Sunday, April 19, 2009

How to Have Fun While You're Stuck at Your Brother's Baseball Game

Well, it's officially baseball season here. For the next month, we'll alternate games where we huddle together on the bleachers, a blanket wrapped around us, cups of coffee clutched in frozen hands with games where we lube everyone up with sunscreen and listen to the kids complain that they're thirsty and dying of heat. That's the weather in Chicago.

So today, the whole family (minus Jackson who was at a friend's house) went to Austin's practice. Lexi, Clay & Veruca Salt (formerly known as Brooklyn) played in the dirt the whole time. What's that? Why is Brooklyn now called Veruca, you ask? Well, this morning, Austin was eating a package of chocolate chip muffins. Brooklyn decided she wanted them. She demanded them from Austin. Austin, being a good big brother, told her they were the last chocolate chip muffins and offered to get her some blueberry ones. That wasn't good enough for Brooklyn. She screamed, "I want those chocolate chip muffins!!!"

Austin said he'd share his muffins with her. "Here you go Brooklyn, you can have one," he offered her. That wasn't good enough for Brooklyn either. "NOOOO! I want those! I want them NOW!"

I think we started calling her Veruca about the time she threw herself down on the floor in a kicking, screaming, muffin-induced tirade.

Anyway, as I was saying, Clay, Lex, and Veruca played in the dirt.


Yep, this is one of their favorite pastimes while at the ball field - making piles of sand, rocks, and dirt. This nasty sand that's on baseball fields everywhere, sticks to skin and clothing and stains it orange. It stays forever. In the summer, it sticks to sweat and sunscreen and leaves a filthy layer of yuckness on your skin.

They played with piles of dirt for a while, then they loaded up their shoes, yes, that's right - their shoes, with the sand and ran around the bleachers looking like crop dusters as they left a trail of fine sand billowing out behind them. I think it's time I pack up the baseball bag and throw it in the van. For those of you who don't know what I'm talking about, I pack a big beach bag full of stuff. I put small toys, Barbies, Matchbox cars, a Video Now player with a couple movies, some fruit snacks, a box of Goldfish crackers, some bottles of water and/or juice boxes, crayons & coloring books, a bottle of sunscreen, and some soft squishy balls in the bag. I keep it in my van and pull it out when we're at games so there are plenty of things to occupy the little kids. No, it doesn't usually work for the whole game, but it sure helps fight the boredom. For those of you who spend their springs and summers at the ball field, give the boredom-busting beach bag a try!

Now, I'm off to wash the layers of sand off my skin...

22 comments:

Shelli (wishes she was) Mrs. Burchett;) said...

I am sooo with you girl! We have a "softball bag" in the car at all times! We are in the middle of a tournament as we speak...my 2 younger kids turned into MUD in the shower last night! I have no idea why they get so excited when I say, "Sophie has a game, do you want to go play in the dirt?"

Megryansmom said...

Καλό Πάσχα (kalo pasca)

Happy Easter to my Greek bloggy friends!

Monica said...

I call my little ones "baseball hostages" every Spring. They are taken against their will to practics and games: the only redeeming factor is when another little baseball hostage -- another little sister forced against her will -- is also there. That's a good day for the prisoners!

Tracy said...

I hate that dirt, my flip plops are always orangey grey. This will be our first year with 2 kids in baseball, should be interesting keeping the 2 year old occupied 4 times a week.
BTW I about busted a gut over Veruca, I had the image in my mind of her singing that I Want It All song from the movie around your kitchen.

Dawn said...

Christós Anésti Megryansmom!

MaBunny said...

The beach bag sounds like a good idea! Good luck washing all that dirt off! Sounds like it sticks as bad as Texas Red Clay...

Heidi @ Tayterjaq's Rebels said...

We definitely have one of those for softball. We have lots of snacks, a cooler, a few toys and bubbles.
It is an absolute necessity during the "season".

Anonymous said...

LOL! I love the Veruca Salt comparison. I love that movie. The original one. With Gene Wilder. While I adore Johnny Depp, he was not nearly as frightening as Gene Wilder.

There was a local Chicago band named Veruca Salt, in honor of that character.

Karen

Margee said...

I have another suggestion for the bag, especially for the days that are hot. I always packed spray bottles to fill with water. Even if it gets on the parents in the bleachers, it will be a welcome respite from the heat. My daughter always used to spray it on the sidewalk or the chain-link fence. The kids can also have water fights with them far away from the parents.

Beth said...

I'm a little slow. I totally didn't understand what "veruca" meant. But thanks to the magic of Google, i am now totally up to speed. Very funny.

Abby said...

I was so totally doing every one of those things at the Little League field when I was a kid!!! I didn't even have a sibling playing... my mom used to go watch OTHER PEOPLE'S KIDS FOR FUN! (She's a teacher.)

Granted, I volunteer there now doing the scorebook, etc. It gets inside your SOUL! lol

my3boys said...

We call it the hockey bag. And just for the sake of "one-upping" you (because you have six kids and I only have three), hockey season goes from mid-August to the end of February. That's six and a half months in case you're counting. And I have to sit in a freezing cold hockey rink at least 5 days a week during those months. And it overlaps TWO entire soccer seasons. ugh.

Natalie S. said...

My son is also a ball player and I use Phels Naptha bar soap to scrub his pants, it takes out ALL of the orange clay/dirt/gunk lol Its in the laundry section at the store but its a bar soap, let me know if you can't find it and I will send you a few bars :)

Anonymous said...

And then there are those windy days when everyone sitting in the bleachers is covered in that lovely sand--in your eyes, hair, ears. Ugh! Softball season for us doesn't start for a couple of more weeks. I'm not looking forward to it!

Aimee said...

My daughter can relate to this! She's always stuck at her brother's baseball games. We bring sidewalk chalk and she draws on the concrete. Of course, it doesn't last the whole game either, but it helps!

Anonymous said...

Oo, thanks for the bag idea...I've got one entering kindergarten and one still in preschool, and I see a lot of bleacher-sitting and boredom during soccer in my future.

reen said...

Meant to put my name on that...it's Reen, not Anonymous. :)

Nicki said...

Ugh, I remember those days when Monkeyboy used to play Little League... either freezing to death or sweating bullets, and always trying to keep Little Bear (who was a toddler then) from running out into the field and getting brained by 6-year-old with a bat!

Nicki said...

PS... I commented a few days ago that your book wasn't published yet, but I'm a dummy or the store I went to is a dummy! I found it at Barnes&Nobles yesterday!

Michelle said...

Yikes. Good luck. Sadly, it was Mister Man himself who was making sand angels on Saturday. Little Miss was off at the park next to the ball fields the WHOLE time. Now I know two parents are necessary at every game. *sigh*

And Sunday was rained out. You forgot that there are days we don't play at all because of the ick coming from the sky!

Anonymous said...

You could be the owner of a high school player who has brand new WHITE PANTS and shirt that one of the other mommies campaigned for because he little darling wanted them! YOu can pour a surprising amount of chemicals on these things though, so I can't fault the quality of the material - my fingers, however, a different story! One of my friends says if I get a female judge with at least one kid playing a sport, I will get justifiable homicide where this mother is concerned! :)

~Jenifer~ said...

Hey just wanted to comment on the dirt that turns everything orange..I live in Alabama where they put RED (yes red) dirt on the field and then they give the players WHITE pants!

Also this is my kids first year playing ball and the have no consideration for parents that have more than one kid playin. I am at the park everynight most times from 5:20 until 9:30 or later. I have 2 boys a 10yo and 4yo it is crazy!

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