Friday, April 5, 2013

Weekend Happenings, A Gift of Fun AND Time

Good Friday afternoon!

RANDOMNESS #1 - You may or may not recall this OLD story from four years ago when I took The Boy to JSU for Freshman orientation.

What can I say about yesterday? First, I had SEVEN MEETINGS.

The first hour was great. The Go Team (kind of like Ambassadors at Gardendale) put on an hour long play/skit of all things Freshmen will experience. It was funny, musical and very entertaining. It held my interest like a two year-old at a Wiggles concert. "This is going to be okay," I thought to myself. "This isn't going to be over my head or boring." I allowed myself to be lulled into a sense of false security.

Austin left and the next session (a/k/a meeting) was given by a woman and it was about parents. She called us "helicopter parents." You know... hovering. She even suggested we not call the kids all the time. I quickly tuned her out.

On to Session Three... Nine parents met with the advisor who would be handling our kid's schedule. He was very nice. He was very informative. I tried very hard to listen to every word that came out of his mouth, and then I heard, " after I go to registration with your child tomorrow, you can pick them up." What?

Not only am I NOT a meeting person... I am NOT an "ask questions at the meeting" person. I usually get very angry with the people who ask questions at the meeting because that means the meeting will last longer. But I felt my hand raise high over my head. "Yes," he acknowledged me.

"I never ask questions," I started. No one cared. "Why isn't the parent going with their child to registration?"

"Is there a particular reason you think you need to be there?" he responded, not unkindly, but maybe slightly irritated.

I know he did not expect me to go into the lengthy story of the day Austin was born, and what I physically and emotionally went through giving birth to him, but I wanted him to understand the FULL extent of our bond. That, and the fact if he messed up his schedule, Mike and I would have to PAY to change the classes next week.

"I think we'll be able to handle it," he said, again, not unkindly, but maybe slightly smug.

You didn't have to be a brain surgeon to understand that these people were planning on treating these Freshmen like "adults." Absurd!

Okay. I would not consider that session a success... Mainly, because I didn't get what I wanted. I needed to go to lunch before we had another meeting... I mean session.

Lunch was okay. Because of my diabetes I couldn't eat the mashed potatoes or the mac and cheese or the homemade roll or the peach cobbler. That pretty much left chicken, carrots and green beans. Oh, and they didn't have a Diet Dr. Pepper so I had to have a Pepsi Zero. Just shoot me now!

After lunch, we had my favorite session. Austin decided he wanted to try the Communications Major Session. It was fascinating. I loved it. Austin loved it. I can totally see him doing something like this... if he wants to. I refuse to be a "helicopter." Austin was really pumped up about it, so I encouraged him. (Oh, by the way, I am now registered in Communications 101. I'll be with Austin Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10:00 to 11:00. Not being a "helicopter." Just trying to expand myself... I want to be a better blogger, and this class should help.)

The next session was a student panel where six kids sat in front of us and answered all the questions we could think of. Mostly, they talked about how important it was for us, as parents, to give the Freshmen freedom.

Session Six was an administrative panel where nine adults talked about all the things we, as parents, needed to know about the different departments at the school. I think I lost consciousness on Administrative Panel Member Number Four.

Then we went to our final session which was a reception. Sugar cookies and sweet, sweet red punch. I admit it. I took a sip of the punch. I have the red mustache to prove it.

And then Austin was in his final session. Parents weren't allowed because it was just for the kids so they could ask questions they wouldn't ask in front of their parents. All I can say is Austin Faulkner better not have had his hand waving.

Out of the SEVEN MEETINGS, I can honestly say I thoroughly enjoyed TWO of them. That is excellent for me. I consider yesterday a success.

To all of you out there who have sent children off to college, I admire how you pulled it off without being called a "helicopter." For those of you who still haven't experienced this monumental task, I would advise you to take your child, run to Montana, buy a farm and just keep everyone with you in a compound-like environment. I really think that's the way to go.

In reality, it was a good day. I loved the campus and the faculty I met. Everyone seemed very nice and helpful. Austin seemed more at ease, too, which is very important to me and Mikie. We want him to adjust well and be happy.

