Weekend busy

Ri and Mario spent the entire weekend in sleepovers with their friends. Friday night, Ri and Mario headed up to the football game tailgate with Jon. They arrive an hour early to party it up with the rest of the parents parked in the lot by the field. Ri chatted it up with Jon’s friends and ate the unending line of dips while Mario threw the football with his buddies. 

I made it up in the second half (after letting go of the week’s work and taking my pup for a walk in the woods). When I arrived, Ri and Evelyn were already asking for a sleepover. Mario and Zach had already gotten approval from their dads for one at Zach’s house. I agreed and we decided to leave the game to head to Choclate Cafe for a late night snack. As I cleaned up the kitchen, the girls primped up for the Cafe. I had no clue that’s what they were doing and when they came down, I was caught by surprise. They really need to not dress up because they look like high schoolers and it makes me cringe! 

We enjoyed caramel truffles and milkshakes at 10 pm. Meanwhile, the boys played some serious x box at Zach’s house. 

On Saturday, the girls humored me and walked to Stauf’s for breakfast. We sat outside with Rocco and played cards while eating our yummy muffins. Then we hit Target for dress shopping – the girls’ favorite activity. The boys went, too, in order to sucker me into buying them face masks for their Nerf battles. Mario brought up his previous two eye scratches and that’s all it took. I bought them. Ri found a dress after trying on three of them. Ev wanted her to get one with polka dots but RI’s style is much more subdued – plain black. 

After Target, I took Ri to get her hair conditioned. A week ago, she mixed coconut oil and baking powder in her hair and it felt like hay. It looked awful and you couldn’t get a brush through it. She didn’t seem to care but it drove me nuts. It took two washes to get it clean but it finally looked normal again.

The girls had a b-day party on Saturday afternoon, and the boys wanted to hang out our house since we’ve got all the “bad food.” I agreed to take them for the night and our friends would take the girls. The boys begged me to take them to Get Air like I took the girls one evening a while back. But Zach is still recovering from a concussion so we couldn’t do trampolines. They decided on Galaxy Games and Golf for a round of putt-putt and some gym play. Little did they know that I am quite the putt-putter. I amazed them with my hole-in-one. Actually, I heard Mario whisper to Zach “my mom is really good.” Precious. 

We walked inside after their crushing defeat and right in front of us was a claw machine – Mario’s addiction! He begged for coins to play. Again, sucker mom. It doesn’t help that I love those dang claw machines, too. Mario, of course, immediately won a stuffed animal and a ball. It took Zach a few more tries but he nabbed an animal and a ball, too. In trying to get an animal, he nearly got a stuffed animal chicken. Mario was set on winning it because I was dumb enough to whisper “oh, I would have loved that chicken!” He’s gonna spend all his money on his dates trying to win them stuffed animals. He kept trying and trying but the chicken kept winning. I finally stepped in and asked if I could try it. I clawed the chicken and a random teddy bear – won two in one try! Can you sense my excitement still?! The boys were amazed again….

I had to put a stop on the claw games much to their dismay. They would have spent a fortune there if they could. We moved on to the gym, which was full of kids. I read my book and ate my snacks while looking up at Mario here and there when he shouted at me. 

We stopped at McDonald’s on the way home for some delicious dinner and then turned on the Buckeyes game when we got home. They made their way to the reclining sofa and commented on every play of the game. Jon got home shortly after us and we all watched the game together. Mario fell asleep around 10 but Zach hung in with us until the end. 

The next morning the boys and I walked to Stauf’s (two days in a row!). We ate bagels while playing cards and watching the marathoners. Heaven. Then we topped off the sleepover by heading to the woods for a Nerf gun battle. Rocco refused to leave Mario’s side. Alana and Patty were at the house when we returned. 

Alana and Ri loved working the concession stand at Mario’s football game. They each made some cash from it. 

Meanwhile, Mario and his teammates suffered their first loss of the season. They played hard with two of their stars out with injuries. I’ve never seen so many crying boys after the game. But they have next week to recover. 

So there you have it – another non-stop weekend with friends and parties galore. It’s a new kind of busy from the days of toddler-hood but I love it all the same.

Mini-Pittsburgh trip

Our weekends have been so full this Fall between sports that we have not been able to schedule any weekend outings. But Ri freed us up a bit with her soccer concussion – way to take one for team, Ri-bee! Now we have Saturdays free so we used the newfound freedom to head to Steeler country and visit Sarah, Jorge and sweet Elena for a couple of days.

