Paul’s sister, Anne, Paul’s mom, and our best friends, the Smith-Jacksons, came to watch Elsa run at the state track meet. She did beautifully. Qualifying in four events did some harm in that she had to run three preliminary races to qualify to compete. So, her morning was spent in running a 100 m, 200 m, and 100 m hurdles — and she qualified in all these — easily getting a first in her heats. Then, she ran the 4×100 m relay. Due to horrid handoffs, they came in second and missed beating the state meet record, which earlier times indicated they would. They were disappointed. Elsa won the 100 m. Then, we are guessing because of weather (it threatened to snow and hail), the state officials sped up the race times. Elsa did the 100 hurdles next and garnered a fourth. Though the 200 is her best race and she’s rarely been beaten in it, she ended up getting a second. It’s nothing to be ashamed about, but her times were faster than what she or the first place winner ran — she just couldn’t do it that day. It was her seventh race and she was worn out. She’s been sleeping ever since.

We did a child switch with the SJs. Robin took Ingrid and Dagne to play with Norah and we took Aine and Shaene to spend the night at our house. On the way home, we enjoyed playing a morphed version of Balderdash. One of us makes up a word, and thinks up a definition. Everyone supplies their own definition and whoever is closest to the original wins or sometimes we gave honorary prizes to the best one. My cheeks hurt from laughing by the end of the hour and a half ride.

floflempecker:a wooden leg

sniptor: an insult thrown at Spartan warriors who wear their tunics a little too short and don’t fight well. They must report back home and tell their mother they were called a “sniptor.”

tracterion: a Chinese, caveman farmer who designs handmade farm tools.

chittiface: Latin. pronounced KY-tee-fahch-ay. a blessing pronounced on a congregation that all the chaotic things in their lives turn out good.

schmunguslitus: a Swedish hopscotch game or … a bacterial infection Sumo wrestlers get between their creases.

Wow! The long ride home swept by in laughter.

I’m so impressed by those Smith-Jackson girls. They’re intelligent, mature and funny! And my girls aren’t too shabby, either. Though almost all parents love their children, it’s not guaranteed that we’ll like each other. Sometimes, especially during these teenage years, the child takes off in such an opposite direction that it’s difficult to even relate on small matters. But on Saturday, we had a car full of those teenage girls and we couldn’t have enjoyed ourselves more.