The Herald Bulletin

July 9, 2013

Jim Bailey: Grandkids’ activities keep grandparents on the run

The Herald Bulletin

---- — Ah, the joys of grandparenting. It means spending our summer weekends on the run.

Four weekends in June were spoken for. First was a trip to Ohio to see Cameron’s baseball team. They lost more than they won, but this was a big W.

Cameron played in center field, where 9-year-olds don’t see a lot of action unless a ball gets through the infield. His batting has been improving, and he smashed a triple a week earlier.

This time he got three hits. Well, actually he hit the ball hard three times, but directly at infielders, and each time he was thrown out by a step.

We thought we’d see him play twice, a rainout having been rescheduled that Sunday. His team showed up, but an apparent miscommunication on the rain date left them without an opponent. League officials called a forfeit.

A week later it was off to Center Grove, south of Indianapolis, to see Ronnie play in the Indy World Series. That’s a term thrown around pretty loosely, of course — it was an invitational for 10- and 11-year-old travel teams. Ronnie’s team hasn’t done that well either, but this time they won 12-2 via the mercy rule.

Ronnie got a single and also excelled with his glove and on the mound too. He pitched two innings, charged with no runs, and was the middle man in one of his team’s three double plays while playing third base (give the other team credit for some ill-advised baserunning).

They played again six hours later, but we opted to head for home. Turned out we should have stayed. With his team trailing by two runs against the same team and two teammates on base with two out in the final inning, Ronnie smacked a double to tie the score. His team won in extra innings.

Then came LeeAnn’s swim meet at Muncie’s Tuhey Park pool. She was in three events, and in each her time was a tick slower than her seed times. She quickly decided she didn’t particularly like that pool.

Not as bad as it might seem. She was 17th out of 27 in her age group in the 200-meter backstroke, her time still better than the age-group divisional cut, although she has done about four seconds faster in practice. And her 1:52 in the 100-meter breaststroke, her self-described weakest event, was faster than a handful of other competitors.

The next week we stayed home to host a surprise birthday party for daughters Becky and Ruth, who hit the big 4-0, and Becky’s son Jason, who hit double digits, all three days later on July 2 (they didn’t suspect anything more than just a family get-together). Everyone had a good time despite daylong rain.

That got us into July, and the Dolphin Club Swim Invitational is this weekend. And Rachel tells us practice is beginning for Cameron’s fall soccer season.

Such is the life of a grandparent.

Jim Bailey’s column appears on Wednesday. He can be reached by e-mail at