Just kind of crazy here...
You know that saying, "There is a place in Heaven for the Mother of Three Boys"?
Yeah. I'm banking on it.
I'll be back when I can breathe. It's all good... just crazy.
On a side note, there are just days that no matter how much you've decided not to put things like caffeine in your body or sugar or cream, that the only way to make it through the day is a 3PM cup of coffee loaded with sugar and cream.
There are days... it just has to be.
Bones had his first recital today. Some of the students from his voice instructor were selected to sing at a small gathering for a great little church on Palm Beach. He sang a song called Cedar Hill.
And I was listening to him warm up before everyone arrived and I realized what it is about Bones when he sings. I joke that it is watching the little imp up there, knowing that he is a mischief maker, yet seeing an angel and it makes you laugh.
But... that is not it.
He stood up there today, lifted his chin, opened his mouth, and a strong quiet voice emerged. When you hear him you do not think, 'What an amazing voice this young man has." You do not think, "Wow. Can you believe this kid?"
What you see is a sincerity, an earnestness, a purity when he sings. And that is what makes him make me want to listen... the innocence of his voice, and the depth of his sincerity when he sings.
There were some amazing students there. A small recital, the instructor had selected eight kids, from 6th grade to 11th. There were kids singing in German and Italian and that blew us away. Bones was the only boy whose voice had yet to change.
There was an 8th grade boy who sang Finiculi, Finicula. Holy cats. It was amazing. This boy was THIRTEEN and sang this song, not perfectly, but with so much enthusiasm and with such a strong voice we wanted to stand and cheer.
(For those who don't know exactly Finiculi, Fincula, click here and you'll immediately recognize it.)
Anyway, it was very fun. Interesting... and fun.
I found out today that Bones has a girlfriend. Her name is Kate. They have been 'together' for two weeks. He had a party to go to on Saturday night, and upon arriving to pick him up, my husband met some parents who ratted Bones out and told him about Kate.
Kate is a foot taller, very quiet, and blonde.
Kate is the anti-Bou. Such as I suspected... he will gravitate towards a nice quiet blonde, a girl completely different than his Mom.
However, Kate and he, as quickly as they came together, may not last, as Bones' buddy has decided he has a thing for Kate too. She told Bones she is struggling as she still has some feelings for Bones' friend.
He is telling me of his tales of woe concerning this girl and his buddy, and I think I spent the entire conversation slack jawed.
Girls are calling my house. It seems that one of Bones' friends called him to tell him that Kate and his buddy are now 'married' on Facebook. Bones doesn't have a Facebook account.
Bones told me he was a little hurt and was going to say something to her about it on Tuesday. Lo and behold two hours later, Kate called to tell him she was sorry and she was going to divorce his buddy on Facebook.
So they are 12, friends butting into relationships, marriage, divorce... I'm going to croak if he tells me they can have FB children.
I'm not ready for this...
I'm not in town. I am running for a State office for an organization I'm in and so I've been campaigning the last few weeks. (I'm running opposed. I could lose, but hey, that's life.) It's actually a bit of a time sponge, but I am meeting some of the NICEST women. I've been having a blast.
One of the meetings I was offered to attend was here in Pensacola. I took this as an opportunity to go to my Mom's chapters meeting, 'press the flesh' up here as my husband says, and to just hang with my folks.
I literally flew in Friday morning and fly out at O'dark thirty tomorrow (Sunday) morning. I didn't tell any of my friends I was coming in town, not to be cold, but because for the first time in 16 years, I had my folks... to myself.
I didn't have to share them with my siblings, with my children, with anyone else.
They were mine.
Every damn minute I have soaked in. We've gone to lunch and dinner, my Mom and I went shopping, my Dad and I had date night tonight (Mom had previous plans), we've laughed, we've talked and I am... so content.
My folks have an easiness about them, having been married now for 48 years. They are completely separate people with completely separate interests, yet they are best friends and love each others company. They are separate, but one.
It is to be inspired.
One should be so lucky to be married to their best friend.
This has been truly one of the best weekends I can remember. It is not that I don't love my own family. I love them dearly.
