Tuesday, February 25, 2014

What I Love

There's a new love in my life.  I'm not throwing that word around loosely, this is a LOVE in my life.  This is a bit of a public service announcement, because I think the word needs to be spread.  Spread to where?  I don't know, because everyone I excitedly share this with says, "Oh, yes, I love those!  Aren't they great??"  Well, then, why have you never told me?  Someone finally did, a friend of my daughter...and now I'm in love.


These are so perfect.  They are light and crisp, perfect amount of salty.  I will eat no other chip.  Now, that's probably going a bit far.  I'm sure another chip will pass my lips at some point.  But as long as it is within my ability I will eat no other chip.  I think I will name my next child Juanita.

We also must keep it real.  Salty is great and has its place.  But sweet...sweet is my first love.  Have you ever been asked if you could only have sweet or salty for the rest of your life, which it would be?  You don't ever need to ask me that question.  If you know me, even just a wee bit, the answer is obvious.

So, via a little Facebook conversation, I came to know another of my new loves.  A friend posted a picture of a pallet full of "Mini Cadbury Eggs".  Blech.  I thought they were miniature versions of the big cadbury eggs that leak out raw egg-ish looking goop.  THAT is a waste of chocolate, friends.  So a mini-version of that?  No thank you and please don't even suggest it.  HOWEVER, I was enlightened by my dear friend.  She happily informed me that these didn't leak any goop.  They are pure chocolate on the inside.  She described it as "an M&M on steroids".  Ah, now.  Yes, please.


We went out for a special dinner together Friday night, to celebrate Brad's new job.  And I was presented with a bag of these nuggets of delicousness.  And we broke 'em open right there at the table while waiting for our dinner.  Cuz we're classy like that.

And seriously?  I could hear Keith Partridge singing "I think I love you...." as I began my relationship with these.  They are only here for a limited time, so I highly suggest you jump right aboard this bandwagon without any further ado.


I have plans for them.  Plans for them to prosper...in the form of a cookie.

My new loves.  I hope you will love them too, there's plenty for all!

Monday, February 17, 2014

What I've Learned

A year ago this week, my son and husband were on a college audition trip.  They made stops in two very different places to tour campuses, audition and interview.  We had made trips within our state to do the same thing.  I was so full of questions back then.  I have never been a big fan of unknowns.  And like most parents know, the life of parenting teenagers is full to the brim of unknowns.

The top pick in this college quest was way beyond our reach.  The cost was laughable.  There was NO WAY we could provide for that on our own.  And there was great freedom in that.  We were able to encourage him to go for it, and remind him that the only way it could happen is if the Lord created a way.  He was fully, completely and totally confident about it.  I was the realist.  I know he saw me as the pessimist, but in truth I was just a realist.  After a year full of deadlines followed by waiting, applications followed by waiting, auditions followed by waiting ~ so. much. waiting. ~ he received his official acceptance and scholarship offer to his top pick:  such a generous scholarship that it costs us considerably less to send him to his dream school than it would cost to send him to a public school in our state.

So it was settled.  My little boy's dream would take him across the country, just about as far away as you could go and still be in the same nation.


Now here we are a year later.  I've learned a lot about mothering my young-adult son.  Knowing I get to do this two more times with my girls, I thought it would be good to reflect on what I've learned:

* The goodbye hurts more than I even imagined it would.  The moment of getting the last hug is both numbing and wretchedly painful.  And I survived it.

* Continually telling myself that it wasn't about me was helpful.  Keeping my mind on things from his perspective helped my perspective stay in check.

* The first couple months, when I wanted to be clingy and constantly in contact was when I most needed to give him space.  He was transitioning, adjusting, finding his way, growing up.  He needed space to do that.

* He did call or text when he needed something.  He knew we were here for him.

* Time. Things just took time.  We all had adjustments to make, and allowing that to happen over time is the only way to get through the transition.

* My prayers were vital.

* Sending packages, whether necessities of just fun things, were good for me and him.

* Although he has always appreciated us, I think his appreciation has grown over his time away.  I think he believes us that we are on his side.

* Technology is my friend.  I get to see his face in pictures, I get to send/receive messages in texts and emails, I get to occasional skype with him and see for myself how he is.  Just like when he was a baby and I could decipher his cries, I can look at his eyes, hear his voice, and decipher how he truly is.

* The investment of time and teaching has not returned void.  He listened and learned.

* I still laugh when he laughs (mostly), still hurt when he hurts, still ache to make everything okay for him, still wonder about what's coming, and I still would feel better if he was here.  Yet this is the reality of the season we are in.  And it's still not about me and what I want.  It's about him pursuing his future, and I'm so proud of him for following his passion and doing it with such integrity.

* And mostly what I've learned is that despite being 2,811 miles apart, despite being 6'3", he's still my little boy.  Time, age, distance...nothing will change that.