Wednesday, August 29, 2012

ONCEKids Publishing Cheers on Olympic Mom Jenny Potter

At 33 years old, Jenny Potter is a very accomplished hockey player . She has been on the U.S. Women's Team since 1997 and during that time has competed at three Winter Olympics and seven World Championships

At just 19 years old she was the second youngest player on the 1998 U.S. Olympic team. In 1999 she led the team in the Women's World Championships, scoring 12 points in five games.

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During her career she has won seven medals at World Championships; three gold medals, in 2005, 2008, and 2009, and four silver medals, in 1999, 2001, and 2007. She has participated in four Olympic Games, 1998, 2002, 2006, and 2010, winning a medal in each. She won gold in her first Olympic games in 1998! 

She played at the University of Minnesota Duluth for three years and at the University of Minnesota for one year. In 2002, Potter set the NCAA record for most goals in one game with 6 and became the all-time leading scorer in Bulldogs history. Winning the silver medal at the 2010 made Potter the most decorated Olympic medalist in Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs history. She currently plays for the Minnesota Whitecaps of the Western Women's Hockey League. 

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Oh and did we mention she was the only mother on the 2010 U.S. Olympic Team? In 2001 she gave birth to her first child, Madison, and in 2007 she had a second child, Cullen. 

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

ONCEKids Publishing salutes Modern Mom Kim Clijsters

Kim Clijsters is a professional tennis player from Belgium. She is a former world number 1 in both singles and doubles and as of August 13, 2012 she is ranked number 28 in singles in the world. She won Grand Slam titles at the US Open in 2005, 2009, and 2010 and one at the Australian Open in 2011. In 2003 she won the French Open and Wimbledon titles. 

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In 2007 she announced her retirement but returned only two years later. All of these accomplishments, and she is a mother

Clijsters gave birth to her daughter, Jada Elle, on February 27, 2008. A year after giving birth to her daughter, she came back from her retirement to win her second US Open title. This victory gave her the title of the first mother to win a major since 1980 when Evonne Goolagong won. 

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Her accomplishments equal the record set by Margaret Court, winning three Gram Slams as a mother. She is also the first mother to hold the number one ranking since 1975. In June 2011, she was named one of the "30 Legends of Women's Tennis: Past, Present, and Future" by TIME magazine and according to Forbes in August 2011 she became the fifth highest-paid female athlete. 

Monday, August 27, 2012

ONCEKids salutes Modern Mom Dara Torres

Dara Torres is an American former college and international swimmer. The twelve-time Olympic medalist is the first and only swimmer from the United States to compete in five Olympic Games. 

At just 15 years old she set the first American record and 26 years later she broke her own record in the 50-meter freestyle. At age 41, she is the oldest swimmer ever to earn a place on the U.S. Olympic team

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She competed in the 1984 games, 1988 games, 1992 games, 2000 games, and 2008 games. She competed in the 50-meter freestyle, the 4x100-meter medley relay, and the 4x100-meter freestyle relay at the 2008 Summer Olympics, winning silver medals in all three events. 

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She gave birth to her daughter, Tessa Grace Torres-Hoffman, in 2006 and won gold in the 100-meter freestyle at the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis just 15 months later. At the 2012 United States Olympic Trials, she finished just .32 of a second behind Jessica Hardy, and .09 of a second behind Kara Lynn Joyce, making her  place fourth in the finals of the 50-meter freestyle. Only the top two finishers qualified for the 2012 Summer Olympics, so she did not make the team. Despite this, her Olympic career still spans an impressive 24 years.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Olympian Lochte shares Gold-Stained Secret

Olympians are admired for their world-class ability, discipline and prowess.  As a mother, many of us use this standard to inspire our children.  One moment our family is cheering on our favorite Olympian, the next we're using that hero to help to motivate or teach a lesson.  "Olympians eat their vegetables..."  "Olympians go to bed early..." (luckily we're still many years away from the well-publicized: "Olympians wear condoms...")

After a recent and revealing interview, gold medal-winning Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte has perhaps reminded us of two family lessons -- but perhaps not using the exact words that we would've chosen.