I picked up the kids at noon on Friday, which absolutely made Mario’s day. He actually begged to not go to school at all Friday morning…. (I’m telling ya, I will not be surprised when he leaves us at age 15 for Hollywood – the latest place he wants to live). Ri was more excited at the thought of seeing Elena then getting out of school (unlike Mario she “loves school so much”). We hit I-70 with our bags of snacks and water bottles. 

I loved the drive out to Pittsburgh because we talked nearly the entire trip. Ri gave us her vocabulary words and we thought up sentences for them. Mario looked at our Atlas book and decided he wanted to visit Australia. They read some. We geeked out at the “Welcome to West Virginia” sign and then the “Welcome to Pennsylvania” sign soon thereafter. Those moments boost me up more than any energy drink ever could. 

We arrived to Pittsburgh traffic but – as Ri pointed out – not as bad of traffic as it could be. She’s been to Pittsburgh a handful of times but she knows the city like the back of her hand…. We finally hit our exit and waited at the light to turn up Poucousset Street. Ri observed that the intersection looked like an intersection in Oaxaca with the painted mural on the stone wall, the gas station and the one-story stone building. Gotta love this perceptive girl. 

We arrived at Sarah’s house with the kids fighting over who got to present Elena with her Frozen book. Ri gave in to Mario and let him present it to her. Sarah opened the front door holding Elena in her arms. The kids yelled surprise and Elena made a hilarious “O” face and held out her hand like an officer directing traffic. She is a card! She immediately jumped down and played with the kids. Within five minutes, she was directing Ri and Mario to jump on the bed with her.

Mario couldn’t wait to go to the park and try out the cement slide. He had heard about it from Ri when she went to Pittsburgh and it sounded awesome. The rain was heading towards the city so we loaded up the kids and drove to Frick Park. The slide did not disappoint.

Elena loves the rolling hills at the park so she held our hands and led us in their direction. The kids ran down the hill in a scene reminiscent of Little House on the Prarie, minus the face plants. Elena likes to act like she’s sleeping and Ri has to wake her up. She also likes to climb on Ri and Mario’s backs. Oh, and she loves to eat grass, much to Sarah’s irritation. 

As it started to sprinkle harder, we decided to pack it up and hit the hotel pool for some swimming action. We all could have eaten Elena up in her swimsuit and floaties. 

The hotel pool seemed minuscule compared to our visit four years ago. And they got rid of the hot tub! The hot tub is Maria’s and Mario’s favorite. 

The pool was freezing when we jumped in and sweet Elena was shivering within ten minutes. We lasted about 30 minutes altogether – the kids got to act out lines as they jumped in the pool and Elena loved watching Ri do cannonballs. 

We got dressed and you guessed it – we headed out for another adventure. This time to the Union of Pig and Chicken. They serve southern goodness – baked beans, collard greens, brisket, corn bread. Ri was all up for it; Mario, aka “picky eater” was not. He ordered plain nachos. While he ate those, we could not get enough of our food. Delicious!

We could not fathom dessert after that spread so we dropped off Elena and Sarah at their house and headed back to the hotel to watch some cheesy Nickolodeon movie and lay in our pjs. We did end up getting ice cream bars and KitKats later in the evening, however….

Mario woke up at 6:30 am Saturday morning. I purposely drew the heavy curtains with the hope the darkness would keep him sleeping. No luck. He is a night owl and an early morning bird! I made him lay with me until 7:15 am and then Ri woke. I thought for sure they’d want to go to the pool but they had no desire. They just wanted to see Elena. I called Sarah at 8 am and for once Elena was still sleeping! We wore that girl out. To our glee, by the time we got packed up, checked out and got Starbucks, she had awaken and was ready to see us. 

We pretty much hopped right back in the car as soon as we arrived and headed 40 minutes outside of Pittsburgh to a pumpkin patch. It was still sprinkling outside as we drove. We kept hoping it would stop and clear up. Meg and dad met us at the patch and informed us we just missed a massive downpour before we arrived. I guess a few sprinkles is nothing compared to a downpour. Dad probably just said that so we’d keep the sprinkles in perspective….

