Summer School Started

Posted on Jun 16, 2014 under Random Thoughts | No Comment

Today was the first day of summer school… Not the most exciting way to spend a summer, but it is important for many kids to not lose learning over the summer.  Unfortunately, many of the kids who need it most don’t actually want to be there!  This year’s program is called STEM Academy – everything will have a focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM).  One day in and things seem to be going well in the classrooms.  I’ve heard about what sound like some cool projects.  Hopefully the kids will stick with it throughout the next 6 weeks and be open to some creative learning.

During the official school day, I’m going to be doing behavior support.   Time will tell how this actually works out, but hopefully it will be about connecting with kids and helping them overcome barriers to classroom learning. There is also an “after-school” component this year run by Community Education and Beacons.  During this portion of the programming I’ll be working with up to 15 kids in Bike Class.  I’ll see them two times a week and hopefully we’ll get to ride our bikes at least 50% of the time.  I’ve been teaching “bike class” since the summer of 2009 and since my school received a fleet of 13 bikes last year I’ve been teaching an elective class serving almost 60 kids.  We talk about bike safety and maintenance, go for rides, work on bike handling skills, we’ve done some advocacy projects, and community service.  It is a lot of fun!

Hopefully the next 6 weeks will go smoothly and both the kids and staff will have a good time!!

Father’s Day!!

Posted on Jun 15, 2014 under Random Thoughts | No Comment

Today we celebrate our Fathers…

Merriam-Webster defines a father as:

 :a male parent

: a man who is thought of as being like a father

: a person who was in someone’s family in past times

But the word means so much more…

I’m not sure we fully understand the word until we become a father (or mother). It is ever patient and kind.  Helpful, sacrificing, patient.  Listening, sharing, caring, and patient.

I have many good memories with my dad, (which M-W defines as a person’s father).  Probably one of the best was when we road tripped to New Jersey.  The summer before I started grad school I had to visit for orientation and to take a test.  We left late and drove through the night. I did what I had to do and we checked out the town, camped in the suburban.  We then spent a day in New York City, stayed with a friend in Philadelphia.  Then spent a day in DC and stayed with a friend in one of the suburbs.  It was a great road trip and I’m glad I got to spend that kind of quality alone time with my dad.

We spent a lot of time together through the years, sitting in tractors, driving around visiting farmers, camping, boating, skiing, working around the house (tearing down and rebuilding almost the whole thing), fishing, and much more.

I hope I can be a great father to my kids and pass on many memories and lessons along the way!

Here are a few pictures, in no order!!

3 generations of Cross


The newest Cross kids!


In NYC on the Today Show! Today show

At our wedding… _MG_8584A surprise at birthday dinner! 

And of course, I can’t forget my new father Gary! _MG_8707

Guest Review: North Star Bike Festival Kid’s Ride

Posted on Jun 13, 2014 under Uncategorized | No Comment

This is Nadia… I ran in the North Star Bike race tonight. Yes, I said I ran. I didn’t want to do it at all. But Daddy kept tricking me (lets go get a number, lets go see your friends, why don’t you put your helmet on for a picture, did you know you’d win a medal) and I finally did get excited about riding with my friends and winning a medal.

Sadly, the race organizers were a little disorganized and made us wait around forever… and they almost created a disaster by not telling the 6 year olds which way to turn and they turned into oncoming bikes…

Finally just before they let us go I had enough of sitting around on my bike and refused to ride. Daddy did say that if I ran it they would still give me a medal. So I ran/walked the course. Lots of people cheered me on! I’m really proud to say that I wasn’t last! And that I won and got a medal! 

Maybe next year…

Enjoy some pictures




Waterfall Run on Baptism River

Posted on Jun 11, 2014 under My Running, Uncategorized | No Comment

There is nothing more frustrating than being in a park with 23 miles of trail and not being able to find a way to close the loop without running roads or doing an out and back. The park map I got yesterday  shows ATV trails, but the trailside maps don’t, so I didn’t risk it.

I did do about 4 miles on the Baptism River which included 3 waterfalls!

Two Step

two step falls

High Falls

high falls

A great way to start the day. I ended the run at our camp site and then stuck my feet in Lake Superior and stretched on a rock next to the lake!

Another Epic Minnesota Weekend

Posted on Jun 10, 2014 under Uncategorized | No Comment

It is hard to miss a weekend during the summer in Minnesota as there is so much going on.

This coming weekend is a great case and point…

The North Star Bike Festival starts Thursday and goes through Sunday with some great bike racing. Hopefully Nadia will want to ride in the kid race!

Saturday is also the grand opening of the Green Line with events at each stop along the way. And World Refugee Day. And National Get Outdoors Day. And the Stone Arch Bridge Festival. And Midsommar. And overnight is the Northern Spark festival and Greenway Glow event.

Sunday is Father’s Day. Several of the festivals continue on this day of rest! And alot of places have special Dad events.

I’m sure I’m missing other great things, like races, sporting events, and other cool little events. What are you doing this weekend?

A Spanish Triathlon

Posted on Jun 09, 2014 under Course Comments, Race Review, Random Thoughts, Triathlon | No Comment

I started working on making a photo book from my recent trip to Spain with a group of 8th graders. It has already been over a month since we’ve been back and I’m trying to get a 50% coupon, so the clock is on! It brought back some fun memories and many reasons to want to be back!! I went running 2 different times, one while we were in Madrid and once while we were Benalmadina along the coast. I’ll get around to posting some pictures eventually! On my run along the beach I went West as far as the boardwalk would take me and then ran as far East as it went. It ended in a marina. As I was running I noticed a lot of markers and signs. So I grabbed a quick picture of one and even with my limited Spanish knew what it was… a triathlon! 50f767ff-852d-4a0d-b1b6-c09d01126612_pIt started later in the day and I was doubtful that we’d get to see any of it. It was actually a free day, so if I had known about it and had been training, I might have been able to compete. Nevertheless, I did some research and found it online. It was the II TRIATLON DE BENALMADENA, a 750 meter swim, 20 kilometer bike, and 5 kilometer run event. As we left our hotel to begin our events for the day, I noticed policia up and down the main road and they were beginning to block off the course. I was hopeful we’d get to see the bikers as they came past. We weren’t able to find a cambio to exchange our dollars so we ended up wasting a lot of time, which turned out to be a good thing. Just as we reached the turn around point the lead motorcycle went zooming by. I was fretting the decision of trying to get the kids to stop and stand around a bit to watch, but they all seemed happy to do so. We waited and watched for 10-15 minutes as the riders came by. We probably left before the mid-pack triathletes came by, but it was fun to watch and cheer them on! It definitely made me want to compete and think about getting back into swimming.


Posted on Jun 08, 2014 under Random Thoughts | No Comment

Today’s message at church was very timely, on the topic of rest. Not just sitting on the couch rest, but the need for Sabbath rest. Taking time regularly to recharge and reconnect not only with God, but also yourself. 

A friend recently posted about rest on her blog. With two young children it is hard to find time of quiet rest. Additionally our crazy schedule with Christy’s work makes rest that much harder to truly find.

Rest is available we need to make time to find it. The Bible promises rest to the faithful. Maybe not the rest we think we need. We need to find margin and quiet and not fill it with noise or distraction.

I think one of the challenges of our schedule is the lack of consistency. Each week brings a different schedule and it is hard to find routine. I find routine and discipline refreshing, maybe not restful. With routine you can carve out your time and space.

Matthew 11:28-30 has helped me through other times like this. Here it is for you:
Matthew 11:28-30 NLT

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”

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