Last night I stayed up ’til 2:00 am (I guess that’s technically this morning) making these posters for our stake’s annual track meet. I love this event. It’s so much fun and a great way to get everyone excited about physical fitness. The YW were in charge of making signs and posters and we made a bunch of smaller ones during our last activity but I wanted something a bit more festive. Each ward is assigned a color, ours being green, and awarded points for spirit so I really wanted to give our ward a heads-up.
The race started at 10:00 am but we got there a little early so that I could set up the posters and get the kids situated. I’ve usually done this with Jared so I had no expectations and was trying to keep myself open to anything.
As soon as we got there I realized that I forgot the kids’ numbers for the race 😦 . Not good! Okay, I brush that aside, it’s just for fun and they’ll walk the 5K anyway but they just won’t get credit. Once we get everything out to the bleachers I can see how red Jacob is getting. After weeks of cold and wind the weather finally settled on scorching heat!!! I had only brought one water bottle because I knew there would be water stations along the track. It was almost gone before the race even started. Oops!
The announcer started the countdown and we made our way onto the track. We took our place in the back because we had a stroller and didn’t want to impede the other runners. It would have been so much fun to run with the kids. I knew the older three could do it and would do it, but I didn’t want to push Jacob when I knew that he just isn’t strong enough.
We had fun though. The kids would go in spurts. At first they stuck close to me but once the crowds started to thin out they were a bit more adventurous. They really are wonderful kids! The fact that I could walk for over three miles, in the baking heat, with them being happy the entire time and for a few hours after that was really a blessing.
As we were walking we came across a broken sprinkler that was watering the parking lot. Joseph took advantage of it and got a bit wet. Seeing his ingenious plan, Emma ran over to take advantage as well!
The boys found their Papa working at a water station halfway through the course. They stayed with him to help pass out water while Emma, Jacob, and I continued on. The course came back around to where the boys were handing out water. It was nice to see them helping out. Their water station was right at the base of a hill that we had to climb with the stroller. Benjamin was quite the gentleman, offering to push it up the hill for me 🙂 .
We could not get enough water into us by the time we crossed the finish line. It was a struggle to get Jacob to drink anything but I knew how important that would be so I was practically pouring it in his mouth.
We had a little bit of time before they started the relay races so we grabbed some hot dogs, chips, and more water for a quick lunch! We had the best seats to sit and watch all the races but still eat. That was short lived because they started with the Sunbeams and made their way up from there.
Jacob was up first. I can’t explain to you how excited he was. I was trying to snap picture after picture to try and capture his excitment at running the race but I don’t think I did it justice. It was one of the cutest things I’ve ever seen from him and believe he’s a bundle of cuteness!
I flipped my camera to video mode to try and give a better idea of what the race was like but I just make myself feel naseus when watching it over. Taking video and running at the same time are not a good combination.
After watching Jacob run, Joseph was more than ready to step out onto that starting line. He was a little bummed when he didn’t win but we had a little chat about that and how winning isn’t the only thing that matters. We talked about all the things he could learn to get ready to race again and let him watch his video several times.
Then it was Emma’s turn to race!
Followed by Benjamin and all the other 8-9 year old kids.
While the other relay races were going on the kids and I went back up to our seats and finished eating. At about 12:30 they had one last race called the “Ward Relay”. They needed one representative from each of the age groups to run 100 meters and pass the baton to the next runner. Jacob was the only Sunbeam at the race so he got to start our ward off.
He was so excited to hold the green baton, I was actually a little nervous that he wouldn’t let go of it when it came time to pass it to the next runner.
He ran his little heart out! You could tell he didn’t have to same stamina as the other kids but my heart was bursting with so much joy just watching him run and smile and try so dang hard!
After the races it was time to say good-bye to our friends. This is going to be one stake tradition that we are really going to miss. Maybe, if we’re asked, we’ll have to mention something like this to our new ward or stake. The one thing we can’t duplicate will be all the people we’re leaving behind.