The clan headed straight to the corn maze. Mario and Maria darted into the entrance and loved trying to find their way around. I have never been a big fan of corn mazes; they freak me out. But the kids love them and Elena seemed to love it, also. At the end of the maze, they had a sledgehammer game where you try to hit the ball to reach the bell at the top. It looked a lot easier than it was, I can say that much. Mario tried with all of his might to get it up to the top. He accomplished the feat on the miniature one!

They had a slingshot area where you tried to shoot a tennis ball at a target. Mario got quite a few at the first target; Jorge and I cracked up at our attempts at the farther target. 

They also had a tube slide and inflatables. Elena loved the kiddie inflatable but she wanted Maria in it with her the entire time. Mario loved racing Ri and I in the other inflatable – he won by ten seconds each race. Ugh! They also had a petting zoo and lots of animals to see, including little chicks and a piggy. My favorite! It was Elena’s favorite as well. 

Our last activity was the hay ride to find pumpkins. We found Elena a tiny  pumpkin as we looked for the most perfect colored and shaped pumpkin in the patch to put on our porches. I loved a white squat one but another person grabbed it. Mario nabbed a pretty bright orange one with a curved stem. Maria ended up with a monster of a pumpkin weighing 32 pounds! I got a multicolored one – green and orange. We all walked away happy. 

The rest of the gang was ready to call it a day four hours after we had arrived but the kids and I decided we needed one more round of pig watching and haunted house viewing, and we still needed to go apple picking. We kissed our gang  goodbye and headed up to see our pig. Then we went to the haunted house, and ended the day picking golden delicious and gala apples from the orchard. I figured we’d head home from the pumpkin patch but the kids wanted to see Elena one more time. 

So we loaded ourselves into the car and headed back to Sarah’s house. Are you tired yet?! We scooped up Elena and took her to the park while Sarah took a run. In typical Mary style, I allowed Elena to play in the mud and get her hands full of it. In typical Maria style, she joined in the mud-fest and got it all over her. In typical Mario style, he stayed far away and was repulsed. I was cracking up. But I knew better they to let Sarah see Elena with mud-filled hands so we darted to the water fountain and cleaned her off before Sarah ended her run. There was no way to clean Ri but Sarah wasn’t surprised that she was full of dirt! 

After the park, the kids wanted to take Elena to target to look at toys. Yes, we hopped in the car for one last trip. The kids were fascinated with Target because it had a parking garage and an escalator. Hilarious. We got Elena a new fall outfit and played with toys in the toy aisle. Yes, all Frozan items….

We bought some nutritious Lunchables for the ride home and packed back into the car to head to Sarah’s house. I packed up my car with our goodies while Ri and Mario gave kisses to Elena and told her they loved her. We packed ourselves into the car with pumpkins by our sides and Lunchables in laps. Earlier, my key had gotten stuck in my car so I had to park it at the top of Sarah’s narrow driveway to avoid someone stealing it. I reversed the car in the dark trying to see behind me. As soon as I merged in between the two houses, I thought to myself “watch the side view mirrors.” I might as well have willed me to hit one against the brick wall. CRUNCH!

I let out a few choice words only to hear Maria whisper up to me “it could be worse mom, you could have gotten in a huge wreck.” That’s my girl. Perspective. After all, I could still see out of the side mirror through all the cracks.

Jorge and Elena came our to check on us and after laughing about the craziness of it all, I drove off into the Pittsburgh night with the kids watching Spellbound and devouring their ham and crackers. 

What did you learn?

So just a day after I posted my last blog about giving the kids feedback on how they played during their games, I read this article. Life is about constantly growing and learning, right?
I love this approach. It isn’t off-putting like giving feedback may be to a kid who just listened to the coach drone on about the game for 15 minutes. It’s not accusatory like giving feedback about certain plays on the field. It allows the child to think through actions on the field and arrive at his or her own self-feedback. It also reinforces that we are all here to learn – in sport, in school, in relationships. We are far from perfect at any age, and need to embrace the constant quest. 

To that end, I think I will add this to my repertoire and ask myself this same question at the end of my days. 

“What did I learn in that meeting?

“What did I learn from giving that presentation?”

“What did I learn from chowing on that sheetcake at 11 pm?!”

I love to watch you play … But I also like to see you play well…!

We had a full day of sports yesterday. Ri had a double header softball game at 10 am, Mario had a two hour football game at 12:30, and Ri finished out the day with a soccer game at 3:30. I know, I know. All my friends with older kids remind me of how much I will miss these packed days when my kiddos are grown. And I know I will because I actually don’t mind watching them for hours straight on a weekend (as long as I can get my teeny workout in and I may wish they played a bit closer to Grandview but that’s about it). 

