Sharks Softball 2008 Highlights

i look out from the dugout and i see no one, yet this field is not empty.
can you see it?
from behind the fence i hear proud parents cheering for their daughter.
are you one of them?
the dugout where i now sit is filled with the giggles of team mates, too young to be distracted by the importance of this game. they are here to play.
can you hear them?
under my feet i feel the vibration of the ground as the game reaches it’s crescendo and the crowd erupts when the winning run is scored.
can you feel it?
no, this field is not fallow, the spirit of the game continues to grow here.
the sharks 2008 season is now in the books, but long after the sunflower seeds are swept away and the chalk lines have faded into the earth, these memories will remain.
at the beginning of the season kim and i decided to document, as much as we could, rain’s first venture into organized sports and the team mates she would share this season of memories with. when april wasn’t impersonating THE GUY ON THE TRAIN WITH PEE WEE she chipped in too.
in no time at all we found ourselves swimming with the sharks and reeling in some amazing moments. catch and release didn’t apply to these fishies. insert the “we’re gonna need a bigger boat” jokes here.
unbeknownst to the parents, i put together a slideshow of the girls and presented each of them with a disk after the sharks last game of the season. we wanted every parent to have something none of us have. something more than just the standard issue team photo and player button the we’ve all been force fed our whole life. those were not going to be the only option this year. we wanted everyone to be able to truly relive the entire season and remember the moments we all shared from practice to practice, game to game. i am so glad we did this. i know rain will be too someday.
there were so many images i had to split them into two seperate videos for this blog post. if you have the time please watch them both and share in the joy that we were fortunate enough to witness this season.
these girls had an awesome time and not only developed their softball skills, but some great friendships as well.
closing ceremonies are saturday and rain is anticipating bringing her very first trophy home. the whole ohana is so proud of her.
the countdown to opening day next season starts… now.
we already miss our little sharks.

(in alphabetical order) here are the 2008 sharks!

abby (aka abby patty)









some random girl that ran out onto the field (and lauren again)

and batting cleanup, zoey!

before i sign off i just want to send a huge thank you to all the girls and their family and friends. we had so much fun doing this. thank you for sharing these happy moments with us. it was our pleasure to capture these memories for you. you will all be missed. God Bless. see you next season!

i’m rain, and i approved this message.

edit to post:
some of you may have seen this image pop up during the 1st slideshow. this jersey not only belongs to boston merila (brooke’s brother), it represents one of the most inspirational ohanas we know. no, boston wasn’t on the sharks, but over the season we got to see him and his little brother brody quite a bit. together with brooke, they are the dynamic three-o. such a fun bunch. i wish i had half of their energy. honestly, i don’t know how wendy (their mom) keeps up.
at some point during the season we realized this family is even more amazing than we thought. brooke’s dad is Mark Merila. for those of us in san diego, you may already know him, or at least feel like you do. he’s the bullpen catcher for the SAN DIEGO PADRES.
please take a moment to READ ABOUT MARK & then we ask that you join us in praying for him and his ohana. we are so blessed to have met this awesome family.
the merila’s have inspired us more than they know.


I LOVE your softball photos! They really show personalities! Makes me smile :)

This post brought back so many memories of myself when I played!

This must have taken a lot of time and thought to put together. Kudos!

I would die to have my days playing documented like this.

These parents and kids are so lucky to have such incredible photographs put together of this time in their lives.

How grateful they must be.

Oh and your commentary made me cry! You all are so talented and this is why I continue to come back and visit :=)

How cute are they! I love these!

these shots are precious! What a rockin’ slideshow, you couldn’t have captured the season more perfectly! Makes me want to go out and play :)

I could almost feel the running footsteps hitting the ground with writing like this. Great description and images! What lucky girls to have thier images taken by great photographers.

I played soccer for 7 years, including High School Varsity and Club. And I never ever had pictures like this to treasure. These girls are so blessed to have you Baxter’s around to document this fun time of their life.
My favorite shot is with the girls sitting on the grass in their cleats, excellent job David!

I really hope the parents and children realize how lucky they are to have had you document this. THe slideshows were amazing. I admit they made me cry. This was clearly a lot of work and so much thoughtfullness put into these.
Love the shots of all the girls, each and every one. They’re all so cute!!

