Monday, August 11, 2008

Oklahoma YMCA State Swim Meet

This past Saturday, the 9th of August, I attended for the first time in my life a YMCA state swim meet. The meet was in Stillwater and was to start at 9:15 am so Rhys had to be "on deck" by 8 am to warm up. We left our house at 6:45 am to be at the Stillwater YMCA.

Rhys is new to the swim team having just started at the end of the Spring semester this year. He attended 3 other meets to qualify for the State Meet. He's been attending swim practice at the Enid YMCA about 1-3 times a week for the most part and really seems to have a knack for it with some coaching from Seth.

It's been an educational experience for me having no idea what the difference was between a breaststroke and a butterfly nor the order of an individual medley vs a team medley relay. I still get the medleys confused.

So, to summarize, here are Rhys' times this summer:

14 June 2008 Enid YMCA swim meet #1

50 yd fly: 1:05.59 (1:12.80)
50 yd back: 1:03.03 (1:09.96)
50 yd breast: 1:05.85 (1:13.09)
100 yd free: 2:03.17 (2:16.72)

(Converted to meters just to make the numbers comparable)

12 July 2008 Enid YMCA swim meet #2

50 yd fly: 1:04.43 (1:11.52)
50 yd back: 1:05.27 (1:12.45)

50 yd free: 50.52 (56.08)
100 yd IM: 2:33.48 (2:50.36) - DQ'd

26 July 2008 Stillwater YMCA swim meet

50 m fly:
50 m back:
50 m free:
100 m free:

9 August 2008 State swim meet, Stillwater

200 m medley relay (back): 1:09.65/4:20.44 (2)
50 m fly: 1:06.65 (2)
50 m back: 1:10.46 (4)
50 m free: 53.77 (2)
100 m IM: 2:25.71 (1)
200 m free relay: 55.37/3:28.78 (1)

The state meet was a LONG day (we got done at around 3 pm) and Rhys swam a lot more events than he had at other meets but seemed to be just fine. He improved all of his times and is looking forward to the swim team party this week.

Edited to add: I made it just in time to Rhys' swim party at the Y for the awards presentations. Of all the age groups, the only "sure" high points winner was Rhys in the 7-8 age category. For this he received a trophy. Rhys also received 2 gold, 3 silver, and 1 bronze medal for each of his races and did not receive any DQs.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Med Tours - Preparing Payment

I really need to sort out what we will owe in both Euros and USD for our various tours and such while on our cruise in the Mediterranean. I'm ready to buy Euros from our bank but the cost hasn't dropped as much as I would have liked. The current rate is about $1.55 USD for 1 Euro. I don't know what our bank's current rate is - probably in the $1.65 USD range.

Here's the breakdown that I've figured based on an exchange rate of $1.55 USD per 1 Euro:

ROME: Rome in Limo transfer from FCO to Civitavecchia (6 passengers): 28.33 Euros per person + tip ($3 USD per person) = 66 Euros
Roma shuttle private transfer from Civitavecchia to FCO (2 passengers): 120 Euros + tip ($3 USD per person) = 130 Euros

SICILY: Celebrity tour already paid for. Tip ($3 USD per person) = 10 Euros

ATHENS: Spiros taxi service (8 passengers): 56.25 Euros per person + tip ($5 USD per person) = 128 Euros

EPHESUS: Ekol tours (6 passengers): $55 USD per person + $10 USD per person + tip ($5 USD per person) = $140 USD. Ekol will take USD or credit card and we also paid the $130 USD deposit for this tour for all 6 of us.

NAPLES: Italy Limousine service (6 passengers): 66.67 Euros per person + tip ($5 USD per person) = 148.83 Euros

Total: $140 USD + $482.83 Euros

I plan on picking up some envelopes at Staples today and labelling each envelope with the info for each tour and putting the amount that we need in them in Euros once we receive them from the bank. Hopefully this will make it very easy to keep things sorted out. Of course, we'll also need some pocket money but I'm thinking we'll need to use an ATM or 2 while we're out there. Looks like I need to order at least 500 Euros from the bank.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Too good to pass up - DVC

It really was a deal that was too good to pass up. DH and I had discussed briefly buying more DVC points after I had received an email with the latest "deal" DVC was offering at their newest addition: Kidani Village at the Animal Kingdom Lodge Villas. I called our guide, Amil Arroyo, and spoke with him just catching him before he left for his next trip (DCL to Mexico this weekend). We already own 350 points at SSR. Here's the deal:

$104 per point with an $8 per point credit applied to the downpayment. So for 100 points, it would cost $10,400. Down payment would be $1300 - $800 credit = $500 down (Disney Visa). The remainder of the balance has 30 days no interest then 10.75% for a 10 year contract. I'll be putting that balance on our Disney Visa and paying it over 6 months with 0% interest. No closing costs with first payment due about October 1st. Here's the real bonus: we are allotted 100 points for March '08 use year (not '09) AND we receive 100 bonus points AND we receive a $500 Disney gift card. The downsides: Our annual dues go up by $471.32 and the 100 bonus points must be used at SSR, Disneyland, or through interval international within 12 months of purchase (by August of '09). So, if I'm doing the math right, $10,400 for 100 points - $800 ($8 per point credit) - $1000 (approx value of 100 points if I sold them) - $500 (gift card) = $8100 which amounts to $81 per point. 3 years ago when we first bought in to DVC, we ended up (after incentives) paying $90 per point.

For next year, then, we'll have 120 points banked from this year + 450 points = 570 points. We are soon-to-be-owners of Kidani Village at the Animal Kingdom Lodge Villas! Woohoo! We will be able to book either SSR or AKL 11 months out, otherwise, all other resorts we can book 7 months out.