However, when I watch them play, I do expect them to give it their all. If I’m putting in the time to watch, they should put in the time to play hard. I was complaining to my girlfriend a few weeks ago about Ri not running up to the ball hard enough. I told her I felt bad because after Ri’s game I coached Ri and told her that she’s gotta concentrate on the ball ahead of her more. Ri responded flippantly “how about saying nice game, Ri?”  My girlfriend counseled me that I need to simply say after her game “I love to watch you play.”

After thinking about it more, I resolved to take my friend’s advise but add to it. I’m gonna tell my kids “I love to watch you play, and I also love to give you feedback on things I thought you did well and things to look out for next game.” That’s fair, right? Heck, that’s what I do with school work so why can’t I do it for sports? 

And so I did just that yesterday without too much negative feedback from either child. They were too high on their performances to give me any negative feedback: they both did amazing jobs in their games. Ri cranked out two strikeouts and a play at home. I got a bit of it on video for once. 

Mario had two great runs in his football game and I scored big for getting them on video. He loved watching himself last night….

And then Ri finished the day with a shot in the goal form the right wing position. Her face was priceless after the shot went into the goal. I was too busy jumping up and down to capture it! But I did capture some smiling faces after the game.

So maybe my feedback after the “I love to watch you play” comment is working…or getting them so irritated that they take out their aggression on the field. Either way, I will take it.


Happy 9th birthday, Mario!

Mario turned nine yesterday. At least, he turned nine in biological years. In Mario years, he’s 21. 

If he could break free from the confines of his parent’s house, he’d do it in a heart beat. If he could head to the bar and drink a cold one, he’d be off. If he could head to the coffee shoppe and get an espresso, he would walk there in a second. If he could bike to campus to hang out with millennials, he’d grab his helmet and take off. 

This is not to say that he doesn’t still ask me to get him water or rub his back at night. It’s not to say that when he’s chillin’ on the couch he doesn’t ask me to sit next to him and snuggle. He even still let’s me squeeze and kiss him in private (he’d die if I did it around friends). 

But he has definitely hit an independence streak. I think he may deal with us until age 16 and then pack his bags for California and take off to hang with the surfer dudes and make vlogs. But he loves  money so much that if he did move out, he’d be one of those young, hip entrepreneurs who drops out of high school but makes millions.

So, how to sum up Mario’s eighth year of life? He loves you tube. He loves watching music videos. He loves playing video games with his buddies. He loves going to football games and playing on the hill with his friends and talking with the older kids. He loves wrestling and jumping all around the house. He loves sports. He enjoys biking by himself to the library or down to school. He still craves chocolate everything. He will drop all plans to go fishing. He remains a total character. He is compassionate and sweet, and loves to make people laugh.

Some highlights from his eighth year:

1. Football games with his buddies and sideline passes with his dad.

2. Halloween trick-or-treating with his two friends (and mom not standing too close to them as they went house to house)…and a boatload of candy!

3. Serving Thanksgiving meal to homeless men at the Y and chatting it up with them.

4. Christmas morning opening presents – oh, the drama and anticipation!

5. A broken arm! At 11:20 pm on NYE, you ran into my friend’s dining room  holding your arm and crying that it was broken. Your friend had fell down on it as you were playing. Sure enough, it was. We sat at the hospital as the New Year was brought in laughing at you in your “high” state from the pain meds. 

6. You took care of Grandpa Ionno’s grave in Marietta.

7. You went to Feed the Streets with me and walked a mile passing out water and lunches to people in need.

8. You went hunting with your dad and “had the best day of your life!”

9. You watched OSU hockey with your buddies in a suite with tons of cookies, and met Brutus!

10. You got all dressed up for Easter and killed it on the volleyball court.

11. You went on Spring Break with the Webers and Muellers to Hocking Hills. You went fishing and hiked. I met you there two days into break and we explored together. You loved taking risks and climbing steep rock climbs.

12. You cranked baseball this year – one of the strongest players!

13. You fed a baby calf and named it after a girl at school (romantic, just like your dad).

14. You starred in your first talent show singing “We will rock you!”

15. You became enamored with ball pythons.

16. You started sporting sweet Panama Jack hats.

17. You won Elena’s heart by making her laugh with your silly antics.

18.You kayaked and fished on Lake Erie.

