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Entertaining Non-Hockey Playing Siblings

One of the toughest things about being a Hockey Mom can be keeping children entertained and happy while their (often older) siblings are on the ice practicing, or playing. This has certainly been an issue with me over the years, and continues to be with my youngest and most energetic child who is bursting at the seams with energy NOT geared towards cheering on one of her brothers.

Usually, I come prepared with some healthy, and sometimes some non-healthy snacks. I bring colouring books, crayons, hockey sticks, small toys; anything that I think might keep her focus for two minutes or more. I said usually, because sometimes I forget one or all of these things. More often, when I do bring my bag of tricks, she doesn’t really play with them anyways. Her focus is instead on those lovely purple slushies that she sees the other kids walking around with, and that I treated her to (once only) but that has apparently led to a purple slushie addiction that can only be cured guessed it… more purple slushie. She can also sustain a fierce focus on candy, either in the machine, or dropped on the floor; from those unfortunate quarter candy machines that are installed in so many arenas. Does anyone know the deal on these, by the way? Are they mandatory at arenas? Because here, in Ontario, you are hard pressed to find a rink without them.

I hear from parents with older children that “this time will pass”, but after our last visit to the rink, where my child had a less than stellar night and could be heard everywhere by everyone, I think even these optimistic parents hope that I can get it figured out quickly. More importantly, I don’t want to wish this time away. I’d like to think there are some solutions that I haven’t thought of yet that could help us both enjoy the hours at the rink in a more civilized manner.

Now, I know there are a lot of moms out there who are reading this, and I’ll bet that you have a lot more tips and tricks than I can think of. Or, maybe I have thought of them, but other mothers might be able to benefit from your wisdom. For those of you who have been through it, and for those of you who are in it right now, how do you keep your little ones, or older ones entertained and happy when you are at the rink when they would rather not be there?

I’d love to hear from you, and I’d love to hear your ideas NOW since we’ll be at the arena all weekend (yes, again). Email us with your ideas at or leave a comment on our Facebook page. There could be a lot of moms and their kids, who could benefit from your ideas!

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