May 26, 2013

Bones Recital

Bones had a recital tonight. His voice has changed and settled in so much. He has grown.

People were stunned by his voice. Now if we can just find a haircut we can agree to, all will be right in our World.


Here's a comparison of Bones... then... December 2011. His voice had just started to change. You can hear me say it at the end... "His voice is getting so deep".

But compare it to now... May 2013, two and a half years later, and there is no comparison. The little boy look is gone. He's a full on Baritone. His stage presence is improving, something we are still working on.

(Excuse the issues in the beginning. I have a new phone and was trying to get it all focused.)

Better still, see the look at the end. The pianist accidentally cut him a full verse. Although he gave an odd look, he handled it well. As she slowed down, he did too.

Over the years, I've sat with Moms who knew the goofy kid came in with me, but they'd never heard him sing.

Today one of them came up to me and said, 'I had no idea his voice was so beautiful. I cried...'

For me, I'm just glad he's settling in. He picked the right art for him. We talk about his double majoring in college, voice with a business major. We also talk about him majoring in business and taking all his electives in voice.

It is too much a part of him... it settles his soul.

You all have been reading me some of you since he was in Kindergarten. You've watched him grow.

How crazy is this?

Posted by Boudicca at 07:06 PM | Comments (14)

May 25, 2013

Screaming Eagle

So my eldest made Eagle Scout last Sunday. Actually, it was the award ceremony. Nearly 70 people were in attendance as there was another boy that had his then as well.

It was fabulous. It really really was.

But my son did two things that impressed me... most.

He had a speech to give and I had no idea he could speak in public the way he does. Every time I queried about his speech he'd say, "I got it Ma".

And then it came time and he told the story of his trail to Eagle, which was very twisty, turny and bizarre. So that impressed me... that he was actually a good speaker.

Even though he threw me under the bus at the end, which made everyone laugh.

He ended his speech by thanking the five adults who helped him attain it, from Scout to Eagle. And then he said something like, "and I'd like to thank my Mom, whose saying had become, "I'm tired of being the bitch".


Everyone laughed, but I was horrified and his friend next to me said, "Wow. He threw you under the bus..."

I then had three women come up to me and say, "I so get it!" and a real quiet Mom came up and said, "I never knew the right phrase... but yes, I'm so tired of being the bitch."

'Tis the role of moms of teenagers.

But what he did that impressed me most was... he had a mentor to choose. He just had to tell the Troop in advance if he was choosing more than one since they needed to have the Mentor pins on hand.

And so he stood up and chose his mentors and he chose his Scout Master... but he also chose our Scout Master's wife, who runs the Troop behind the scenes. She tracks the boys' progress, tells them what they need, helps them get with the right adults, sets up the court of honors so that everyone has their badges... and it is an ENORMOUS amount of work.

Her tracking and cajoling gets these boys to Eagle.

And it was the FIRST time anyone had publicly recognized her. It was the first time anyone ever said she was a big part of why they made Eagle.

I was so proud of him. She was so surprised. We could tell it touched her.

And I'd never insinuated or said a word. He did it on his own. That was my big proud moment.

Here are some pictures.

three boys at eagle coh.jpg

His speech really was good. He was very relaxed. Both his father and I do a lot of public speaking. Evidently we aren't afraid of crowds.

Not a stressed bone in his body...

Ringo eagle coh speech1.jpg

ringo speech eagle coh2.jpg

ringo eagle coh speech 3.jpg

And getting his certificate:

eagle certificate without name.jpg

surprise certificate without name.jpg

One down... one to go.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:50 PM | Comments (9)

May 17, 2013

The Scourge of Auto Correct

So it's been a bit nutty and I've had a lot to post on, but it just gets lost in my head.

Like how much I miss having a 4 year old in the house. They observe everything and say anything.

Ringo's Court of Honor is Sunday. We have nearly 70 people coming. Meanwhile, Bones' big performance is Sunday night.

