November 25, 2013

Go Team.

I sent my children to school today in snow pants.
It was fun and exciting, not sad like I always imagined little freezing children never having a snow day would be.  (Ha! Sometimes I write awful sentences like that on purpose.)

We probably have almost 10 inches of snow on the ground.  Can I tell you how beautiful and hot cocoa-y it feels?

Tip #1- if you are having company for Thanksgiving, do not clean the week before.  Your house will be destroyed during the weekend and no one will notice that you mopped anyway.  Leave the day before for cleaning.  Duh.

Tip #2- if you have short hair, do not go to sleep with wet hair.  Ha!
(Ha! Sometimes I post awful pictures like that on purpose too!)

Tip #3- if your husband agrees to go in to work a couple hours late to help you hang pictures, do not hide in your bedroom writing a blog.


I've been meaning to tell you this great thing that I learned the other day!!  It has changed my mental life.

(But, one more random distracting note.  I'm sorry that I'm not posting things I'm thankful for this month.  I really am brimming with gratitude for so much.  But, I'm a rebel.  Really.  A good girl with a little rebel in me.  What's a little Mormon mother of 8, with some rebel in her, to do?  Not post Thankful posts the week before Thanksgiving.  I'd apologize again, only I'm NOT really sorry.  So there.)

Ok-- ready?!  I love this.

Jakob has played soccer since he was 3, too young to be on a team (he was a first child).  He's had so many great coaches who have helped him develop into the confident, athletic young man that he is.  We love coaches.

Last year, he was on a team with a coach we were warned against.  I'm a little rebel, and the coach seemed skilled to me, so we kept him on the team.  

We began to notice a trend.  Whenever they were playing a game, and the team started to lose, this coach would get whiney.  He would yell at the kids and even the parents.  He'd say things like, "You parents don't care about soccer, you don't even get your boys to practice on time."  He'd yell to the boys similar insults-- that while they may have been true, they were certainly not useful to say in the middle of a game.  

This coach spent more time complaining about his team, the parents of his team, the referees, and the unfairness of the way the other team played than he did COACHING the team!  Hello!!  He shot himself in the foot!  The rebel in me, wanted to yell right back at him that HE was the reason the boys were loosing.  HE needed to stop whining and start coaching his team.

Aren't we like that sometimes?  Don't we find ourselves sitting in the midst of a loosing team (or a car full of team players who are fighting each other instead of working together)?  Do we punish, argue, and blame or encourage, inspire and COACH?

In our families and on our team we have superstars and kids that can't run fast.  How well do we manage our team?  Do we use the skills in the game and build skills during practice times?  

We can yell from the sidelines at how out of control our team is-- but ultimately that is our team!  We can be mad at them OR we can teach and encourage them.  I have seen kids pretty bad at basketball learn to be more confident and aggressive with an encouraging coach.  We can coach our children when no one is watching as well as we could coach someone else's at a sports game.

Honestly-- every single team has children who are young and learning!  They will be what you inspire them to become.  You have seen good coaches.  You might even be a good coach.  Why is it easier to coach a basketball game than it is to coach an early morning when our "goals" are to get out the door, dressed, fed, and happy?  

Listen to the words you speak and remember, the child who you are coaching has a Heavenly parent sitting right there on the sideline.  Are you inspiring?  

We will loose the game every time if we are fighting our team.  We must accept weakness to avoid rebellion.  There is a difference between a team that looses because they are young and a team that looses because they are poor sports.

This is a great game!!  It really doesn't matter if our kids are the fastest or can shoot the most goals.  If they enjoy the game, they will get better every day.  Have fun out there!  Enjoy your team!  Be loyal to them!  

And, if your offensive coach is more strict, you be an inspiring defensive coach.  Don't start yelling at the other coaches... Or teachers... Or refs.  (Maybe just one "Come on ref" for a bad call, and then move on and coach your team!)

I'm all about teaching the skills of a game.  We want to win.  A good coach has great practices during the week.  Teach skills, run drills... And watch the words you speak!  

Our family is our eternal team!
We can make our home a place everyone wants to be.  
We can learn how to teach skills positively! 
Let us all be great coaches!
We can do this!
Go Team!
Maybe not 10 inches... Maybe 5?  Todd says 8 or 10.  Toto, we're not in Kansas anymore.

I am grateful for snow.  And a husband who snow blows for me.
(See, I've always been a lousy rebel.)


Sandra Butcher said...

I love the picture of the 2 pine trees - it reminds me of a couple, leaning into each other. Thanks for the reminders - you are right re positive coaching. We have been thinking about your words here lately. And by the way, I guarantee you (and I am saying this hopefully to myself too), no one is coming to your house for Thanksgiving to see how clean your house is. They re coming to see you and your family. Hope you have a great holiday. Love you!

Christine Suldinger said...

Love the winter wonderland pictures. I miss snow. You in upper New York State?

jenifer said...

Yes- upstate NY. It is beautiful.

Aunt Sandra- thanks for making me look twice at our cuddling evergreens. I smile every time I see them now. And, unfortunately I stopped cleaning to impress others years ago. (I'm actually embarrassed when my house is too clean.). I clean for my own mental sanity- which in and of itself might prove my insanity. Ha! I am happiest with an orderly home. I'm learning to be happy with a garage full of melting gloves, hats, boots and snow pants. My visiting family is very low-key. Thanks for the reminder!!

Sandra Butcher said...

Every house for miles around will have that same pile of melting gloves/hats/etc. When I was at university, even when we went to 'semi-formals' everyone would trudge to the party with boots, etc - and leave them all in a big pile at the door, and change into heels, etc once we arrived. I am with you re orderliness=happiness. But I also am learning that it's not the most important thing that makes me happy, in fact, it's far down the line when compared to happy kids, extra half hour of me-time, etc. I really just don't want you to overdo it, that is the main reason for the comment. The holidays are going to test you and your ability to continue to let others do things for you while you are still in a healing phase. Love you!

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