Friday, April 4, 2014

End of the Seasons

Wow, I did not mean to be away from this blog for so long.  It has been a busy few weeks, with a lot  going on in many areas.   I chose the Ends of the Seasons as the title of this post because in the past week or so we had the end of the Robotics season,  the end of the third quarter at school, and finally the end of the winter weather. 

Last week it was the end of the quarter.  Kyle who does not like to do his homework, had a ton of work to finish up.  It got to the point that he was overwhelmed, and refused to do it.  Many kids are stubborn, but Kyle's Aspergers makes him extremely stubborn.  At times he goes into stubborn mode, when he really shouldn't, like when it comes to homework that will affect your grade point.  It is frustrating when he want to do things the hard way, instead of just doing it as soon as he gets it. He could easily have all As and Bs, but doesn't when  he doesn't want to turn in his homework.  On Friday and Saturday of last weekend,  we had our second Robotics meet. This time it was in a town  about 45 minutes away, and we had to do some fancy scheduling since I could not be at two places at one time.    We fared much better this time around.. After the first day we were in in the top 24, which meant we would have  a great chance to make it to the elimination rounds the next day.  

This time I was able to get to the pits and take a close up picture of our robot.  It kind of looks like Gary from the SpongeBob cartoon.  The circles that look like eyes are the tops of the antennae like arms that would pick up and throw the ball.   We did well during the last three prelim rounds Saturday morning.   Kara had a special dance class that day, so I was not able to get to the meet until after the alliance selections.  I was happy to find out that we were picked to be one of the teams in the final rounds.    We were on Team 8.  Later we would find out that Team 2, lead by one of the teams we are friends with, were planning on picking us for their team. Had we been on that team we may have lasted longer because of how the matches are seeded.   It probably worked out okay though.  During our first elimination round, our robot got hit hard when another robot was trying to block us.  It hit us hard enough that our battery was knocked lose.   The pit crew fixed the problem, but during the second match  there were more technical issues and our antennae arms could not pick up the ball. To make matters worse, one of our teammates also had technically issues, and could not move.  As you might have guessed, we lost that round.   Since we lost matches in a row, we were eliminated.  We are done for the season.  This year was a good learning experience, and we now have a better idea of what we can do next year. Most of the kids on the team are Freshman, we will be a force to be reckoned with  in another year or two.  

This week we had "quarterly" finals at our high school.  This is a new thing that our school is trying, and I think it will really help.  Instead of having one big final at the end of the semester which is  20% of the final grade,  there will now be a smaller test at the end of each  quarter worth 10% of the grade. It takes some of the pressure off of kids who have trouble testing, and each tests is over less material.  I know my oldest daughter aced one of her quarterly finals, so it will definitely be good for her.      

Our snow finally melted this week, after a very cold,  brutal winter.. We are less than 2 inches from breaking the record as the snowiest winters ever for our area. We got double the usual amount of snow.  When the giant snow banks at the end of my driveway finally melted this week, look what turned up!  That is my neighbor's Christmas tree that had been buried in our shared snow bank  for THREE MONTHS! It actually looked pretty good for being out there that long. The garbage men picked it up this week on April 2nd.  There are even some houses in our neighborhood with their Christmas lights still on their house.  This is the longest that has ever happened.  I think ours came down about a month ago.  There was just too much snow, and the temps were just too cold.    It is so nice to look out the window and see brown grass.. It will be green soon enough, and I can't wait.  

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