Friday, July 8, 2016

For the Love of Football

One day back in May I was entering sweepstakes and happened to enter a contest to win Dawson a free registration to the 2016 Demaryius Thomas ProFootball Camp. A $250 win if I should happen to go forth and conquer.
And win I did. Because sometimes I type like Yoda.
 Believe it or not Jason and I actually had to talk Dawson into going to the camp. When I first found out I won (which is when we were on vacation in Steamboat Springs last month) and I was jumping all over the condo in joyful excitement, Dawson was saying he didn't think he'd enjoy the camp unless someone else he knew was there. Shy kids must miss out on a lot of fun. I registered him anyway. If it came down to it, I could pass for an 8th grader, right?
The day finally came and I wanted to capture the moment on camera when we finally got to the high school. I knew Dawson was anxious. 
 Evan didn't care. He got to wear his "pack-pack".
 After signing in, we were  directed over to the bleachers to wait until it was time to get started. It was during this time that the Channel 31 (Denver) news team came up and started interviewing the guy sitting in front of me. So I grabbed my camera and pretended to text when really I was taking a picture of the interview taking place in front of me. I was probably on the news later looking like I'm all texting. Really. I should work for the FBI.
I filled Evan's back pack with toys and the tablet I found at the Goodwill Outlet and bought for $1.67. Score. It already had games loaded on it. However, It was too bright outside for Evan to see the screen so I had to be innovative.
 Dawson loosened up a little when he realized that virtually every kid there was there with a parent and not a friend, so they were all in the same boat that he was in.
 Eventually this golf cart drove up onto the field and the lady across from me started smiling and clapping. I was all... "is that him"? I'm not accustomed to seeing celebrities in close proximity. Except for that one time in San Diego when I saw Richard Karn.
Immediately he was put to work autographing things set out on a table while the camp MC began calling campers out on the field.
 There goes Dawson.
 They were divided into teams by age and assigned a coach. Dawson's row is with his coach that has the hat on talking to the girl about Area 51.
 We estimated there were over 100 kids in attendance. Can you imagine that times $250 a piece? I can't. Because I can't do math. It was open to all kids within the US. One boy came from Florida. 
 Dawson's team getting instructions about the drills.
 DT was brought out.
 And then he introduced himself. I video taped it because I didn't know what celebrities sound like when they talk. I'm sure I had a gaping mouth like the boy in the bottom right of the picture above. 
Then it was time to do drills and learn crap.

 It was during that drill (above) that Dawson said the 31 news team came over and was filming them. When we got back to the hotel room, we quickly turned on the news and found the coverage of the camp so I took video.
Dawson was so bummed out that the film guy didn't get him on camera because the coach's head was in front of his face. Boo. 
More drills. Or standing around. Whatever.

 Some of the staff members passed out a sheet of paper stating that if you tweet about the camp experience you could win lunch with DT.
So I started taking pictures and tweeting like a crazy woman using phrases that Jason encouraged such as "inspiring young athletes" and "boosting confidence" and I still didn't win!
 Speaking of winning. There was a Papa John's booth set up at the front where you first come in. They had a wheel you could spin to win things such as a free large pizza, free dessert or a football raffle (which was to have your name put in the raffle to win a football signed by DT). I let Evan spin and it landed on free spin. So I let him spin again and it landed on football raffle. Lucky kid. I wrote Dawson's name down for the football. But he didn't win. I told Dawson it was all the kids who paid for camp that were winning things.
We managed to capture several pictures of the kids sitting and I'm not quite sure how that happened.
 Juwan Thompson showed up to join in the activities. I googled him so that make sure that he was legit. My blog didn't turn up because I hadn't blogged about him yet.
 Toward the latter half of the camp day, they break the teams up and send half of them to another field to play football games and learn defensive moves.

It was stinking hot out that first day and Dawson kept begging for a juice box. That's all I have to say about Evan. I just felt he needed a little blog space because he might be famous someday too.
 It was on Day 2 that Larry Fitgerald came to help out at the camp and I had to google him too. But Jason told me he's pretty certain he spoke at a recent event Jason had to attend for Compassion and Larry spoke. Only I don't think he looks like a Larry. But I'll go with it.

I'm pretty sure that picture was taken soon after Dawson intercepted the pass thrown my LF. I thought I should probably use his initials since I was too lazy to write out Demaryius's name. Equal treatment.
Dawson's coach had a phrase he repeated continually. "Everybody cover somebody". But Dawson never stayed with his guy. He cared more about catching the ball. I call that ambition.

I mean, the kid even owns football gloves. The sticky kind that help you catch.
This is one of the pictures I tweeted out with those awesome phrases.Now how on earth did I not win?

 And  I tweeted this one too. What is wrong with judges these days?!
I've been practicing my DT smirk.

 This is the part where the kids all came back to the other field to do more drills. Dawson's group lined up to receive passes from LF.

 And.. He caught it.
 Look at that agility. I get that stance when I'm about to chase Evan down for doing something naughty.
 And this is how far back I can bring my arm before spanking Evan for doing something naughty.
 These are the last few pictures we took before winding up the last day of camp. I don't know about anyone else. But the guy with the camera in this picture sort of creeps me out.
 This is DT applauding my efforts for winning this camp for Dawson. He was too embarrassed to look my way while clapping.
 And lastly, I have to share the story about camp pictures. I received an email stating that the first 20 people who signed their kids up could have their child take a professional picture with DT for only $300, signed by DT:
Then I received another email stating that if we didn't want to purchase that picture, it was fine because we could purchase this cheaper option instead for $20:
So I took matters into my own hands for free.
BOOM! I showed them!
Dawson actually did receive a signed photo of DT (actually signed, not a printed copy).
And Dawson also received a free copy of his team with Demaryius Thomas as well:
That Super Bowl ring is the size of a compact car.
I'm so happy that Dawson had the opportunity to go to this camp. And someday when he's a famous football player I hope he compensates me with a large house out of gratitude.