So remember back here when I said all that mumbo-jumbo about how I didn’t want to push our kids into any one particular sport?

Well, maybe I’d like to change my mind on that one.

Because over the last couple months I realized this little fact: it’s kind of fun to have a child on a school team. And that’s just junior high. I bet high school is even more exhilarating.

Is it bad to live out your dreams in your children?

Ok, I totally kid. And I’m not a “pusher” no matter how much I try to “push” my own self to be one.

But I’m serious about the fun thing.

Maybe it was because Elle lucked out to be on a really, really good team.
These girls are amazing players.

They never lost a game.

The whole season. Not one loss.

Or maybe it’s because I knew my daughter was learning things that would change her life for the better.

I know that sounds dramatic, but seriously, not only was she learning volleyball skills, but she was learning a hard work ethic (practice for two hours every single day after school and then straight to tennis some days, and then on to homework…this girl has worked HARD the last couple months). And she was learning the importance of working as a team.
And how it feels to sit on the bench…the fun times:

And the not-so-fun times too:
She learned how scary it can be to have a team depend on you and it scared her pants off at first:

But she gained more and more confidence through the season.
(She didn’t play a whole heck of a lot, but much more than we anticipated having never played before the camp she did right before school started…she had a really good coach.)

She learned how great it is to get out of your shell and push yourself. And the value of having one good friend to begin with:
It makes making other new friends that much easier.

Maybe one of the reasons I fell in love with team sports has to do with the fans I got to hang out with:

These cute girls even got some face-painting fans:

I learned the value of an iPad for keeping a five-year-old happy game after game (the games were every Tuesday AND Thursday afternoon).

Of course, squinkies sure help too:
And the value of having another volleyball-playing child at my side explaining all the techniques to me and having little post-game talks with his sister.

And last but not least, I fell in love because volleyball is really fun to watch.

Last week they went ahead and won the championships.

They were all so excited.(volleyball kids)

So, the bottom line is that wow, school sports are pretty darn fun.

And we are pretty darn proud of this girl:
She’s ready to focus on tennis for a little while and isn’t sure she wants to go for volleyball again in high school, but it sure has been a fun ride.

We will hardly know what to do with ourselves with no more games to go to 🙂 Luckily Max has a big tournament in a couple weeks. Can’t wait for that one.

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  1. Congrats to Elle on the championship!

    My girls are also all about the Squinkies now… Especially the princess ones!

    This might interest Lucy… I'm giving away a one-year subscription to Disney Family Fun magazine on my blog to celebrate my girls' picture in the magazine!

  2. There are such valuable lessons to be learned in team sports as long as the coach is a good one and encourages healthy competition and teaches good lessons!

  3. Go Elle! And Morgan! Thanks for sharing those pictures. I'm so excited they had such a great season. I'm amazed at how much time that took (practices plus games)- wow!

  4. Looks like fun!

    I wanted to ask your opinion about sports vs. weekly mutual activities. My kids are still too young to worry about this balance, but I serve in the Young Women at church. Some of our girls miss months at a time because of sports, band, etc.

    What are your opinions on this? My husband and I talk about it a lot, and we would love your input!

  5. My husband and I are just newly married and we have the same issue of not wanting to force our future kids into anything, but we definitely want them to do sports. I was the girl who did a sport every season for about 12 years. I absolutely loved it. Honestly, the sporting aspect is fun, but the friendships I made and the work ethic I built from it is what I want my kids to be able to learn.

    Your daughter is gorgeous and from the looks of it very talented as well. I'm sure she'll do great in anything she tries. Congratulations to their team! Winning is always a definite bonus (:

  6. This is so crazy! I have been following your blog for about a year. Very well knowing that you are from Arizona. Paige Curtis is my husbands cousin. So fun to see familiar faces on your blog. We live in Springville Utah. So random to see Lori and Paige in these photos. Love your blog!

    Lacey Daily

  7. Go Elle! Volleyball is such a fun sport – i played in junior high and high school and i loved it. I wish I was taller though but elle has the height to do awesome :). My sister now plays and shes a lot better then i was and starts for a couple of teams and while we were in Utah me and Preston went to all her games. I know the feeling of trying to keep a little one entertained! But it was a lot of fun…i personally think that sports is a really good thing for kids to get into. I can't wait to see pictures of her playing tennis too…thats another really fun sport to play and watch!

  8. I have SUCH good memories of jr high volleyball! I played at school and on club teams and then I quit before high school… and deeply regretted it. But I wasn't a tennis star, so ya know, to each his own! Way to go Elle!

  9. Hi, I just wanted to say that I enjoy your blog and the family focus and values it presents. I love your photography and the way you capture moments and scenes.

    Hoping you can help me with a photography question. I noticed that when photographing Lucy in glasses you have no glare or reflection, my little boy has glasses full time and so many nice photos of him are ruined by this, Thanks.

    Also I read that you may be coming to Australia in March for The Power of Moms, if you have never been before I hope you love it and I can't wait to see it through your lens.

  10. I absolutely adore your blog and love your "Mother's Book of Secrets" and tell everyone to read it. You are such an inspiration to so many mothers!! I am a mother of two here in Utah while my husband finishes up at BYU. My brother and sister-in-law Dan & Bec Nabrotzky are in your stake i think. I just wanted to thank you for who you are and what you do. So I have started a "deliberate mothering" blog and I have linked your blog and the Powers of Moms blog on the side. Are you comfortable with that or would you like me to remove it? I just wanted to make sure…

    Love, Mindy Van De Graaff

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