This marker I'm placing in St. Augustine? It has taken on a life of its own. It's becoming a big deal with publicity and originally I thought really I was the only one who cared... emotionally attached... but that's not the case.

I got tunnel vision. I've been working on it for so long, that I never bothered to look around me and realize that there were others watching that wanted to partake either because of the significance or to celebrate the accomplishment.

So... I'm a bit on low freak... blocks of rooms for hotels, sound systems, refreshments, invitations... blah blah blah.

But it's all good and this post is to end with laughing.

A couple months ago Teresa of Technicalities posted a link to the funniest auto-corrects ever. I commented about the horror show that occurred last year when I was on a vocal trip.

I never posted this. It's just too... awful. But I'm in the midst of getting a new phone, so VW took a snapshot of the txt fiasco so I wouldn't lose it. My phone doesn't have that screen shot thingy that others have.

There is no need for an introduction really... this is it... the humiliation of it in its fully glory.

Text msg mess up.jpg

When this occurred, I freaked. There was a Mom sitting across from me who watched this whole thing unfold. She started to laugh so hard, she just about fell over. I was about to cry, I was so horrified.

Someone told the choral directors, who have teased me ever since. I thought I'd get walked off the trip.

Imagine my utter horror when they informed me that said 7th grade boy who received said message is the son of a Pastor. Love that.

Flash forward to about 6 months ago, the boy came up to Bones and said, "Bones... you know that message I got from your Mom last year? That means she had that word in her phone..."

It took him 6 months to realize that. Made me feel like a bigger heel...

Posted by Boudicca at 10:54 PM | Comments (10)


It's been a crazy week here. My niece left on Wednesday with my sister in tow. My Mom is here and we're having a great time.

My eldest son's graduation was on Monday night. During his rehearsal on Monday, at 1:00, the following text messages took place:

Ringo: I assume you're gunna make me a giant banner

Me: What?

Ringo: You're gunna make a banner to bring with you right, ma!

Me: WTF?

Ringo: Fine.

Ringo: Be just like everyone else.

Me: Is everyone making a banner?

Ringo: I don't think so. Gotta be different ma!

Me: You may regret this...

Ringo: I doubt it.

Me: You don't know what I'm putting on it!

Ringo: You gotta get the banner paper and all that.

Me: Nope.

Ringo: No? How are you gunna make a big banner then?

Me: Stop it. Just brace yourself. It won't be big.

Ringo: hehehehehe

And so it was then 1:30, graduation was at 7, but I had to be there at 5:45 for something, which meant I had 4 hours and 15 minutes to create a banner, get it made at Staples (they were running a $20 special), Staples had to make it, I had to pick it up, and be at graduation.

No stress.

The reason I said he didn't know what I was going to put on it is because I intended to put his nickname... for everyone to see.

This is Monday night with his brothers.

Ringo Graduation2.jpg

The boys said later, "Mom, how did you pick THAT picture?" to which I replied, "Look, I had 30 minutes to get it made. I had to have it to Staples by 2:00. I picked the photo I found on the desktop. I needed one, there was one, that's what got used."

It was a great graduation. Son#4 was Valedictorian and gave the absolute best speech I have ever heard. It was personal to the student body, stories from their being together and about teachers, and we laughed throughout. No sage advice from an 18 year old, just good memories that made us all laugh hysterically, and made everyone feel good about themselves. (Sidenotes: For those new here, Son#4 is a young man who's Mom is one of my best friends. We were pregnant together.)

It was a good night.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:51 PM | Comments (6)

May 13, 2013

Not So Sassy

Bones and I were in the car today and we had the following conversation. My four year old niece, my sister, Morrigan, and my Mom are visiting.

Bones: The Great Flambina is sassy.

Me: Sassy. You can tell already?

Bones: Oh yeah. She's sassy. So is Aunt Mo.

Me: You think Aunt Mo is sassy?

Bones: Oh yeah. Definitely.

Me: Am I sassy?

Bones: No.

(I'm going through this conversation now wondering if sassy is a good thing? I think big energy, fun, laughing. Sassy.)

