Jason ditched worked on Saturday so that we could go to Bourbonnais, IL to watch the Bears at their training camp. Jason has always been a huge Bears fan, and goes every year to watch the bears train for the season. Of course this year was very crowded. I'm thinking it's because the Bears made it to the super bowl last season. Everyone has high hopes for them this year.
Two summers ago we brought Anna with us to training camp for the first time. This was also the same summer we went to Disney for Anna's wish trip. Anna was afraid of the team mascot, Staley the bear, that summer. She wanted to see him, but once we got up to him she freaked out. He acted as though he was upset that she didn't want to see him, and walked away with his head down. Later on she decided that she wanted to go give him a hug, but we couldn't find him. She was three, but almost four that year. We were actually afraid that she wouldn't want anything to do with the characters at Disney, but it turned out that she gave each and everyone of them a hug! Maybe she didn't want them to feel bad the way she made Staley feel. Anyway, after I wrote about this in Anna's old caringbridge page Staley must have googled his own name and found the post about himself on Anna's page. He ended up writing her a letter in her guest book. Unfortunately I had to erase Anna's page because someone spammed the guestbook it with porno(how anyone could do this to a little girls Caringbridge page is beyond me)
After he wrote it, I printed it out for her and put it in with her baby book, and other stuff I save for her. This is what it read:
My name is Staley Da Bear and I just read the article your mom wrote about Training Camp last year. I wanted to let you know that you didn't make me sad. It's ok to be afraid of the big brown grizzley bear. Sometimes I wish I didn't look so scary, but that's just the way I am. I hope you are doing well. Please visit me this year at training Camp!
Love your friend,
Staley Da Bear
I'm sure you can imagine the excitement Anna had over this letter. Heck, so did Jason, Mary, and I.
Anyway, last year we went to family fun night at Soldier Field. All Anna did the entire time was look for Staley so that she could give him that hug. We found him and she did give him a hug and this time I did not forget my camera!
As you can see, in both of the pictures Staley has got a hold of Anna's hair! When he pulled Anna's hair this last time, he did it, he made Anna totally obsessed with him. Since we stayed for the whole day (got there for their 9am practice, and stayed the day to go back for the 7pm practice) all Anna could talk about was how Staley remembers her because she hasn't seen him pull on any other girls hair and she couldn't wait to go back to see him later. When we saw him that evening, she asked him if he remembers her and if he remembered writing her the letter. He pointed to her and nodded his head. She was ecstatic! For the whole two hours, every time he would come near where we were sitting, she called out to him. She wouldn't stop. She kept on talking about how he knows her, like they were best buddies. She is friends with a celebrity! It was so precious.
Anyway, it was a great time this year at camp. The weather wasn't so hot because the sun was hidden behind the clouds. We hung out in the van and watched Harry Potter movies and ate the packed lunch Jason made that morning. The evening practice was awesome, they had a little kiddie training camp set up for the kids, which they got a kick out of. Through out the day we got some autographs, Mary thought that was really cool because last year she was really into watching the games with Daddy, so she knew the people. It was hard to get good pictures of the players we got autographs from just because everyone was pushing to get through, but I got a few good ones!
This one Alex took of the Mary and Anna