Sunday, February 27, 2011

From Dating to Duct Tape

Ah, the roller coaster of adolescence. Last time I wrote about my 12-year-old's comments/plans on how he is going to be dating next year. Now this week, he's back to his almost-obsession with making things out of duct tape. Dave and I have joked about giving him duct tape for Christmas and birthdays, and I think he'd be thrilled.

Check out the messenger bag he made:

He and a friend made the front part at school in art, and then he finished rigging it with strap, etc and is now using it for his backpack. Creative kid!

We've all enjoyed a quiet weekend at home with the kids, we're watching season 3 of the TV show 24 on Netflix. I've finished week four of scuba lessons, and Dave and I headed to the scuba pool yesterday so I could practice putting all my gear together (scuba is an "equipment intensive" hobby, and lots of things to make sure are correct before getting into the water). We spent some time at the bottom of the pool, working on neutral bouyancy (finding the place where we were hovering, not going up or down)and clearing the water out of my mask, taking it off underwater, etc. I'm feeling more comfortable each time I'm in the water, and looking forward to our trip to Honduras in six weeks.

Now back to 24, and finishing up laundry before the week starts.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Growing Pains (for Mom)

"It is easier to floss with barbed wire than to admit you like someone in middle school." - This quote from a popular teen book is one of several etched on a glass wall in the teen section of the library near our home. Jace and I head there every couple of weeks to check out a fresh stack of books, and the quote is somewhat of a running joke with us now. I like to read it aloud and rib him a little each time we're there, and in turn he gives me the Oh, Mom look and eyeroll that I'm sure I'll be seeing more of as he gets older.

Not that I want to embarrass him (although at times it is hard to resist) but I know that no matter what I do at some point, he'll be at that stage where he's too cool to be seen hanging out with his parents and (gasp!) actually enjoying it. I'll just have to develop thick skin, breathe deeply and pick my battles, until he's oh, 22 or 23 and realizes that I actually do know some things about life. I remember that transition myself, both thinking that my parents just didn't get it, and then realizing that they did and appreciating what they had to say.

Lately Jace has gotten interested in skateboarding, I think as much for the socializing with friends as the actual sport itself. For the last several Friday nights our mom/son Friday night ritual has been kaput and I have been relegated to the position of chaffeur for his trip to and from the skate park here in town. I was a little leery of letting him stay there with his friends for the evening, having never let him hang out anywhere without me or someone else around. But it checked out okay, and is well supervised. I've chatted with the manager several times when I bring Jace, and hang out for a bit before leaving.

In the four or five times he's been there, I've not seen a single girl - this isn't like the roller rink when I was growing up, where we went to skate but also to giggle with our friends and meet boys. No, these kids are there to skate, with some pretty steep ramps, bowls, and a multitude other foreign terms that I've heard rattled off in the back seat on the way home. Thankfully there are several small ramps and areas that seem much more managable for Jace and his friends, who are all novices to the whole skateboarding scene.

Another important thing to note is that apparently (hopefully) skater clothes are no longer those baggy jeans/shorts with the waist halfway down the legs. The style now seems to be the "skinny jeans" with t-shirts and/or flannel long-sleeve shirts, which is decidedly better than the baggy look, but still not the most flattering. Clothing choices, though, would fall under one of those "pick your battles" categories, and not something I'm going to fight unless it becomes something of a necessity.

One thing that I have learned recently is that apparently girls are on his mind, even if he's not seeing any of them on Friday nights at the skate park. A couple of weeks ago he informed me on the way home from the park, "Mom, next year I'll be 13 and I'm going to start dating". Uh wait, stop the car, what!?!? Further discussion on this subject revealed that "dating" did not mean that he expected to be going out to the movies with a girl next year. "Dating" will mean that he has one girl that he will be texting, talking to, holding hands in school (or maybe not, I'm not sure what the rule on PDA is now in middle school?). A little more do-able for this mom, I think I can handle that.