Monday, August 4, 2014

I'm A What??!

It's official.  I'm a soccer mom.  I've got the minivan.  The extra 30 lbs.(okay, maybe 40).  The unattractive tan lines.  Yup.  That's me.  Honestly,  I did not think this would be happening so soon.  I thought I had a few more years, you know?  I mean, the kid trips just walking across the living room!  He can't kick and run with a ball.  At the same time!!!  Are you kidding me? 

Well, I was half wrong.  It turns out, he's not half bad as the whole kicking the ball around.   It was just an intro class, drills and stuff.  No games, no practices.  It was actually pretty intense for an intro course for a bunch of kids who can't even wipe their own asses.  But W definitely benefited from it. It's a taste of the many years of team sports he will be forced to participate it.  Lol!  Yes, that's right. We're going to MAKE our kids play.  Why?  Because the world of sports is like that of the sea.  You could have a giant fish tank in your house but it doesn't come close to that mysteriously vast ocean.  There's no way you will ever experience all the emotions and trials that you would while being part of a sports team.  I've never played.  Like ever.  I hated P.E. with a passion.  Nothing could keep me up at night like the dread of having to run that weekly mile in P.E.  Oh, the dread.  

But I missed out.  Big time.  Not that I would admit it at the time.  Being married to a sports-loving man, I've learned to appreciate and understand it on some level.  (Except football.  I can honestly say that it is an acquired taste and much like beer, I just can't.)  Boys, you'll thank us one day.  Don't miss out.  Not on all the camaraderie.  The payoff of practice and hard work. The anxiety and thrill of competing.  Losing and even more importantly, winning.   And much like food, it's universally appreciated.  There are so many invaluable lessons to be learned through playing sports!  Not to mention, it gets you off your ass!  Something kids don't do enough of these days.

W did pretty good in the intro class, minus one awful, tantrum-filled afternoon.  It was blazing hot almost every time and it doesn't help that there is a gigantic new playground 50 feet away.  Oh, and he absolutely will not do the stretches.  Have no clue what that's about.  I thought he just didn't want to get dirty but he won't even do the standing ones, so…whatever.  Picking battles left and right, know what I'm saying?  He's joined a league since, with practices and weekly games.  Pictures to come.  He's the most adorable little soccer player, if I do say so myself.  This is really good for him.  It's good for the whole family.  We've all decided to move more.

I will sit in that hot sun and watch all your games, juice boxes at the ready.  I will join that army of Korean ahjumas and start a collection of pastel visors.  I will lose my voice from cheering at every game. You and your teammates will consume more victory pizza than a college freshman.  And I will become a stain cleaning master.   I will hold you, win or lose.  I am a soccer mom now.  Bring it.

W, refusing to stretch.  

Working those little legs.

Looks so grown up here.
I think he's having fun, right?
His first huddle.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Angels In The Outfield


This isn't our first baseball game as a family, the four of us.  But that first one didn't really count.  First of all, it was a Dodger game.  And we ain't Dodger fans.  Secondly, it was a for a baby shower, so we hung out in a suite and didn't see one minute of the game.  Don't get me wrong, the suite was awesome.  Food was good.  But you gotta be in the stands if you want to experience baseball, am I right?  Nick was still a newbie and I spent most of the time trying to get earplugs from first aid at the stadium.  It was fun, but it had nothing to do with baseball.   See?  Doesn't count.

Fast forward a year, we still haven't taken the boys to a game.  An Angels game.  It's tough because it needs to be a day game and there aren't too many during the season.  But my good friend, KT, was awesome enough to give P some tickets for a game that was a day before his birthday!!  Not to mention VIP parking!  Happy birthday, papa!!!  Thank you, KT!!!  It was for a day game against the Kansas City Royals and the seats were uh-mazing!  Right by 3rd base.  It was a hot, hot day so we did our usual thing of eating in the shade and walking around the stadium until the sun settled a little more.  

One of my earliest memories of when P and I dating was receiving tickets to an Angels game as a gift from a friend.  It was my first baseball game and I had a blast!  I became an instant fan.  Just in time to see our team win the World Series the following season.  Baseball, itself, took me a little bit to get excited about, but the experience of going to the game was magical.  The sound of the roaring crowd.  The voice of the announcer blaring through the speakers.  That vast green field and red sand.  And at night, the bright UFO lights that attract every moth within a 5 mile radius.  The smell of nachos and dogs.  The hundreds of variations of Angels gear that people wear in silent cheer.  Doing the wave.  Rallying when we're losing.  The extra innings.  Parking a mile away and waiting an hour to get out of the lot after the game.  All of it.  There's nothing like it.  I challenge you to find the equivalent.  I'm so grateful to my P,  for sharing his love of sports with me.  I never participated in any sports in my youth unless I absolutely had to.  And even then, it was a struggle to pass phys ed.  I never appreciated it, not as a player nor as a spectator.  I might've gone my entire life, completely oblivious to the greatness of team sports and all that comes with it, had it not been for my husband.  

