The younger two had basketball this morning. I'm the coach of Petunia's team; Thing Two plays on a different team since he listens much better to people other than his parents. Not sure what happened, but our team had only five players for today's game. Three kids just didn't show up (maybe they thought we were off for the holiday weekend...my bad for not e-mailing everyone beforehand to confirm) and a fourth broke her wrist at gymnastics this week. And it wasn't our strongest five there, either: God love the ones who showed up, but that game was an adventure. Let me just say that man defense (required by our league for reasons that have not been satisfactorily explained to me) is a challenge to teach to newbie first and second grade players and leave it at that. The kids we had played the entire game, did the best that they could, and made a respectable showing and I was beyond proud of every one of them.
Thing Two had a tough morning. He has some real athletic gifts, but he HATES to lose and does not take losing well. His game was on the other side of the gym from ours and there is a curtain in between, so I couldn't see any of their game. By the time our game ended and I got over there, he was on his sideline crying. He'd been taken out of the game. We're working on explaining that being sad and frustrated is ok but that crying because of losing or getting something wrong is not: this is an uphill battle at the moment. I was told later that he played well, at least. He has to learn to get his emotions under control in order to move to anything beyond rec level sports: as it is, his behavior is standing out even at rec level, especially since he's such a big kid (he could be a third grader but we held him back.) He might be good enough for travel soccer from a skill standpoint, but those kids will eat him for breakfast unless he gets the social element down, so he's staying at rec for the foreseeable future, unfortunately. Damn language and social impairments. Damn them for limiting him because we fear the social repercussions to him. (Is that just our fear, or cold reality??)
Fortunately for me, I was able to spend the afternoon regaining my personal equilibrium at a nearby nature hike/geocaching event. I now recognize vole holes, fox poop and praying mantis egg sacs (I heard a horror story from a friend about the eruption of tiny praying mantises in her house after one of those sacs came in on her Christmas tree, so I'm glad that I now know what they look like!) I am also very happy to say that I declined the opportunity to eat the larvae of some bug or other when it was presented to me. Himself is convinced that I am insane for deliberately spending an afternoon walking around in mud in 35 degree weather, and put that way, he does have a point, but to each his or her own form of insanity. I made some new friends, had a nice walk in a beautiful park, and found four more caches, including one so sneaky and evil that the prior logs for it (written by both finders and people who gave up) are among the funniest things I've read in years. Fake bolt embedded in the wooden support of a guardrail, anyone??
Home now, getting ready to enjoy some good wine in front of the beautiful fire that Himself just built after a dinner that I did not have to cook. Another day survived and a peaceful evening earned!