Thursday, May 5, 2011

Take me out to the ball game...

"You won't need your camera. It's just a first practice," I told myself as I scooted Chloe out the door last night for her first t-ball practice. How I WISH I could've captured the events I'm about to unfold for all to see. No one told me that t-ball practice for four year olds would be such a hoot.

Now, if you know my Chloshmo (or if you know the gene pool from which she emerged), you know she's not so much coordinated athletic. She can't really throw, she can't catch, she can't even pedal for crying out loud. And it's not for lack of trying. It's a combination of her lack of interest, her lack of motivation (she doesn't care if she EVER learns to ride a bike), and her you know, coordination.

However, she loves social activities. She loves being on a team, being in the spotlight, and participating with other kids. When I asked her if she wanted to play t-balll, she sure did! So we signed her up and took her to her practice.

I sat in the stands and watched from afar. She does better when I'm far enough away she can't interact with me at all. Some moms sat very close and shouted instructions to their kids when they didn't listen to the coach, but I wasn't going to interfere. I watched them in the outfield first. They did some hitting and catching practice. Chloe squatted in the grass, picking tiny flowers from the ground, smiling each time she found another one. Balls rolled past her, people called her name, but she was pre-occupied.

She focused a little better when they came to the infield and began practicing "for real." Most of the kids ran to the wrong bases, didn't drop the bat, or commited other "first-timer" infractions. When Chloe grabbed a ball that had been hit and started running for first base two steps ahead of the runner, I was proud. I smiled as she beat him to the base, getting him out.

"Step on the base, Chloe!" the coach yelled. She put her foot on the base.

Then she put her other foot on the base.

Then she did a little dance, swinging her hips and singing a song I couldn't make out. She chatted it up with the base-runner who didn't know he was "out." Chloe didn't know either. She kept dancing. And singing. The coaches kept hollering at her. She kept dancing.

Finally she snapped back to reality and went to hit. She hit the ball right past another little girl sitting in the dirt drawing pictures with her finger. She made it to first safely, and back around to home. Then she joined the little dirt girl drawing pictures.

The coaches had done about all they could do with the short attention spans, and were losing the attention of all the kids. Finally the coach piped up, "OK how about we have a a snack and go home?!"

Chloe's head popped up, she shot to her feet and screamed, "WOOOOOHOOOOO! Snack time!" She hustled over to the coach, emiting so much team spirit. If only she had that zeal on the field :)


  1. Sounds like the normal behavior of a bunch of four year olds! They are so adorable in their little uniforms with the ball caps hitting the balls off the tee. It really is irresistible!

  2. I used to love to go to Hunter's games for this very reason. Now, I have Hudson and Cameron as first timers this year to enjoy. Take a camera every time - it's just a toss up whether to take a video camera also. The moments you'll get are priceless!