Now, many years later,  we have 2 boys of our own.  Surreal doesn't even begin to describe it.  The excitement I feel about all the sports that will be a part of our family memories is hard to describe.  There's nothing more to life than to share what we love with them.   And we love baseball.  We love the Angels.  So, this game was a big deal to us as parents.  The next day, we'd be heading out to Mammoth Lakes on our first family trip.  This was the perfect send-off.  Big thanks to my sister from another  mister!!

W had a lot of fun, minus a few moments of major attitude.  But he definitely liked sitting in the stands and cheering when everyone else did.  Obviously, he had no idea what was going on.  He would even cheer when people were booing the other team.  LOL!  It was adorable.  We took W to an Angels game when he was a baby, but he never went inside.  He spent the entire game crying in his stroller, absolutely terrified by the crowd and loud noises.  I stayed outside by the gates with him until the end.  See?  That didn't count either.  I thought he might still be a little skiddish because it is a scary tall building and lots of noise, but he loved it.  I'm talking giddy.  He kept running up and down the corridor by our seats and around the planters outside. Oh! and our seats!  You know how those seats fold up automatically?  Now,  just add a fidgety 3-year-old to that mix and you have non-stop entertainment.  We thought it was the heat, but it turned our little baby N had a fever.  Sigh.  Right before our trip to Mammoth.  Unbelievable but yet, not surprising.  He spent most of the time in papa's arms, trying to nap.  

Hopefully, our next game will go a little more smoothly.  No one be sick.  Lots of Dippin' Dots.  And I definitely will not forget to bring the rally monkey next time.  Almost had a meltdown during the 7th inning when that little primate came on the big screen.  Stupid mom.  How could you forget to bring the monkey?!



Little boy in baseball hat.  That's perfection.
Lil' Conger!!!  Look at that face.  

Whadda tell ya?!  Great seats, right?

His first Dippin' Dots.  I don't think he looked up once while eating this.

Even gave his brother some.  Sigh.

Just walking' around, waiting for our seats to cool off.

One of the greatest baseball coaches ever.  

Doesn't he make that hat look good?


Your turn, little one.
Nope.  Not havin' it.  
My angels.


Baseball's awesome.  Just like you.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

One Way Ticket to Crazytown

Did you know there was a holiday dedicated solely to trains?  I know, right?!  It was National Train Day and, of course, we had to take W to see some trains.  Actually, our little N is turning out to be quite the train enthusiast himself.  Before any words, he was copying his big brother and making choochoo sounds.  It sounds more like "Hmmmm! Hmmmm!" but you can definitely tell it's a train. So cute!

We headed to Union Station.  It was the first time for all of us.  It's across the street from Olivera street where Cinco de Mayo celebrations were in full swing.  So I knew traffic would be bad.  But I had no idea that Union Station would be just as crazy, if not worse!!  Who knew so many people are as crazy about trains as our W is?!  

Now, it's no secret that we try our best as parents to expose our kids to as many new experiences as possible.  Since W was a baby, we went everywhere.  And remember his gnarly stranger anxiety?  So, you know this was no easy feat.  It's so exciting to have children because you get to play ambassador to these most adorable and willing little people who are almost always overjoyed at whatever it is you put in front of them.  Emphasis on the word "almost."  Lately, W has been horrible.  I mean, really just wanna-punch-you-in-the-face bad.  I never know I could love someone so much and yet want to kick at the same time.

P and I were really excited about taking W to Union Station.  Hello!!! National Train Day?  It's gotta be awesome, right?  Well, W was in a funk from the get go.  We napped him on the way and he woke up with a stick up his ass about something.  I guess you have to be 3 years old to know what exactly that is.  Excuse me!  He would be excited then pissed off all in the same minute.  I'm exhausted just writing about it.  Bascially, it was kind of okay, and he kind of had fun.  But mostly I just wanted to kind of leave him there… forever.

By the end, he was so done and got in so much trouble that he now refers to the train station as "we're not going to take you to train station anymore!!"  place.  Yup.  We're not.

W. On a mission.

It was jam packed with train lovers of all ages.
The ceilings were more interesting than the walls!
It's like they knew my boys were coming!!

Arches.  Architecturally simple yet elegant.







I gave him a luggage tag and told him it was a train ticket. 
So shiny and pretty.  I can understand the obsession.
They were offering a tour of the inside.  I think he was scared it would start moving.

I think I know what our next vacation is going to be.








This guy just ate pretty much the whole time.  He's so awesome.













Brass windows.  So fancy, I felt underdressed.


N, appreciating his surroundings.  So young yet so wise.

Even the tiles were stylish! Love this place!