Me, wondering if I should offended: So Aunt Mo is sassy and I'm not. Why is Aunt Mo sassy?

Bones: I can see her hanging out with her posse laughing. Hanging out with the girls.

Me, wondering what he pictures of me: Do you see me hanging out with a bunch of girls?

Bones: Nope. I see you hanging out with a bunch of guys.

Heh. We've been laughing. I told him I hang with individual girls.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:51 PM | Comments (4)

May 12, 2013


My mom and sister are in town for Ringo's graduation. My sister brought her eldest daughter with her, who is now four. We are all having a blast.

We've not had a little person in this house for a long long time. She is sleeping in Bones' room and Bones shifted into Ringo's.

I have steps next to my bed since my bed is so high up and I struggle to get in.

So this morning at 7AM, I heard a slight pitter patter and I could feel the air in the room shift. I slowly opened my eyes, and near the foot of my bed stood a little girl, completely wide eyed.

As soon as I awoke, she grinned and said, "MMMM!"

Then she climbed up on the steps and stood there peering over the bed. My husband woke up and waved at her.

It was so damn funny.

I got out of bed to get her breakfast and find her something to play with. My sister, hearing we were up, came out to take her. I went back to bed and my husband laughed and said, "I don't remember the last time we were awakened by a little person..."

It has been so long... but it feels like just yesterday, my 3 year old Ringo would stand peering into my sleeping face, so when I awoke, his eyes were 2 inches from mine, and his gutteral voice would yell, "MUFFIN PLEASE!"

It goes so fast. In reality... that was 15 years ago.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:37 PM | Comments (7)

May 08, 2013

Bones Has Left the Building

Bones is not home and the house is really quiet.

Dead quiet.

It's the first time we've ever been in the house for any length of time without Bones. His brothers have gone to camp, they go on trips, but Bones is never not here. When he goes on a trip, I have gone with him, so it felt like half the family.

So it's odd. So so so qui...ettt....

I had him at the airport by 6:00 AM, which means I've been fighting to stay awake since 5PM.

He's texted a few times and says he's having fun, but I can tell he's beat. He toured DC today and said he thought it was very very cool.

But being they are performing at the Kennedy Center, they are busy practicing.

I think when he comes home Saturday, he's going to sleep like the dead.


At 222,000 miles on a Toyota Sienna, 2004 year, you will start to have electrical problems. For instance, you can be listening to a station on button 3 and when you hit button 4, the radio turns off.

That's new.

I get my window fixed tomorrow, so there is that.

I'm wondering if I need to get my driver side door fixed. At about 200,000 the hinge broke so it just swings open freely when it's not shut.

I remember when I was interviewing some C-141 pilots that were transitioning to the C-17. (That was part of my job in the Mission group.) One of the 141 pilots said, "Flying a C-141 is like flying a flight simulator. You know there will be an inflight emergency, you just don't know what it's going to be."

I'm not quite there with my car, but... yeah... I always wonder what little thing is going to start to go wrong.


I work with one of the funniest men. I will call him Joe. Joe is well into retirement age, but the beautiful thing about my company is you can work just a few days, keep your hands in it, but it won't rule your life.

So he works Tuesday-Thursday, probably 24 hours total, just 7-3 and he takes off. We give him jobs that we need his expertise in, but we try not to stress him out... mainly because we all love him so much we WANT him to stay.

That's not to say he doesn't get stressed, but we try to keep it lower key since if a job is stressful, at 71, you'll walk.

We don't want him to walk. Besides, he loves us too.

As I said, Joe is funny, but the great thing is, he doesn't mean to be. He just... kind of falls into it.

Today my girlfriend that works with me, brought in some pictures from our old group, when she and I were really really young. It was 1989.

Joe looked at them and he said, "I don't know anyone in this picture". He was dead on serious.

My girlfriend and I just looked at each other. Finally I said, "Joe, yes you do. There are two people in that picture you know."

He was scratching his head, looking at the picture, and finally my girlfriend pointed at the two women and said, "That would be me... and THAT would be Bou."

