These two own my heart. . .
I took my sons once to a place called Toffee Tree Ranch, in the mountains of Redding in Northern California.
It was a lovely vacation, complete with fishing, hiking, horseback riding, arctic plunges, hot tubbing, games, kittens and dogs, mounds of food and OF COURSE gymkhana.
Any idea what gymkhana is?
It’s when a bunch of tourists run around a dude ranch trying to act like real cowboys by doing things like barrel racing, speed runs, and ultimately, a water fight!
In case you were wondering, yes.
I barrel raced (I tipped over ALL the barrels):
And my boys had a super BIG blast ganging up on me and getting me soaking wet after the competition:
I came across these photos the other day and couldn’t help but be reminded of all the fun I had with my boys when they were little.
How I hope those days are only temporarily on hold and will resume once the awkward teenage years are over.
I’m getting sentimental.
Maybe it’s the remnants of the flu but I find myself a little moody and nostalgic for the old times.
Don’t know what you’ve got, til it’s gone.
Have I mentioned recently how lucky I am to be a mom to my two boys?
I can’t express enough gratitude for being chosen to be their mother.
My eldest, Duncan, is now working and joined the Army National Guard to be in the Military Police.
Of course, he hopes to get a career in law enforcement, just like his father.
My youngest, just got accepted into UNR and will be attending in the fall and studying the field of biology.
He hopes to make a career as a veterinarian or a nurse.
Now, the thing you must know about having teenage boys is that even though they are less work than girls, with less mood swings, and outbursts, they’re also fiercely independent.
I’m constantly texting them asking where they are and who they are with.
I barely see them.
If it wasn’t for the fact that they need food to survive, I could go days without seeing them.
So, all this is just a BIG excuse for me to post this photo of us:
They came into my room while I was lounging on my bed – Duncan on the right and Gavin on the left, and they stayed there long enough for me to snap the photo.
PARENTING ACHIEVEMENT REALIZED!
Elon Musk took his FIVE sons to a pumpkin patch.
The CEO and founder of SpaceX and Tesla, Inc. has FIVE sons.
I’m less concerned with how something like that happened and more concerned with how wonderful and chaotic it must be to be the father of FIVE BOYS.
I know it was CRAZY with my two.
Elon’s five boys remind me how very badly I want to have more children.
I thought for sure it would happen in the years after I got divorced.
I was sure I’d meet someone special, settle down, and maybe have a girl or two.
Or another boy.
I’ll always feel like my family is too small since I lost Douglas and Ruby.
It is my lot in life to carry around the burden of having lost children.
I have, by no means, cornered the market in this area and I am aware there are bigger burdens than mine.
I want more kids.
Now, I’ve TOTALLY given up on the idea of having more kids of my own.
I’m too close to the tail end of raising my boys to turn around and start all over.
But reading about Elon Musk’s abundance of children, I am struck with the hope that perhaps, if I’m lucky, I will meet someone special who has children of his own.
The game is not lost, my friends.
I could still wind up with a girl or another boy.
I am struck, given my own adoption background, how families are made in all different ways.
I happen to have two mothers and two fathers, an abundance of siblings (six), and even more cousins, aunts and uncles.
So I know better than anyone that more than blood makes a family.
There’s hope for me.
I might get more kids yet!
When I was growing up, I CONSTANTLY had to wipe pee off the toilet seat.
You see, my dad is a germaphobe and he taught my brother to LEAVE THE TOILET SEAT DOWN while peeing.
Needless to say, my brother’s aim was off.
I can’t tell you how gross it was to forget to check the toilet seat and to sit down and feel the wetness of someone else’s pee on the backs of your thighs.
Then I got married and lo and behold my ex-husband was trained to LIFT THE SEAT.
And he did.
I’ll let you in on a secret: I don’t really care if the seat is up, I just don’t want there to be pee on it.
What can I say?
I set the bar low.
My ex-husband taught my boys to lift the seat but lately, I’ve noticed that someone is leaving the seat down and peeing on it.
Once I figured out which one of my spawn it was, I confronted him.
But the seat-peeing has continued.
So. . .
In order to make a point, I left a bloody wad of toilet paper in the toilet.
