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Awesome things in 2014

2014 is nearing the end, and to reflect on the year that was… I figure I would write about a few awesome things that took place in 2014 …

1) I did a mud run and then played roller derby in the same day (capping off a 5 week streak of derby games – starting with a tournament!)

Photo by Kelly Dutchak

Photo by Kelly Dutchak

I have played more roller derby this year alone, than the previous 4 combined. Most of which took place between April and May. I also issued a challenge to myself at the beginning of the year to finish a mud run, so I trained accordingly for the demands of what my body needed for many derby games and a mud run… but what I didn’t factor in, was playing a game AFTER a mud run.

I was asked to play with the Revelstoke Derailers after the Kelowna MST run, and being the fool I was, I said yes! My first mud run was quite the experience and I’d defintely do it again! The challenge was to get home, shower off and get all the mud off of myself and then sit in a car for 2 hours and then get un-stiff to play the derbz. Well, I did! And came along with the Derailers as they claimed victory against the Kamloops Wreckers.

This year has been a great year in roller derby, I have had such fun skating with the Sun City Sirens and the Thompson Okanagan All Star Team (annd anyone who wants to pick me up! 😉 ). Between home games, tournaments and scrimmages, I’ve been fortunate enough to be part of this amazing Okanagan roller derby community.

I’ve learned that I LOVE tournaments, and I love the physical challenge of training my body to see how far I can run, how fast I can go, how much I can lift. I can’t wait to see how much I can push myself in 2015!

2) I finished school!!

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I’m done, done, done done! No more working all day in code, and then going home and coding (unless I’m working OT, which seems to be happening a lot this week). My last semester was definitely the hardest and most trying just dealing with program requirements and taking 2 courses at the same time, but I feel so great and so much lighter and happy to say I finished school!

3) Lego

Bike Shop and Cafe

EVERYTHING IS AWESOME! Seriously, it is! I got back into Lego in 2013 and 2014 I started to collect more buildings, I even annexed the train table to give my Lego a home and now I have my little city (as yet un-named) to build and it’s been a great hobby that I’ve taken on. I love building the sets I get, it’s a great way for me to get working with my hands and more about spatial awareness. Also, I *think* I’m getting Dave into Lego, so I’m hoping it’ll be a fun hobby the both of us can do 🙂

Santa was awesome to me this Birthday-mas and I finally have a few modular buildings to add to my modest collection, I look forward to posting a small tour of my lego town for you guys!

4) Rose City Wheels of Justice

THIS TEAM. omg. Watching their rise to the WFTDA finals was amazing, and with the late season acquisitions of Serelson and Rivas, it just made an already strong team.. SUPER strong. I love watching Scald Eagle jam because she just exudes power, something that I’m trying to work towards is to be powerful.

They took such a fight to Gotham that nobody has ever done before, and it was amazing to watch this team come together and be strong and be there for each other in this amazing moment. My heart broke for them in that last jam, but I know they’ll take what they’ve learned and become even stronger, and from them, I draw inspiration to become a better team player, and become a skater.

5) Skating Park

I like skating, skating is the best

To me, this is easily one of the highlights of the year… getting the balls to go to the skate park and mess around in the ramps and jump all over things. Skating park has opened up a whole new avenue of things to do on skates (and I LOVE skating, skating is the best). I love getting up early, having the park to myself with tunes in my ear and just jamming around on anything and everything I can think of. I am by no means a pro skater, but I love park skating and can’t wait for the snow to melt so I can skate MOAR!

6) Going home for the holidays

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For the first time since I moved, I was able to go home and celebrate the Christmas season with my family, and boy was it a whirlwind of a trip. Did some last minute shopping, helped with cooking and wrapping gifts and I still was able to do some work-work while I was there. It was nice to be able to celebrate my nephew’s birthday with him and to be able to participate in the Christmas Bingo as well as being the Santa for this year. It definitely was awesome to be able to spend time with my family and see their faces when they opened gifts, and awesome to see the amusement on my nephew’s face when he was opening gifts. It was definitely worth the wait, and hopefully I’ll be able to afford to be out there more for the holidays.

 

2014 was a great year filled with amazing accomplishments, some difficult times (being injured sucks), trying times and of course happy times. I couldn’t fit everything that I would love to write about in one blog post, but I look back at the year and I smile at the good memories that were made and look forward to making even more.

Thanks for the memories everyone! Let’s make this year even better!

– Until then…

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I’ma show you how great I am.

There was a moment this weekend, it was exceedingly simple.. almost cheesy, but there was this moment. I was sitting in the back seat of the car… crossing the Alex Fraser bridge on the way over to watch the Terminal City Rollergirls double header… and it was just a moment of absolute clarity.