19. You went white-water rafting, zip lined, and completed a mud obstacle course in West Virginia!

20. You blobbed your sister!

21. You swam in the creek at Park of the Roses with your pup!

22. You won a poop emoji at the Ohio State Fair!

23. You started third grade – your last year at RLS!

24. You celebrated your birthday with a bunch of friends at Get Air and a sleepover!

Happy birthday our sweet Mario. I hope this year brings you lots of learning experiences and lots of adventures. And guess what?

We love you (you weren’t here to say it before me:)!).


It has been a bit of a struggle this school year in dealing with Mario and his voracious streak of independence. Actually, let me strike the word “struggle” and change it to the word “battle.”

We never had this issue with Ri. She begged to be driven to school every day and enjoyed if Rocco and I walked with her on the other days. She had zero desire to trek 1.3 miles to school.

Since the end of last year’s school year, Mario has been pleading with us to allow him to bike or walk by himself to school. Jon and I would discuss it here or there but never arrived at a decision (yes, we are the ultimate procrastinators). Then, the school season arrived. And there stood Mario, at our sides, begging to bike by himself to school.

The bike ride is a simple one. Straight down the main strip with one small downhill at the end. There are three crossing guards spaced out at different sections of the strip. Kids are walking and biking along the strip from 7:30 until 8:15. 

But they are typically with an adult.  

“Typically with an adult.” These words scorched Mario’s ears. He did not hear anything more. Then came the persuasive arguing.

“You let me bike to the library by myself. You’ve biked with me to school and back and told me I did a great job. I am responsible and call you every time I should.” And so on and so forth…. On and on…. 

So, in a fit of whining fatigue and  unbridled trust, we let Mario bike to school two days straight. The first day, Jon followed Mario on his bike. When Mario got to the hill to go down towards school, Jon stopped him and told him he did a great job. Mario had no clue he had been following him and he broke down in tears.

“Why did you follow me, dad? I thought I rode by myself.”

Jon apologized and took off down the street. Mario thought that Jon was upset with him, so he biked towards where Jon drove. He couldn’t find Jon. One of our friends approached Mario and saw that he was sobbing. Mario called Jon from the friend’s phone and told him he was sorry for yelling at him. Jon felt horrible. He reiterated that he just wanted to see how well Mario biked to school, and he waited to give Mario a hug at the end of the hill.  The next day, we let Mario bike all by himself. He did great, policeman waved at him as he went by, and he called and said that he got home after school.

But that night I talked to my mom and a couple of girlfriends and all of them thought that having Mario bike to school at age 8 was a bad idea. I had been questioning in my own head whether I should continue to allow it. On the one hand, Mario craves independence and loves achieving physical feats. He was so excited to go to school those mornings. He felt awesome. 

On the other hand, he’s only eight. Other kids likely crave independence from their parents too, but they arent allowed to bike all the way to school. Jon and I have always given a lot of leeway in raising Ri and Mario. But what is the limit? If something happened to him on the way to school, I knew I would never forgive myself. Yes, something could happen to him when he’s in fourth grade and riding by himself but that feels different than allowing him in third grade at age 8. Besides, the fourth grade school is much closer to us. But he’s also a responsible 8 year old about to turn 9 year old. And he craves the independence so why not continue to give it a chance? It is a safe neighborhood, there are crossing guards, there are police. Parenting is ping-pong in the head. 

In the end, Jon and I pulled the plug. We sat with Mario the night before school and told him that for the time being we did not feel comfortable with him biking by himself. We discussed our concern for his safety at his age. We told him that we believed in him and we believed he was responsible but that he was just too young to go to school by himself. 

He was absolutely deflated. He cried. He gave us his case as to why he felt he was responsible and able to bike down to school. He begged for us to change our minds. It broke my heart. I was still so torn but I could not go back on my position at that point. 

The next morning, he did not want to get out of bed. He did not want to eat cereal. He did not want to go to school. I was sick to my stomach. Why had I allowed him to bike to school in the first place only to take it away. Why would I give him a tiny taste of it only to pull it back? I was beating myself up all day long.

