My boys hate it when I call them “gang.”
“Mom, you sound like we’re in the 1960s,” Charlie will say, and I laugh. But I’m at a loss for what to call them — forEVER, it was always just “boys.” And calling them “children” makes me feel very Maria von Trapp. I like the idea of being so prim and proper, but that’s not how I always roll (yo).
This picture was taken at our weekly post-Mass brunch spot. We are in a nice little habit of going out with Paul’s dad every week after early Mass. We head over and settle in our spot just before the big Sunday morning crowd and it’s fun spending time together. It’s so great with bigger kids to sit and really just enjoy each other’s company and talk about whatever — what Father said at Mass that morning, how the Celtics played last night, Buelo’s memories from forever ago — we cover it all.
[a few other thoughts on that picture: one, the dress Isa is wearing is a hand-me-down from my friend Colleen. A few of her girls wore it and whenever they did I would gush and swoon. It's just the prettiest little thing. When I had Isa she brought it over. I never (ever ever ever) thought I would do more than admire that dress from afar; two, yes, we are letting the big boys grow out their hair for the summer. The school has a hair code, so live it up for now, boys! Ethan's hair grows up, Elliott's grows down; and finally, Isa and Augie are just killing me in this shot. Too funny.]
Today I was texting back and forth with my friend Stacey who has four girls. I’m noticing lately that I’m getting a little “talked out” around here. Meaning, I love having conversations with my children, my gang, but that I’m sometimes left with little to give after that. If that’s how it is in a house filled with boys, what’s it like with so many girls?
“Your ears must be exhausted by the end of the summer,” I wrote. (She has yet to respond.)
These days, I notice that I’m not so eager to pick up the phone to call a friend. I enjoy communicating, but right now, summertime, I’m so happy to just sit in silence whenever that rare opportunity arises. When the boys were little, the phone was my lifeline. Now I’m saving all my thoughts for when I get together with friends.
But it’s so wonderful, isn’t it, enjoying these bigger kids? It’s amazing to watch them blossom and grow.
When I was in Boston, I got an email from an “Internet friend” (someone I met through my blog but who I have also met in real life). Karin wrote about their busy schedule and it was such a sweet and encouraging little note that it made me tear up a bit. I read it out loud to Danielle as we were heading over to the studio.
Things surely are crazy here. I’m sure it will all sound familiar (or else you can consider it your future). Ted (the older of the two sons you met) got a call from a music camp this week. They need a French horn and have offered him full freight. He is very excited – we could not have paid for this month-long, overnight camp ($$$). So… in addition to preparing Rick (youngest) for Scout camp next week, I have to pick Ted up from a diocesan camp, push him through the learner’s permit exam (the only one of my kids who doesn’t want to learn to drive), and prepare him for music camp. Meanwhile, my college-age daughter with the active social life, and my ex-Marine son (about to enter college) are making car logistics interesting with their social lives. And my husband is determined to hike every weekend in NH until he feels ready to climb Mt. Katahdin in Maine in August. Including this weekend before the drop-off at Boy Scout camp.
Yep, that’s your future. But I’ll tell you something – I wouldn’t want to trade it for the world, and neither will you when you get to this point. The kids become more and more themselves as they mature – and more and more fun as well.