RANDOMNESS #2 - Guess what? The Boy is going to graduate in 21 days with a Bachelor's Degree in Communications.

Did that four years fly by, or what?

He's going to walk for his diploma, but he's going to continue to take on-line classes for a Bachelor's Degree in History, too. He only needs six more classes.

By this time next year, he will have a double major from JSU and hopefully, a job in broadcasting and communications.

And he accomplished all of this with the disadvantage of having a "helicopter" mom.


RANDOMNESS #3 - I'm talking about The Boy a lot today because not only is graduation in our not-so-distant future, but we went to his last Communications Banquet yesterday in Jacksonville.

I'm proud to say, The Boy won his fair share of certificates.

We ate chicken, sat with his Communication buddies and listened to a Keynote Speaker talk about the job situation... and we left there feeling pretty good about Austin's prospects.

Actually, I can honestly say I am not worried about Austin's job situation.

Can you believe that? I'm not worried?

God has opened door after door after door for Austin at JSU. It has been pretty amazing, so I am more than willing to pray, wait and see what God has planned for Austin's adult life.

Not only is Austin graduating from college, but this self-proclaimed Helicopter Mom has finally learned to turn some of the big stuff over to God. (He's been trying to teach me that lesson for years and years and years.)

RANDOMNESS #4 - My friend, Melaney, e-mailed this to me this morning, and I liked it. I liked it a great deal.

"But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law." Galatians 5:16-18.

I remember several years ago when I was teaching my kids how to drive. Talk about nerve-racking! Sitting in the passenger seat, I felt absolutely helpless. All I could do was give them guidance and allow them to follow it. And when they first began driving on their own, I don’t think I slept for days!

Now when it comes to teaching kids how to drive, you can do it one of two ways. You can start by showing them the first aid kit, the map, the insurance card and where to put their Starbucks while the car is moving. Or (the best way), you can let them start driving and show them what to do along the way.

God wants us to know how to steer through life. He could have taught us by telling us exactly how to respond to any and every situation that might arise. All we would have to do is memorize His instructions, and we would be good to go.

However, like driving, God knows the best way for us to learn is to get out and experience life for ourselves, walking by the Spirit and listening to Him as we go. So if you want to get the most out of life, live teachable. Allow the Holy Spirit to guide your steps, and you’ll learn how to excel in every aspect of life!


Pretty good, huh?

RANDOMNESS #5 -The Ovarian Cancer MotherWalk is coming up this May, and I wanted to give you an update on Mom.

She finished her second round of chemo this past winter, and while the chemo did what it was supposed to do, her doctor wanted her to take monthly chemo for a year (maintenance).

The monthly chemo is not quite as harsh as the other two rounds she has been through, and she has her third maintenance treatment the middle of this month.

We had 13 walk on Team Tootsie last May in the MotherWalk, and our goal this year is 20.

If anyone is interested in walking on Team Tootsie, let me know, and I will be glad to give you the information for sign-up!

The more people walking, the closer we get to a cure!

A Gift of Fun AND Time

I found this in the May edition of Family Fun.

For my niece's seventh birthday, I gave her a personalized day of fun. I bought $5 gift cards to local spots, including the movie theater, the bowling alley, the ice cream parlor and the bookstore. Then I made a date to take her and my daughter to all the places in one day. The two girls had a great time, and the memories will last a lifetime.

This idea came from Julie Dossantos... and I thought it was marvelous!

Weekend Happenings

This weekend is a little less organized than the last two "Easter" weekends.

Mike and I might have a date.

Roxie, Josh and Mike might go fishing.

Austin may do some yard work at Grandmother's in between dates with The Lovely Melia.

I might take a Sunday afternoon nap. (I hope. I hope.)

Nothing major, but I like that in a weekend. Don't you?

Have a lovely Spring weekend. I actually think the weather in Central Alabama is going to cooperate!

Take care, and I'll talk to you Monday morning!


The Enchanting Belinda...

And Sparkle. The cutest 77 year-old pooch EVER!

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