Tag Archives: Nintendo

Buddy Trip

My older son is ready to synchronize watches with Chase.

Summer is winding down now. The dog days definitely are barking.

Both boys have had a great time this summer hanging out with my older son’s friends. The college kids enjoy gaming (online and Nintendo) and late-night iHop runs. I’m sure they’ve been solving the world’s problems as they munch their pancakes . . . or at least which characters are best in Mario Party.

Chase is ready to go.

While they still have a week or two before leaving for their respective colleges (and my younger son starts his high school senior year), the guys decided they needed to take to the road. Specifically, a trip to Schlitterbahn, one of the best water parks in the U.S.

So today they’re having fun in New Braunfels and staying overnight in San Antonio. Tomorrow they’ll check out the sights in my #1 son’s college town and then return home.

The youngest traveler rocks the best beard.

Hopefully, these eight lovable knuckleheads (which include my “third son,” Chase, my older son’s now-former college roommate Ben, and Josh) will have a ton of fun without making many bad decisions. I’m thrilled that my two guys get to experience a buddy trip, which is a rite of passage.

But I’m even more pleased that the Mister and I won’t be subjected to the crowds, garish tattoos, and too-small swimsuits (well, I don’t think the Mister minds that last part at all) that are the hallmarks of Schlitterbahn. I plan to enjoy the peace, quiet, Olympics . . . and air conditioning . . . while the boys are away.

A Past Nondecision Sparks a Discussion

“Go away, Mom!”

My younger son walked into my home office yesterday and said, “I don’t want to make you feel bad, but . . . .”

At that moment, I flinched and wondered what horrible thing (in his mind) I had done that he was going to rag at me about this time. Of course, there are so many of them when it comes to a 16-year-old boy and his mother who are home together all the live-long day. Sometimes just the fact that I’m within 50 yards of him is enough to make him clamp on a set of headphones and put me on permanent “ignore.” Guess I’m lucky he hasn’t taken a restraining order out on me . . . yet.

So I merely gazed into his gorgeous green eyes and waited for him to finish his opening sentence.

“Our gaming lives would have been better if you hadn’t bought that N64 as our first video-game system,” my beloved son continued. “The games are better for the Xbox and Playstation.”

The venerable Nintendo 64 game system, which my sons still use.

Really, son? You think I feel bad about that decision? Heck, I don’t even remember buying the N64! How in the world did it come into our lives?

My older son Skypes with his younger brother.

That evening my #2 son Skyped with his older brother, and they discussed the merits and demerits of their mom’s possible woeful decision . . . that she can’t even remember making. And even though my older son claims he has a terrible memory, guess who knew how the N64 became a permanent resident of our house . . . to be followed by the Nintendo Game Cube and Wii?

“It came with the minivan,” my #1 son reminded us.

Oh, of course! After the Mister and I bought our twin Mercury Villagers (his blue, mine red) in 1999, he surprised me by putting a now-obsolete entertainment package in Big Red (now Ancient Red). It contained a VCR and a small TV . . . and that ever-loving N64. We stuck with Nintendo after that because 1) Mom was too cheap frugal to buy another gaming system, and 2) the boys loved the Mario games. It stayed that way until my younger son earned his Xbox 360 (which he hardly uses, because apparently I’m the only mom in the world who doesn’t allow children to play M-rated games).

My younger son takes notes as he chats with his brother.

Fortunately for me, my collegian doesn’t agree that their gaming lives would’ve been improved with a different system. That didn’t surprise me—he does have a subscription to “Nintendo Power” magazine, after all!

But just in case I actually was feeling bad about sticking with Nintendo when other video-game systems beckoned, my younger son comforted me by saying, “If that’s the worse thing you’ve ever done for us, you’re doing okay, Mom.”

Whew! Glad he didn’t harangue me about trying to take his picture all the time. I’ve really got no defense for that one.

What Love Is

A very supportive Mister for 22 years

With this being Valentine’s Day, it got me pondering about what love truly is. Love can be a casual comment that gladdens one’s heart.

When the Mister and I were at our younger son’s high school track meet Saturday (Thursday’s subvarsity one was colded out, so our little guy triple-jumped for the varsity), I was lamenting that I hadn’t snapped any photos of our head coach’s son, who attends a different school. My #2 son told me after the long jump competition about the lad, who was the winner.

“I’m sure Coach has plenty of good action photos of his son,” I said to the Mister as I tried to cheer myself up.

“Not like yours,” he replied. Made me smile!

Pokéball, go!

Love can be a Nintendo-impaired mom tracking down an elusive Pokémon at Toys R Us for her collegian. My #1 son, who doesn’t have a car at UTSA, couldn’t snag a ride to a TRU in San Antonio to get a Pikachu for his Pokémon game. Little brother had homework to do, so yesterday I volunteered to use #2’s Nintendo DS to wirelessly capture the little, electric character.

Seems easy, right? It’s not when you’ve never so much as turned on the handheld device, though. With #1 helping me via cellphone, I looked at the tiny DS screen in dismay—where’s the “Reader’s Digest” big print version? Even with reading glasses firmly in place, I could barely see what I needed to do. I spent 15 minutes struggling with what would’ve taken the boys maybe 120 seconds—is the A button intuitively “next?” Not in my world!

But in the end I did grab Pikachu and stored him where my older son eventually can transfer him to his own DSi. I don’t need cards or candy to show the boy how much I care—I choose you, Pikachu!

My younger son shows me his heart.

Finally, love can be putting up with your mom as she makes you contort your hands into a heart so she can take a photo. How much does my younger son love me?

An anonymous heart!

Not enough to show his face!

Happy Valentine’s Day, y’all!