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PACK ON WEIGHT PROTEIN SHAKE

Chocolate or vanilla will work well for this recipe.

One serving/scoop (according to package instructions) whey (or other) protein

10 – 12 oz. whole milk (or do half whole milk, half coconut milk)

1 banana, chopped up

2 tbsp. peanut butter

1 tbsp. malted milk powder

1/4 cup dark chocolate chips

scoop of ice

optional: oil with omega-3, or other essential fatty acids

Put all ingredients into a blender. Add ice and.or more milk depending upon desired consistency. Consume right away, refrigerate any remaining shake.

 

Apron Strings by Samantha Gianulis – Since loving them was effortless the second I heard their baby cries.

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THE PRICE OF ADMISSION.

I had every rational, thought-out, and research-backed excuse against tackle football, and I used them all.

None of them worked. In fact, I imagine they are all spinning around my head, large-font, cartoon-style, the way stars spin around the head of cartoon characters who’ve been hit hard. Real hard. The way kids get hit in…tackle football.

My failed excuses were good, too….

1)You could get hurt beyond repair.

2)It’s so hot in August. And September. We have the Indian Summers, you know.

3)This means no soccer, a sport which we all love and (sniff) your father has coached you in for years.

4)It’s a HUGE commitment. Huuuuuuuuge. (Not just for you.)

5)This messes up our vacation plans (no cruise!).

6)You’ve already had one sports-related concussion.

7)You need to put some weight on first. I haven’t seen you taking the initiative with protein shakes, yet. buddy. I want to hear that blender going at 6:00 a.m.!

8)The football atmosphere will take some getting used to for us, possibly, too much. (If I don’t jump up and scream like an escaped lunatic, I’ll feel like you think I love you less than the other moms love and support their kids. Do you get me?)

9)The pediatrician doesn’t love the idea. That’s a biggie.

10)I have to relinquish some maternal control and let you participate in something you have earned the right to try and darn it, kid, you hit me with this before I was ready.

But I will never, ever be ready. Here it is, the leap of faith part of parenthood and I have bought all the time I could.

My son is twelve years old. For three years, he played flag football, concurrent with soccer and baseball. We looked forward to the madness that began in August, at least I did, because the “big kid” )read: potential serious injury) sports were beyond the horizon. I was the team mom of three soccer teams my husband coached, we had at least two practices each night of the week, divide and conquer Saturdays when I told Coach Dad where to be and when, a uniform changing area in the back of the SUV for the kids who did multiple sports (that would be two of our three kids), then baseball we somehow fit in between. I had more than enough to think about without worrying about the possible Hell Weeks of the future. Snack duty, banners, heat waves and trying not to forget anything important, I did conditioning of my own.

I didn’t do enough.

I had no idea. The physical part of my job as a mom; washing stink off of uniforms, organizing, calling, e-mailing, DRIVING!, cheering on, applying sunscreen, kissing boo-boos, and fortifying with food, that takes a lot of time. It looks good from the outside. Those tangible things, they give me a lot to fall back on in the future. It can all also be be done subconsciously, in a trance-like, repetition induced state.

The rapid pumping of my heart when he is in harm’s way, and I signed off on it, that is my own 4th and inches with 10 seconds remaining. I never know what quarter I’m in. And this is supposed to be fun.

When he is on the pitchers mound, facing batters unusually large (and strong) for their age, using bats that can launch a ball like a rocket to Nevada,, I get up from the stands and pace. I can pace a good two miles around even the smallest baseball complex if my son is the starting pitcher. I see other moms doing the same thing. We tip our visors at each other and share nervous, congenial smiles. I stay close enough so that I can see what the umpire calls; strikes, balls or fouls. But I stay far away so that no one can read my emotional release when the next pitcher is brought in to relieve my son.

What am I going to do when I have to drop him off for conditioning, leave him in the hands of a coach I barely know, when it’s 100 degrees outside? What strategy am I going to use to keep him safe from the opposing team, when I have to stand behind that stupid white line? My only hope at this point is that my panic is mistaken for excitement in this screaming-from-the-sidelines sport.

I can’t keep him a baby forever. I want to. I want to prolong the drivers license, the far-away college, out of control parties and opportunities to make impulsive, bad decisions. So what if he’s got the chutzpah to try something new, who cares if he’s been watching football for years and has absorbed the tactics, no matter that he puts an impressive effort into whatever sport he’s doing! It may not be enough!

But it’s a lot. It’s a lot. I need to take notice. I need to give credit. I need to let him take these steps toward his older, wiser, stronger self. I need to learn to pace in a rectangular shape, since I have mastered the baseball diamond pace maneuver. My heart has to conform to fit into all of these shapes, and it hurts a lot of the time.

Every game has a price of admission. I’m taking baby steps with football.

Come August, I’ll have that protein shake recipe delivering miraculous results

 

 

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