But this weekend is something I will forever treasure in my memories.
I walk amongst the blessed...
As you may recall, for Christmas, I got my 2nd son a subscription to Sports Illustrated. Such a sports nut is he, so engrossed in all that is football, both pro and college, it truly did seem like the perfect gift. I even see him reading about basketball now, although he confessed last night he feels rather lost without football season and he just can't get into basketball as much.
Never did it cross my mind as to what was contained in the 14 Feb issue.
Let me remind you about my 2nd son. This is the boy that when I told him about sex, he was completely analytical. This is the boy that wanted to know the stats on pregnancies for various forms of contraception, wanted to understand why a priest would have any type of say on contraception given they aren't parents or married, and tried to calculate the fiscal responsibility of having more than three children. (I did explain to him that having lots of children is truly a blessing for those who are great parents. I'm not one of those. A large family for someone like me would be disastrous.)
This is the boy that upon hearing about reproduction, found to his amazement, that everywhere he turned something in the world seemed to be 'doing the deed'. Turn on the TV? Monkeys mating. Flip the channel? Meerkats grooving. Walk outside? Dogs doing the dirty.
He said to me after awhile, 'Mom, I just... can't get away from it. It's EVERYWHERE!"
And much to his chagrin, one dark night at Boy Scout camp, when he was exhausted and tired and wanted to be home, a night that I was the chaperone, taking him for a walk for a little 'venting time', he saw one tortoise mount another and with great exasperation wailed to me, "And I can't escape the mating! Not even at Boy Scout camp! It's EVERYWHERE!" (Although tortoises do the egg thing, they do mount each other for some reason as well.)
He's not exactly moved into acceptance. With each time he's witnessed this ritual, his face turns a light pink, he gets an embarrassed grin and shakes his head as if saying, "Goooooolly."
He is truly... my Boy Scout.
He's the one that is horrified at the thought that one day he might date. He cannot even conceive of asking a girl out EVER, let alone kissing one. It's a cross between intimidated by what a girl is (not having sisters probably didn't help that), not understanding them, and the fact that all the girls he does know well he has known since he was five. They're all like sisters to him.
Yet he was the one that was the recipient of one SI Swim Suit issue... today.
I opened the mailbox, brought the mail inside, flipped over this large magazine and there it was... a girl kneeling, legs spread on the beach, sand on her thighs, big breasts falling out of her too small swimsuit with the 'don't you want a piece of this' expression on her face, lips parted and I thought, 'Holy cats!'
I grinned and so wanted a camera for this moment and it went like this:
Me: Hey! Your Sports Illustrated came today!
Mr. T, rummaging through the fridge: It did?
Me: Mmm hmmm. Look at this! *I turned it to him*
Big eyes, pink face, embarrassed grin, shaking his head, he said: *blink*
Me: Once a year, Sports Illustrated has a swim suit addition. Did you know that?
Big eyes, pink face, lopsided grin, shaking his head, he said: Noo...
Me: Yup. Son. This is probably the most coveted magazine by American men today...
He stood there.
Me: It's yours. You can take it...
He took it from me, and looked like he wasn't sure what to do. I continued: I'm off to get your brother from school. You're allowed to look at it. It's not porn. Well... not really. It's legal.
He shook his head, dropped it on the counter and walked away.
I KNEW... I KNEWWWW, when I got back home it would be flipped through. Sure enough, I found it next to the TV where it had been read. Ten to one says he says to me, if asked, "I read it for the articles..."
At dinner I said, "So, which one was your favorite?" He got all sheepish and grinned and muttered something.
I replied, "Do not even try to tell me you just read the articles..."
To which he laughed and said, "There were articles? I didn't see ONE."
I pressed further as to the favorite chick and he said, "I don't know. I don't think I have one. There were just... so many! That was the biggest magazine I've gotten yet!"
And at that point his father joined in and they, including Ringo, but not Bones, continued to speak of this coveted magazine. Bones was puzzled. He kept saying, 'I don't see what swim suits have to do with sports..."
Meanwhile, one of the girls at work said to me today when I told her the story (I called), "Bou, you are every young boys dream to have as a Mom..."