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Lochte entered the London games as a relative unknown in a competition featuring one of the most famous athletes in the world: Michael Phelps. Rather than let his nerves get the better of him, he worked hard, trusted himself and earned his worldwide standing.  This paid off as he won the gold over Phelps and others in several early games.  This is of course brought his notoriety which he may or may not have been "media prepared" for.  But the lesson: work hard, stay discipled and your dreams may come true.

Secondly, Olympians are human beings.  Just like me, you and everyone else.  While they excel to the highest percentile in at least one distinct way, they also have foibles.  When first given his media attention there were many people to thank, many companies to endorse and many poignant ideas to share.  For better or worse, the quote that received the most attention was how often and comfortable Lochte was with peeing in the pool.  With so many comfortable athletes in the warm water for hours, it makes you wonder not the drug content in their blood.  But rather the urine content in their communal bathtub.  Practice forgiveness; no one's perfect.

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My hope is the next time my son plays in our pool, I don't catch him smiling slowly with relief and then cheering, " I did it, Mom!  Now I can be an Olympian too!"

Thursday, August 16, 2012

'Lady in Red' lifts eyebrows at Olympic Opening

On Friday, July 27 over 700 million spectators around the world watched as world-class athletes from the globe's many countries paraded into the Olympic ceremonies.  Many countries' global identification benefitted from titled captions, soaring flags and of course their uniforms.  That is, except for one woman dressed casually in red, smiling proudly and marching along with India.

Who is this woman?  How did she sneak in? Where is she now? These are the questions that have been on the lips of  global security since the moment of broadcast.

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Definitive answers seem to have not yet been reached (and barely pursued).  But plenty of plausible potentials have been.  The woman is suspected of being Madhura Honey, a post-graduate student from Bangalore who now resides in London.  It seems she was a legitimate part (a volunteer) from the vast opening show who decided to extend her 15 minutes of fame in a cheeky nod, showing loyalty to her native land.   

To be sure, not everyone is finding humor or ease in her free-spirited red-cheeked moment.  But concerns of security were immediately extinguished as it was explained that all members of the ceremony were screened as they entered the world-class venue.  Her father, K. Nagendra, has also apologized on her behalf in case her actions embarrassed the Olympics, Olympians, officials or Indian authorities.

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The red-faced situation does bring up a difference among cultures.  While London seems to have turned their head from the embarrassment India has not.  If the incident had happened in the United States, would there be punishment, cable show banter, or worse?

Equally as important, what does Honey's Mom think of her daughter's "performance"?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

'Bucket List' Holds to Inspire Life

In recent years, movies and TV shows, such as The Buried Life, have brought the old term bucket list to our attention, but what really is a bucket list and why make one? A bucket list is a list of all the goals you wish to achieve and experiences you want to have before you die. They can be simple goals or big dreams. 

Creating a bucket list is important because it reminds you of what is really important. Most people spend their time getting caught up in the chaos of daily life, feeling like each day is just passing them by. 

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A bucket list will maximize every moment of life and encourage us to live life to its fullest. It is an eye-opening activity and gives the writer enthusiasm about the future, which is a crucial component of happiness. Plus, it's just fun to create! You can always remove things from your list or just keep forever adding to them. It is always a great feeling to cross things off as you accomplish them. 

When writing your bucket list, ask yourself certain questions to jog your memory if you feel like ideas are escaping you. Important questions to ask include:

  • What if you were to die tomorrow? What would you do today?
  • What have you always wanted to do that you haven't yet?
  • What countries do you want to see?
  • If you had unlimited time, money, and resources what would you do?
  • What activities or skills have you always wanted to learn? 
  • What would you like to achieve within your love life, social life, family, career, health and so on
  • What do you need to live life to the fullest?

These are just a few of many questions you can ask yourself when writing your bucket list. Don't hold back when writing, with your bucket list you don't need to be too realistic, the sky is the limit! 

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We at ONCEkids are strong believers in following your dreams and reaching beyond the ordinary. 

So tell us! What is on your bucket list?