Saturday, May 26, 2018

May 25

We really and truly (finally) closed out baseball season this evening with Brady's team party at the A's game. Thanks to one of the team dads --who happens to work in the A's front office-- we enjoyed a suite and more than enough game-day food. (Think hot dogs, pizza, wings, nachos, chicken tenders, glub glub!) And then to top it off, we got to sit right along the third base line right next to home plate for the Star Wars themed post-game fireworks show.

It was pretty darn cool to sit with my family and watch those brightly colored lights illuminate the sky, and it was even cooler to watch from the very spot where the players who inspire my little boys so much had just finished playing a game.

Those unique moments don't happen every day, so I try to embrace them with a gratitude-filled heart when they do.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

May 24

It was a busy, busy day. I spent the morning preparing for the final PTA general meeting of the year, ran said-meeting at 3PM, had dinner, then scooted over to the Sports Park to watch Isaac and his team (and the other first and second place teams) receive their trophies.

Given the number of items on the PTA agenda, I'd been apprehensive about this day for at least a month, but it all went blessedly smoothly and I heaved an actual sigh of relief as I drove out of the parking lot.

It was fun to see Isaac get his trophy and of course I have lots of pictures of him and his teammates trolling the field afterward, but this moment from the meeting stands out as a favorite.

It's probably not immediately obvious, but it's a photo of one of Isaac's friends reading a letter to one of our service award recipients, who is a teacher who will be leaving the school at the end of the year. Said teacher teared up as T read the note, and in that moment, I felt distinctly blessed to be in a place with great schools and terrific educators who truly care about our kids.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

May 23

And just like that, the baseball season is over. Isaac's team didn't win the big game, but they played well and kept it competitive until the very end. There were a few tears when they came off the field for the final time, but for the most part, I think they were happy and I didn't think I could be prouder of all of them. And then this happened, and, ironically, I had to eat those "couldn't be prouder" thoughts:

After each team took pictures on the diamond, the parents scattered to our respective sides to swap reflections and parting words. I was surprised --and genuinely touched-- when I turned around at one point and saw boys from both teams engaged in a spirited game of pickle. A's running with Braves running with A's, laughing and tripping over themselves and having a fabulously good time. It was, in a word, beautiful.

With the competition over, they went back to being what they've really always been underneath it all: a bunch of eight-to-10 year old boys who just want to play and have fun. It no longer mattered who was on which team; in those post-game moments, they were all just kids who --underneath it all-- probably didn't want to see their fabulous season end.

What a blessing it is to see children living the way we all should live, right? I think so.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

May 22

...and this is what it looks like to be top 2 in AA-ball.

Isaac and his team played their hearts out tonight against the number one seed. And they won. At this point, I'm not sure why I was so surprised; they've improved steadily as the season has progressed and as of this moment, they've won a whopping 9 of their last 10 games. (And the one they didn't win? It was that marathon 8-inning effort last week that they wound up losing by one lowly run. And yep: that's the other team left standing.) They've worked hard and they've really, truly, honestly earned their spot in tomorrow's championship.

But in a weird way, it's also hard to win. My heart broke a little for my good friend's son, who pitched several really strong innings for the other team and came out on the losing end. So when one of my fellow moms aggressively cheered for the other team during the post-game handshakes, I joined her. Because at the end of the day, when their heads hit their pillows, they're all just little boys. And any team can win --or lose-- at any time. And it's always good to be kind. So thanks, Erin, for the powerful reminder that we always need to prioritize doing what's right and good.

Monday, May 21, 2018

May 21

This is what it looks like to be top 3 in AA-ball.

Isaac's team --who began the season by going 2 and 5-- won their 8th of 9 tonight and earned the chance to play for a spot in the championship games. The Championships!

I don't know what will happen tomorrow or the day after, but I do know that I'm hopeful that these boys will come away believing that they can accomplish anything at all with hard work and dedication.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

May 20

Adam and the kids gave me these flowers on Mother's Day last week. After seven days of waiting, the lillies all finally opened completely today.

Aside from being beautiful (and quite fragrant), they reminded me of an important truth: sometimes, we have to wait for something to mature and become beautiful. And really beautiful things are truly worth the wait. So just keep praying and waiting and trusting that the beauty will eventually shine through the circumstance.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

May 19

For numerous reasons, I didn't play any sports when I was a kid. (I did dance, though. Not exactly a team sport, but it was my physical-activity-thing and it kept me from languishing on the couch in front of the Atari 2600.) So the whole baseball experience has been a different one for me. And I really do love it: I love watching my boys do something they really enjoy, but I also love getting to know the other parents and kids.

And today, one of those seasons came to an end as Brady's team played their final game. (Isaac's team won their playoff game. They have a tough row to hoe from here on out since they're in the losers' bracket by virtue of their loss on Thursday, but they're one of only four teams left in the mix so they should be really, really proud. I know I am.)

No specific observations today; just a sense of thankfulness that I've had the chance to watch all of these boys play and grow over the past few months.