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Author: Beth Walker

Beth Walker has partnered with her husband for twenty years, in leadership and ministry both on and off the football field. Beth is passionate about encouraging women to pursue their individual callings from God. She is a contributor to Friday Night Wives and The Glorious Table. On her own blog, Lessons from the Sidelines, Beth offers practical advice for other coaches’ wives as well as a behind-the-scenes look at her family’s life as they serve their football players and their community. Her first book released in August of 2020.

How to Serve the Team without Upsetting the HCW

How to Serve the Team without Upsetting the HCW

Note to Readers: This post is part of an ongoing series “Dear Veteran Coaches’ Wives” and includes one question from a wife submitted anonymously. There are also several responses from veteran wives which offer encouragement, suggestions, and life examples. We can only write from our own personal experiences, but we’re committed to answering honestly and thoroughly to the best of our abilities.

 

Question From A Newbie Coach’s Wife

Dear Veteran Coaches’ Wives, 

How do you, as assistant coaches or a coordinators’ wife, fit into the mix when you want to be more involved with the team but don’t want to step on the head coach’s wife’s toes?

Signed, 

Just trying to avoid stepping on our HCW’s toes….

 

Answers from Veteran Wives

Dear Trying to Avoid Toes,

Sister, your heart for other service and respect will get you far in the world of school sports! First, do you have a relationship with the head coaches’ wife? If not, get that started first by inviting her to meet you for coffee or to take a walk. Then, ask directly—“I would love to do ____, but I’m concerned about stepping on your toes. If I did ____, would that cross a boundary?” A face-to-face conversation is a great way to make sure you are both certainly on the same page. 

Love Your Heart,

Becca Egger

Dear Trying to Avoid Toes, 

It is amazing that you want to serve right alongside your husband! I am right there with you! I’m going to assume other wives around you are not involved, and the HC’s wife is doing everything by herself. 

With that assumption, why don’t you ask her to lunch or coffee? At the girl’s date, express to her how you would like to get more involved. Ask her directly what specific activities she needs help with.  Make sure you tell her your heart’s desire to serve along with your coach. 

If she does not have anything specific to suggest, make sure she understands that you would love to help in any way if something comes up. I would also ask her permission for anything specific you want to do for the team, like goody bags or making signs for the locker room. One thing of note, if she asks for help, be there. 

In my experience, there is a reason why she is doing all things. Somewhere someone along the way has hurt her or let her down. She might be guarding her heart against that pain again. Trust is hard to earn when you don’t know someone, and you have experienced pain. Don’t take this personally, because girl, you are different! Once she sees that, hopefully, it will get better! 

Sincerely,

Stephanie Windon 

 

Dear Trying to Avoid Toes,

I love cooking for my man, and he loves it when I cook. At our school, our varsity coaches also serve as junior varsity coaches. Often on Monday nights, practice ends fifteen minutes before the JV kids and coaches have to get on a bus to go to a JV game. I make meatball sandwiches or something easy to grab and take with them as they get on the bus.  

The sandwiches are easier to warm up in the microwave, or they are delicious cold. I feel like I am contributing without competing with anyone else. As soon as another wife said, “Hey, can I take a Monday!?” I was eager to have help. I always snuck in quietly, left the sandwiches when I really wouldn’t be seen or made a fuss over because it wasn’t about me, right? It was about serving my guy and the guys with whom he serves. Maybe your quiet service starts a conversation about how y’all as a group can do other service projects.

 

Hang tough,

Lisa Witcher aka Mamawitch

Dear Trying to Avoid Toes,

I have been a head coach’s wife more than any other role. Here are my quick answers:

  1. Think about your desires, skills, giftings, etc., and how you would like to be involved. If you are on the team, that means you are part of the team, and you have something to give that may compliment the head coach’s wife’s gifts and talents, and desires or they may be different!
  2. Ask her how you can help. Some wives will have more of an answer for you than others. Maybe there are practical things and maybe she will just say sit next to me and be nice (that would be my answer 🙂 I can’t imagine turning down someone who wants to be helpful.
  3. Just straight say the fear, “I don’t want to step on your toes so…” and let her know what your desires are. I’d be kissing you and saying that despite my abnormally large feet (size 13, really) I am not easily offended and happy to support you in whatever you’d like to do.

