their athletes are fairing in the competitions to see that the large group that Emelia was competing it, ½ of the girls were highly provincially ranked and had qualified for the provincial competition next month. All of the girls in Emelia’s group had at 4 other competitions under their belt this year. So she was in for some tough competition. Add in that she was still coming out of a nasty virus that really took her out we were a bit concerned how things were going to go this weekend. Well she once again amazed and blew us away.
Emelia started out on beam, this was the element last that had been really challenging her was beam. She had a bad fall about 2 months ago and it was still spooking her for her split leap, add in that she fell off the beam last year in competition it was on her mind. All week back at training she was working hard over and over again to really take on the beast and she did. By Friday she was ready, steady and told me Saturday she was excited to do her beam routine for competition. Well she nailed her split leap and it was one of the strongest beams she has had in a while. She had some mis-steps that hit her with some deductions and she didn’t get the score she hoped for but we were so proud of her.
The biggest win for her this weekend was the floor routine. She scored her highest score ever on floor. She missed the podium for both floor and uneven bars by 0.025. It was so hard to see her that close but once we looked up her competition and saw where these girls were ranked provincially she was even prouder that she held her own in a very hard group and did so well.
We are about done this season for gymnastics and her development has been unbelievable. We should know very soon where she is placed for next season, she wants so badly to move to level 4. No matter if she is Provincial 3 or 4 we will be always be proud of her. She is just so excited to compete again and hopes she can move to even more next year. We are beyond proud of her, all her dedication and hard work. Way to go baby girl, mommy and daddy are so proud of you!