At the bottom on the left is an alphabetical list of the pages in this web site, to help you navigate if you feel so inclined.
A guide to our family photo album covering 1994-2010, showing the principal themes, is here.
A year by year guide to our family time-line from 1994 through 2007 is here.
A photo journal beginning in 2008 is here.
The most recent pages of the album, copies of posts from my WordPress family blog, http://ianstock.wordpress.com/, are linked here:
First, a little background. Santa Cruz County puts a lot of effort into organizing its youth soccer. There are several different structured recreational teams, and several different structured competitive teams, as well as more informal arrangements. One of the competitive clubs is the Santa Cruz County Breakers, which fields Boys and Girls teams (not co-ed) from Under 10's through Under 19's. You can check out the Breakers on their website at http://sccsoccer.org/index.htm.
Charlie is our first Breakers player. Alex became one as soon as he was old enough, and Alban would probably have qualified (this is a selective club), but we were worried about fitting in homework (which he was allergic to) with all the training and travel for tournaments. Homework is less of an issue at this point: the older children do what they are going to do, and the younger typically show willing.
This 2005 Breakers team was committed in their first season with the club. The photo on the left is of an opponent's free kick in front of the goal, a good opportunity to score. All of our players are intent on ensuring that the shot does not go into their goal. It's written on their faces, it's written in their posture. These boys are 9 and 10 years old, and for them the Breakers is about as serious as it gets. There were eight players on the field at any time, and each is caught here by the able photographer's lens intent on playing his part in keeping the ball out of the net.
And we were lucky enough to have a professional photographer among the parents of this team. Tony Pagliaro took all the pictures on this page, as well as a couple here, and they are simply a superb record for the future. Check out Tony's website, (http://www.tonypagliaro.com/about.html), and bear in mind if you're in the Santa Cruz area that you too could have the benefit of Tony's photographs of your children playing their favorite sport. It's what he does!
On the right is Lynden, a cracker of a player, the coach's son and the team's leading scorer. Again, one look at his face here and you can see that he means it! On the left, here is Cole, the team's goalkeeper, at full stretch with Anton and Stevie in back-up roles.
Below we have portraits of still more skillful players. Their faces show their concentration and effort: we parents were very proud.
Four of the players on this team are at Happy Valley School: Charlie, Anton, Ean and Jaia. The next four photos feature these Happy Valley boys.
First, Charlie is running down the wing and crossing outside his defender. That was how it was.
To his right, Anton, our defensive wall, is winning the ball from an opposing team's attacker. That too is how it was.
On the next row, Ean, also in defense much of the time, is clearing the ball from his team's end of the field. That ball is going places!
Finally, Jaia is running up the right looking across to center or pass the ball. The boys spent the season developing their passing skills, and it was joy to watch some of the moves that they started stringing together as the season went on.
Here are the remaining players, in action. If you have ever tried to photograph your children playing sports, you'll have some idea of how difficult it is to get shots like all of the action shots on this page. Thanks again Tony!
This page is already a little heavy in bytes, and will thus download slowly, but Charlie wanted to put the team picture at the end. So here it is, on the left, with both Paul and Boo, the coaches, and their illustrious troop.
They had an impressive first season together, very impressive. Let's hope that they can keep it up!
Finally, a little team spirit, caught in the lens after Wyatt scored a goal. They love to score goals!
Listing of Pages in the Site
. . . with Alban