Newest USA Archery Level 1 Instructor

I just got the last email from USA Archery that all my pre-requisite checks were now complete.  I’m officially a Level 1 Archery Instructor!  I’m now qualified to teach beginning archery skills to 8-13 year old children.  While not a difficult process in general, it was actually more time-consuming that I had originally thought and of course, more expensive.  As with any organized sport, the organizations will charge more money than anyone thinks is proper, but you don’t have a choice.  That is all behind me now and I’m already looking forward to actually running a weekly practice session at our local range.

My daughter has taken archery lessons now for just over a year and it’s the longest activity she’s managed to stick with in her 10 years on this planet.  It’s a big deal people!  We even were confident enough to go out and buy her first bow with all the trimmings that go with that to the tune of more than $400.  She’s actually become quite good and has achieved most of the pins for indoor and outdoor re-curve bow.  Her skill with shooting has quickly matched mine and in some respects, surpassed me.  I don’t have my own bow but am planning on purchasing one with my next work bonus next month.

She’s tried soccer, softball, basketball, tennis, swimming and field hockey and wanted to quit all of them before the first season was over.  We did force her to finish out the season because we did pay for them up front.  Archery was one of those things both the wife and I thought she would quit.  Well, it turned out to be something that she looks forward to going to each week and actually gets mad when we have a conflict and can’t go.  I was there so much that when the went around asking for people to volunteer as instructors, I naturally volunteered given that I’d been shooting off and on since college (more than 20 years ago!).

Now I can help teach other kids while spending time to and from archery every week with the daughter.  We play this game where she tries to explain to me what anime and manga are and I obviously act like a Dad and just make it harder for her.  It’s all in good fun and I never make it feel like I am making fun of anime and manga, even though I think it’s absolutely ridiculous.

Let’s hope I don’t hurt myself!!

Work – 1 / Life – 0

The last time I posted something was May 22nd and all my plans to stick to a schedule got thrown out the window. Work reared its ugly head and has been kicking my ass for the last several weeks with little reprieve or consideration for my personal time. Getting home after working since 5:30am meant getting dinner ready, cleaning up, doing anything that needed to be done around the house and nothing was left in the tank for me. I ended up going to bed most nights earlier than usual just to keep up with the next days work load. I’ve slacked on writing, reading and generally keeping life balanced with work. There is light at the end of the tunnel though, but it’s still a few weeks off at this point and will unfortunately start back up again towards the end of August.

I’m still writing sporadically for EatPrayVote.org as I still do managed to read the news every day and write when I’m passionate about certain subjects; mainly political stuff though. They’re quick drive-bys around 400-500 words mostly that are mostly reporting with a sprinkle of opinion for good measure. I find it cathartic to write out the politics clanging around in my head keeping me from becoming too jaded with all the crap that’s been flung at us in the last few weeks from Washington, D.C. Even writing political opinion has tapered off in recent weeks and I get about 2-3 pieces submitted and published when just a few weeks ago, I was submitting 1-2 per day.

Funny how you can make so many changes to keep things balanced between all your commitments and one thing can throw the whole thing out the window. I’ve kept pushing myself to minimize as much as possible and, interestingly, the less I have around me the easier I find it to stay closer to feeling balanced regardless of whether I actually am or not. The majority of the items that I find add value to my life have been moved and organized into my office space in the basement. The family is in a separate category of course, but material possessions now fit into a single 11×12 foot room with little feeling of clutter. Once I get the closet built around the radon mitigation tube going into the floor, I’ll have even more items packed away behind a closet door. It’ll quickly become a refuse that will help me recharge my batteries.

Last night I took a few hours to watch some Dr. Who, which was a feat in of itself as I had to utilize my VPN client to log me into a UK-based server to allow me to stream the content through BBC One iPlayer. The new season has started out slow and I’m looking forward to getting into some more action packed episodes. The mix of different writers has brought a lot of different types of stories and has varied the show without leaving behind the core of what makes Dr. Who “feel” like Dr. Who. It was good to get some uninterrupted time to watch some shows. I also am now taking the daughter to archery classes, which she’s been doing for almost a year now. I’ve started taking her because I want to start shooting with her and it just makes sense that I take her if I’m there already 🙂 I’ll be shooting with her next week as they didn’t have a bow big enough to accommodate my string pull distance.

I can’t make any promises when I’ll be back more regularly until I get a better idea of how things shake out at work in terms of audits and organization changes. I moved to a different building in the same campus and am now reporting to a new Director that is most certainly going to make additional changes. It might pan out that I get a bump in salary and position so that I can, at some point in the future, build out my own audit team. It remains to be seen how that plays out though, but I’m hopeful the changes will be positive.

Looking forward to some life when work decides to take some time off 🙂