Putting YOU at the center

Regular readers will note that they haven’t had much Trophy Mom to read lately.  Sadly, the blog has dropped toward the bottom of the batting order, somewhere between making graduation party decorations and cleaning out the linen closet.

But I’m hoping that will change by the time I complete Day 100 of You @ the Center, a coaching program with Rachel Davis, Ph.D.  The opportunity to take this course came to me through Enlist Moms. I applied, mostly out of desperation, with no real hope of 1) being selected or 2) being able to fit it in to my ridiculous schedule. To my surprise, I was selected, and even though the timing was not so great, I decided that I couldn’t let an opportunity like this pass by. I enrolled, and have just completed week one. Read the rest of this entry »


Singing the praises of TeamSnap

teamsnapYou think managing a youth team is hard? Try managing an adult team. As the manager of my women’s hockey team for the last dozen years or so, I have tried various management systems, including the old fashioned paper and email system, eTeamz, hometeamsonline, Sport NGIN, Google groups and Yahoo! Groups. This year, I turned the manager reins over to Krisha, and we moved to a new online team management software and things couldn’t be better. So now, let me sing the praises of TeamSnap.

First, I have to disclose that TeamSnap gave us an account upgrade to the Premium level for free (an $85 value) in exchange for my review. We had already set up our free basic account and were loving the heck out of it, then upgraded and love it even more. Read the rest of this entry »


Books to boost your athlete’s reading skills, plus a giveaway!

As the parent of really active kids, my problem wasn’t getting them moving, but getting them to stop moving. Those idyllic photos of a mom cuddled up with a child reading a book together was not my reality. Our interludes lasted about 30 seconds. It wasn’t that they disliked books or had trouble reading, just that they hadn’t figured out a way to play hockey and read at the same time.

Knowing the importance of reading in brain development and school success, I kept at it. One of the things that really encourages an interest in reading is finding a topic that holds your child’s attention. Not surprisingly, for my kids that tended to be sports books, biographies of sports stars, the sports section of the newspaper, draft day previews, programs from sporting events and Sports Illustrated.

Kris Yankee author photo medSister hockey mom and author Kris Yankee understands this. As a freelance writer and mom to a couple boys, Kris  knows what appeals to kids, especially hockey crazed boys. Her brand new book Cracking the Code: Spreading Rumors takes the lessons of hockey and applies it to the everyday life of middle schooler Toby Karlson. Here’s a summary of the story:

CrackingtheCode cover

When Toby Karlson, aka TK, is at the wrong place at the wrong time, he goes from cool kid to total outcast with just one hip check. Sixth-grade orientation was scary, but TK didn’t realize it would change his life. Now he has to hang out with the smartest and geekiest kid in school, while dodging the school bully and his posse. If TK were on the ice, he’d know exactly what to do. But this is life and not a hockey game. Can TK get his good-guy status back at fifth-grade camp? Read the rest of this entry »


Product Review: Defense Sport

Mouth guard

Ok, I am sort of embarrassed to admit this but it’s instrumental to the review so I’m just going to put it out there and you can all look at me with a shaming look next time you see me. See, here’s the thing. I wear a mouth guard when I play hockey. (My kids wear mouth guards, too, because it’s the league rule and it’s The Mom Rule.) And after the game, I take my mouth guard out and I STICK IT RIGHT BACK IN THE PLASTIC CASE. Sometimes it gets a cursory squirt from a water bottle. Many times, not.

That’s pretty gross, I know. Every once in a while (translation: a couple times a season), I scrub it with a toothbrush and some Crest. But that’s it. And then, I leave it in the case all week and stick it right back in my mouth the next game. Ewww. I’m grossing myself out!

When Defense Sport contacted me about reviewing their product, an anti-microbial mouth guard cleaner, I wondered if someone on my team had contacted them, like a mouthguard version of What Not To Wear.  I quickly agreed to test it and Defense Sport sent me a free bottle to try out.

Read the rest of this entry »


Sock it to me! Oh, what to do with all those hockey socks.

If you’ve had a hockey player in the house for any length of time, you are probably in danger of being buried by hockey socks. These innocuous tubes of knit polyester appear to be completely harmless, yet seem to have the reproductive capability of rabbits. Seriously. Hockey socks spontaneously generate in our locker room, appearing in colors unworn by any of our teams, in singles and in pairs, threatening to disrupt the natural ecosystem like so many Asian carp.

As the old saying goes, when life gives you hockey socks, make, uh, make other stuff. Reduce, reuse, recycle, right? With just a little imagination, you’ll find that hockey socks have a multitude of uses that have absolutely nothing to do with hockey or socks. I think it goes without saying that you should wash the socks first, but there, I said it anyway. Here are a few of our favorites: Read the rest of this entry »


Recommended Reading List for the Thinking Sports Parent

I am a big reader and always looking to educate myself, and anyone else within lawn chair distance, on kids and sports (not necessarily in that order), so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that I read a lot of books about kids and sports. I’ve found some really good titles and now present the Trophy Mom’s Recommended Reading List for the Thinking Sports Parent. We’ll save the inspirational biographies for another day–these titles are thought-provoking and informative and might challenge you to think about youth sports in a different way. All of these books are worthy of purchasing and I own some of them, but since I work at a public library, I would be remiss if I didn’t tell you that you could save some coin by borrowing one of these from your local library. Read the rest of this entry »


Do you feel lucky?

Today, we’re talking lucky t-shirts, chicken sacrifice and respecting the streak. Plus I have a fun giveaway for you.

One of the first things you learn when you engage in sports is that preparation and skill only go so far. To perform really well or win the game, you’ve got to have a little luck on your side. OK, so maybe that’s not really true, but believing it makes it so, according to a recently published article in the Psychological Science journal. The New York Times writer Gretchen Reynolds spells it out, and explains that yes, the lucky socks thing really does work, as long as you don’t go overboard.

If you are the parent of a kid on a win streak and trying to convince your superstar to wash her lucky socks, Detroit Tiger Jim Leyland didn’t do you any favors when he confessed to wearing the same (unwashed) underwear for 12 straight games. Believe me, he didn’t do Mrs. Leyland any favors, either. Baseball players are notoriously superstitious, which has been well documented in classic movies like Bull Durham and Major League. In fact, a couple high school players in Texas tried the chicken thing and got kicked off the team. Read the rest of this entry »