Saturday, January 23, 2010

Game Day at the Army of Six house!

There was a hustle and bustle here this morning and it was no problem at all getting kids out of bed bright and early and fully dressed to head out the door.  There was no question that it was game day at our house.  The kids are playing basketball this season.  We chose to let the kids play on post because it's very low competition, short playing season and the practices are literally walking distance from our house-although it's been way too cold to walk.  Everybody had their first games today.  For Rachel and Nathan, this was a return to playing basketball as they have played before.  For Connor and Grace, today was their very first basketball games ever.  Regardless, they were all four very, very excited.

We'll start with Rachel.  She has an excellent coach this season that really knows the game and really knows how to teach it to the girls well.  She constantly has a great attitude and I love how she commands respect from the girls while being so positive with them.  Many of the girls have not played before, and those that have are not very experienced.  We discovered today that we are very happy with the "low-competition" spirit here as opposed to the very tense, high stress games we experienced in Yukon.  Rachel has improved so much in her confidence, strength and skill with the ball.  She had many steals today with a few fast breaks and several assists.  Rachel scored a goal today and her team won !!

Rachel steals and has an assist!
Connor was very apprehensive about playing basketball this season.  He loves playing soccer and especially loved his soccer team in Yukon.  Little by little he is having to admit that he is having fun.  His team is a co-ed team and many of the kids have never played basketball before.  So, this is a perfect place for him to learn to play.  And again, we LOVE the low competition of it here on post.  He did great today.  He had over a dozen steals and fast breaks.  He is just still learning what to do once he reaches the goal!  He scored a goal today and his team won his game.

Connor stole the ball and takes off with it!

Nathan is so much fun to watch.  We really noticed that his focus on the game was so much better this year.  They play zone defense and he is learning where his position is.  He also stayed up off the floor this time and really followed the ball and went after rebounds, blocked shots and tried to steal a few times.  We were very excited that he was catching on and having such a great time.  His team won!

Nathan (#4) gets a pass to the inside and takes a shot!

Grace was so very excited this morning.  This was her first basketball game ever!  She is one of two girls on her team.  Their jerseys are numbered 1-10 and the smaller the number, the smaller the jersey.  Grace is number 1 :)  She is the smallest player on her team.  She is still trying to get up the strength to reach the basket but can't quite get there yet.  So, she is focusing more on her dribbling.  We have been surprised to see her dribbling mostly left handed.  When she played soccer, she kicked mostly left footed.  But in most other things, she is right handed, so we'll see.  Their team did not keep score and it was so cute to watch them play that I have no idea what the "score" was.  I do believe the other team would have won if we kept score, but we won't tell them that :)

Grace bringing the ball down the court.

We have fun with the kids in their sports.  We have learned over the last few years that we will limit our outside activities.  We got so involved in outside things-including volunteering- that our family time was truly lacking and we were also not able to take care of things we needed to.  Even the most positive and edifying program must be shed if it becomes a distraction to our family's ability to fulfill our number one purpose. A big reason we like to have the kids involved in sports is that we do homeschool so we are not around "the world" very often.  We feel like as Christians, if we are not around "the world" at times then we are preventing ourselves from helping to fulfill the Great Commission the Bible talks about.  However, we feel very strongly about protecting our children's hearts and minds from worldly things.  God calls us, as adults to go into the world.  Children are not fully trained nor prepared to go into the world and preach the Gospel.  Much like you would not send a missionary into the mission field without proper training and resources, we will not send our children out into the world in like manner, until we feel confident they are fully trained and prepared.

Participating minimally in sports allows us to be around the world and hopefully be able to be a witness and testimony to them in an environment where we are right beside our children through that and can withdraw them or talk to them about these issues.  We talk to our kids daily about our responsibility in "the world".  That said, we would not put our children in a program that we feel goes against our beliefs and principles.  Including putting them in a program where the attitude of those presenting it are incorrect or harmful to our family.  Sadly, we have had our kids in a few programs and learned through that that those were not activities we should be involved in.  Some because of the attitudes and goals of those running the program but others because we got smack dab in the middle of them and realized they were not just unhealthy programs but they were ones that we came to believe were even wrong for us to participate in regardless.  Those were hard lessons learned for all of us and we have learned to pray constantly for discernment in those areas.

Ultimately, we want to teach our kids that our primary purpose is to glorify God in all that we do.

As a footnote to this, we are forever grateful to the 'family' we had in our soccer friends the last year and half.  We were truly blessed by a large group of Christian friends through Connor's team and they were beside us thick and thin through Andy's deployment helping us with everything from repairs to childcare to food when I had surgery.  We know without a doubt that God placed them in our paths for such a time as this and we formed wonderful relationships with amazing people. (thank you :)

"Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the Glory of God"
1 Corinthians 10:31


Corina said...

I LOVE it!! I love all their happy faces and being able to see them play. Sounds like they are all doing really good! Were you at the basketball court all day??? I know that'll be us in a few years when all 3 of the boys are playing - yikes!

Our Army of Six said...

Actually their schedules are great. We'll be done by 1 on most game days, but then a few of them Rachel has a late day. The only thing is that we're not together for all 4 games. I have to create a spreadsheet with all of them and then highlight the boxes with colors to show who is taking who where :) I'll have to send it to you, it always makes me laugh :) I've been doing this for a few years now (except when he was deployed and couldn't help. then those colors were a couple of friends who helped out)

Our Army of Six said...

I forgot one of their pictures! I just stuck it in there :)

Corina said...

Awesome!! That's a great pic! : )

So they play in different places? See, with the program we do, they all play on the same court. Which is good because I can't be in two places at once, but that also means we'll be up there at 3 different times when they are all playing!

Our Army of Six said...

Yes, different places. We wanted to do Upward, but it only goes through 6th grade so Rachel's too old and the nearest place is about 30 minutes away (at least). So, going there 2-3 times a week was not ideal for us at all. Once the kids get older, it's unlikely they will all play at the same place. When Andy was gone it was tough, but I had a few friends that helped with that so it wasn't so much of an issue.

Julie Watson said...

So glad to see Connor grinning with anticipation!! Looks like everyone did great! Miss ya'll terribly, but so happy that you are able to "start anew" and settle into life as a family as you want it to be. See you soon!!