I love how the music in the slideshows totally go with the pictures! So much thought went into this!

Love all the backlit pics in the slideshows!

Awesome season Rain! I’m so proud of you and loved watching you play. It brought back good memories of when I was in softball and your awesome hilarious teammates made it so much fun.

Love you, your sister the hobo.

WOW!!! I absolutely LOVE all the candid non playing shots you got in addition to the actual game shots! These families and girls will truly cherish this forever!! incredible!!!

This is so awesome of you to do this! I am sure all the girl’s families are so blessed!

Your family blesses so many lives. This is just amazing. What an incredible gift for all the players and their families. You guys are so wonderful! And the slideshows brought tears to me eyes. AWESOME images!

P.S. I will FINALLY be mailing your little “thank you” Monday! What a loser I’ve been. :/

To dang cute guys and I love the picture of zoey!!!!! and al the kids are funny and cute!!!!

Those slideshows friggin rocked! Those girls are so hammy! Love it!

So sorry to hear about Brookes daddy. We will keep their family in our prayers! God Bless You Merila family.

Ok, I just watched these slideshows 2 times now, and I have to say that I think it’s amazing what you’ve captured here. Those kids and parents are so blessed to have those memories to look back on and cherish for the rest of their lives. You’ve sent some inspiration my way, and you’ve made me sad all at the same time. I’m sad because it’s going to be a while before I can do something like this for my young kiddos:) Awesome stuff!

Dude these rock Love the one of Rain approveing this message. This is why I look forward to checking out your blog there is allways new and cool stuff on it.

Love these slideshows!

We’re sending lots of prayers for your dad to get better brooke.

What an awesome thing you did for these families guys! You rock!!

Ahhhh! What cuties! What a blessing for all the girls. Looks like a fun season.

Dood! What an amazing slideshow – you really captured the truth in those moments. You’re not only gifted in photography but in the story telling behind the photos – be blessed this week my friend. /e

I love every single picture of these funny girls!!! Each pic shows personality and I just love it! What a wonderful thing you have done for these families!

Our prayers are with the Merila Family.

It’s always a treat visiting your site!

Many prayers to the Merila family. Such a heartbreaking story.

I love the top one. They look awesome

the girls are so adorable! great slideshow. :)

Love it!!!!
That team photo is the BEST one I’ve ever seen.

Way to bring it!

Oh I just LOVE them!! You captured everything that softball is!! What a great thing to look back at when Rain gets older!!!

I definately will pray for the Merila Family! Thanks for sharing that.

Also, thanks for your prayers for our family!! :)

Simply wonderful. Those girls and their parents are going to remember this season forever. What a great memory you provided to them!

OH my gosh, you guys are awesome! I would DIE if someone gave me something like this of my own kid. Such givers:)

awww… i LOVE your commentary! how lucky is rain and her team to have you documenting their games! what a treasure these photos are going to be for them and their families! you’re awesome!

All of these shots are too fun!!! I am praying for the Merila family…thank you for sharing Mark’s story.

these photos are awesome! great job capturing the different personalities of all the girls – what a cool thing to do for them and their families!

fun! man i miss being that age!

David, Kim, and all the other outstanding photog’s.

Thanks for your magnificent photos and slide show.

They certainly do enhance the memories of this season.

And what a fun and great season it was.

I must remark of the great progress and growth each of our girls showed over the course of the season.


Robert and Susan
Kenzie’s parents..

You guys ROCK!

I can’t tell you how awesome it is to have the slideshow disk to look back on the Shark’s ’08 softball season.

Lauren, Mike and I really appreciate the effort and time put into taking such fantastic pictures.

Thank you for sharing,

The Dvoraks

Praying for the Merila Family. That was a touching story. Thank you for sharing.

How did these parents not just hug and kiss you guys for this momentous gift? I would of tackled you guys ;) I just love these slideshows and tear up just watching them. Great Job and bless you for being such giving & caring people.

ah bummer I was hoping to see more sports pics! I think something maybe wrong with the post on this one. I just see a box with an x. :)