From an HCW who Loves Help

 

Dear Trying to Avoid Toes,

We’ve made a few assumptions in our answers above so I’ll go a different way with my response. There are some situations where a head coach’s wife is insecure in her role or doesn’t believe in the ministry of coaching. 

It’s wise to avoid conflict on a coaching staff whenever you can, so I applaud you for that, however, I hope you won’t stifle your passions or gifts just to avoid a conflict. If you’ve attempted to help the head coach’s wife or had your offers met with resistance don’t give up.

I encourage you to create a specific list of ways you want to serve the team and have your husband ask the head coach if he has a problem with you and your husband together investing in your position group together. With the head coach’s blessing, you have the freedom to do whatever you want. 

Remember, coaching is your husband’s job, and conflict with wives can trickle into the staff. So make sure you keep serving the kids with the right heart the focus and protect the home team.

Don’t Stifle Your Calling!

Beth Walker

 

Do you have a question?

Meet JD Doty

Two Minute Drill with JD Doty

Join “Friday Night Wives” every Thursday as we interview a different coach’s wife with rapid fire questions. This is the Coaches’ Wives version of a “Two Minute Drill”

This week, we’re getting to know JD Doty. JD is the Friday Night Wives graphic designer and she’s also the founder of Harpo Graphics, and co-owner of Hank and Scoot Wholesale Line, Phew!

Make sure you never miss a Two Minute Drill by subscribing and today!

To the Burned Out Wife: Take a Time-Out

The sideline is also where athletes rest and hydrate in preparation for the next series. It’s the place where teammates encourage each other and minor injuries are tended. The sideline is a tremendously important place on game day. But most people only see value in the field.

Living on mission will require time on the sidelines on game day

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26 Hilariously Awesome School Mascots

The most loyal fan (besides a Coach’s Wife of course) at any athletic event is the school mascot. Rain or shine, night or day, year after year teams count on their mascots to cheer for them on the sidelines. A great mascot knows when to get the crowd going, when the team needs a boost, and how to entertain the fans during timeouts.

All this hard work is often overlooked. So we thought we’d take a minute to say thanks to all the Lions, Rams, Tigers, Panthers, Bears, and Pioneers. You’re Great! We appreciate you.

However, today we’re giving an extra shout out to the mascots that are especially memorable for many reasons.

Rocky Ford, CO: Meloneers

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Fun Fact: The school phrase is “Fear the Melon.”

Chinook, MT: Sugarbeeters

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Fun Fact: The Mascot’s name is “Shug.”

Hutto, TX: Hippos

Fun Fact: Legend has it this mascot was chosen when a hippo escaped from a circus train.

Winters, TX: Blizzards

Fun Fact: Winters, TX rarely sees snow … much less a blizzard.

New Braunfels, TX: Unicorns

Fun Fact: This mascot is actually the result of a misunderstanding. According to kwnewbraunfels.com, the unicorn was originally taken from a coat of arms of Prince Carl of Solms-Braunfels. They thought the arms depicted a blue unicorn in a gold field. However, it was later discovered it was not a unicorn, but in fact a lion. I guess there was no turning back.

Hamlin, TX: Hamlin HS Pied Pipers

Fun Fact: The school often chooses to shorten their name to the Pipers and uses an H as their logo rather than their mascot. Could it be the rats?

Cuero, TX: Gobblers

Fun Fact: Cuero won the 2018 state championship, with star Jordan Whittington breaking the state rushing record that had been set by Eric Dickerson in 1978.

San Antonio, TX: Central Catholic Mighty Buttons

Fun Fact: We don’t get it either. But head basketball coach Joe Cortez boasts ten state championships, so the buttons really must be MIGHTY.

