Tag Archives: swim meets

Summer League Swim mom Survival Guide


I love Summer League Swim Season.  These short 5 weeks were our foray into the world of swimming.  Whether your child is just swimming for fun or your child springboards from here into competitive year-round swimming, summer league swim is a time to relax, cheer for your child, and enjoy the summer.

What you need to bring:

  • Sunscreen
  • Highlighters
  • Sharpies
  • Cash
  • Water
  • Chairs and/or picnic blankets
  • Snacks that won’t melt (try frozen grapes, granola, or rice crispy treats.


What you need to do:

1.  Slather on the sunscreen before you leave the house.


2.  Arrive at least 15 minutes before warm-ups begin.  Your child needs to check in with his coach.  This also gives you time to set up a spot for your family.  Chairs, blankets, games, ice chests, etc.


3.  Buy a heat sheet.  You’ll need the cash to purchase a heat sheet.  This is your guide to the meet.  Find your child’s name and highlight it.  Your child will swim more than one race, so don’t miss any.  Also, check the relays.  If your child is listed on a relay, you don’t want to miss it!  Three other swimmers are counting on you!

Each event or race is numbered: 1, 2, 3, etc.  Within each event, swimmers are divided into groups of 6 or 8 to swim heats.  The heats are arranged slowest to fastest.  (The slowest 6 will swim the first heat.  The fastest 6 will swim the last heat.)  Within the heat, the swimmers are assigned a lane.  The fastest swimmers in the heat are in the middle lanes.


4.  Determine what race, heat, and lane  (R, H, L) your swimmer is in.  Use a sharpie to write the RHL on your child’s arm.  When my kids were little, I wrote on their upper arm.  Now that they are old enough to line up by themselves, I write it on their forearm so they can read it.


5.  Volunteer.  Swim meets run because of parental involvement.  All clubs need parents to help time.  This is the easiest job.  You just push “Start” on a stop watch when the buzzer sounds and push “Stop” when the swimmer in your lane touches the wall.   Timers sit behind the starting blocks, so these are the best seats in the house!

Some clubs need parents to volunteer to run snack shacks, help line children up for races, or as runners.  Find out where you need to be.

I’ll be honest.  Volunteering is not really an option.  These meets can not proceed without enough help in place and your team’s coach will appreciate all your help.


6.  Slather on the sunscreen.

7.  Teach your child how to follow along.  Some clubs have volunteers that will call small children to line up.  If yours doesn’t, you need to keep track of which event is in the water.  You child needs to line up 2 events before  theirs.

8.  Drink plenty of water.

9.  Slather on the sunscreen.

10.  Cheer for your child.  You are there to cheer them on, not coach them.  The coach will do that.  And remember, the goal in swimming is not to win.  The goal is drop time.  That means that every time your child swims a 50y freestyle, they want to swim it faster than before.


11.  Last but not least, slather on the sunscreen.

Updated with a few more thoughts from my friend Angie, a former swimmer and current swim mom and coach.  Thanks Angie!

  • Make a new swim mom friend (sometimes this will become your best friend)
  • Be very impressed with your kids.  Swimming is HARD.  Most moms couldn’t do with their kids are doing, especially in those early May hours when the water is 76 degrees!
  • DQs (Disqualifications) and tears may go hand-in-hand but a hug, a high five, and encouragement to try again are all they need.
  • A 6-8 year old that can do a legal butterfly or breaststroke is a special gift to a summer league coach.  Be very impressed!
  • The true sign of a swim mom is the wet mark that’s left behind on Mom’s dry t-shirt after a hug from her swimmer.

I’d love to hear your summer swim experience.  Any questions or tips and tricks?

Swim Fuel


I saw a shirt the other day that I completely understood.  It said, “I’m a goggle-hunting, lane-timing, towel-washing swim mom.”  That’s about the sum of it.  Except maybe for food.  Feeding swimmers can be a challenge.  They need healthy and quick and lots of it—at least at a swim meet.  Pasta salad is our swim meet go-to meal.  Here’s how we do it:

Swim Meet Pasta Salad


You’ll need whole grain pasta (we like macaroni or spirals), diced fire roasted tomatoes, whole olives (drained, but not rinsed), dried basil, and cheese (cubed mozerella or crumbled feta).


