Dinosaur. Dinosaurs eat meat. Pumpkins are pretty. Dinosaurs, pumpkins, and trucks, and airplanes. Pumpkins are pretty and I like to collect them. I also like to look at ’em. Trains can take you places and trains are cool. Trucks can move and they work. Fishies are cool and I like to catch them. That’s it.
So I have gone from being a horse show coach and competitor on the weekends to being a soccer coach and a “soccer mom”. The coaching is going well, though I am a bit intense for my little charges. The spectating has been completely enjoyable and downright hysterical most of the time.
Wade is playing on a 4-5 year old team under the tutelage of my friend and fellow Bellbrook High School player, Holly. She is also the mother of one of the little ones on the team. She is a better woman than me, and has the patience of Job. As a “sweeper” in high school, she was a force to be reckoned with. As the “center halfback”, I felt completely as ease knowing that Holly was our last line of defense. She would systematically run the ball down and take players out that got in her way. Anything to protect our goal. Now I watch as she carries kids off and on the field, turns them around to face the right direction, wipes runny noses on the field, comforts crying kids, ties cleats, and passes out snacks. I sort of wondered if this whole mothering experience had somehow taken away her edge, changed her…….
……but along came little number 4.
Last weekend Jeff and I were sitting in our “chairs in a bag” along the sidelines. We smiled and cheered as our little angel ran up and down the field chasing the ball. Occasionally he would kick it, but mostly he just ran. He is really good at running. In fact, after every practice and game that is what we tell him. “Really good running today, buddy!” “I love how fast you chased after the ball!” “You are really fast at running around that herd of small children!” So it was going along just like any other game…..but then we noticed something out of place.
Wade forgot about running and spent the rest of the game looking at the numbers on the backs of the other team’s jerseys. When he would locate a #4 on the back of the navy blue uniform, he would push him in the back run away. After a few times of this, Jeff and I looked over at each other in a sort of “did you see what I just saw?” kind of way. The answer was clear. Our little vigilanty was specifically hunting down #4 and pushing him in the back whenever possible. It became so obvious to us that we assumed someone else would soon notice and give him his first red card. Do they actually kick kids out of the “Candy” league?? The whistle blew, signaling the end of the game, and Wade was spared.
After the game was over, and the kids had run through the tunnel…..don’t even get me started on the tunnel….. we went over to the sidelines to collect our boy. I asked Wade ,”why were you pushing little #4 in the back?” He told me, “That is what you do in soccer”. I told him I wasn’t going to buy that answer. When I asked him again why he did it, he told me that #4 had pushed one of his little friends earlier in the game. He said that he “was protecting his team”. I think I may know where he could have gotten that gene.
When I spoke to”coach Holly” about my son’s violence on the field, she said that she had been glad to see it. “At least he was doing something! He was one of the only ones who actually wanted to play. He was the only one who ran and didn’t cry!” She may have made some remark about getting that from his mom….yaddah, yaddah, yaddah…….
I walked away with a huge sense of relief. Holly was the same old Holly. I was the same old Joy. Motherhood only hides the fierce competitor in us…….some of the time.
After a rough couple of losses, the Mustangs finally came to play! The girls had a fantastic game against Franklin and posted a 6-0 win yesterday. They passed the ball well, played positions, took great shots, and learned to “contain” the ball on defense! I was so proud of the way they worked together as a team. And….to top it all off, my Kate had a spectacular goal in the fourth quarter! Congratulations, Mustangs!
We are getting ready to take on a few new projects around the farm. Due to the new horses moving in, we are motivated to finally finish off the South Barn. The South Barn will eventually house 5-6 horses, a large hay loft, and a new tack room. We are also in the process of getting a new barn door built, getting estimates for the electric, and buying building supplies to start the new stalls.
The small outdoor arena is also on the list of fall projects. The instructors are excited about having the chance to teach their beginner riders in a new setting. The new outdoor arena will also double as a paddock for poor weather turnout.
The jump field is getting a new face. By the end of the week we hope to have all of our cross country fences moved in to the jump field for more convenient schooling.
Updates coming soon…..
Wetherbrooke Farm congratulates Tonya on the purchase of her new horse. He is going to be a fantastic partner for her and her daughter for years to come! “No Name” we shall call him (until she picks out a new name), is a 16 hand, 3 year old paint that is going to make a super fancy hunter and eventually an eventer. He will be joining us here at the farm next week.
Congratulations Tonya and Meghan!
