March 16, 2015

Mission #53, Day 1--Sneakers

This week's Mission Week will be all about sneakers.  I think we are all relieved that tennis shoes and sneakers are a "thing" now.  Our feet are equally as grateful.  And they are now able to be worn with everything--even blazers.

Those of you who read my blog know that back in October I volunteered to be a coach for Odyssey of the Mind at my kids' school for my son Conner's team.  It proved to be very challenging in so many ways.  It is the school's first year with OOM in several years, so school-wise we were not prepared.  Our problem was basically to make at least three rubberband powered devices to complete seven tasks (like ring a bell, sound an alarm, make something move on its own, etc.) and then put it all into a performance.  It was A LOT.

So the kids have been working hard, but it was new to them.  And a very difficult task.  And myself and my co-coach were new to this.  And there was a team of six 9-10 year old boys and one girl.  So keeping them on task was often difficult.  And they are all in advanced classes.  So keeping them in the team spirit was equally difficult because they all wanted to use their ideas and they all wanted to be right.

The last two meetings before the tournament this last Saturday were brutal.  We didn't have a defined script and some of our devices were missing, damaged and faulty.   Then came the morning of our performance.  The iMovie that one of the kids had been working on to go along with the performance wouldn't work.  One of the boys was not going to be able to be there and all we had of him was a movie that all of a sudden could only be pulled up on my iPhone (not loud enough and not big enough for everyone to see).  One of the kids' devices was a hot air balloon that involved helium balloons but as the kids walked into the gym to perform, they ended up letting go of the balloons and they floated up into the gym rafters.   My co-coach and I had filled out the wrong forms and had to re-fill out forms minutes before the performance.  The kids kind of froze and didn't remember all of their script.  And they ran out of time and didn't even get to use most of their devices.

We watched patiently as all of the other more seasoned teams blow our performance out of the water.  The kids were in good spirits, but they were humbled by their performance.  We had gotten there at 8 that morning and though the day was full of other performances, a spontaneous problem that they had to complete and some other activities, they were so sure that they wouldn't win, almost all of them left before the awards ceremony at 5.  

But then, to all of our surprise and amazement--we came in fifth place in the tournament.  This means that we are going to the State Championship in two weeks.  (Brielle's team did too.)  And although I was so ecstatic to be done with the extra time and effort and stress and headache of coaching, as soon as I saw my kids' faces when they won, I felt something else.  I was excited and proud and so happy for them.  Immediately the kids that were there started planning on ways to improve their performance.  This is the payoff for coaching.  I get it now.  Wish us luck!

Skinny Camo Jeans-Kohl's; Oversized White Oxford Blouse-Walmart; Black Blazer-thrifted; Black Tennies-Target; Necklace-UnCommon Goods, c/o; Earrings-Charming Charlie's

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