I'm not too sure about that. It truly was an accident. But from the way he reacted, you'd have thought I handed him his first Playboy. Prolly the next best thing...
I suspect with all the y chromosomes in this house, it will be a very very well read magazine. Very well read.
More randomness... as I'm feeling a bit scattered this week.
I'm getting old. High school is flying by for my eldest. We received the order forms for class rings last week. They buy them early at his school, which to me makes sense. If you're going to spend the big bucks on a class ring for high school, you might as well wear it as much as you can, because once you get to college, it comes off.
I opened the mailbox the other day and not one speck of mail was for me. It was all for Ringo. From colleges. Odd.
And we're starting to prep for the SATs which he takes next year.
And he's so not emotionally ready for going away to college. He's just... not there. I'd quietly pushing for Junior College, give him some time to mature and figure out what he wants, but everyone goes away and he'll feel like a failure if he stays home.
We'll see how this plays out...
Bones got his haircut last week and managed to swindle out of me some hair gel. He is the most high maintenance little boy in the world. I swear he is not genetically of me at times.
Except they say he looks like me.
More so, lately.
So here he has this GREAT haircut when he informs us the next morning that he is now going to go to school with a ... fauxhawk.
He came out with his hair all spikey in the middle and I said, "Wow. So do you want colored hair spray for it to be green or blue?"
He looked at me, shook his head and said, "Mom. Please. I don't want to look like an idiot..."
Phew. Good thing...
Bones had Cotillion on Friday night. Finally, the end of this entire painful process, that he fought us EVERY.STEP.OF.THE.WAY.
With Bones, everything is about whether HE has made the decision or if someone else has. If HE makes it, all is right. If someone is TELLING him what he is going to do, he is the biggest pain in the neck known to man.
Life is all about people telling you what to do. Life is going to be a struggle for him in that sense. And if you think for a minute I let him give me any lip over what I've told him to do... you are so very wrong. I'm absolutely not nice about it.
Downright ugly, I am.
So the day dance partners were selected we forgot he had Cotillion. So they saved a little girl for him.
For the last two months, we have been told that this little girl is trollish. I think I posted how he said he was afraid of her eyebrows. He made her sound HUGE, big, with one big scary eyebrow.
He hated her... and every step of every dance.
And so this is what we expected.
And this is what we saw:
A little girl about 2 inches taller than him, and maybe 10 pounds heavier, because afterall... Bones... is Bones... for a reason. She had a good grip on him the entire dance, but that's because they were two of the clutsiest kids out there. They were stepping all over each other. She had a hold of his shoulder to try to steer him so they might not actually... you know... KILL each other, in the process of their mangled dancing. She was trying to steer him for safety of them BOTH.
He took it as she was leading all the time, and she may very well have been, but they were so all over the road, someone needed to steer that crazy dancing ship.
As for the eyebrows? She has TWO eyebrows, both light brown. They are very bushy, and highly arched. When she is a woman? She is going to have very pretty eyes. His dance partner will be a force to contend with.
Good grief. When she stepped out on his arm, my husband and I looked at each other, mouths agape and said at the same time, "THAT is the TROLL?"
I am understanding now why people think I am small. I've never felt small. But now that I've lost 13% of my body weight, I get it. I feel... small.
I'm not sure that makes sense. But I do feel small.
I hit the high goal this week. People are definitely noticing. I walked into the band room on Friday, not having seen some of these Moms in awhile, and they were stunned. It is noticeable.
Lastly, there are days, I swear I'm the only sane person in this house. And that says a lot, because y'all have been reading me for a better part of six years and you know... I'm not so much.
Just the things that happen around me... seriously, I'm puzzled at times.
Bones going to an Art school, they're all about these crazy projects. The last one was building a replica of the Sphinx.
My husband is very arty. He uses that in his profession. He also thinks very LARGE. Between he and Bones when they get into these projects... these projects just take on a life of their own.
I have to walk away.
This latest one is building a scene from the Trojan War. Bones wants a Trojan horse. The planning of said project started today.
