Category Archives: University of Texas at San Antonio

One Down, One to Go

Not hiding from me but not willing to look, the kid studies our MacBook.

Not hiding from me but not willing to look at me, the kid studies our MacBook.

My younger son arrived home from Sam Houston State yesterday afternoon. He nicely and neatly put his many things in his bedroom instead of flinging them in the dining room. Could he finally be growing up?!?

I ultimately will judge by the towel factor.

He was watching the Charlotte Bobcats’ game (his favorite team).

He was watching the Charlotte Bobcats’ game (his favorite team).

Meanwhile, we await his always-neater older brother (though also neat-towel-hanging-challenged), who has his last final tonight and will drive home from UTSA tomorrow. Then we’ll have four-plus weeks of togetherness during their long winter break. Four weeks of late nights and late wake-ups (for the boys), laundry, friends, clutter, and chaos.

Good times await, my friends!

A Fun, Frustrating Time

Tanner, Chase, and Josh know where to look, not my sons.

Tanner, Chase, and Josh know where to look, not my sons.

What a nice weekend we enjoyed! First, both boys came home from UTSA and SHSU. While we waited for my younger son to arrive Friday afternoon and join his brother, we entertained my older son’s good friend Josh and my “third son,” Chase, who both attend college in Houston. Or should I say that they entertained me. It was good to get their take on life (and Runescape) and talk about what their post-graduate plans are (hard to believe that they’ll be done with college in May).

The boys met their pal Tanner Friday night at Buffalo Wild Wings to eat, chat, and play trivia (the Mister and I helped our disc golf friend Eric’s team and sat nearby). Saturday night (yep, cheap Mom relented so the boys could sleep in) we watched “Thor: The Dark World” movie and really enjoyed it (Loki is such a witty bad guy).

So stubborn!

So stubborn!

Then I spent the next couple days trying to get my younger son to cooperate and let me snap a pic or two of him.

“Stop it, Mom!”

“Stop it, Mom!”

Naturally, he refused to play nice. When I told him that one day his children will enjoy seeing photos of him, he replied, “You’ve taken enough pictures.”

Really, son? Enough?!? That word is not in the vocabulary of the momarazzo!

The two brothers

The two brothers (yes, Jake got his hair cut)

At least he put up with the usual pose-with-your-brother-before-you-leave harassment. Guess I’m thankful he threw me one little cooperation crumb.

Wonder what the photographic Thanksgiving break will be like . . . or do I.

One Home . . .

My older son is back in his usual spot in the dining room.

My older son is back in his usual spot in the dining room.

. . . and one to go! I can’t wait until our family of four is reunited!!

Sidebar: Jake looks like he’s up to something, because he didn’t have his fake tooth (flipper) in (he gets the permanent one probably in March). He looks like a goober when he smiles without it!

Feathers A-Flying

The brothers (ages 4 and a half and almost 8)

The brothers (ages 4 and a half and almost 8)

Throwback Thursday has me thinking about life as an empty nester. It’s been almost 12 weeks since both of our sons flew the coop, the older one to finish his senior year at the University of Texas at San Antonio and the younger one to start his college journey at Sam Houston State.

So how has it been for dear, old mom, who is home alone during the day for the first time in almost 22 years? Lonely, my friends. Maytag man lonely. Oh, how I miss my sons!

The boys on their play cottage in 1999 with their  Pokémon collection

The boys on their backyard play cottage in 1999 with part of their Pokémon collection

What’s been hardest for me is that my younger son usually ignores me unless he needs homework help or someone to talk to while he drives through McDonald’s at night. Yes, my little sweetie who I’ve always been so close to! Before he left for SHSU, he told me straight out that he would not be like his older brother, who at least texts me good morning and good night every day (and usually quite a bit more).

I understand that he wants to assert his independence and become his own man, but, as I’ve told him many times this fall, caring is not a crime. There’s no off switch to your emotions when you’re a parent.

I hate the news blackout after 18 years of being in the loop. It stinks, and it hurts my heart.

Older brother helps his younger sibling with his homework 10 years ago.

Older brother helps his younger sibling with his homework 10 years ago.

My strategy has been to be patient and relish the communication opportunities that I do get. The kid does call and Skype more often than his older brother. Plus I listen intently while he and his father chat (he talks to him more), while throwing helpful suggestions for questions to ask (which the Mister usually fails to use . . . frustrating! Guys!!).

Fortunately for me, we’ve gotten to see our sons this semester, our younger son more often because he’s closer. My older son hasn’t returned home since he left in late August. That’s about to change, though, because he’s driving in from San Antonio tonight (he has no classes tomorrow)! When little bro heard about it, he also decided to come visit the old folks at home.

I’ll try not to make the grill too hot for him!

Continuing Education

Comb needed STAT for two of us!

Comb needed STAT for two of us!

This is what I learned during a loooooong day-into-night trip to and from San Antonio yesterday to visit our older son:

1) A lot about Tommy James (and a little about the Shondells) on the way there (he hosted his own show) and back (Cousin Brucie talked to him) on Sirius XM’s Sixties on 6. It was fascinating! Children behave!!

2) We always always always love seeing our sons! It was such a boost to my heart to spend time with my sweet, blue-eyed boy for the first time in seven weeks. Skyping simply isn’t enough for this mama bear.

3) We’re looking forward to our UTSA collegian graduating in May and moving back to the Houston area, so we don’t have to endure those long car rides, though.

4) Despite all the fun the Mister and I had harmonizing (well, to our tin ears) to all that fab and groovy 1960s music, I did contemplate divorcing him when he ordered the St. Louis-style ribs at Tony Roma’s after I told him not to. He knows how this lifelong Cubs fan feels about the Cardinals!

5) Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger make a good team (it’s hard to understand both of them) in “Escape Plan,” the movie we saw with our son. Yes, there was plenty of bad language and a ridiculous amount of violence. But the story was good, and we loved the ending.

6) Finally, it’s very tough to take a selfie plus two on my iPhone 5S and properly center it (as the evidence above proves). As my clever son quipped, “That’s why they call it a ‘selfie’ and not a ‘triofie!'”

Miss you already, kiddo!

A Surprise in the Mail

Unbelievable!

Unbelievable!

Need proof that time does actually fly by? This was an envelope we received in the mail the other day.

Yep, my older son will graduate from the University of Texas at San Antonio in May!

Very official

Very official-looking

When we dropped him off in late August of 2010, four years seemed like an eternity. It’s almost surreal that our older son will reach this important milestone in a matter of months.

One more semester. Only 12 more hours (four classes) left until he has his marketing degree. What a wonderful achievement for him!

The Mister and I would like to make one little change to the wording on that envelope, though:

“That day you’ve been waiting for . . . off your parents’ payroll!”

Hope that’s not just wishful thinking!

Fill ’Er Up 2!

That ceiling light is bad news for photography.

That ceiling light is bad news for photography.

My heart was filled to overflowing this weekend. It started by Skyping with my younger son Thursday night . . .

I live for that smile!

I live for that smile!

. . . and ended with some overdue, virtual face-to-face time with my older son last night.

My UTSA senior always prefers texting us, but every now and then it’s important to actually see that he’s doing fine instead of just reading about it.

Getting to look at those beautiful blue eyes, handsome face, and cute smile? Definitely a bonus!