Add to your toolbox
Add to your wishlist
Create an account
Already have account? Login
Already have account? Login
Hi, I’m Sarah Southwell, founder of GroWise Be Well, a holistic and inspirational lifestyle company for children of all ages. We are here because of you and for you. GroWise Be Well, empowering you.
[0:00:25.2] SS: Hi everyone, it’s Sarah with GroWise Be Well. I hope everyone is having a fantastic day so far, thank you so much for tuning back in to the GroWise Be Well Podcast. As you can see from the title of today’s podcast, this is a gratitude for traveling baseball moms and it is a bit of a survival for how to get through a traveling season with your family and be supportive and still be on your feet at the end of it.
I have to tell you, I’m a newbie to this. I really should have somebody in here that is seasoned because every weekend, I’m asking the moms at the games, “Okay, how do you do this and how do you do that and how do you prep for that? Oh right, crockpots.” Every week, I am asking a ton of questions, they probably think I am very annoying, which I apologize for if they’re listening but I want to say that when I say that it’s a gratitude, I certainly – this is a new world for me.
I certainly never knew before, the length that families go to, to support their children in their sports activities on the weekends. Especially traveling teams, where you’re loading up the whole family, whether they’re involved or not and you’re trying to keep everybody happy and well-fed and roof over their head, and entertained, right?
I am just in awe of these parents. I say moms, I apologize, I mean, there are fathers that trek around, I mean, it’s really parents. I am just in awe and I cannot believe how much resilience and energy these families have. I don’t know all the tips and tricks and I’m going to just –
[0:02:26.6] I think if anything, this podcast might be a little entertaining because I’m just going to kind of throw some things out there and then I really hope that one of my traveling parents listens and says, “You know, that doesn’t always work.” So, you know, maybe I’ll get some feedback on this, or maybe I’ll help someone out there listening to this think about a different way, and also know that they’re not alone and struggling with supporting their child on this wonderful opportunity that they have to travel for their sports passion, right?
Every weekend from now, actually from three weeks ago, until July 11th is completely booked for us. There will be no summer barbecues on the weekend, there will be no hanging out with other friends besides the traveling baseball families, which we have slowly started to become friends with because they are kind and generous.
That alone is a bit of a shock for us because we’ve never done this before and we’re pretty social people and we have friends from all different walks of life and we’ve always liked to entertain every weekend, especially in the summer, because we’ve got this farm and we’ve got this outdoor patio and barbecue and it’s always a really fun time of year to entertain.
I’ll tell you, the families I’ve gotten to know at the traveling team, they are so amazing and you know, being able to hang out with them and share this experience with them has been wonderful. Now, I will say I’m still a little harried, I’m hanging in there right now. I would say that at this moment, I’m not thriving with this schedule. Probably because we’ve got the farm and the goats now have been – their babies have been weaned off and I am milking every morning and making cheese.
[0:04:24.6] And running my business, GroWise Be Well. The website just launched last week. And I’m homeschooling. I’m schooling my children in the mornings, every morning. As well as keeping our pantry stocked and making meals and making sure the kids have clothes and all their baseball gear and everything else.
Right now I would say, I’m a bit exhausted. I normally need my weekends to recoup, right? We entertain in the evenings or the late afternoons but you know, I don’t really sleep in but I sure take that extra time in the morning to drink my coffee slowly and do a longer meditation and read my book and do something that really kind of fills me back up personally, privately.
I haven’t been able to do that with the traveling team. I mean, some games you need to be at the field at seven AM and you’ve got to drive an hour to get there like we did one weekend. Some games you have to be there at nine, either way, you’re still trying to get breakfast in you and your child and the rest of your family and make sure everything’s packed up in the car and that you’re prepared for anything.
It is definitely one of these times in my life where I have to plan everything out. Planning is wonderful and generally helpful but I’ve found with a traveling baseball team that it doesn’t really do much good in the end. You have to be super flexible.
[0:05:59.8] Planning is great but flexibility is queen, right? You have to have that above everything else because a game could be canceled at the last minute. A game could be moved to a later time or an earlier time. A game could be on one side of the ballpark one day, one hour and then three hours later, the second game is all the way over on the other side of the ballpark.
