The Boys Are Back In Town… Almost

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The month of May will be here tomorrow… WHAT?!?!? Am I the only one who it snuck up on?? It seems just yesterday that the boys were leaving after Christmas break (and when I saw the mess that was left in their wake, I may have actually been grateful that they weren’t coming home again until summer…oops!!) But I do love May for lots of reasons: Tim’s birthday, Will’s birthday, my mom’s birthday, my favorite cousins birthday, my nephew Andy’s birthday, Mother’s Day (plenty of notice boys… books are always good), school ends, summer begins, and our household occupancy doubles while my laundry/cooking/cleaning TRIPLES! I have learned to make very few plans in May because I know it’s the longest my boys will be home all year and we just plan to soak it in.

Other mothers talk about having their college kids home for the summer and I must say that I have never had that experience. Our oldest son worked every summer and spring break for his entire undergraduate life. It looks like both our middle son and youngest are headed down that same path. I’m not complaining, because I believe it’s good from them to experience all that they can while they are young and unencumbered. (Plus, none of them are dumb and they know there is no way their dad would put up with them staying in bed until noon.) Do I miss them? YES! Would I love to have them home for a longer period of time? Sure in theory but I’m pretty sure we’d get on theirs nerves about the same time they started getting on ours!

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Tim and I are loving the empty nest! Seriously, when your kids do what you raised them to do it’s hard not to be happy for them (besides, I’d be crazy to mind less laundry, smaller messes and cheaper grocery bills…just sayin) it also means that when any or all of the boys are home we put everything aside and just enjoy our time with them. So for the next month there will be late nights, tons of good food, great conversations and more fun than you can imagine. Seriously, I may be worn out and used up come June but it will all be worth it!

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Longing for Masters Week!!

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Yes it’s here… that time of year when I am REALLY tired of winter but spring is still a long way away. I find myself not only looking at the spring fashions wishing it were warm enough to at least wear a short sleeve shirt but longing for Masters week. In this part of the world, we begin the countdown to Masters pretty early for several reasons. First, it is the official beginning of spring to all of us in the Augusta area. Second, tons of people rent their house out so they have to get it Masters ready. Meaning the house looks like it is going to be photographed for a magazine (reason #4,563 why we don’t rent!!) And third, it is spring break.

Yes, you will NEVER EVER hear of a spring break in the Augusta area occurring any time other than Masters week. Now to those of you not steeped in Masters tradition, that means our spring break always starts on Monday following the first Sunday in April because Masters ALWAYS ends on the second Sunday in April (more than you ever cared to know? You’re welcome!) The good news about this is that you can plan your spring break years in advance resting in the knowledge that it WILL be that particular week. The bad news? It is so hard to wait that long for spring break. Especially when your college kids are enjoying an early March spring break.

For years we stayed in town for Masters week because, uh, I worked there and taking vacation that week was really frowned upon by the establishment. WHAT?!?! This past year, Tim and I had tournament badges so I REALLY wanted to get to go as just a normal person (I admit, it’s a stretch for me to be normal but I gave it my best shot.) So hubby and I have been torn this year, should we stay or should we head out of town??? Naturally, there are tons of fun things to do in town Masters week but there are also about a million extra people. That’s the rub, stay and play with a million of my closest friends or get out of town and enjoy peace and quiet… hmmmm… it really is a harder decision than you can imagine. And when we decide, I’ll be sure and let you know.

Random Friday Musings

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  1. Today is my dad’s birthday, so if you see Greg make sure you wish him a happy birthday. Happy Birthday Daddy!!
  2. Will got home from Memphis last night so my nest is full…and messy…and my fridge is empty…and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
  3. Anchorman 2 is out… wonder how long before I get to hear my boys reciting every one of the movie lines?
  4. Why do boy’s dorm rooms smell so bad?
  5. Robin Thicke is the son of Alan Thicke… you know the dad on Family Ties?? WHAT?!?!
  6. James Marsden, who I may or may not have actually met in person while on a girls trip in Atlanta, may have the most beautiful eyes ever. Well, other than my husband of course. Of course…
  7. How can one boy coming home from college for the break have so much stuff and have it ALL OVER THE HOUSE in just two short hours??? Yes, I’m talking about you Luke Reeve!
  8. Why can I think of thousands of things I want until someone asks me?
  9. Did anyone ever really care who let the dogs out? Whose dogs were they anyway?
  10. Why is there a difference between “for sale” and “on sale”?
  11. Speaking of which, why can’t car dealers just tell me how much they want for their cars? I don’t haggle over milk at the grocery store or my mortgage payment…just tell me how much the car is and I’ll pay it if I want it. DONE.
  12. Rett and Gini are getting married tomorrow…unless Gini gets around our family and realizes she doesn’t want to sign on for all this! So y’all hide your crazy at least until after they’re hitched… then go wild. Seriously, can’t wait to begin celebrating with them tonight!

p.s. It’s almost Christmas Day so you might want to start your shopping. I might want to start mine too… I might…

My Boi Kittle

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I gave birth to three sons, but in reality we have a fourth son. He came into our family when he was about seven years old and not matter what we do, we cannot get him to leave! Yeah, this is not a “Blind Side” kind of story. Nope, this it’s more like Eddie Haskell from Leave it to Beaver…I kid, I kid! It’s really like Fred and Barney from The Flintstones. Two guys who are good separate but better (and full of trouble!) together.

