Monday, October 4, 2010

Would You Turn Down Free Tickets Because of Your Child's Sports Practice?

I haven't done as well as I think I can at being a Yes Mom when it comes to sweets and computer time (though I have bought Tyler two popsicles). But I think Phil and I do kick ass when it comes to doing things with Tyler that make lasting memories. Last Friday, I didn't tell Tyler until after school that he and I were going to Disneyland. We stayed overnight, and the next day we checked out all the Halloween stuff in the park. 

I'm so fortunate with all the things this blog has brought me. I try to share my good fortune with friends and family whenever I can. I invited our neighbor's kids to go with us as a thank you for watching Tyler when I was in Vegas. They declined because they had a busy weekend planned. I invited my other neighbor. No, sorry, dance and karate. 

I invited so many people, and got the same answer each time. Everyone declined because of their kids' schedules. I have to say I was totally surprised. I literally could not give the extra tickets away! I agree that we have to teach our kids to honor their commitments to their sports. We've had that conversation ourselves when Tyler complains about being too busy. 

But the way I see it, Tyler has his whole adult life to be beholden to someone else and to feel the weight of commitments he can't ignore. Childhood goes by so fast. It won't be too much longer until, as far as Tyler is concerned, the only things Phil and I will be good for are rides, spending money and keeping him fed. Now is the time to make memories. Now is the time for bending the rules a little. 

We've taken Tyler out of school for fun stuff before and we don't feel the least bit bad about it. Tyler has told us more times than we can count, "this has been the best day of my life!" We're so lucky to be able to have given him that. To us, that's part of what being a parent is about. Even though we didn't have company, Tyler and I had a great time together. I just wish the friends I invited had been able to see beyond the missed practice to the potential for lasting memories.

What do you think? Is it OK to miss a class for something like this? Would you have gone? 



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*Disney provided our hotel accommodations and tickets to the parks.

7 comments :

  1. I think it's okay once in a blue moon--and it's clear that you can do this because he is a student that keeps up on his schoolwork and has good grades.

    I would have had my kid miss a soccer game or dance at Tyler's age, but not once they got older (over about 9) unless it was planned in advance. I will say missing a game is a bigger deal if your kid is the star of the team--nobody likes to lose because your kid went to Disneyland.

    It sounds like a great trip.

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  2. I agree! We follow the 'everything in moderation' (well not EVERYTHING) but when it comes to lasting memories, we definitely go for it. After all, those are the memories I remember from my childhood and still consider them The Best Day of my Life.

    This is coming from a mom of a kid who isn't on a competitive league ;)

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  3. I think it's perfectly fine to "break the rules" once in a while. You are so right that kids are only kids once, and they will have enough time to be tied to responsibilities and deadlines when they get older. Even as adults we play hookie every now and then to take time out and do something we enjoy (at least we should!) I used to never make plans for Sunday and spent the whole day dreading the week ahead because that was the day before going back to work and school. Now I'm more open to enjoying Sunday just as much as Saturday. I mean, why not - life is too short! ;)

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  4. @Jenn - So far, yes, we're able to keep up with schooling. We know we won't be able to do things like this for long, which is why we're taking advantage of it now.

    @Christina - Yes, I remember more special occasions and times my parents did something 'just because.'


    @Courtney - I feel like doing things like this needs to happen now or else we the opportunities won't be there anymore.

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  5. I would definitely have gone! Last year we had the opportunity to go see the Big Apple Circus... on a school night!I signed my daughter out early, we took the train into the city and we had a blast. And she sill got up in a good mood the next day! It was exciting for her and we loved the show. If she had had practice she would have missed it. My kids know once they commit to something they are in it until the end, BUT there should always be time for fun!!

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  6. My kids are now 19 and 21 and I can NEVER get on their schedules any more. Well, not without a lot of effort. I took them out of school/practice/whatever occasionally, but I wish now that I had done it more often. We still have a great time when we are all together and I truly believe that a big part of that is because of all of the things we have done together in the past.

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  7. @Margaret - "Always time for fun" yes, absolutely!

    @Jamie - I'm so glad you said this. Thank you!

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