Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Perfectly Scripted Pinewood Derby

Our biggest concern with this year's derby, other than just finishing both cars, was how do we deal with hurt feelings if one car ends up being better than the other. The root of this problem stems from Clark having a hard time understanding why William seems to get "special" attention. All the kids feel this way, but Clark just seems to vocalize it and dwell on it more often. He is constantly upset because William comes home from the hospital with various toys and trinkets or he finds out that William had Jamba Juice or In-N-Out for lunch after his doctor appointments. We try our best to be sensitive to this and make special efforts to make sure each of our children feels special, but it's hard and we're walking a fine line. I know this is true in all families, in all situations, but it just feels exacerbated with this whole cancer thing. So this derby thing raised some awareness as to how we were going to make sure they both come out feeling like winners. (I'm all for kids learning how to be winners and losers, but I didn't feel like teaching it that day).
The carving of the car and the outfit to do it!
The boys did a great job designing, carving, and painting their cars. We tried to give them some sense of ownership before we stepped in to help/finish.

The finished products. William's is the yellow and black one and Clark's is the American flag one.

We finished the cars just in time. Actually, we were a bit late, but we figured we'd just be the last ones to be weighed in. Both looked great and I got a new corded drill to aid the axle prep! I love power tools more than my husband! (Probably because I use them more often!) The boys and cars did great! I couldn't have scripted the outcome more perfectly! William won 1st place for the Webelos (not counting the 2 cars that won first and second overall) and Clark won 3rd place over all. It was perfect because both boys won several races, but Clark won more. Both were sincerely happy for each other! And so were we! Whew!
The excitement of winning a trophy! Always with a flare for drama!
Well done!
A little toned downed, but equally thrilled!
Brotherly love competition!

p.s. Yes, we took THE trip! Details to come as soon as I/we recover!


  1. Great pictures - Clark was sure loving it that night. You showed me up big time - gotta spend more time on the wheels next year.

  2. We tell people that our goal for the pinewood derby is to not have one of the cars that barely makes it down the track. Even if they come in last, as long as it was close, it's ok. This year, we cut out the cars, but our boys did all the rest, including putting the wheels on. It's such a difficult balance, helping them make it, and not taking over. Great job, and hurray for doing so well in the races!

  3. Hi there William and Family! This is Spencer Pihl, W.C., Emily and family. We were so excited to read your posting about William and brother doing well in the Pinewood Derby. Spencer made an icecream sandwich shaped car which was a ton of fun at the derby for our Pack.

    We also did the Give Kids the World trip for a Disney World trip Spencer a few months ago, and share your compliments for the Make a Wish crew. We hope William's trip was as magical as he hoped. He is looking great, and we hope to catch up with you in the near future. Please feel free to email Emily at so we can catch up.

  4. Becky here. :)I think you a do a great job with all of your kids. I can't even comprehend how hard it must be to share all of the attention with your kids when you are dealing with a child who needs special care and attention. My oldest daughter needs attention ALL THE TIME. She gets so envious of her siblings, and we don't have cancer to deal with. So, I guess I just want to say that I admire you guys and think you are doing such a great job handling all the things life has dealt you!

  5. well done, william and clark! those are some fine looking cars--and even better looking boys! xoxo

  6. LOVE clark's outift he wore to make his car - that's the secret to his win no doubt. love you guys!!!

  7. "Brotherly competition"? I have no idea which side of the family (grandpa) they have to thank for that? Great photos, great flare!

  8. Great job on the derby boys! I'm anxious to hear about THE trip!!

  9. Hey William & Clark, love the pinewood derby. We just finished our big one for the Council. It's very obvious to me that you guys understand what matters, pinewood derbies are FUN...
    Love you guys lots. Lynn & Joanne