Will Kittle (Kittle in my house since i already have a Will) played soccer at the YMCA with Luke when they were little boys. They became fast friends who despite going to different schools until college, remain best friends to this day (I like to think Kittle is Luke’s Lynne… except they break more stuff and eat more food!) So as is want to happen, over the years of the boys being together, he just became family. I can’t even begin to count the nights he spent at my house nor the meals he’s shared with us and vice versa at the Kittle house. So much time together that both my other two boys are almost as close to him as Luke is.

Now don’t misunderstand, it has not always been smooth sailing with these two. Oh no! There was a time amidst broken school bus windows, destroyed furniture and conversations with the youth pastor about their latest “incident” at church when I thought I would pull their hair out if they didn’t calm down and straighten up! But not only did they straighten up, Kittle and Luke have become fine young men who are both excelling at Georgia Tech (yes, Ga Tech even though for most of his life, Kittle, bled the red and black of the University of Georgia BullDawgs!)

I love the fact that even if Kittle is only home a few hours, we get a visit. Heck, he comes by to visit whether Luke is here or not. Like I said, he’s our fourth and cheapest son… we’ve yet to pay a dime for his college tuition! Now food on the other hand…

The Love of My Life

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My husband is one of the most amazing people in the world (and I’m not just saying that because Christmas is coming and I don’t have a job.) No, Tim is really one of those rare people who are truly kind, always loving and full of grace. He lives life with a song in his heart and on his lips. Which I cannot fully appreciate since he starts singing first thing in the morning (I’m not fully human until after 9:00am… ok 10:00am!) Tim truly embodies the practice of putting other first and is hands down one of the greatest listeners in the world. He is an amazing husband, father, educator and friend.

Now don’t misunderstand me, he’s far from perfect. I mean, he is a hoarder like no other! Just last night we discussed WHY he wanted to keep twenty-six empty prescription bottles…yes, twenty-six!!! His reason? Just in case we need something to keeps safety pins in or if we travel and need something to put all our pills in (yes, the TSA would just LOVE that!!) And don’t even get me started on the nails, screws and bolts on his work bench. Let’s just say if there is ever a shortage, you people know where to come!

He’s also one of those people who I describe as having “wheels on his butt” meaning that he cannot sit still! You give me a book, I’m not moving for hours unless there is a federal emergency. Tim? Yeah, he can barely sit still for twenty minutes. Other than taking our kids to Disney movies, I can truly count on one hand the number of times Tim and I have gone to the theater to see a movie. Our first movie together was “Field of Dreams” in 1989 and it was our only movie in a theater until well after we moved to Augusta in 1999. The few other movies that we have seen in a theater were movies with other couples and, truth be told, he only went then because of peer pressure.

Yes, I am married to the most amazing man in the world and I don’t tell him that nearly often enough. I mean who else would put up with a wife who wanted to “retire” just a year before having two sons in college and two years before having all three sons in college? Only one man friends, and that man I am proud to say is my husband or more accurately the love of my life!

Bring on the Empty Nest!

                As of August 23, 2013, my husband and I officially became empty nesters. Now I know some of you are thinking that we must be awfully sad and trying hard to find our new roles. But honestly people, it’s been WONDERFUL!! Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my boys but this is what we raised them to do: move out, go to college and be independent men. I assure you, no one enjoys being with their children more than us. I often joke about the fact that just when they got to the point of being real humans, it was time for them to move out and go to college! So yeah, we truly enjoy them when they are home but want them to see the world, experience different things and learn how much more there is to this life than just the little bubble they grew up in.

                Years ago, when I realized how quickly time was flying, I wondered what in the world we would do once the kids were out of the house. Back then I spent so much of my time doing things that revolved around them (mountains of laundry, eternal grocery shopping, picking up thousands of toys) that I wondered if I would find anything to fill my time once they were gone. HA!! Little did I know how wonderful this side of raising kids would be. On so many levels this is the best part of being parents. No longer is my time spent saying, “stop touching him!”, “put that down!”, “get that out of your mouth!” Now we talk, we REALLY talk. About big things, little things and world changing things. I’ve learned my role has morphed from do this, do that, don’t! To more of you did? You can? You are?

                Sure, we miss them and really enjoy it when they are home. But the day to day…. so much easier! Can you say less laundry, cleaner house, LOWER grocery bill?? Hello free time!! It is kind of like being newlyweds again. We are in control of our time now since there are no sporting events to attend, no homework to police and praise the Lord no more college visits (our middle son Luke must have visited EVERY college south of the Mason-Dixon Line!) We have the time to do the things we only dreamed of doing years ago like just the two of us taking a walk after dinner, going on a road trip whenever we choose and best of all, going to bed without playing rock-paper-scissors to see who has to wait up on the boys!!

                Forest Gump’s mom really did have it right, “life is like a box of chocolates” and just when you think only crème centers are left you realize they’re ALL caramel filled!!