The cricket season is just around the corner. Whether it’s your child’s first time playing or their third or fourth season, here are eight simple tips you can follow to ensure an awesome season for everyone!
1. Commit to having realistic expectations for your child AND the coach.  This sounds easy but sometimes it’s not. Make it a priority to remind yourself this isn’t the Olympics, it’s ten-year-old recreational soccer! You and your child will have a happier and more rewarding experience.
2. Reacquaint your child with the game.  Just like anything in life, if your kid has some basic understanding and a little practice under their belt, it will be a more enjoyable experience and they will have more confidence.  
3. Make friends with the other parents.  You will see these people often. Get to know their names and a little about them.  Having friends on the team will make it a much more enjoyable experience.  Ask for the contact info of at least three potential carpool parents. This will come in handy when you’re in a pinch.
4. Take photos or hire someone to take them.  My daughter’s team had a Dad who also happened to be an amazing photographer. He kindly captured her (and the entire team) for the first four seasons of cricket with beautiful photos that we will always cherish.  That being said, action photos on a cricket field aren’t easy.  If it’s not your thing and there isn’t anyone on the team who enjoys it, then hire someone. Yes, all pitch in and hire a professional to come to one or two games. It will be worth the small investment.
5. Buy snacks in bulk ahead of time. Particularly if you have more than one child playing sports. Trust me, your “snack day” will creep up on you. And instead of running like a crazy person to the corner 7-Eleven at halftime, the next time you’re at the shops, stock up. Most of the snacks aren’t perishable.
6. Don’t pick apart your child’s game on the car ride home. EVEN if you think it’s constructive criticism.  This will cause them to lose enjoyment for the game and dread the ride home.  Plus, take it from someone who has a hard time not doing it…they will stop listening and block you out anyways.
7. Be on time! This will not only help your child begin their game or practice in a calm, focused way, instead of harried and rushed, but it is also disrespectful to the coaches and other players who do get there on time – when you don’t! We all have a lot going on in our lives, save the excuses and set a good example for your kids by arriving on time.
8. Step back.  If you find you are one of the many parents who gets riled up during a game, be it at your child, the coach, the ref – or all of the above.  Take a step away. Remove yourself from the middle of the field in the thick of the other parents and sit off to the side.  This will give you a different perspective, it will eliminate the energy (good and bad) that’s flowing from the sideline, and it will at the very least, keep others from hearing you!