I've kept my mouth shut, knowing I'll act as referee between the two warring factions in time as my husband attempts to assist Bones in making Bones' vision a reality.
Now I'm thinking... small scale. I'm thinking, grab the lid of a pizza box for a base of the village, throw a couple houses down, make a horse out of toilet paper tube, make some grass and have some cows, make it a night scene so there aren't people involved, and press on.
I realized at supper today, that the horse had taken on a life of its own. The horse, in their mind, was going to be about a foot long.
Folks... they were going to build a ONE FOOT Trojan Horse as part of this project.
Now think linearly as to what else has to come, sizes of buildings, farm animals, the rest of the lay out of the village.
And that's when the 'tiff' ensued between my husband and I, in the kitchen during clean up, and I heard myself blurt, very loudly, "ARE YOU... INSANE?!!"
He just stood there speechless.
The horse is now toilet paper tube sized and the village is small.
There are times... when I swear to God they are flinging into space... the whole lot of them... and my job as Mom is to grab hold of them before they fling off onto Pluto, and bring them back down to Earth.
Big Ideas. All three of them. Big. God help me.
Oh, on one FINAL funny, note, my father has traced my paternal grandmother's family back to Aeneas. The way this works, is if you can trace yourself back to some British King, like Brutus in our case, they have this stuff traced all the way back to practically Christ.
I found it kind of funny that he brought it up this morning while we were skyping, and Bones is working on the Trojan war. Funnier still, the link to my boys and the Greeks is not through their Italian father, but through their Scottish Great Grandmother.
Anyway, at one point, we were joking he could get us back to Noah, as in 'build an ark and fill it full of animals' Noah. (There is a conflict as to whom Brutus was actually descended. It is written he could be descended of Ham, son of Noah.) My Mom had this great idea that there could be a Noah Lineage Society where you wore an ark pin and for every ancestor you could trace back to Noah, you could add an animal.
Maybe you have to be in the lineage socities to get the full effect, but I've been laughing about it all day. Whatever.
It's kind of cool. My folks are always unraveling something. Two years ago it was Mayflower for my Mom, last year Jamestowne for my Dad. This year some Trojan hero. Moses has got to be in there somewhere...
I've been out of town and just got back in. While I was out, I was writing something and needed the time. I looked at my watch, saw the date and thought two things:
1) Today is the 10th! It's Mo's birthday. I have to call Mo!
2) I have to call TGOO!
You may be wondering why I would call my Dad. Well... last year Mo was turning 39. I called TGOO and said, 'Hey! Just called to tell you that TODAY your YOUNGEST child is 39. That means NEXT YEAR your YOUNGEST child will be FORTY!"
He replied, "You think I give a crap? This year *I* am turning SEVENTY!"
So today I had to call TGOO to rub in that his last child was turning 40. All his kids are now officially... middle aged. Heh.
I asked him today, "Did you talk to Mo?"
And he replied, "Yes. She didn't sound like this was phasing her at all..." to which I replied in turn, "Of course not, she's frickin' celebrating in Maui, is pregnant with their second child that wasn't supposed to be, and her baby is staying with her grandparents getting loved to pieces. You can't beat that birthday with a stick!"
Mo earned a trip for two to Maui for her job performance last year, so she and Flam are there right now. Dang! That's a GREAT 40th birthday!
So to my sister, Mo, Happy 40th Birthday! Woot! It isn't easy being green...
You know how I said that the little Darth Vader reminded me of Bones? And in the comments my Mom put that as she watched it she said to my Dad that it reminded her of Bones?
Bones moved that way when he was little. He was always doing dress up and super power stuff.
I saw THIS and holy cats! This is what Bones looked like when he was about that age! Seriously, they could be cousins!
Sunday morning, we woke up and it looked like a bad war movie. There were bodies all over my house... every bed, every couch, in the rec room every square inch of floor. Bodies ranging in size from 5'3" to 6'4", sprawled all over.
I tiptoed into the kitchen and every single one of them was sleeping like the dead. I got out the pots and pans and not a soul stirred.
