Thursday, July 27, 2006


My babies are getting so big. They stretch out on the bed and take up LOTS of room. Their size 5 jeans are too snug. When the 12 yr-olds play football on the lawn at the swim meet--they rush in and want to play, too. They have to be repeatedly booted from the game. Milo makes a disgusted face at the suggestion that he might get hurt by the big kids. "I just want them to throw me the ball!"

Max has been oblivious to competition for years. He understands the concept of a race, and he understands the concept of racing against yourself--to beat your old time. But he has long adopted this position of powerlessness, seeming to see the ability to win as being fixed. You have it or you don't. And if you don't, then you're there to have fun. Put some effort into it--but don't hurt yourself trying. This summer that has changed. Although he's had some races where the old guy showed up to swim. If I make a suggestion like, "Stop playing for a bit and watch the big kids when they swim. See what they do to their strokes. Try some of what they're doing and see if it feels better when you do it." Then he might at the next swim meet actually stop playing for a few minutes and watch the big kids for a few minutes.

9 days ago he swam the 25 meter breaststroke with a time of 36.65. This was about 5 seconds slower than the next two fastest kids. Tonight he swam that race in 32.57. I said, "You looked really good! Like--faster!" And he said, "Yeah! 32.57! I was watching the other kids and they do something different with their pace. So I tried it this time and it worked!" I don't need Max to win (although he came in first in backstroke in Tuesday's meet and that was a fun surprise--in all fairness, it was due in part to a low turnout, but as I said to him--I've more than once learned that sometimes the best prize goes to the guy who just shows up. That counts. Nobody gave it to him. There were five other kids in the pool and he was the guy who got from one end to the other first without being DQ'd.) But it means something to me to see him put effort into things.

I have to say that the weight bench, after sitting for a bit without any use, has recently been used. Chris taught him the movements, made him a workout, and spots him for it every other day-ish. Then last week, one of his friends came over and Chris taught his friend to spot for him. Ooooh they think they are SUCH the big boys on that weight bench. They take it very seriously (which is good because I don't want them to drop any weights). It's nice to see them do something other than Pokemon Gamecube games and card games together.

We ate sliced cucumbers in ranch dressing today and they were sweet and delicious. All the rain keeps the bitterness away.

The Orenburg shawl is hard, but I love it. I love that I really can't do anything else while I'm doing it. It's me and the yarn and the chart. Anything else and I'm soon tinking back to find the mistake. It's all so tiny! I worry that my tension is too tight and the little pattern won't show up. But it can't possibly be that big anyway because how big can a YO be with a size 1 needle?

And now it is bedtime. Assuming the kids will let me have a pillow.

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