Because I know it grosses my boys out to see blood in the toilet.
I see your pee on the seat and I raise you one bloody wad of toilet paper.
In case you didn’t know, my first husband was a police officer.
He was about as straight as they come.
Also as it turns out, a bit on the combative side.
After 10 years of marriage, I called it quits.
I was expecting to find a partner who would give my boys another example of how a man behaves.
I’ve now dated several men who I felt represented what I want my sons to grow up to be like.
Unfortunately, none of them have stuck around, but there’s still time.
In the last few years, since I’ve been going to Burning Man, I’ve met all variety of men.
In an “open” relationship.
I must say, I have found something appealing in most of the varieties that men come in.
But when it comes down to it, I’m still looking for a man who fits the bill.
I had a conversation with a friend lately where he professed his unending loyalty to his wife, which I thought was so sweet.
I don’t come across too many monogamous men.
“You are a rare and principled man,” I told him, giving his quite possibly THE BEST COMPLIMENT I CAN GIVE SOMEONE.
And that’s when it hit me.
What I’m looking for?
My own rare and principled man.
Every year, about a month before Mother’s Day, I gather my two boys, force them to wear nice long sleeve, button-down shirts and trousers (gasp!) and we head to some beautiful location to take family photos.
Last year, Yvonne took our photos and she did an OUTSTANDING job of prepping us for the shoot AND actually taking AMAZING photographs.
So this year, we’re doing a repeat!
It works really well to take family photos around Mother’s Day BECAUSE you can GUILT TRIP your children into participating.
AND since they ALWAYS forget me on Mother’s Day, this is my present.
So to speak.
It’s also perfect because I get my photos ahead of time and then I’m prepared to get my Christmas cards made long before the crush of the holidays hits.
Last year, this was our holiday card.
We chose light, Easter, pastel colors for our photo shoot.
This year, we’re going with a more saturated color scheme – navy, burgundy, and a nice deep gray:
I’m totally excited once again to actually get family photos taken and I HOPE that enforcing this one family activity with my boys will reinforce that THIS IS JUST WHAT HAPPENS IN APRIL.
They MUST obey!
I’ve had no dates since returning from Sweden.
It’s not that I’m consciously trying to be loyal to The Swede.
It’s because I simply can’t stomach the quality of men I meet online.
Did you know that one man thanked me for moving my beer on the first date because (as he put it), he “could see my tits better without the glass in the way?”
Mind you, I have behaved no better.
I’m no “holier than thou” woman.
I sent dirty pictures.
I wore low cut dresses.
And I flirted with the best of them.
In the end, online dating is not any way to make a connection with somebody.
Although, I did meet The Swede on Tinder.
One in a fucking billion.
And I had to import him from ANOTHER COUNTRY!
You’d think, given my inclinations, that I’d be missing all those dates, and sexting, and flirtations.
But you’d be wrong.
I’m not missing it ONE BIT.
Maybe it’s because I can skype The Swede whenever I want.
It’s because I can TEXT The Swede whenever I want.
Maybe he’s a big part of why I’m happy, but he’s not the ONLY reason I’m happy.
I’ve got a hundred other reasons to be happy starting with my boys.
I guess this is growing up.
I don’t 100% HATE Valentine’s Day.
Although I should.
There’s something about a day where you can tell people you love them that just tugs at my heart strings.
After all, I have two teenage boys whom I adore to pieces.
Always my babies.
And since they’re usually adverse to me hugging, kissing, and snuggling them, Valentine’s Day is a good day to GUILT TRIP them into letting me do it.
This year, I got them each a funny card:
And since Duncan’s hobby is gaming, I got him THIS shirt:
Which I think he has more than enough attitude to wear when he’s out and about.
Gavin, on the other hand, is the daddy to two parakeets – Ross and Smokey.
They are his pride and joy, to say the least.
So I got him this colorful parakeet tee shirt, which I think he will like.
As much effort as I put into training the boys to remember to get me cards or presents on holidays, I think that I will be forgotten this year.
I’m not expecting to get anything from them. . .
. . .unless I HOUND them.
And that’s a possibility since I’m doing a piss poor job of teaching them to remember their loved ones on special occasions.