The night before, I had just finished Apolo’s Book “No Regrets” and I found myself in the same locale as he did when he started and ended his skating career. I thought about how far he was able to take himself as an athlete in the years following SLC’s olympics… and then the thought came back to myself… I looked back to how far I took myself in the past year. I lost so much weight, I became a stronger skater… I was able to make it onto the Thompson Okanagan All Star Team… I was in this moment, having played a game in the morning and now off to watch even more games.

I could block this, or be blocked by this all day long.

I could block this, or be blocked by this all day long.

In that moment, I decided to myself that I was going to build the best skater I could possibly build. I was going to make myself into someone who there would be no singular doubt in anyone’s mind that she belonged on an All-Star roster. In that moment, everything that held me back.. negativity and doubt left my mind… and I just imagined all of the possibilities that I had the very capable abilities to unlock.

As you can probably tell, I had an amazing weekend last weekend. Almost, life changing.. personally.

I had the amazing opportunity to try out for the Thompson Okanagan All Star Team (TOAST!!!), a massive conglomeration between several leagues in the Valley (OSRDA, RDD, TCDD, OKRD, SORDA) they chose the best skaters from the try-out and took these skaters to the West Coast Dust Up.

The West Coast Dust up was created from the ashes that once was the RDAC Westerns tournament. A labour of love from many parties, the tournament came together in little than 3 weeks. Teams converged on the Cloverdale arena from Red Deer (Belladonnas), the Okanagan, the Terminal City All Stars and of course the home team, The Anarchy Angels. Each team would play each other once.

The tournament was an amazing experience, topped off with a double header to take in on Saturday night courtesy of the Terminal City Rollergirls.

On Sunday, the TCRG All-Stars took me to church.

I look up to every rostered skater on the All-Stars, their commitment to derby and their excellence in skills. I was lucky to have the opportunity to skate against them, in my head I kept repeating to myself “this is why I got up at 5 am, why I bike to practice… why I lifted those heavy weights.. why in one  year I pushed myself further than I had ever gone before. This game, right here… is the beginning of a new chapter.”

That game, was a series of small victories for myself and for TOAST.. and a realization that when your opponent is giving you tips right in the middle of game play, that this sport is an amazing and magical thing.

Roller Derby brought TOAST together, the love for the sport and the want to skate at that higher-level. It’s safe to say that TOAST also became a magical thing, a team.. that had only skated 3 weeks together meshed so well on the track and brought so many surprises to the crowd. Roller Derby made the Dust Up happen, it was the pure love for the sport that made this event happen.

Roller Derby saved my soul.

… and now I sit here, at work… listening to motivating music, feeling renewed and refreshed.. although exhausted. There are still faded numbers on my arms, velcro burn everywhere, bruises forming… but deep inside I have a growing smile, and a new found motivation to show myself and the world how great I am.

-Until then…

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Oh Mah God, it’s Summer!

Why yes, it’s the sunny time in which there is NO SCHOOL!

I am quite excited to be done school for the summer and I am looking forward to some awesome things. I’ve got my craft room all primed and ready to go to make cards for the summer, and lots of new ideas that I want to put on paper.

Roller Derby is also super exciting for the summer… Firstly, I am skating for the TOAST! TOAST stands for the Thompson Okanagan All Star Team! I feel so lucky and privileged to have been able to try out, and even more so to have been rostered on the team! TOAST will be playing in the West Coast Dust Up (Facebook Link here: https://www.facebook.com/blairblock#!/events/399432733511059/). We’ll be facing the Terminal City All Stars, Red Deer Belladonnas, and the Anarchy Angels. TOAST has already had one practice and I am loving skating with a different set of amazing skaters. It’s definitely been a whirlwind of 2 weeks, and I am looking forward to the challenges that do come!

I am also announcing the week after the Dust Up at the OKRD’s championship Bout, where the Sun City Sirens will face the Bad Apple Betties for the OKRD Championship skates! This bout should be super-awesome to watch as the Sirens have really brought up their level of play to where the Betties are at, and the Betties have been playing some really tough and hard hitting derby. I can’t wait for this barn burner!

On August 10th, my derby wife and I are headed down to Seattle to watch Rat City play… GOTHAM! We’re so excited to watch two amazing teams go at it and play some hard derby. I can’t wait to see Suzy Hotrod and most of all, Bonnie Thunders live and In PERSON!

Summer is shaping up to be an awesome 2 months, and I look forward to all of the fun!

-Until then…

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