Easiest recipe ever:  Boil your pasta and drain it.  Toss the pasta, tomatoes, olives, and a good pinch of crumbled basil together in a bowl.  Once the pasta is cooled toss in the cheese and toss the whole bowl in the ice chest for your swim meet!


Don’t forget bowls and forks for the kids!

Swim Mom Survival Guide

It’s that time of year again—Summer Swim League!  Woo Hoo!

Summer swim is a fun break for my kids because they swim year round.  For us, the shorter practices are fun and the meets are time spent with friends.  The only downfall—Louisiana in June!

Here are a few things we must have for those 5 hours we are at summer league meets:

1.  Sunscreen.  Sunscreen for them.  Sunscreen for me.  Sunscreen for my face.  And don’t forget to reapply.


2.  Water.  Again, for them and for me.  Lots and Lots of it.

3.  A picnic quilt.


4.  A pop-up shade.  Our swim club has two covered areas.  One is reserved for visiting teams.  The other fills up quickly.

5.  Lawn chairs.  At least one for me.  My rule is:  If you want a chair, carry it yourself.

6.  Food.  Swimming makes you hungry.  Waiting for a race makes you hungry.  Just being 8-years-old can make you hungry.  We pack grapes, cherry tomatoes, peanut butter sandwiches, yogurts, chex mix, and rice crispy treats.

7.  Some cash.  You’ll need to purchase a heat sheet.  At summer league meets, these are usually only a few dollars, but they are always cash only.

8.  A highlighter and a sharpie.  Highlight your kids in the heat sheet and then write their race, heat, and lane on an arm or a leg.  They sooner they can get to their own races, the better!


9.  DSs, iPads, phones, playing cards, books, crosswords, sudukos, and lots more fun stuff to do.



10.  Patience.  Lots and lots and lots of patience.  Also, a willing attitude.  Summer meets  couldn’t run without parent involvement.  Timing is easy (and you get splashed so it’s quite refreshing).  Or, trade off with another parent and watch her kids so she can time.  Trust me.  You’ll coaches will love the help to make the meet run smoothly.


If you’re in the Shreveport area, Summer League is sponsored by COSST.  You can swim with any team.  Town South, the Swim School, East Ridge, the Elks, Pierremont Oaks, Stonebridge, and Southside are just a few.


A weekend in Jackson, Mississippi

**A Disclaimer:  I really hope that I don’t bore/irritate/bug you with stories of my children.  It’s just that my Aunt Jo reads the blog for updates (Hi Aunt Jo!) and I need to brag on the kids for her!**


Momma, the kids, and I headed to Jackson, Mississippi for the weekend.  The kids swam at MAKOS Invitational Long Course meet (that means a 50 meter pool).  Both the kids had personal best times all weekend.


100_2162 The Boy surprised a few people, even his coaches, with his best swims ever.  (Just don’t look too closely at his dives at the start of the races!  He’ll get better—one day!)


100_0744His sister had some amazing distance swims:  400m, 200m, etc.  She earned her very first state cut with her 200m freestyle swim.  Looks like we’ll be at the Louisiana State Meet in July!


2012-05-05 After our Saturday morning swims, we headed out to Mississippi’s Museum of Natural Science.  If you ever find yourself in Jackson, go here.  Seriously.  This museum had some wonderful aquarium exhibits, tons of native wildlife dioramas, really short and shady outdoor trails, and even some dinosaur bones (for the 7 year old!).  The Big Girl snapped lots and lots of great photos!


When you’ve had all the fun you can handle at the museum, go eat at Primo’s.  So yummy.  Hot plate lunches and a bakery.  What else can you ask for????

The 3rd week of 2012

January 15:  I started a quilt top with the help of Momma (it was all her fabric) and A (she arranged the blocks!)



January 16:  I almost finished the quilt top!


January 17:  I finished the quilt top!  All the fabrics are from the same line, but they are the strangest collection…

quilt 2-1


January 18:  Time for mid-winter planting!  I love living in the South!  We can garden all-year-round!



January 19:  Thursday.  Um…I don’t remember Thursday!


January 20:  We celebrated A’s homeroom teacher’s birthday.



January 21: Another Saturday, another swim meet.  Both the kids won 1st in their respective freestyle events!  I managed to get (blurry) pictures of the end of each of their races.  Look for the blue caps.