After school that day, we allowed Mario to have a friend over to spend the night. When I got home from work after fretting all day, Mario and his friend were having a blast together. They were playing basketball and video games. Mario had nothing to say about not being able to bike to school. As it is many times with kids, the worry we put on ourselves is lost on them after a few hours. Over the weekend, at random times, Mario continued to bring up his wish to bike by himself. He made his case on how responsible he was and how he stayed on the sidewalk and how he would never let a stranger take him. We listened and continued to mull over what to do with him. My “all or nothing” personality was shining bright in my thought process. Either he can bike everyday by himself or nothing at all…either I eat an entire sleeve of cookies or none… either I win the race or don’t run at all. Maybe I needed to learn to loosen the reins of that  personality trait a bit.

On Monday morning, as I made his waffles and talked with him about his day ahead, I flexed my rigid trait and told him that we would just see how things go throughout the fall and the spring. I also told him that I had arranged for him to be able to walk with a couple of friends once or twice a week (I didn’t include the fact that I or another mom would be walking behind him).

Sure enough, this past week, he got to walk with his buddy (and yes, I walked far behind them to make sure they got to school on time). He also got dropped off  by Jon and picked up by our sitter. And he biked to school with me a couple of days. Jon and I allowed him to bike home by himself those days since our babysitter was waiting for him and she could call us to let us know he made it back to the homestead. 

And with each day, all ended up being just fine. 

School’s back 

We got the haircuts, the school clothes (braved Polaris Mall and wanted to poke my eyes out), the book bags, the lunch boxes, the notebooks, and even managed to get a couple of showers in prior to the first day of school. The kids were so excited – they both couldn’t fall asleep. It was like Christmas Eve. I was taken aback at how charged up they were to head back to school although I know in a few weeks they will be dragging out of bed…. 

Maria set her alarm for 5:30 am. Yes, 5:30. Why? Because she needed to spend 45 minutes on her hair. How is she my child?! She borrowed the “beach wave” curling iron from my girlfriend to assist with the do she wanted for her first day. My girlfriend had styled Ri’s hair a few weeks ago with the iron and Ri loved it. We laugh because my girlfriend’s daughter is a replica of me – athletic clothes, sports watch, hair in a ponytail and Ri is like my girlfriend with her sweet hair styles and trendy clothes. But I digress…. 

Jon and I shook our heads as we laid in bed listening to Ri bumble around in the bathroom. At around 6:15, Ri came into our room and tapped my shoulder.

“Mom, the curling iron is really hot. Could you do my waves in my hair?”

Are you kidding? Did she really ask me, the woman who puts her hair in a pony every day, to do her hair?! 

I rose out of bed determined to curl her hair and curl it well. Ri had straightened most of her hair but put a small section on each side in a ponytail on top of her head. She just wanted the hair in the pony to be wavy. Not so hard, heh?!

Yea, well, for someone that never uses curling irons, it was torture. I curled the first strand and when it came out, the hair was kined in every direction. Ri took one look in the mirror and bawled. Then she hyperventilated. Then she sobbed. I grabbed another strand determined to do it right. More kinks. What the he–?! More hyper-ventilating. I tried again. No luck. Ri bolted into her room crying. I walked in and made the executive decision.  

“We are gonna have to straighten the hair in the pony and try waves another time. I can’t do waves right now.”

She gave an affirmative nod and cried a few more tears. I told her again I was sorry. She stood still in the bathroom as I tried to straighten the kinks. She finally spoke:

“It’s ok, mom. I should have known you couldn’t curl hair.”

Well, at least she’s honest in her downtrodden moments. She actually looked just as adorable with the straightened ponytail look and I think she felt half way decent about it, too. Mom came through in a half-assed way….

Mario, meanwhile, slipped on a pair of athletic shorts and a t-shirt and was ready to hit the road. Thank goodness. 

I made Ri and Mario take obligatory pictures out front prior to heading off for their first day. One of these days, I will gather all of these “first day of school” pictures and do something with them….

Ri left at 7:30 to walk up the street and meet her two girlfriends. Mario and I biked up to meet them so I could get pictures. They all looked so mature! I can’t imagine how taken aback I will be when they hit high school.

Mario and I then biked to RLS. We got there early so we walked around and talked. Mario eventually spotted his buddies and bolted from my side to see them. I caught up and asked for a picture. What was I thinking? They dashed away from me as soon as they saw the camera. Where the girls were mature, the boys were 3rd grade crazy.

A few other moms and I were able to direct our sons over for a picture eventually but it took some muscle. 

And then the bell rang. Mario did not ask me or Jon to go in with him. He didn’t even wave goodbye. He just disappeared into the masses.