Saturdays in the fall...after school starts, inour house consists of marching band from 9-5 and a cross country race thrown in for good measure. Today was no different. My middle kid ran in the first cross country race of his senior year at 9 this morning and then went to marching band practice. My youngest kid decided he was not running for love nor money, so I took him to marching band practice at 9am.
The Queen did band and cross country her whole high school career. She never did make varsity but ran and loved being on the team. She even ran when she was the Drum Major...not so much in the races but after band rehearsal every day, she met up with the team and did her miles. My middle son didn't think he had a choice and by the time he realized that he did, he was hooked. Hence, he has run his whole high school career.
I really wanted my youngest to run. I thought it would be good for him and he would get to hang with his big brother. "I hate running" he said," But I haven't ruled it out." I am sure that he said that just to shut me up. But it didn't. The other night, I threw a fit just to see if he would run. I yelled a little, I even cried and it seemed like he was almost going to run cross country just to shut me up. The next day, my middle son said to me,"You know mom, I think you almost had him. If you throw one more of those fits, and really turn it on, he may change his mind." I had to laugh because he had me pegged. To make a long story short, he ain't runnin'.
Since the boys were gone to band, and the Queen no longer lives here, it was Jim and I. I decided we needed to get organized. I remember as a kid when my mother wanted to get organized. She would say, "I gotta put my rolla-skates on and get going." Then we would hear the Bobby Vinton music playing loud from the record player. Today, I turned on the "classic rock" and started moving. I assigned Jim a task that has been on my to-do list for a long time. Meanwhile, I got the kitchen clean, floor mopped, and plants trimmed before I knew it. Then I started on laundry and decided it would be nice to clean my boys rooms for them and do their laundry because they are pretty busy. I looked at my watch and it was 3 pm.
Marching band practice is hard work. It takes a toll on your body...holding up and instrument and standing tall for hours. It also takes a toll on your brain. They have to memorize the music and the placement on the field all the while standing tall. I decided since I was having such a great day, I would bring them ice cream to end theirs. I headed to the grocery store and bought 120 ice cream sandwiches as a treat for the end of the band practice. That way, I get to sit and watch the last 15 minutes of the band and marvel at my kids.
When band was over, the director told the kids that "The Ritter's brought ice cream" and a loud shout went up from the 96 kids there. They walked over and one by one, took an ice cream sandwich and thanked us. Not one kid just took the ice cream and walked away. Some of them stopped and talked about how much they appreciate a treat after band and thanked us again. We had some left overs, so I went around and offered seconds. Of course, the high school boys could eat the whole box and still be hungry...
I thought about how lucky I am. I have kids that do fun things and I get to be there to watch. Plus, while I seem to embarrass my kids most of the time, I am who I am in plain site and they are polite about it. Sometimes I forget how much I love being with those kids...all of them including my own.
Now, don't get me wrong...are my son's perfect? No way...there is math to be done, and english papers that are being put off as I write. But, I'm not either. Sometimes I push them to be who they are not...and expect things that they are not capable of. But, there seems to be an acceptance that I have with them and them with me. I hoped that I would have that when they were little but to have it when they are teenagers...it is awesome.
So it was a sweet Saturday. A race that ended well, a mostly clean house, band rehearsal and ice cream, and faces of teenagers thanking me. Dude...what else can I ask for?
For Doris Joy, who could clean a house!
We'll tawk tommorrow,
I love you all,