I'm not actually sure exactly what it was that awakened them, but it was as if they were all mentally tied together because just as they were all crashed to the world, instantly every single boy was awake, moving, and spry.
Let me tell you though, they are GREAT kids. One boy asked me to wait to get the bedding out as he would help me. (I made sure his Dad knew. Parents need to know when their kids are so well behaved.) Every single kid picked up after themselves. Every plate was picked up, fork in the sink and wet towel put in the laundry room or handed to me.
NOT ONE BOY left anything on my floors. Literally, they'd get out of the shower, search for the laundry room, or come up to me and ask where I would like them to put their wet towel.
My tables were wiped down, chairs pushed in, thank yous and pleases abounded.
How in the world can you NOT want kids like that to come back?
We went through 1 gallon of OJ and we needed TWO.
Three dozen scrambled eggs with cheese, but 2.5 would have sufficed.
Two pounds of bacon and we needed three.
Fifteen Pillsbury cinnabon rolls that I found out later the boys think I made from scratch, and I hear we needed 30 rolls.
I was cleaning the kitchen as they ate on the back porch and I heard one of the boys say to my son, "I don't think I ever remember eating this good..."
I had to laugh. They had fun, but I had a GREAT time. I'm still marveling at how polite everyone was. Polite and clean.
Great kids. I'd do it again in a heartbeat...
Personally though, I think Bones is the one that had the best time. He said to me after they left, "Mom, you know what I want for your birthday?"
I replied, "Your brother's friends for a sleepover?"
He blinked, stammered and said, 'Uh, no, I wanted a paintball gun, but having his paintball friends and Son#4 for a sleepover would be GREAT!"
Right. I had to laugh. Big man in a little body...
I didn't watch the Superbowl, but my boys did. I'm not sure what happened, but I appear to have given birth to sports freaks, or rather they are morphing into them.
Ringo just follows along. He is the least sports freakiest of them all.
Mr. T is REALLY into it. I got him a subscription to Sports Illustrated for Christmas and he is EATING it up. He cannot get enough. He's now following basketball as well. He is the most sports freakiest. I'm still waiting to see his expression when he gets the Swim Suit Issue...
Bones is in it for the social aspect. He likes to be able to talk to people about sports. He's even starting to read the sports page in the newspaper. We carry a newspaper in our car at all times now for sports... and comics. Since starting his new school, his classmates have convinced him that the funny papers are a must read in the mornings. His favorites? Argyle Sweater and Pearls Before Swine.
But I think Bones kind of looks at the sports section as a gossip paper. He'll read it and then start talking to us about who got traded to who, who got caught with drugs, who is doing what to whom. He's really into the human aspect... both good and bad.
I leave the room during sports. The four of them can do their sports bonding. I have other things to do.
My boys were rooting for the Steelers. I didn't care.
I did pop in every now and then and take a look at the ads. I only saw one funny one I loved... the one with the Little Darth Vader.
I laughed hysterically... because... this was Bones when he was little, except he always dressed up as Hulk. And when Bones is disappointed, he does the body schlump. Cracks me up.
This is the extended version. Ringo and I don't get why they didn't run the entire thing. It had to be money related.
I can't quit laughing...
My house is filled with the sound of boys. Big boys. All sizes. An additional... seven.
My eldest is REALLY into paintballing. That's all he wanted for Christmas, a special paintball gun he found on-line, saving his money so he could split the cost with his father and me. He has a group of friends from various schools that are into it as well and its become their past time... they even have a name.
They meet at our house, go out paintballing, and use our home as homebase. I feed them, have them shower here, and most of them spend the night.
Today we went through a pound of lunch meat, cheese, hoagie rolls, all around 2PM, and for supper two 9x13 pans of baked ziti, two large loaves of garlic bread, a pan of brownies, and a variety of desserts that I brought home from a women's meeting. (At the end of the meeting I said to the women, "Any of you who do NOT want to take your leftovers home, please give them to me. I have teenage boys staying the night... its like having locusts." They were generous with muffins, cookies, cakes, etc. They were ALL eaten.)
Tomorrow morning I have four dozen eggs, two pounds of bacon, and 15 cinnamon rolls, with a gallon of orange juice.