You gotta have one of those carts, the outdoor carts with like the fabric on the sides. You load up your chairs, and you need a clip-on umbrella for your chair because we went to a tournament a couple of weekends ago and there was not a cloud in the sky for two whole days. It wasn’t really scorchingly hot but after sitting out there with no shade for hours, believe me, the sun finds a way to scorch you anyways.
We were all just – I mean, cooked. It was not good. The sad thing is I couldn’t do anything about it. I had already ordered the umbrella for the chairs, it hadn’t come in, right? It’s very interesting because then the very next weekend, we went to a tournament and it was chilly and we didn’t need the umbrellas or the organic natural sunscreen I had bought.
[0:07:18.5] You just never know. And so having a cart that you can put your chairs in and put your umbrella in and put your cooler in, with your snacks and water, lots and lots of water, tons of water bottles, everybody’s got to have at least two, right? Then I take the big water bottles too, full of water and then we refill our water bottles with those because of course, our water from the farm is just awesome. I mean, we have well water, first of all, which is amazing and then we went to the added layer to add in these vortexes on our water system inside our house that takes that stale tank water, right? Because once it fills into your tank then kind of becomes stale and some people say dead. Then we run it through a vortex that reoxygenates it and livens it up. We fill everything up with water as much as we can.
And then you’re out the door. If you forgot something, “Oh well.” Flexibility, ingenuity; these are words that will definitely serve you well on a traveling team. Also, taking activities for your other children. Because I’m not big, in fact, I can say I’m not big on electronics, I don’t agree with electronics for kids, I’m not only not big on them, I don’t allow them for my kids. I just really, I know that sometime in the future, we are going to find that their developing brains are really being damaged by these electronics and I think there just hasn’t been –
We haven’t been using them long enough to know what the long-term recourse is on these electronic products with our children, let alone ourselves. I don’t take my computer with me, even though I may have work. It’s very hard to concentrate on anything when you’re at a baseball stadium pr a baseball park outside and it’s, you know, beautiful scenery here in Montana with the mountains and nice people to talk to and there’s a game going on.
[0:09:19.6] You want to watch your kid play so – but take activities for your kids. I take mazes and dot to dots and riddle books and joke books and coloring books and colored pencils and markers and I mean, this isn’t for little kids either.
I’m talking about, my kids are 10 and 15 that have to sit on the sideline and watch their 12-year-old brother play. These aren’t activities just for little kids. These, I think, can cross barriers and you know, even I will pick them up occasionally. And then a book, you know, I take a book for myself and the kids take books.
We really try and stay active as well, so we’ll play catch. We all take our mitts and a ball and we play catch and we love doing that. We try and keep ourselves active in between the games and in between the innings and then of course, being super supportive of your child that is out there on the field or in the dugout and being supportive even when they’re not playing well.
We’ve come across the fact that we’re so proud of them for making the team and being able to have this opportunity that there’s kind of, I guess, a sharp edge to that where because you’re so proud of them, you expect them to give a 190%, right? 100% just isn’t even good enough, right? We’re not hard on our kids like that, we allow them to be themselves.
I have certainly found in myself that I’ll sit there and I’ll be expecting him to do better and I have a really hard time when the game is over and the day is over and I ask him how he thinks he played and you know, he says, “I think I played really good,” and I don’t think he played that great and I know that I’ve seen him play in the backyard even better and I wonder, “Gosh, should I open this conversation?”
And you know what? I have opened the conversation once with him and then I woke up the next morning realizing, “What am I doing?” I mean he is 12 and he’s having a great time and yes, he needs to play his best because other people on the team are relying on him to play his best, but he’s playing his best. He’s doing the best he can and I need to realize that the coach knows what he’s doing and that he believes in him and that he’s supportive and he’s doing a great job with the team.
[0:11:45.1] I don’t know how to coach a baseball team and I don’t know how well baseball players should play. I mean, I’ve certainly been around, my husband is a Houston Astros nut so I have definitely watched my fair share of baseball games, MLB games mind you, but there are different rules in this league than MLB and obviously a different level of play.
It’s been a whole new educational experience for me to learn how these coaches have to coach and how these players need to play and things like that and it’s just been fascinating. It’s been a fascinating journey so far. I’m looking forward to the rest of the summer and getting to know these families even better because like I said, they’re amazing.
I mean any family that can get their children to practice during the week and sacrifice that family dinner and sacrifice their sleep and their sanity so that their child can feel fulfilled, those people are – they’re heroes. I mean they’re really amazing parents to make the commitment and the sacrifice. Someday, their kids will recognize that.
