Sunday, October 12, 2008

Little Girls are Sugar 'n' Spice 'n' Mouth Guards and Sticks!!

Yesterday was my baby girl's first EVER ice hockey game/practice. I took a couple of hours away from work so that I would be able to take her. My heart did little flip flops as I helped her with her gear and then watched her take the first tentative strides toward the bench. She was nervous ... at least that's what she said, but it sure didn't show.

I laughed as I was helping her dress because the more stuff we put on the more worried she was became. She kept saying, "Mom, I don't think I'm going to be able to skate with all this on." I kept reassuring her that she would be able to.

Look at her:

How cute is this little face behind the mask?

She was amazing!!! She is one of those lucky people who is a natural at whatever sport she plays. Hockey doesn't seem to be any different. She innately seemed to know where to position herself, when to go in and when to hang back. She showed no fear and dove right into the action.
That's her in the blue with her back to us on the left... in front of the orange dude.
She even had a very close scoring opportunity which I almost missed because I was changing lenses on my camera, shhh don't tell her. It was difficult taking photos through the glass whilst shivering, many of my shots were blurry but at least her first time was documented.
She has the puck !!! Go girl, go!!
It was so exciting to watch her. It made my heart go pitty-pat. I used to play and she shares my love for the game. She looked like an old pro. Watching her with the other kids one couldn't tell that it was her first time playing.














She is the one in the middle on both these photos. She kept up with the other kids, and went into the corner and fought for the puck. I think she's played somewhere before...in a past life, because she sure didn't look like a rookie player.

Well, except for maybe here:

She dropped the water bottle and couldn't pick it up. Pesky, bulky hockey gloves anyway!!!!!
She is playing in a pond hockey league as opposed to the minor hockey league in our city. Anyone who has ever played organized hockey will know what I mean when I say some hockey parents can really ruin it for some kids and the league here is no exception. When I first phoned to inquire about registering her the woman I spoke to was rather snobbish when I mentioned that my girl had not played before. She then went on to haughtily explain that the girls team was a "travelling" team and it was very expensive. So I asked about the Pee Wee C team in the league, her reply was "if I wanted my little girl getting hit all over the ice by a bunch of boys then by all means put her on that team". My reply... Thanks for making my decision easier. We'll save $450 and put her in pond hockey.
The pond hockey league is more laid back. It truly IS just about having fun and being a part of a team. There is a lot of parent involvement, in a good and positive way. All kids, all ability levels are accepted and encouraged. If there is a child who can't afford the $100 sign up fee or equipment then help is given so that the child can play. The philosophy is that ALL kids deserve the opportunity to experience the great sport of hockey.
Just to give you an example of how great the people are: When we arrived at the rink we were a bit late due to the fact that I got hung up at work a bit. One of the Dads showed us our dressing room and then made sure the girl got to her bench. He and I began to chat. Through the course of the conversation I mentioned that we were late because I'd had to leave work. He told me that if there were ever any games/practices that I couldn't get her to because of work he and his daughter would be more than happy to give her a ride. The coach's wife also offered the same thing. I am going to like this pond hockey league. It really felt like we been a part of this team forever.
I look forward to this upcoming season. To seeing her develop her skills and abilities. To watch her confidence grow. To seeing her blossom both as a player and team member, as well as an individual. Most of all I am looking forward to strapping on my skates and showing her some moves!!!!
Look out Hayley Wickenheiser ... there's a new kid in town!!!!

2 comments:

Debra W said...

How cute is your daughter?!?! My husband plays ice hockey, on and off, and he loves it. It's one of those sports that stays with you long after you are a child. Good for your daughter for doing something she loves!

hugs,
Deb

Jenn-n-n said...

Deb,

I played for years when I was younger as well as an adult. I started when I was 11 as well.

I'm so excited that she's playing.