My book blog now has its own home. Please visit me at LYNNE'S BOOK REVIEWS. Of course you're more than welcome to see what's going on in my personal life, but if you want to talk books, that's where I'll be!
On Friday Florida Gulf Coast University will take on Georgetown in an NCAA tournament matchup one day after Belmont battles Arizona. In the back of his mind, Eric Moeller knows that he could have found himself suiting up in one of those games having been recruited by FGCU and Belmont. Instead, the 6-11 former De Smet Jesuit big man is on the sideline, itching to get back into the game.
Moeller turned down scholarship offers last spring from mid-major programs for the chance at being a preferred walk-on at the University of Missouri. He'd redshirt this season to build strength with the goal of going on scholarship at some point down the road.
He declined to get specific in a phone interview earlier this week about exactly what happened, but said that "things weren't going well." He said he wasn't kicked off the team. Missouri Head CoachFrank Haith confirmed Moeller's exit last October in an interview with Patch, while saying he thought Moeller still had "a good basketball future."
"I made the wrong decision," Moeller said of the choice to go to Mizzou. It's nobody's fault," he said, admitting that he got caught up in the idea of being in a big time college basketball environment.
In the time since, he's been in the gym working out, getting "a lot" bigger and stronger. He's kept in touch with his former De Smet Jesuit teammates and coaches on their run to the state finals, and that the team's loss against Rockhurst brought him back to his own memories of losing last season's district final in an upset to Parkway North. He said he's been texting Jimmy Barton and Nolan Berry about not taking playing for granted.
And he's on the trail looking for a new hoops home, carrying a full four years of eligibility and a hunger for the structure which comes with being on a team.
Over the winter break, he visited UC-Santa Barbara and liked it, except that they're out of scholarships for the coming season. He checked out Eastern Michigan University over the weekend and said he has an offer there, as well as one from Florida Gulf Coast University, where he'll visit sometime after spring break.
A decision will likely come in late April so that next spring, he can fulfill a dream of saying he played in the NCAA tournament.
"I was meant to play," Moeller said. "I miss it everday."
The forecast called for snow and lots of it. I thought for sure Donna, our fearless leader, would cancel the hike scheduled for the next day. But she's a "neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow" kind of girl. She's also part Indian, and lived in Wyoming. And hunts. And hikes barefoot.
Three layers of pants, three shirts, a jacket, two pairs of socks, a face mask, hat and gloves later, I walked out the door at 7:30 a.m. and into...
After all the hoopla about how much it was going to snow, it hadn't done anything! But I was ready if it did.
My hiking partner for the day was Homer. Homer is very LARGE.
He filled up my whole back seat.
He's also very cute
And very friendly
It started snowing on the drive there
And kept snowing.
It snowed hard! I was glad I had my face mask (balaclava) on
There were about 10 diehards who showed up to hike. The dogs stayed warm with coats Donna provides, and they loved being in the snow.
I took this picture...
Same pic in color
And this I took in our lane on the way home from the hike
Yesterday I got to help save a puppy. She had only a few days left at a rural Missouri shelter before being killed due to lack of space. With our little "crew" of rescuers, transporters, and fosters on Facebook we did it! We saved a life.
Look at this face...
Isn't she adorable? She's a 12-week-old husky mix.
It felt good to be part of the reason she's alive, but it's crazy how much teamwork is involved...for ONE dog.
First, our Facebook friend Aimee saw that this puppy was in danger. Aimee routinely checks this particular shelter's website for dogs in danger of being killed. She notified us on FB that time was up for this pup.
Another friend who operates a rescue agreed to be responsible for vet care and post the dog on its website...IF someone offered to foster.
My friend Kelly (of course) offered to foster. Usually the foster gets to name the dog. Hence, Olivia.
Another friend, Becky, offered to drive the puppy from the shelter to an animal hospital closer to St. Louis, where the dog was treated and given vaccinations.
Kelly had to work, so I picked the puppy up from the vet, took her home for a bath and then to Kelly's.
The foster (Kelly, in this case) gets the hard/fun job of potty training and snuggling a puppy or adult dog and watching it thrive. She socializes it with other dogs and people, takes it for spay/neuter (or I take them since she works) and then finds it a good home through adoption events or the rescue's website.
I love that everyone helps in whatever way they can:
Aimee has a toddler, so her role in rescue is limited but crucial. She is a crossposter and is the best plea-er / beggar around. She is relentless and refuses to let a dog die on her "watch." I'm sure her family and friends are maxed out on dogs.
No dogs would be saved, of course, if it weren't for the rescues who agree to take on a dog and its baggage, which could include thousands of dollars in medical bills. SO PLEASE DONATE, especially to small rescues!
Without fosters, the rescues couldn't save dogs from shelters. With only so much space in their own homes, where would they put them?
Transporters drive the dogs to their destinations. Sounds menial, but with dogs being saved from all over the country or in this case the state, transporters are essential.
I wish I could do more, because it's the most gratifying feeling in the world knowing a life was saved because of something I did. I can't imagine how fosters must feel.
I'm a married mom with one son, Eric (19), two stepchildren and a baby grandson. I met my husband on a blind date set up by friends. We dated for 10 years before getting married six years ago. I grew up in a small beach town in Southern California and have lived in the Midwest since age 25. I love it here! My passions are reading, sports, and animals. Thanks for stopping by!