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Thursday, 12 September 2013


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Eric O'Rafferty

Hey Grace! Sorry for the delay, but well... schedules like that get in the way of blogging! Ha ha!

How did I do it? It helps to have kids who are old enough to be ok when left with responsible adults for a short time. In this case, soccer coaches and team parents. This works with Colin and Audrey.

But the main thing is being able to visualize the flow of things, at least for me. Most of the time, I just need to map out the actual flow of the day in my head. For more complex days, I may use paper. When it gets really ugly, I bring in the big gun (aka my wife!). Talking it out with her really helps.

I simply start with the first event and go through the checklist: How do they get there? How long does it take to get there? What do they need to bring? Where do I go next? Can I leave the kid? When do they need to be picked up?

Then I step through the events in my mind as though I were actually doing them. Hopefully it all works! If not, we find a solution. For example, Jennifer was leaving that morning to head up to visit with our HK gang in the Bay Area. So I was on my own. The soccer games and team pictures fortunately were all in the same general area, so that helped tons. I am team parent/manager for Colin's team and a referree for Audrey's so that added extra complication and anxiety (it was my first time reffing and I didn't want to screw up the girls' chances at making the women's World Cup in 2015!).

So the monkey-wrench (and little monkey) was Claire. She's too young for soccer and can be a real armful (usually of joy, but not always!). So we got a sitter to come for her that morning. Problem solved.

Once I got into the flow of the day, all the stress and anxiety melted away immediately. No time to think about it anymore: I just had to do it!

All went well. No animals or children were harmed. I still need a Margarita though!

Now, wait until next year when we have three playing soccer! Aiyah!

Thanks for asking!


Love it Eric! Am curious to hear how you managed to make it work. I could use the advice.

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