This morning I took my 13 year old son to ref his first soccer game. He took all the classes he knows the game he's been playing since he was 4 years old. He was very nervous and let me tell you why. It's not the rules, it's not the players, it's the adults.
There's always a shortage of referee's and that is because a lot of them doesn't come back after the first season. If you're 13,14,15 or older (or younger) it can be very intimidating to be on the field when parents yell at you or call you stupid or worse all because a decision you made.
My boys don't like to be the center of attention, did I push them to ref soccer? let's say I encouraged them. I think it's great for their confidence and let's face it most parent's are great, but it only take that one parent for them to feel really bad.
To all you parents out there without all these boys and girls reffing (for $8 a game on a hot sunny day) your children wouldn't be able to play so let's give them a break. Yes, they'll make mistakes but so will you and I. Let's be patient and maybe they'll be back reffing next year.
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Today we went to watch the memorial day parade. Marcus was playing in the marching band and they all did a great job. He told me he felt honored to do it and that was very nice to hear. If you take music in 9th grade it's mandatory to play in the marching band but lots of kids keep doing it through highschool. It was a beautiful day to honor all who have served or are serving our country.

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Today I took the boys to the lake for a couple of hours. My sister in-law and nice was there. It was great to catch up with them and relax on the dock for a while.

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Today we planted our vegetable garden. It was super hot 91f (32c). As usual we planted tomatoes and zucchini but then we switched it up a bit with broccoli different lettuce and kale. Now we're waiting for Adams friends to show up for a fun evening with bounce house and smores🍫

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I love my flowers. There's nothing like going out in the yard in the morning and just walk around before all the craziness starts. I've been planting all week and tomorrow is the last step when we plant our vegetable garden. I said we because Adam is helping me. It's one of the requirements for boy scouts. I'm sure he'll do a great job. Happy Friday everyone🌼

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Every year in May some of my friends and I go to NYC for a couple of days. We're usually four but this year Lisa couldn't join us so it was just Carolyn, Betsy and I. We stayed at the Warwick and in the afternoon we went to see a musical, The Jersey Boys. It was really good. We took the Subway downtown to a Swedish candy store that was just fantastic. We walked around the block eating candy and happened to see Sarah Jessica Parker which was a nice surprise. I wanted to see Highline for the past 5 years and it was just as beautiful as I imagined. It's the old railway track that they made into a park that goes quite a distance in the city. On our way back we went by Kleinfelds, it's a store that sells wedding dresses and also the location where the TV show Say Yes to the Dress is recorded.We had a nice dinner at Friedman's and ended the day with some drinks back at the hotel. The next morning we did some more sightseeing and shopping before we left the city and went to IKEA in Paramus NJ. Of course I found a lot of nice things but I also stocked up on some food and candy a la' Sweden馃槈 Our final destination before returning home was Woodbury Outlets I could probably spend a week there.

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Dear mom

Today is your birthday, you would have been 74 years old. Happy birthday mom. I'm so thankful that I was in my thirties when you past I can't imagine how it would be like if I was a child or a teenager. Every year on your birthday I receive pictures of your grave and it's always done beautiful with flowers and candles. I haven't been at your grave since we were buried you, I haven't been to your house or even to Sweden since. I can blame it on that it cost a lot of money to travel or that the kids are so busy but you know why. You know why I haven't been back to my childhood home in almost 8 years. To me it would be like stepping back 8 years and land in the deepest sorrow I have ever felt. To sleep in your bed or to sit in you chair or to see all your things. I'm not ready and I don't know if I ever will be. I know that I have too for my children's sake. Thank God dad comes every year but I miss my sister and my niece and nephews but most of all I miss you. I miss you so much it hurts. No, I'm not crying myself to sleep anymore but the pain is still there it's just different. So many memories, like when you would dust the living room with the radio on and you would call me if there was a good song like "vikingarna". We would dance and when the song was over you would continue dusting. It's the little things. We often talk about you. I want the boys to remember you like I do. Marcus remembers but I'm not sure about Jacob and Adam. For many years I had a picture of you on the counter in the kitchen and one day I saw one of the boys kiss the picture and say she's always with us. It makes my heart smile. One day mom I will come home again. I hope they play some Christer Sj枚gren and have some good birthday cake for you in heaven today. I love you and Happy birthday.

/Helene

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I couldn't wait any longer. It's to cold outside to plant flowers and there's talk about snow tomorrow! It's my 42nd birthday tomorrow and I have never ever had snow on my birthday. I planted some herbs that I can use in my cooking. Hopefully by next Saturday I can plant my flowers🌸🌹🌼🌺🌸🌹🌼🌺🌸🌹🌼🌺🌸🌹🌼🌺🌸🌹

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This Friday and Saturday was the yearly neighborhood garage sale. For some reason Fridays are always the best. This Friday it was pouring rain but people still came to spend their quarters. It's fun and exhausting all at the same time. Kids clothes sells absolutely the best but also little knick-knacks that you think nobody would buy. Maybe I should do one more this summer or maybe I'll wait until next year, at least I got my closets cleaned☺

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15 years ago I gave birth to a healthy baby boy 3995gr and 51 cm today he's a little bigger than that! Happy birthday Marcus🎁🎂🎈 In Swedish tradition we woke him up by singing happy birthday and bringing him presents. My mom always brought me breakfast too we kind of skipped that part of the tradition. We had to rush  because the bus comes a little before 7am and if you're a teenager it's a must to take at least a 20 minute shower🚿 After school they had a track meet that we went to look at. Marcus is not participating because he hurt his hamstring at the last meet so that has to heal. We cheered on his friends and by 7.30 we got some birthday food from Taco Bell of all places but everyone was happy. Now it's time to sleep and all I can think of is in 365 days he can get his driver's permit!  I told him we have Swedish rules you can't drive until you're 18! 😝

Marcus is taking a picture with Mrs. Petrella

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