The Mustangs took to the field on Saturday in their first game of the season. We played like we were asleep the first quarter, as the girls just tried to get the hang of it. The second quarter we played fantastic—and scored our 2 goals. The third and fourth quarters were pretty rough. The girls were tired, and they were having trouble staying in position. We managed to hang on to the 2-0 lead for a win. WAY TO GO, MUSTANGS!!!
After several weeks of practicing, running, drills, and some whining….the Mustangs are ready to hit the field. We have our first game this weekend against Monroe. I am looking forward to seeing the girls put some of the things they have learned into practice.
Last night was Wade’s preschool open house. …
Last year he went to “Tuesday School” at our church, and we struggled with it all year. Along with the fighting over what to wear/not to wear to school (He doesn’t want to wear any clothes that have “naps”, “buttons”, or “zippers”—which he, not so fondly, refers to as “button clothes”), he cried about me leaving him every day until the very end of the year. It was rough on both of us. So I was hoping that this year would be a bit better.
We were very excited to see that his cousin Elena was going to be in his same class, along with his friend Maryn from soccer. Last night he was having a ball at open house. He met his teachers, played with toys, decorated his new school bag, and played with some new kids. It looked like it was going to be huge success. After the open house, Jeff and I took the kids down to the Dairy Shed to celebrate. And that’s when Wade piped up with……
“The boy that smelled like a diaper called Lainey (our neice Elena) a ‘diaper’ “. Jeff and I ,still just eating our ice cream, looked up at each other. We needed to hear more about this. So I asked “What do you mean ‘he called Lainey a diaper’?” Wade said “Well, he called her a “diaper” and then he got in trouble.” I asked “Was he a big boy or a little boy?” Wade said “a big boy.” I can’t stop the questions at this point so I say ” Did he really smell like a diaper?” Wade says ” well, he smelled somewhere between gas and a diaper”. I glance over at Jeff as his cherry slushie is starting to sneak out of the corner of his mouth while he is trying not to crack up. I say “Really? Do you think he was wearing a diaper? or does he just smell like one?” Wade says ” I think he just smells like one.” Kate is losing it across the table. All of us knowing at this moment that our private lives are no longer private now that Wade is in school. I just pray that he stays really busy, and doesn’t have a lot of time to talk about his home life. One can only imagine what he would say…….
It has been a crazy summer….The early goals and dreams I had for the show season just didn’t pan out for various reasons, but other REALLY exciting things are taking place all around me. Although I was a bit disappointed at the way show season went this year, things couldn’t be more perfectly timed. Normally I am so busy training and travelling to shows that I wouldn’t have had the time to do what it is that I am doing this summer. Not only do I have time to coach, but I am getting to spend more time at home on the weekends. We got all of our “Barn Bash” prep. done in record time this year, and am in the process of trying to get yet another barn remodeled. I am diligently pecking away at the ICP requirements (just finished my FBI background check and go to CPR-first aid in a week or so) and continue the studying. My friend and I are also working on an exciting new venture! Maybe someday soon I’ll be able to share about it!
So, the horses have been sort of put on the back burner. I usually ride anywhere from 4-6 days/ week (and usually ride 2 or more horses off and on- depending upon who I have in training here) . I haven’t been on a horse in a week and 1/2 ! Well, I take that back…..I am horse hunting for a client, and I have been on several horses —-just not mine. I think Gus and Rhyland are enjoying the break—I know I have. I guess I will need to start back up here shortly….
We had perfect weather for our Barn Bash on Sunday. We think we had nearly 200 people show up for an evening filled with games, food, hay rides, fishing, square dancing, and smores! Every inch of the farm was filled with small kids in sheriff vests, cowboy hats, and boots. My mom went over the top in creating yet another fantastic set of games for the kids to play and a “general store” filled with prizes. My father-in-law was once again our faithful tractor driver for the hay rides. I think my Wade was on that wagon every time it left the barn! Everyone enjoyed the square dancing under the Christmas lights, and the “caller” did a good job keeping everyone up and dancing. Kate and her BFF’s twirled and swirled to the music all night long. Our boys, Abe and Danny, did what they do best——make kids smile. Thank you to all of you that helped out in that area: Julie, Elizabeth, Karen, Julia, and Rick….and anyone else I might have missed. The “stick horse steeplechase” was once again a huge hit. The kids (and some really brave/crazy?? adults) ran themselves silly around the “steeplechase” course of small cross rails. We were all winners! Maybe a little sore from all that sprinting in the sand, but winners. Thank you to everyone who helped us get ready for the party and to those who helped us cook/prepare the meat. We had a great time, and we hope you all did. We’ll see you at the Barn Bash 2011!
Joy—and the Von Handorf/Meredith Families