September 16, 2010 · 10:33 am
There is nothing like the wonder of a 5th birthday party when the birthday boy gets to open his presents after the festivities. What I would not give to know what gift prompted that perfect little thrilled face on my boy. And the equally impressed face of my other little boy to his left. Of course, his sister – the Boss, was on hand to make sure he opened his gifts correctly.
Fast forward 15 years that flew by so quickly I am suffering from a little mommy whiplash today just thinking about it. And there is my boy, firmly planted in his new college life, most probably still fast asleep right now.
But waiting for him in the package room in the dorm would be the ever famous box of…
you guessed it: 18 presents. This idea came from my friend Karen and I copied her for Jana’s 21st. Of course sending it to Spain cost more than the contents but it was surely worth it.
So, to my 18 year old ‘baby’, may this day and your new life be as filled with wonder and excitement as your 5-year-old face in the picture above. And know that no matter how old you get, you will always be a little bit of that bowl hair cut sporting, basketball jersey and t-shirt wearing, lego building little guy in this mom’s heart.
Happy Birthday Danny Boy. Be all you can be and…
Love you, man!
March 30, 2009 · 10:01 pm
Imagine a toddler falling in love with his Little Tikes basketball hoop and finding a life’s passion at a tender young age.
Imagine that same little boy, no more than 10 years old, shooting hoops in his ice-encrusted driveway during the dead of winter. Hour after hour. Defying all laws of frostbite and logic. Driven to perfect his shot at all costs.
Now imagine him as a crazed adolescent bouncing that damn ball throughout the house, driving his mother over the edge. (part of the fun, I am sure).
Fast forward to 9th grade and this young man struggles with the decision to leave his friends and the security of his hometown public school to attend a private High School and be part of an elite basketball team. Forgoing summer camp opportunities he chose to play basketball year round to hone his game. Playing through injuries and, well – not so gently put – height challenges. All without a single complaint. Never saying die. Always pushing forward, doing his best, working his hardest. With a smile on his face.
Mikey Buckets, they have called him. He is smart, swift and driven. What he lacks in size he makes up for in court sense. I have known him since he was in utero and quite frankly I have come head to head with his determined style on some not so pleasant occasions during his early years. But as we hoped, he channeled that determination to be the best he could possibly be. Against all odds.
The reason I am writing about him today is because I could not be any prouder if I had carried this child myself. This past weekend, as a 10th grader on varsity, his team won the state finals! A dream realized for a young man who never listened to the mean-spirited commentary that he was too short. Too white. Too green. Too suburban. Too much of a dreamer to make it in such a competitive sport.
So here’s to you Mike, I am proud to say at your tender age of 15 you are an inspiration to me. One of my heroes. And whenever I think I can’t, you will remind me that I sure as hell can.
We love you!
(but PLEASE, can you stop dribbling that ball in the house!)
The photo above is Mike and my son Danny. A REALLY long time ago.
Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog.
For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.
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June 15, 2008 · 10:23 am
I have a rival story.
There is nothing more perplexing than trying to figure out the mind of a 15-year-old boy. Unless of course you have been living with one and observed the habits of the pack he brings home.
As I have stated before, I love teenagers! I truly do. They are sophomoric, so am I. They love music, so do I. They love to laugh. Well, we all know, so do I!
This little story will make you both cringe and smile if you have ever lived with (or been) a teenage boy.
Last friday my daughter and I left my son and his 4 friends playing a heated game of basketball in the driveway. It was during the ghastly heat wave we had in NY last week. High 90’s, 1 million percent humidity. They were all dripping wet when we left and kept on playing after we were gone.
When we came back, Danny tells me that he had to take the laundry out of the dryer because, “they needed it for a minute”. I did not think much about it. Left for dinner with daughter and husband and sometime after the second hot sake it occurred to me!
“I know why they needed the dryer!” At that same moment my daughter got it to.
Yes, my friends, five 15-16 year old sweaty, disgusting, post-basketball-playing boys, took off their shirts and put them in the friggin’ dryer!
Worse yet, they put them on when they dried and went out for a friday night… with girls!
Nothing like baking that sweat into your clothing and impregnating my dryer with a stink that no can of Febreze will ever cure. (BTW, Febreze is the Spanx and Spacebags of living with teens) Can you imagine calling the repair guy, “Um, well, I have this kind of stink in my dryer that I can’t get rid of. No really, I have no idea where it came from”. Enough to get the Matag repairman out of retirement!
I can’t be sure, but I think I saw the cleaning lady turn up her nose when she did the laundry this week.
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