Saturday, June 30, 2012

Empty Nest Syndrome Early?

The older the kids get, the harder it is to get them all together at one time.  The oldest joined the military awhile back, married a wonderful young lady, and they live in another state.  The next in line has graduated high school.  So, he’s trying to decide the next step in his life, and while he does that, he’s working full-time, which means he doesn’t always get to come along when we do fun things.  And the third oldest, now a precious teen, has major time commitments that keep her away from the family a lot too.  Thank goodness for little man, he’s just a tot, and I know he’s going to be around for awhile, but I miss my kids!  I like them all together, and with me.  Is it possible to have a taste of ‘empty nest syndrome’ before they’re all even gone?  

Whoever first said, ‘Time sure goes by fast,’ or ‘Enjoy them now, they won’t stay young long,’ really knew what they were talking about because both are very, very true.  Yes, you’ll get to enjoy your time with your children when they’re older and even moved out, and of course you’ll always love them with every space in your heart, but it won’t be the same as it is now.  Soak it up while you’ve got it.  I think having your children right there with you is one of God’s greatest gifts.  My advice to you, therefore, is to enjoy that gift to its fullest because before you know it, that time that seems so normal to you now, will be gone. 

Friday, June 29, 2012

Renting a Car is Fun!

Have you ever rented a car just to see if you would like driving it or not?  We had a wedding to attend last year in a neighboring state, and our air conditioner decided to go on the fritz just before we left (that story was amusing in itself, but I will save it for another time).  Considering the weather was a good 90° out, and we didn’t have time to take it to the shop, we rented a car.  We did not care what kind of car they gave us, so long as the size matched our family needs.  

What a pleasant surprise for us to discover we loved the car!  It was a brand we had NEVER before considered buying, in fact we thought it was a car we would not like…but boy, we were wrong.  The car they gave us was a Limited Edition Ford Taurus, with all the fixings.  It had charging devices in all the right places, played music directly from our iPod, was extremely comfortable, had cold AC, was very roomy (even for the teen and tween in the back), and had a lot of trunk space.  In addition to that, it was a very smooth and quiet ride, and the engine had great get-up-and-go!

The next trip we took was a mini-trip to Chicago, another neighboring state, to see the well-touted Navy Pier (a trip well worth taking, we loved the pier!).  We decided to rent a car, just for the fun of it, to have the extended use of a different type of car.  This time around, the car we got was one we thought we might like to purchase in the future, and we found out we just hated it.  It was too low to the ground, not at all roomy, and the seats were uncomfortable.  On top of that there was a lot of unusable space around and on the dashboard.  It just wasn’t designed well (or at least to suit our tastes).

The last trip we took had us gone for two weeks, and it was a few states to our west.  Again, we decided to rent.  The car we got was not one either of us (my husband or I) really wanted to test drive, but part of the fun of the rental cars is you get what they give you (or at least that is the case with the only rental car company in our city).  The car had a no-key entry (which really takes some getting used to), the trunk wouldn’t open unless a button inside of the glove box was switched to ‘on,’ and the interior appeared a bit small for our needs.  The car really wasn’t what we thought we were looking for, but it was comfortable, and it did have a super smooth and quiet ride.  Not to mention it turned on a dime and could keep up with the best of ‘em on the highway.  After a couple of days, however, the car really started to grow on us, especially my husband, and as a result of that trip, he has bumped that make and model up very high on his list of ‘definite maybes’ for his next purchase.

So, we have two more trips to take this year, possibly three, and we are thinking we will again take rental cars.  We are only passively looking for new vehicles, but the experiences we gain through the rental car transactions are a lot more extensive than we could ever get from just a test drive off of the car lot.  And driving makes and models we had not previously considered before, is just fun! 

And with that being said, I wonder if I can talk hubby into test driving a Porsche… he he he.  Kidding (sort of).

Thursday, June 28, 2012

His First Ride!!

His First Ride...well, not counting his wagon, tricycle, big wheel, various bicycles and skateboards, etc.

And yes, the time went by so fast!  He's been working full-time and saving for a car.  I guess the saving (at least for the car he wanted/wants) was taking too long because today he asked me to drive him to another city to see this motorcycle.  I knew as soon as I saw him straddle it that it was coming home with us...the look of sheer glee on his face told the tale before he ever uttered the words.  I wasn't really surprised, he'd mentioned wanting a bike several times over the last couple of years, but I can't lie, a part of me was hoping his first vehicle would have four wheels, not two.  As a mom, I just worry about his safety.  But he's nineteen now, and responsible, and he should be able to choose what he wants to drive. And so, I'm very proud of him.  He's worked, and saved, and purchased his first vehicle; the vehicle HE wants, for outright cash.  And now he'll have his summer ride.

Just between you and me though...for the very first time ever, in my entire life, I may be glad when winter rolls around.  ;)

Congrats on the new bike, JG!

Look Who Got Fitted For Glasses Today!

I remember when I first got fitted for glasses, at about age 12.  I wanted them so badly, and then once I got them, I just hated them.  I still wear glasses, but only if it's dark and I'm driving.  In fact, I keep my glasses in the car.  My daughter, on the other hand, loves her glasses...and taking one look at how gorgeous, wonderful, cute she looks in them, I can totally see why.

We got these glasses at Walmart and the total cost, including frames, lenses, and exam was just under $140.00.  What a great price, and they even threw in cleaning wipes and a case.  Thank you Wal Mart.  And note to K-B, you are looking good little lady!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Backyard Camping is a Blast

What's more fun than camping in your backyard when you're a tot?  Well, if our youngest is any indication at all...not much!  We did the whole "scary but not too scary" (actually, not scary at all, but we won't tell him that) story thing...using a flashlight for effect.  We played games inside of our tent, with the aid of our handy camping lantern.  And we read a story and got tucked into our sleeping bags for the routine factor.  And then of course, we stayed up giggling and tee-heeing for a good part of the night (so  much for routine ;) ).  One of the best things about being a parent is the simple fun our kids bring into our lives.   And putting a camping tent up in the backyard is free fun that can't be beat. What are you doing for fun this summer?