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My husband and I are big sports fans. We are the ‘spend your honeymoon at a stadium’ kind of sports fans. So, when we had children a few years ago, we thought we would have to say goodbye seeing live sports games. It turns out we were wrong. With a few simple and practical tips and tricks we can still enjoy all the live sports we want with the whole family and so can you.
Hey, I didn’t say it was going to be exactly the same as it was before you had a family. There will be some concessions to be made. No more will you be indulging in stadium beer like you used to. No worries, you’ll have more fun sharing crackerjacks and foot longs with your kids than you would sharing a pint, any day. Enjoy the experience through you child’s eyes. The parks and stadiums will seem larger than life and the treats they enjoy will seem extra special as they sit next to you watching the sports games.
Do: Allow a treat or two that you might not necessarily allow on a regular day.
Don’t: Allow them to eat whatever they want as the belly ache will make for a bad memory of your day.
If your children have never been you’ll need to prepare them for what’s ahead. Are you heading to a nine inning baseball game? Let them know it’s going to be a long one and pack a bag accordingly. You don’t have to rely on technology, either. A new book or comic, a simple dollar store toy and snack or two can take the edge off of a long game. Don’t be too hard on them if they don’t watch the game in its entirety. They are just starting out and will become sports fans slowly but surely if you let them come at their own pace.
Do: Teach them the rules of the game before you attend.
Don’t: Expect them to be as invested as you are. They are just kids and should act accordingly.
Make it a Matinee
We choose matinees when the kids are in tow for a few reasons. The little munchkins love to be there but they can’t really stay up for the evening games; throw in extra innings or overtime periods and they’re toast. The language is cleaner during the afternoon games and that might be because less alcohol is served. All in all, a matinee is a much more family friendly experience.
Do: Take them to a matinee now and then.
Don’t: Give up your exciting night time games for good. Get a sitter and indulge a little, once in a while.
Sports teach so many life lessons to our children and the bonding experience between kids and parents who love the same team is like no other. Your little one might start off slow but they will have a true life long love of sports just like you do, if you make their game day experiences good ones. Go Team!