He got quiet, a stunned silence and then he blurted at her, "Wow! You were really pretty!" I busted out laughing and he said, 'And you were too!"

After he left, my girlfriend said, "Did you note the operative word?"

I replied, "Oh. You mean WERE?"

And we both started to laugh. And... he NEVER caught on to how it came across and we never said a dang word.

Posted by Boudicca at 07:34 PM | Comments (6)

May 06, 2013

Flaring Up

Events are happening quickly in this home now. Ringo's graduation is next Monday and combined with Mother's Day, there is a whirlwind of activity... Baccalaureates, people flying in, Bones coming home from DC, luncheons (Mothers day), a birthday of a nephew thrown in for good measure.

The week following is just as crazy for me... with Bone's performance at the Kravis Center, practices, and Ringo's Court of Honor for his Eagle Scout.

I'm planning, scheduling, sorting, thinking and Bones is... figuring out what to wear.

In particular, what to wear to Ringo's Graduation.

He conned his Dad into buying him a BRIGHT ORANGE shirt from Kohl's. There was some plan coming together in his head, one I definitely could not see.

A few days later he said to me, "Mom, I want to dye some pants orange..."

I replied, "No." and I walked away.

Last night, I was sitting in a corner reading when he came out in a pair of khakis that were about a 1/4" too short and a bit tight in all the wrong places.

I looked up.

Bones, sucking in a stomach he doesn't even have: They kind of fit.

Me, raising an eyebrow: Those don't fit go take them off. *looking back down* I'm reading.

Bones: No, Mom. Mom. Mom. Listen to me, these are the perfect pants to dye orange.

*Closing my book* Me: Bones. You cannot wear those pants for any great length of time. I can't believe you aren't in your falsetto voice. You're going to damage yourself and I won't have grandchildren. Go take them off. *looking back down* I'm reading.

Bones: No, Mom, look, these are PERFECT. They're just a little tight. They can work. And I was going to give them away anyway. I'm going to be sitting anyway.

*he goes to sit in a chair*

Me, *shaking my head*: Those will not dye orange. It will be a dirty orange, it will not match your bright orange shirt. What, are you looking to go as the great pumpkin? Go away. I'm reading.

And I, of course, thought this was done and dead. And I was, of course, sadly mistaken.

In the car today for his voice rehearsal he said, "Mom, I was thinking. I can get a different orange shirt, more... subdued. It will match the orange pants better after they're dyed..."

Me: No.

Bones didn't stop. I stared ahead and he just kept going and going about this great plan with the orange shirt and pants.

Bones:... and Mom, I found these great orange shoes on the internet.


I nearly stopped the car. I finally yelled in exasperation: What is your deal with having to look like a frickin' FLARE at your brother's graduation?

I have no idea where this crap comes from.

No, he's not wearing anything orange other than a shirt to Ringo's graduation, but what possesses? What?

Posted by Boudicca at 07:42 PM | Comments (11)

May 01, 2013

Bowing to the Bow Tie

The boys are either bow tie converts or they're really into the odd knots they can find on the internet.

Ringo appears to be a convert. Not only did he learn to tie it for that Prom, but a couple boys at the Prom had bow ties and needed them re-tied. So he was the official bow tier of anyone in need.

Ringo Prom.jpg

Remember the bright colored shirts Bones insisted he had to have? Evidently they fit every male in this family, all just a bit different. Bones doesn't fill it out. The difference between age 14 and 18.

At the beginning of this year, they instituted a couple new policies at their school. One of them was when they had Mass, the boys were to wear ties.

Here is what Ringo is wearing... Bones' BRIGHT Red shirt and his Union Jack bow tie. Tomorrow, Mr. T is wearing a bright teal shirt with an orange tie.

Somehow, I don't think this is what their school was expecting when they came up with this new policy...

G school.jpg

He thinks this outfit would be perfect with white dress shoes. I think I'm glad we don't have any in the house.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:25 PM | Comments (10)