Saturday, April 02, 2011


I took all the kids to soccer practice last Thursday. They're not very organized; they told Rachel that Melissa's was going to start at 5:00, but we arrived at 5:05 and nobody was there. We turned around and got pizza, returning just in time for Matthew's practice to start at 5:30. Melissa stood around and talked with anyone who wandered near where her team was supposed to be practicing; if she was disappointed, she didn't show it.

Meanwhile, Isaac ate two and a half pieces of pizza. Pizza is virtually the only food he hasn't decided was duck [yuck] at one point or another, so it's our go-to meal pretty often. Matthew ate one slice before practice and another when we got home, and Melissa had one and a half. In short: assuming Rachel and I want more than one slice apiece, a 14" pie can't be assumed to be enough for our family anymore.

Melissa's team trickled in and her coach got things started at 6:00. Isaac was starting to get bored. We went over to the small playground near the soccer field, but there weren't any other kids there so that didn't help much. There were several throw-myself-to-the-ground tantrums. At least he gets down on the ground more carefully now, instead of actually throwing himself. He's stubborn, but not that stubborn.

I would have rather stayed at the playground, poor amusement that it was, but I needed to go back to the fields at 6:30 so Matthew wouldn't panic. So I dragged Isaac over (another tantrum) and found Matthew. The three of us kicked two soccer balls around for a while, but Isaac was getting increasingly restive. I looked over at Melissa's team and she didn't look very into things, so when she walked off the field to get a drink of water I asked if she was ready to go home, and she said she was, and we left fifteen minutes early. (The coach called Rachel later to say that they didn't realize I'd picked her up and panicked at first when they realized she was missing at the end of practice. And could I return the orange lapel pin she'd been wearing to show her scrimmage team?)

Saturday was game day. We tag-teamed: I took Matthew to his game, then Rachel took Melissa to hers. Isaac stayed home for both.

Matthew's team was crushed 8-1. Matthew and #6 on his team were the only ones with hustle. This could become a pattern. (Melissa's team had the opposite experience -- they won, no thanks to Melissa, who just stood there, even when the ball rolled right past her. But, she had fun playing tag with the other kids while she was on the bench...) I don't know if losing so thoroughly took any of the sting out, but Matthew was more disappointed than angry or bitter. Bullet dodged!

Meanwhile, Matthew threw me his watch wadded up inside his shirt and didn't mention it until we were driving home. We went back to the field, but the watch was gone; someone had given it to one of the coaches -- they weren't sure which team's coach. Matthew took this additional blow with extraordinary (for him) grace. Fortunately, it turned out at his next practice that it had indeed gone to Matthew's coach.

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