Spring Means Softball

Sports and the Large Family

Not pictured: 1 new pair of cleats, 2 new bats, 4 new pairs of socks, 6 jerseys, 4 new pairs of pants, 2 new pairs of batting gloves, 3 new helmets and face guards, Collin’s toy tractors and my comfy chair for the ball field.

I’ve begun the annual sorting and organizing of softball gear. With two parents and four kids playing on three different teams, the sheer amount of softball-related stuff in this house is overwhelming. While G and I don’t need new gloves and cleats, the kids often outgrow their stuff between seasons and I have to make vast lists of what to buy so everyone is properly outfitted.

All cleats and pants are kept in one closet during the off-season. When it’s time for spring practices to begin, I pull all of the gear out and the younger kids start trying on to figure out what fits. This year, Levi couldn’t find cleats that worked, so he got new ones. I usually have to buy new cleats for Maya, too, but she laid claim to my extra pair (my kid now wears the same shoe size as me. Gah!) and I was plenty happy to not need to spend more cash on shoes that are useful for 2.5 months of the year.

Maya and Levi got bigger ball gloves. Grant inherited Maya’s old glove (perfectly broken in already, so he’s thrilled).

The boys need new bats, which I have not yet purchased, because they’re moving up to coach pitch ball. The girls need actual adult-size softball pants. They all need new long socks. I’m pretty sure no one knows where their batting gloves are. Because storing them in one of the 5 ball bags we have in the house was way too complicated. They all have to have their own helmet with a face guard this year, too. We have one of those in our inventory. Add three to the list!

Collin is happily gathering up the outgrown gloves and the tee-ball bat for his own collection.

Now I have to get all of this stuff back in the appropriate bags and make space to haul them around in my car from now until early July. I’m seriously considering making a spreadsheet of all the softball gear so I don’t have to ask the kids what they have lurking in their room or at the bottom of their stinky ball bag from last season.

Did you notice that I said there were three teams for the whole family? If you’ve ever heard me talk about softball season before, you’ll know that I’m incredibly happy to have only three team schedules to manage. Usually we have at least three teams for the four kids that play, plus the team G plays on. The stars lined up properly so that Maya and Hannah are on the same team, and Levi and Grant are on the same team, so I can actually plan to play some on G’s team this year! Yay! We’ll still need help from grandparents to get everyone where they need to be, but I’m relieved to have one less team to think about this year.

Of course, next year, that means Maya and Levi will both move up a level, while Hannah and Grant do not. Four teams. In the same summer. Guess I better enjoy the relative freedom while it lasts. The following year we’d be back to the girls and older boys being on the same teams, but then Collin will start tee-ball. Should I start interviewing for a summer nanny now?

Tell Me What You Think!