Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Hockey Seems to Go On Forever...Maybe Because It Never Ends

Tonight we had Michael's hockey end-of-year banquet. It was a fun, casual gathering at one of the player's homes, and like always, it is with relief and some sadness that we turned in our jerseys to end the season. The season is so long, at 6 months in length, and we all start to feel a bit burned out by March approaching. At the same time, we spend so much time doing the hockey thing and being together, that it is sad to realize that chapter is ending. Some of these people we will rarely see again, as our interests over the off months disperse in many directions. With some luck, about half of us will end up on the same team together again next year.
I will admit that I will not miss the many emails that seem to pop up out of nowhere in the middle of the day announcing another added game or practice that requires our attention immediately. I will certainly NOT miss the practices that go until midnight, or the ones that begin at 7am, meaning we have to arise at 6am or earlier on the weekend. But I will miss watching these kids play and improve...we have watched them all so long and closely that in some ways, they all feel like our own kids, and we are proud of evey single one of their accomplishments.

(Sidenote: Thomas was so nervous about the 2 dogs walking around, that he was clinging to Bob for dear life. It was so funny....he wouldn't even let ME hold him. He sure loves his Daddy! Even at hockey games, he would always search for Daddy standing on the back wall while he was sitting in my lap. He has the sweetest and most genuine smile of pure love saved only for Daddy. Here, he knew he could count on Daddy to keep him safe, while Mommy would probably just put him down on the floor as soon as she had the chance.)

We did not have to wait long to jump back into hockey. To be precise, we were done with hockey for only 1 hour and 45 minutes. Just as we were about to leave the party, the head coach announced we had been invited to participate in a tournament THIS WEEKEND in Brainerd, as another team had to cancel their spot emergently. Of course, the kids went nuts, and were jumping all over the place, excited about the prospect to play more hockey, when we all thought it was over. The parents' reactions were mixed, between sighs of "Oh, no!", to exclamations of "Yes! Game On!". The end result was decided to do the tournament...the kids are so psyched!

Unfortunately, poor Michael will be going alone with the neighbors....this will be very odd for him because Daddy does NOT miss a single game or scrimmage. But Bob will be enjoying his vacation in Arizona this weekend, golfing with his good buddy, and I will be home alone with the rest of them. Trying to manage them in a hotel room all weekend by myself just does not seem very appealling. Plus, I have Jonny to focus on this weekend.....he has been rather neglected during this hockey season, and he has done SO MUCH babysitting to help us out. This weekend, he and I are going to work on his pinewood derby car....and gosh golly, we are going to make a winner this year! I offered to take the neighbor girl for the weekend since they will be taking Michael....kid swap. We'll see who gets the better end of the deal!

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