The highs and lows of parenting and real estate.

Day One: No Casualties

So we’re trying something new this weekend: No TV and no Internet before 8 PM. We have a lot to accomplish around the house (master bath remodel is almost done, and next in line are the backyard and kitchen…) and Jason and I both tend to be easily distracted by mindless surfing of both the web and TV.

I consider the experiment a total success already. It was a little weird this morning to get up and make breakfast with the kids underfoot in the kitchen instead of distracted by SpongeBob, but also a little nice. I think we genuinely had richer ‘family time’ all day because of this, plus, I got more cleaning and reorganization done and Jason is this close to completing the bathroom. It’s definitely an adjustment, though. I usually read while I brush my teeth, and I must admit, by 7:15 PM I was exhausted and trying to figure out how I was going to get through the next 45 minutes without passing out on the couch and staring at the blank TV. What can I say, I’m addicted to my Prime-time down time and the withdrawal symptoms are harsh.

Anyway, one of our non-plugged in activities today was Ben’s first soccer game of the season. This year we went with the AYSO league that’s right next to our house and it’s a huge improvement to the one we did last year. We are members of The Lizards:


The coach is energetic and knowledgeable and the kids are super cute. Four of them are quite talented. Ben’s… well… Ben’s a newbie. He just hasn’t had much coaching at this sport and wasn’t born with a foot that just knows how to kick, like some kids are. Suffice it to say that he’s not a World Cup Pro yet. We’re not ruling it out for 2020, but right now he’s still in the early stages.

For instance, before the game started, the kids were lined up on the field waiting for the ref to blow the whistle to begin the game. We were up against The Killer Bees. The kids were ready, the coach was poised, the parents were on the edge of their seats. All of a sudden, Ben starts running in circles. It becomes apparent that he is being chased by a large bug:


The ref finally runs over and swats the bug away before blowing the starting whistle. My dad, sitting next to me remarked, “It seems unfair that the other team is using actual insects in their defense.”

Sadly, Ben’s only other contact with the ball during the game came when the ball was kicked so close to him he almost couldn’t avoid kicking it. He bravely stepped up to the challenge, swung his leg back and let it fly… his shoe that is. The poor kid’s shoe catapulted off his foot and up over his head and landed about 10 feet behind him. Jason and I really need to take quite a bit of responsibility in this one. We had a discussion before the game about which shoes he should wear: the ones with little traction that fit well, or the ones that were a bit big but could grip the earth a bit better. Obviously we made the wrong call.

So that’s the Newlin Saturday in a nutshell. I’m off to watch some TV. Woo hoo!

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