Tag Archives: college kids

Time to Cry Tuesday – Disorder in the House

This Time to Cry Tuesday has a little something for everyone. If you are a sentimental parent type, it has that poignant touch. If you are someone who could live without the family gushing (cough, cough… Dr. Jimmy) but you are a fan of good music, watch the great video of Warren Zevon and Bruce Springsteen at the top of this post. If you are both (that would be you Uncle Neal) then you will relate on all levels.

This Zevon song has always been a favorite, and although the premise is a little off topic the title is perfect. (oh and I love the line about even the lhasa apso being embarrassed – isn’t that a duplication of terms? I mean are they not the embodiment of embarrassment unto themselves?)

This Tuesday finds my kids back at school and my house a little quieter than I would like. As any parent of a college kid will tell you, they blow back into the house and everything goes back to family hyper drive as soon as they arrive. For most parents, as thrilled as we are to get the family back together, it takes a few days to get used to the…

disorder in the house.

And then we realize how very much we missed it all; the friends, the food, the late nights and even later sleeping habits, the messy rooms and the general lived in feeling the house gets when they are home. The desire to keep the house ‘picked up’ and everything in order soon dissipates for me as soon as I realize that a clean room and an orderly house means only one thing… no one lives there.

So as I walk passed the now recently vacuumed orderly bedrooms of my kids I can think only one thing…

damn i wish there was crap all over the floor in there with the blinds drawn and the countless empty water bottles and equally abundant amount of carmex tubes lying around.

yeh, i pretty much miss the disorder in the house.



Filed under college, dr. jimmy, family, Time to Cry Tuesdays

Time to Cry Tuesday – The family you choose

We are very fortunate Jews; very fortunate indeed, as we are invited to a most amazing Christmas every year with our dearest friends. I wrote about this last year but I can’t help but post again about an evening that is so very special to our family.

Seated in one room were  members of four families, one friend of the boys and the boyfriend of my girl. The ‘kids’ table was now populated with 14 to 20-year-olds!

As we all took our seats, the vision of all those young adults took my breath away. Some in High School, others about to go off to college, still others scattered in universities across the country, some about to go off on semester abroad adventures, were the finicky eaters and meltdown whiners of Christmas’ past. Was it not just yesterday that the girls put on their famous dance show in front of the fireplace while the boys bounced balls incessantly through the house? Did we not pajama the kids before we went home a few short years ago?

And it’s amazing how we don’t look a day older. (ok, we had a lot of wine with dinner).

It is never a bad idea to count your blessings during the holiday season. So much time is spent on rushing around to make it all perfect, when the truth is, by nature of the players it already is.

Thank you once again to my dear wife friend, Joanne, who makes a holiday like no other. Go figure that the skinniest, most fit woman I know would also be the best cook! She gave me the little framed picture above this post long ago and I keep in on my desk to thank my lucky stars for the day her husband brought her into my life (and believe me, he dated many women I would not have been all that happy sharing my life with, most of whom I remember and he does not).

I am doubly blessed to have a real family that I would choose anyway and an extended family of friends that I would throw myself in front of a train for.

Happy holidays to you all. Count your friends as your blessings for without them nothing is all that important.

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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Filed under family, friendship, holidays

College Move-in, Big Box Style


This post is dedicated to all you fellow parents out there partaking in the annual ritual of moving your offspring into the countless institutions of higher learning across this great land.

You know who you are. All of you flocking to the big box stores, veteran patrons of the Bed Bath and Beyond retail brainstorm: ‘pack and hold’. Consumers of everything that is not nailed down in Target’s ‘College ’09’ aisle. Walmart, Costco and Best Buy fans. If you are anything like me, around hour 36 you were resembling some sort of parental Night of the Living Dead character wandering around the aisles insisting on ridiculous items like shoe organizers and storage bins ad nauseam; the last shred of your sanity gone out the window with your third Starbucks of the day.

Seriously folks, we have surely lost our minds, have we not?

And if I were to guess correctly, most of you went off to college with some big ass ole Bose 901 speakers, a few cinder blocks and wood boards, a couple of orange and milk crates and an album collection that took up three quarters of your parents’ car.

There were no fashionable color coordinated canvas storage bins or over the door hooks, no shower caddies or must have bed in a bag sets. You had some clothes, a few towels, the old linens from your parents’ house an indian tapestry bed spread from the headshop and you were good to go.

Show of hands please, how many of  you had the coordinated dust ruffle for your bed? Yeh, that’s what I thought. Come to think of it, we did not even have bed frames, the fashion of the times was box spring and mattress on the floor. Anybody out there feeling like their college years were somehow not fulfilled because they did not own the ShamWow, or its pathetic copycat, the ShamEase (whose name is not nearly as cool).

So what has made us fall into this trap? Oh right, because we created it. We are the As Seen on TV generation of parents and damn it our kids’ will be organized and color coordinated even if it makes us broke!

