Children and Sports – Keeping Score

I believe the current trend of not keeping score at children’s sporting events is doing more harm than good.  Playing team sports teaches children valuable life lessons and keeping score plays a major role in teaching these lessons.

  • Keeping score teaches children the benefits of hard work.  If everyone receives the same reward, no matter how hard they try, it takes away any incentive to put forth their best effort.
  • Failure is a fact of life and children need to learn how to lose.  It’s much easier to learn the basics of overcoming defeat as a child on the playing field than as an adult in the work force.
  • Children also need to learn how to win.  Personality goes a long way in the world.  If you are an obnoxious brat, employers will not want to keep you around.  You must learn to be a gracious winner.

 

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Honesty of Children

I was at the doctor’s office.  There was a woman with her young son sitting across from me in the waiting room.  The poor little fellow was not happy and he made sure everyone knew about his distress.  That got me thinking.

As adults, we often hide our pain and our true emotions.  We say we are fine, even if we are in great distress.  We are often afraid to ask for help, because we might appear to be week or needy.  We will suffer in silence, instead of asking for help.

However when children are hurting, physically or emotionally, they will seek out help.  Children will immediately look for the people that love them and express their discomfort.  Children are honest about their feelings and I admire them for that.

 

Message for Mom

Dear Mom,

I just wanted you to know, I think you are an amazing mother.  You always encouraged me to follow my dreams.  You always celebrated my victories, no matter how small.

Most important of all, you never left me on the side of the road with a note that said, “Free to good home.”  I admit, I was a difficult child and I didn’t always use my creative powers for good.

Anyway, happy birthday Mom and I hope you have a wonderful day.

My mom had a great deal of trouble with me, but I think she enjoyed it.  – Mark Twain

Black Forrest Family Trip Disaster

Mom, Aaron , and I went to the Black Forrest in 1987.  It was just a family day trip, so we were riding on a tour bus.

This was our last day in Germany.  The next day we would board a plane and move back to America.  Mom was looking forward to this trip, since she probably would not get another chance to see the Black Forrest.

For some reason, my brother was an absolute tyrant that day.  He was rude, obnoxious, bratty, and defiant.  In all fairness to Aaron, he did not normally behave this way.  He was usually a good kid, but that day he was on a roll.

It started as soon as we boarded the bus.  Aaron decided to block the aisle and tried to charge people a toll fee to pass by him.  Mom was rather embarrassed, but the worst was yet to come.

We were walking around and admiring all the sites, then Aaron started crying about being thirsty.  He was winning and about ready to have a full on tantrum.  Mom stopped at one of the shops and bought us each a can of soda.

Aaron took the soda and stuffed them in his jacket.  He refused to give me one of the cans and said he was “holding them for ransom.”  I started yelling at Aaron and we were on the verge of a throwing punches, when Mom stepped in to put a stop to the whole thing.  She snatched the soda cans away from Aaron and give him a good scolding.

Later in the day, we stopped at a shop that made baskets.  In front of the store was a giant picnic basket for sale.  It was so huge, Aaron could have crawled inside of it.

Aaron wanted Mom to buy the giant basket, but she refused.  That set Aaron off again.  He started yelling and screaming about the basket.  Mom had reached her limit.  She got in Aaron’s face and yelled, “I’ve had with you!  I am changing my name.  It’s not Mom or Rita anymore and I am leaving you here.”

Mom spun around and started walking away from Aaron.  I was standing there in shock and wondering if she would come back for me.

Aaron tried calling out to her, but she didn’t respond.  Aaron bellowed out, “Hey lady with the brown coat and the grey streak in your hair!”

Mom’s face was about to turn scarlet red.  She was so angry, I expected to see smoke coming from her ears and nostrils.  She grabbed ahold of Aaron and started walking away with him, without saying a word.

In spite of everything that happened that day, Mom still loved her son.  The next day, Aaron was on the plane with us, instead of being left in the Black Forrest to be raised by wild animals.

 

Kids Can Benefit From Having a Dog

Dogs are amazing animals and wonderful pets.  Children that grow up with dogs, benefit from their companionship.

  • Having a pet teaches responsibility.  Children can help with taking care of the dog and learn new skills as they grow older.
  • Children also learn compassion and the importance of putting the needs of a loved one above their wants.  There will be times when the dog needs to go to the bathroom; however, the child is busy having fun.  This is an excellent way to teach the child about needs vs wants, putting others first, and compassion.
  • Dog training classes actually teach the owner how to teach the dog.  The child will learn concepts like behavior modification; positive reinforcement; as well as how to meet the physical, emotional, and intellectual needs of the dog.
  • Having a dog can make science fun.  Here is one example:  The dog has about 200 million more olfactory receptors in the nose than a human.  However, that is only part of the reason why they have such a phenomenal sense of smell.  The design of their outer nose, allows more smells to enter the nasal cavity.  That small slit on the side of the dog’s nose, actually does serve a purpose.  The olfactory system in the brain of a dog is 40 times larger than that of a human.  This allows the dog to process and remember all those wonderful smells.
  • Children that grow up with dogs have a stronger immune system, because they are exposed to a wider variety of bacteria.  They also have a lower risk of developing allergies.
  • When a child has a dog, it opens up a whole new world for them.  They will interact with veterinarians, trainers, and groomers.  They will be able to visit dog parks.  They will learn how to play games that involve their furry friend.  Also, they will always have a best friend that loves them and wants to be their constant companion.

Pictures Tell a Funny Story

These pictures tell a funny story.

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This picture was taken November 1958.  The girl on the right is Kathy, my aunt.  It’s her birthday, so the cake is for her.  The girl on the left is Rita, my mother.  She is obviously upset about not having her own cake.  Just look at that face.

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This picture was taken later that same day.  There are two things that really stand out to me.

  1.  My grandparents were poor and they didn’t have money to buy birthday gifts for Kathy.  However, my grandmother worked hard to make the day special.  She baked a cake, curled Kathy’s hair, and dressed the girls in their best clothes.
  2. My mom is no longer frowning.  Instead, she is now smiling and has her own cake.  If you look close, you will see my mom’s cake is bigger than Kathy’s.  Obviously, my mom was capable of throwing some epic fits in her younger years.  How else would she end up with a cake bigger than the birthday girl’s cake.  I think my mom was an extremely difficult child.