I recognize it because I’m new to it and I hope that I can do as good of a job as everyone else who’s been doing it for a long time is doing it. I mean, in the years of commitment they’ve made is just tremendous but I will say that it’s a fascinating journey to go down and you know, my husband and I even when he got on the team, we even immediately thought, “Oh you know, we should get a trailer. We should get a camper and that way we don’t have to find a hotel or rental house wherever we go. We can just pull the trailer behind us and we’ll park in the parking lot of the ball fields because other people do that.
And so we started looking at trailers and then we realized that we needed a full-ton truck to pull the trailer.
[0:13:49.7] Right now there is a shortage on trucks so we couldn’t find one and you know, we were getting a little crazed about it and then finally this past weekend, I took a deep breath and I said, “You know, I think the universe is saying this is not the right path for you right now. You need to just focus in on what you can do.”
And so we did. We dropped the whole idea of the trailer and you know, my husband does need a new truck but he’s going to wait and find the exact truck that he wants. Not just find one that’s available so we can pull a trailer. I mean so, you know, it kind of brought that up in us too is that, “Oh we needed this thing so that we can have all of our stuff in it all the time and we could be ready to go on a whim,” but, you know, we don’t really.
We’ve got a great vehicle we are currently using and we’re going to continue to use it and we’re going to get hotels because other families get hotels. And we’re going to rent a house here and there, and maybe we’ll even rent a camper one of these times. All the things that I felt I needed to do and, you know, I did order in one of those wheel carts like I said because I think that’s going to be indispensable.
I have yet to use it. I will use it this weekend. But you know, finding a cooler that was good for us to take that wasn’t too heavy or not too big, right? Because you gotta lug this thing around. You have to have a comfortable chair. That’s like top number one piece of equipment you need for being a traveling team or even just going and partaking in any kind of sports event, having a great comfortable chair to sit in, you may be sitting in it for a while.
I try to get up and move around every once in a while but you do, you sit in it a little bit. Having that umbrella, having a ball cap so that it keeps some of the sun out of your face, wearing sunscreen so you don’t get burned, taking lots of water. I’m trying to think of all the things, you know, having activities, the snacks. Snacks are huge, you gotta have those.
[0:15:42.3] I’ve also learned to get out my crockpot and preplan those meals, right? I mean you can’t expect to come home from a practice or a game at 9:00 at night and make a meal. That’s not going to happen. I mean, we’ve done that several nights and we end up eating oatmeal or cereal and that’s not okay either, right?
I’ve learned to get the crockpot out and try and preplan some of those meals so that we can still get really good nutrition in us. That is still kind of a challenge I’m having is how to get the nutrition in, how to get the sleep in, how to get the downtime in where you’re not racing around and feeling kind of, you know, you’re burning the candle on both ends type of feeling. But I figure that will come overtime getting better at this.
You just keep practicing, keep trying and just having fun and realizing that, you know, we’ve chosen to be on this journey with our son and we should enjoy every moment of it because these are memories and these are family bonding times and you know, this is what life is all about is being present with the people you love. And so, when it all comes down to it, you know, if I forgot the sunscreen or I forgot the rolly-cart or I forgot water, we can use ingenuity and figure out all of that stuff.
If I forget to be present while my son is pitching or hitting a base hit or if I am so frustrated with my lack of sleep or a lack of personal time because we’re traveling all the time, that I take it out on other people because I’m short tempered, those are things that just aren’t okay and ingenuity isn’t going to fix those. You’re going to be lucky if an apology will fix those.
I say, yeah it’s all a wonderful ride and we are all enjoying it so much and yes, there are challenges to it but what in life is worth doing that doesn’t mostly have some challenges to it? I think I’ve got a lot of things to learn and I know that one of them is to just be full of love all the time and be grateful for everything that comes into my life because it’s always an opportunity for me to grow.
[0:18:08.6] All right, well, I hope if anything I have entertained you with my traveling baseball parent stories but, you know, better than that, maybe just taking away, even if you’re not part of a traveling baseball team, just to always constantly be grateful even for the challenges, even for the times that you forget the proverbial sunscreen, right? That you need to recognize that it’s a moment, be present in it and be grateful.
So, I am grateful for all of you for listening. Thank you so much. I hope you have a fantastic day.