Hey, I am not pointing fingers. I am as guilty as they come. You might recognize me as the woman who was wondering up State Street in Madison, WI muttering about the third curtain rod I bought that was finally the right size while searching for a hardware store to buy a rubber mallet.

Don’t ask!

(Stay tuned tomorrow for the funny stories)

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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Filed under absurdities, college, humor, Jana, moms, parenting

Time to Cry Tuesday – Nothing Like Family

Before I start this post check this out! One of my 50-something moms posts was picked up by the Fresno Bee! (ok, so it’s not the NYT but it’s a start)

This Time to Cry Tuesday mixes things up a bit and starts with a laugh. For those who are regular readers, you have heard mention of Gary’s toddler dance more than once.

Now don’t get all excited out there (especially you MizLiz, as I know you are dying to see it), this video does not feature Gary. But it does star our kids who named this dance and hold it close to their hearts. So without any further ado, I bring you The Toddler Dance by Danny and Jana.

Where is the time to cry piece, you ask? No worries. A good friend once told me it is good to both laugh and cry every day, then you know you have lived your day to its fullest.

Family. Some cringe at the word, break out in hives, get indigestion, run for cover. Especially this time of year with all the forced reunions and pressure to celebrate. Me? There is nothing more important. I was raised this way, it is in my blood. And I am fortunate enough to be able to say that when I hear the word family I am happy.

There is no feeling greater for a parent of a college student than the moment before they close their eyes and know that everyone is in their own beds under one roof. These times become more rare and increasingly precious. My kids may roll their eyes when I get this way – certainly Danny does because he has not left yet – but I know that in their hearts they feel the same way.

It is a tough world out there, and we as a society are facing very scary realities. But when you sit at a dinner table with your whole family and can laugh and enjoy simply being together, the world out there seems a little easier to face.

Thanks kids, for humoring me. Oh and being the first video on my great new Hannukah present…

a Flip Video camera.

How did daddy know I wanted this? Oh right, because I only mentioned it 1,000 times.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at Mid-Century Modern Moms and at 50-Something Moms Blog.

For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under carry a camera, danny, home video, Jana, products, teenagers, Time to Cry Tuesdays


This is a little word I coined in a MMCM post a few weeks ago. I used it in the context of teens having 5 kids over. Those who are there become ‘fruitful and textify’ and before they know it there are 30 kids… you get the picture.

This weekend I have come up with an alternate definition: When your kid goes to a big 10 school you can watch the game on national TV and textify them.

Here is a priceless text from Jana in the bleachers at tonight’s Wisconsin massacre game against Penn State.

Jana: girl fight in the student section a few rows down. alexa said nothings better than a girl fight.

I always loved that Alexa, a reader who is quoting! Such flattery!

Unrelated to textifying but related to the game, below is an actual note from Jana during college app days. Here is a link to the entire post. I thought the Penn State reference was ironic here.

Oh, one last thing. Voting is still open for the Aretha or Tina poll with Aretha in a strong lead Although thet the voting is thin, Lon posted an excellent comment. Let’s have some serious participation here please!

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Filed under family, humor, Jana, Mid-Century Modern Moms, travel

#1 Sign that Your Daughter is Too Old for the Pediatrician’s Office

NOTE: It’s Wednesday and that means I am posting at Mid-Century Modern Moms today. Don’t miss it!

Jana is home for 5 whole days between camp and school. We like to think of this week as relay for health. We fit many doctor’s appointments into a short period of time. Last visit was the dentist, eye doc and gyn. This week it is allergist x 2 (trying to get that asthma in check) and the dreaded annual check-up with…

the pediatrician. Ok, so she is 19 and we are still visiting the pediatrician. Yeh, like we are the only ones doing that! While we were in the exam room I heard what sounded like a full grown man in the other room taking an eye test.

Note the ‘gown’ she was asked to put on. She wanted to know what short little porker size kid this was designed for. Wait, didn’t I see this top in a Vera Wang ad in the NYT fashion mag?

What is with our generation that we don’t trust the big people’s docs with our college kids? Do we have some strange masochistic nostalgic streak that makes us feel the need to still be around kvetching babies and toddlers in the waiting room to validate our vision of ourselves as ‘mom’?

Here are a couple of favorite sound bites from the ONE HOUR wait to see the doc:

8-year-old-girl: Mom, remember our babysitter Uma from Iraq?

Mom: She was from Canada!!

Mom: Let’s play the guessing game. I am thinking of a man.

Kid 1: Is he a singer?

Mom: Yes.

Kid 2: Bob Dylan?

Mom: No.

Kid 2: Bob Marley?

Note to self: kidnap Kid 2 and take her home. She fits perfectly with our musical tastes and Gary always wanted a third child. 


Filed under family, humor, moms, parenting, teenagers