Saturday, June 29, 2013

Weekends at the Lake

A few weeks ago, I finally wrapped up several large work projects just as spring baseball season ended. And that means the boys and I have had some time to start really enjoying summer. Afternoons by the back yard swimming pool, weekends at the lake. Life is slow and easy right now, just the way we like it.

Last Saturday, the boys and I headed down to visit Grandma and Grandpa at their house on the lake. We enjoyed visiting and playing, being outside, and getting out on the lake. Connor and Xander are both big fans of jumping into the water off the back of the boat. Sawyer is content just to be in the water, spinning in happy circles and laughing. I'm guessing it's a sensory thing.

Some photos from our weekend begin here.

Connor wins the lucky draw of the week. He got to stay behind on Sunday when the twins and I headed back home. He's enjoying his first long vacation at the lake with Grandma and Grandpa this summer. Cousins Austin and Kyndal made their way down on Wednesday, so he's having a big time not only being the only child (of sorts), but also having playmates. He'll stay down until the holiday next week, when he comes home to help us celebrate at our house and see the city fireworks display downtown. He's also been requested by Grammy for a trip in the coming weeks. They're thinking about an amusement and water park a few hours away.

Have I mentioned before that Connor has a hard life? I'm pretty sure I have.

Mommy & Me

And Grammy. At the end of the school year, Connor brought home a certificate for free tickets to the local minor league baseball team. It's been a really long time since we've taken the boys, so long in fact that Connor didn't actually remember ever going there before. And that's saying something, because the kid remembers everything he's ever done that was fun (perhaps that's some sort of commentary on his take on minor league baseball, but we'll let that go).

So Grammy and I took him to a Friday night game. We enjoyed the requisite baseball staples of hot dogs, soft pretzels, kettle corn, Pepsi, nachos and even icees. Yes, we had all of that. Connor would have eaten more if we'd let him. Mommy might have, too. We LOVE fair food.

And then we settled in for an evening of baseball, activities and eventually fireworks. I had forgotten how little focus was actually on baseball and how much was on crowd activities at minor league baseball. Connor wasn't overly impressed with the activities or even the baseball game, though he was quite impressed when one of the workers offered him a foul baseball to keep. The home team won, which is always nice. And then the fireworks began. This was easily Connor's favorite part of the night.

A little one-on-one (or two-on-one) time with the big boy. So much of our life focuses on his brothers, their therapies and their needs. It's nice to have those typical moments with just him. A Friday night baseball game, fair food and fireworks. The twins are not baseball fans. They can't have fair food because of the gluten-free-casein-free diet. And fireworks are nice, but sitting through a three hour game in box seats before that started would have been anything but.

Connor, on the other hand, enjoyed a night out where he was the only child. He loves fair food as much as his mother, and he didn't mind sitting through baseball to get to the fire works. He even noticed a few player stats and good plays along the way. And he walked down and had one of the home team players sign his foul ball baseball. All in all, a good way to spend a Friday evening, he says.

Rookie Season Ends-

Last at bat of the season, and as a rookie league player. The boys lost in their first game of the city-wide tournament. The other team was just better. Better at fielding, better at making plays, and better at hitting the ball to places where our players were not at. They deserved the win. Our boys played without a starting infielder (who was on crutches from a summer accident). They also lost another starter to illness after the first inning of the game. But they continued to play hard. There were a few errors, batting was off, and the season came to a hard end.

Overall, it was a great season. They were runner up in the overall point standings for their league and made it several games into their league tournament before losing to their eventual champions. It was a little bittersweet. I've been told that the years of Rookie League are the best ones in little league baseball. With coaches pitching, there are lots of opportunities for hitting and fielding. Fundamentals and instruction are still the key points of the game. And it's just fun to watch.

Connor will be nine this fall, and will move up into the next league where the players begin pitching. It's also a broader age (and ability) range. It will be a different world.

We're taking the summer off to do some fun things. Trips to the lake. Movies with friends. Trips to amusement parks. Swimming in the back yard pool. Week-long camps. Fall baseball will be here before you know it (in August, just as school starts back). Connor will be looking forward to one of those things. I'll let you guess which one.

Friday, June 7, 2013

At the Ball Field

Rookie League, Spring 2013, Nationals

Tournament started tonight. Connor's team is in second place, so their first game is not until tomorrow afternoon. Just another two weeks of baseball. This week to finish out the league tournament, and the following week for the city-wide tournament (first and second place teams in each league are invited to participate). Lucky us. Connor is excited, and that's what counts.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Time Away

Park & View by here we wander
Park & View, a photo by here we wander on Flickr.
A few weeks back, Josh and I got to sneak away for a few days. Okay, maybe not sneak. We did have to arrange for sitters. And reservations. A leave a book of instructions about food and school and therapy and baseball.

Our time away came in the middle of two very big work projects for me. I slept maybe four hours in the two days before we left. Miraculously, I was able to stay awake on the drive down. I may have crashed early and long, but I stayed awake. That was an accomplishment.

We had a great time in our home-away-from-home. We didn't do much hiking this time around. The very short hike we did do very nearly did me in. I'll advise not hiking the day you wake up from said crash, you know, after not really eating or sleeping for two days. I kept trying to pass out on the hike up, which probably isn't good. Great view from the top, though.

No, we didn't hike much after that. But we had some much-needed down time. Sleeping in. Eating out. Watching a movie. Shopping (for the kids mostly, of course). Driving through the mountains and just enjoying the peace and quiet.

Grandma and Grandpa from the lake came up to stay with the boys. It was their first time keeping all three boys at our house overnight. It all went well. The boys likely disapproved of the no screen rule. But they know better than to argue with Grandma. And Grandma and Grandpa might have been ready to get back home, since they practically passed us in the driveway as we came in. But that's also understandable.

There was a reason we needed some time away. Life with three little boys can be busy and chaotic and stressful at times.

But as much fun as it is to go away for a few days, it's always equally fun to come back to big hugs and arms reaching out to hold on a little longer than normal at bed time. It's nice to be missed.