Amarillo, TX: Sandies

Fun Fact: The cheerleaders hold up signs during games that say “Blow.” We suppose sand in the eye would make it hard to compete.

Hoopeston, IL: Cornjerkers

Fun Fact: Cornjerking is a harvesting process also called corn snapping, corn shucking, or corn husking. Intimidating, huh?

Frankfort, IN: Hot Dogs

Fun Fact: The maximum weight of a Dachshund is around 32 pounds.

Logansport, IN: Berries

Fun Fact: Despite having Felix the Cat as their official mascot and logo throughout academic and athletic programs, the moniker of Logansport High School’s athletic teams is the Loganberries, which is a pun on the city’s name. The loganberry is a hybrid of a blackberry and a red raspberry. The basketball gymnasium at Logansport High School is named the Berry Bowl. 

San Jose, CA: Bellarmine College Preparatory School Bellarmine Bells

Fun Fact: This prep school, whose mascot is a huge angry bell, happens to be an all boys school.

Priddy, TX: Pirates

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Fun Fact: Why yes, they are the Priddy Pirates 😉

Bay St. Louis, MS: St. Stanislaus Rock-A-Chaws 

Fun Fact: A Rock-A-Chaw is a sand spur. For context for us Northers, a sand spur is a weed.

Cleveland, MS: Delta State Fighting Okra

Fun Fact: According to Wikipedia, “The ‘Fighting Okra’ grew out of humor among students about the improbability that anyone would find a Statesman’ particularly frightening. In the mid-1990s, a student vote was taken, resulting in the university taking on ‘The Fighting Okra’ as an unofficial mascot.”

Columbia, MO: Kewpie Naked Babies

Fun Fact: A Kewpie is a character that was drawn in a comic strip to teach people to be merry and kind at the same time. It was a cutesy, genderless version of Cupid, with wings on its shoulders, starfish hands, and a head that comes to a point called a topknot.

New Berlin, IL: Pretzels

Fun Fact: According to Theo Nust, a beloved member of the New Berlin community, the mascot was born out of a story from a basketball tournament in the 1920’s when some of players began throwing pretzels at one another.

Itasca, TX: Wampus Cat

Fun Fact: There are actually 6 high schools who claim this mascot, which is explained to be “an undefined imaginary animal.

Poca, WV: Poca Dots

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Fun Fact: While the original mascot was actually a Native American riding a horse, they are most commonly known as the “Dots.” They were first referred to as the ‘Poca Dots’ in 1928 during a storming football game when a reporter said, “They look like a bunch of red polka dots running around the field!”

Robstown, TX: Cotton Pickers

Fun Fact: The community is proud of their rich history and how they provided for themselves, including picking cotton.

Key West, FL: Conchs

Fun Fact: Key West locals are also called Conchs.

Perkins-Tryon Public Schools, OK  Demons

Fun Fact: We appreciate one coach’s motto: “Fight! Finish! Faith! And Go Demons!”

Martinsville, IN: Artesians

Fun Fact: Artesians are spring bath houses.

Pender, NE: Pendragons

Fun Fact: Pendragon is also the last name of legendary King Arthur.

Omaha, NE: Mighty Bunnies

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Fun Fact: We’re not exactly sure why Benson chose this mascot, but legend has it that when the school was built, it was built atop a hill full of bunnies. We’ll just be over here trying to decide which is mightier: a bunny or a button.

If You Need Permission Not to Decorate this Season

If your time is better spent sending resumes, packing boxes, or cheering on your team at another tournament, that makes sense!

On the other hand, if you find that Christmas decorations bring you joy then do it! Do it all. Do the baking and the cards and all the holiday things that make the holidays joyful for you and your household.

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5 Simple and Fast Recipes for When You Want Homemade but Don’t Have Time to Cook

The less planning we need to do during the season, the easier life is for everyone. It doesn’t matter how busy our week is, my kids insist they need dinner every night! I’ve yet to convince them a bowl of popcorn and some apple slices is a well-balanced meal, so instead I’ve learned to keep a few things stashed in the freezer to avoid the drive-thru as often as possible.

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