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Daniel's Soccer Debut

I’m a wanna-be writer and Tim’s a computer geek: we’re not exactly the most athletically oriented people in the world. I took softball one summer because my friend was, and the entire season I only hit the ball ONE TIME. I was stuck in right field where I examined the grass and desperately hoped the ball wouldn’t come my way, because I couldn’t catch it to save my life.

So, of course God would give me a kid who NEEDS sports in his life.

For several years, Emily and Daniel have both taken gymnastics. This was mostly for my convenience, so that their “physical activity” could be done all in one shot, since their classes were at the same time. But this year, I finally had to face the fact that Daniel really needs something more. He enjoyed gymnastics, and would still take it if I hadn’t forced him to choose between the two, but he’s really a team sport kind of kid. He has an intense need to just run around like crazy, which he doesn’t get in gymnastics. And he’s very competitive and social, so it’s pretty obvious that he’d fit in well with team sports.

So, this year, we signed him up for soccer. The Catholic school in town has an intramural soccer program that is low key, just teaching the kids and then letting them play against each other. And it’s all in town at the high school. There is only one practice a week and then a Saturday game, no Sundays. So it’s perfect.

Daniel is ecstatic. And it turns out that he’s really good at stuff like this. This was his first year, but he and one other kid are the only ones who make goals. He’s completely focused on what’s going on, and when he’s goalie or on the sidelines he watches and cheers on his teammates. Any parent who’s ever had a little kid in a sport knows that this isn’t typical. I also think being able to be so highly physical twice a week is helping him in school. He seems like he’s not bursting from the seams quite as much as he usually does!

Getting ready to start
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His turn as goalie. He was VERY focused at this!
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This was Daniel’s big run for the goal. He dribbled the ball from one side of the field all the way to the other and just missed the goal by a hair at the end. But then they were set so close to the goal that it was kicked right in the next play. Woo hoo!
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mily has been enjoying going to his practices and games too, mostly because she has some friends who are also there because their brothers take soccer. And she gets to run around and look at bugs and things (which actually baffles most of her friends, who are very squeamish about bugs. I’m so glad Emily’s not a prissy girl.) On Saturday’s game Emily found a really cool Leaf Bug that I’m surprised she could see, because it was disguised so well against the grass. He had a little bug or something he was holding in his leg and eating, and seemed rather oblivious to Emily holding him. Unfortunately, she distracted the players on the sidelines with the bug, who got chastised for “looking at bugs when you’re supposed to be paying attention to the game!” What do you expect from a bunch of 5 and 6 year olds?
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So, we are very proud of our little athlete and are glad there are other people out there who can teach such things to him, since he’s obviously not going to be learning it from us. And I can only hope I can find something else that keeps him from bursting from the seams after soccer is done!
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