Friday, February 22, 2013


I walked into the house at lunchtime today and realized something.  I was happy.  I was feeling real joy.  And since I’ve been having such a hard time for the last month, I thought that I’d better write about this moment and savor it and remember it and then remember it again.

I’ll have to back up, though, to tell the story.

Yesterday I went to play the piano for the 3rd grade choir, as I usually do on Thursdays.  This time we had to coordinate our schedules because Rachel had play practice before my choir practice, and Jared had a battle of the books after my practice.  Because I was already there I asked the teacher in charge if it was ok for me to stay and watch the battle, and she said of course.  And invited me to come back any time I wanted.

It was such fun.  There was another battle before Jared’s, so I got to sit and watch that one too.  All of the kids were clustered in their battle groups behind the teacher.  In front of the teacher, one on each side, were the battle teams with names like Socratic Skittles and Supernatural Bookworms.  The teacher sat with a parent helper and a student timer and took turns asking each team a question about one of the 16 books that they had read.  Some of the questions were pretty easy, but some were really difficult!  The thing that I liked the most was watching the teams lean together each time to answer the question.  Then after each team answered the question, the teacher and all of the children snapped instead of clapping.

Here’s a picture of Jared’s posse + another friend on their team—in the top of the picture.  This was right before their battle started.

And here is a video clip from their battle.

I enjoyed watching the battle so much (even though I couldn’t answer all of the questions!) that today I went back with the girls for their battle.  Thank goodness their girl drama seems to be over and with the addition of the new teammate they are doing really well.   Here’s a fuzzy picture of their team.  (I was trying to be relatively unobtrusive in my picture taking as the only parent-observer in the room so I took my pic without flash.)

The team that had gone before the girls was the top ranked team and neither team missed a single question until the very end.  It was very exciting to watch.  Then the girls went.  I loved watching them.

They’re just so cute.  And they were so excited.  But I also got to see them being gracious.  And having fun.  It was wonderful.

When their battle was over we trouped out into the grey afternoon, pulling hoods over our heads because of the rain and wincing at the chill in the air.  But the excitement of the battle stayed and was still with us as we walked in the door of our house a few minutes later.  And as we walked in, the girls chattering about when their next battle would probably be, and wondering if they could possibly beat the best team, I was felt joy.
Right here, right now, happy to be in this place so my kids could have this experience, happy to have been able to watch them and to see things I already love about them and some new things as well.

It felt good.  Really really good.


  1. Was wondering after our conversation yesterday- how much of the workings of our lives are for our kids?

  2. Makes me happy to hear! For all of you :)

  3. So happy for you and your family. It's pretty incredible how the happiness of our children so directly impacts our own.