Now that baseball season is “in full swing” (no pun intended) I began thinking about when my son J. R. was growing up and playing ball for what then seemed like seven days a week.  Without a doubt his father and I probably survived on hot dogs popcorn, and nachos for nearly 10 years.  We felt so at home at the field. Jimmie started applying boot black under his eyes and I started wearing cleats as my normal footwear.

I started reminiscing about the “good ole days” the other night when my daughter was telling me about my great-grandson playing ball and how she didn’t have much time to cook a meal because they spent so much time at the ball park.

“Tell me about it,” I lamented.  “Your father wouldn’t eat left-overs and he thought crock-pot cooking was cheating.  In order for it to be edible you had to slave over a hot stove for two hours.”

“I understand,” she agreed.  “I have to wash Brock’s uniforms, get all his equipment in order, take him to practice, go and pick him up, check to make sure he got all his equipment back, take him home and then start washing his uniform for the next day.  Then Tim (her husband) calls and asks what I’m going to fix for supper!  It’s exhausting”

However I fondly remember those fun and sometimes frantic times.  Jimmie would leave work at 4 and watch the team warm-up and I would meet him at the ball field at 5.  There were nights we didn’t get home until 9 or later, but there was nothing we liked better than watching J. R. play.

An added benefit was that I also learned all the baseball jargon like: “it’s not bragging if you can back it up,” “Good eye, Son!  Good eye!” And “A walk is just as good as a hit”.  And I agree except it doesn’t get as much applause.

Yelp, we went the whole gamut: minor and major little leagues, JV, Senior league and high school watching many of the practices and all of the games, as did a lot of other hotdog earring parents, but looking back it was some of the happiest times we ever had.  We met a lot of wonderful people, spent time together as a family despite our deplorable eating habits.  But in retrospect despite the extra 20 pounds of weight, it was a great trade-off.

So to all the baseball Moms I say, “Eat the hotdogs and enjoy it while it lasts because time flies by just like a fast pitch.

Have a great week and don’t forget to Smile Awhile!

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