My husband and I will be the short order cooks in the morning.
And I love this.
Someone once said to me, when my children were small, you want you children's friends to be at your home. You know where they are then and what they're doing.
My sons' friends always feel welcome here. Ringo's paintball buddies now have requests for certain foods. 'Mrs. L, could you... make us brownies?" "Mrs. L... we LOVE your sandwiches. Can we have sandwiches?"
At first I was puzzled. I was like, "It's a SANDWICH", but for some reason, they love them, even though they too can get one by buying cold cuts and bread from Publix.
If they have a request, I make it. I want them to feel welcome. I want them to want to come back and I'm finding food works.
Teenage boys are like stray cats. If you feed them... they'll keep coming back.
When I grew up, my Mom used to have my friends over. She'd cook and my girlfriends would hang out on the back porch or family room. We'd put on music and dance.
I remember when my one girlfriend was turning 16, she was an immigrant from Southeast Asia. Her parents were very strict and there were no sleepovers or parties. So my Mom threw her 16th birthday party at our house. We girls invited the boy she had a crush on, my Mom made her special request meal... which I think was meatloaf and hotdogs... something crazy American, and we put on music and made sure our friend danced with that boy.
The love of her life.
He thought she was just sweet, but that was it. They reacquainted 12 years later at our 10 year reunion and married the next year.
She still talks about that birthday party. All my friends talk about hanging out at my house. My best gf of 30 years still calls my Mom and Dad when she's in town and stays with them. I don't even have to be there! As a matter of fact, MY Mom and Dad were the first non-family babysitters for her son when she came in town for HER 20 year reunion. (I'm older than she is.)
So it's what I know. I come by it honestly. My Mom did it for me. I do it for my sons.
And as I go to bed tonight, I hear the low man/boy laughter in the family room as they're all gathered around watching movies and eating chips, planning their next paintball excursion, telling 'war' stories of who shot whom and when, showing their paintball welts and bruises to one another, laughing and plotting revenge on one another for the next time.
And Thank God for Publix. Everything was two for one this week. It couldn't have come on a better weekend!
I'm not really sure what to think of this mess in Egypt except that I'm glad I'm not there nor is any of my family. I don't know how much I trust the news to tell me what is really going on. I find our news so slanted, both ways, never unbias, that I have a hard time thinking, 'In our own politics they are partisan, but NOT in international politics, NO WAY!'
So... I just know that I think it is scary, but I'm hopeful. We'll see...
Bones was pretty sick earlier this week and stayed home. He is growing up.
Typically when he is sick, the quantity of clothes he is NOT wearing is in direct proportion to how sick he is. If he's well:fully clothed, feeling a bit cruddy: no shirt, feeling pretty awful: just underwear, feeling sick as a big dog: naked, in his blanket, huddled on the couch.
Considering I think of him my sprite or my Brownie (one of the first books I ever read) with his high energy levels and impish ways, to find him huddled on a couch is rather disturbing. All is not right with that little world when he's in that state.
This whole naked in a blanket thing... yeah... he's 11. I finally said he's going to have to start wearing clothes when he's not well. I have this horrible fear that he's going to be a grown man with this same habit. "Don't feel well? Strip down to nothing and huddle on the couch!"
I think progress has been made though. As sick as he was this week, we managed to keep it an underwear day.
And as I told them at work, there is some unsuspecting little girl out there that will one day grow up and marry my son. I pray for her little soul every night... I pray for the patience she will need.
One of the guys I work with got furloughed for two weeks. He's a 65 year old man. He informed one of my co-workers that when he was off, he just hung around the house naked.
It saved on laundry.
My co-worker was shaking her head with TMI. When he left she said, "Bou. Bones may not grow out of it..." Gah!
Struggling to post as of late. It will be quiet. Lots going on in my head... nothing that needs to be here.
Just... not motivated.
Oh... Bones is going permanently unmedicated now. It's been a month. Too many side effects. He's making progress with coping. Let's see how his grades are... because going back on... is not an option.
Just hanging onto that rollercoaster...