This came from either the university president, or possibly one of the deans, at yesterday’s Convocation (I had lost track of who was speaking). He was talking to the students about all the new experiences they would have in college, then said:

Some of you are gonna hook up, and some of you are going to have more permanent relationships. 

The students didn’t noticeably react to that, but all of us sitting in the Exhausted Parents section looked at each other, startled, and asked, “Did he really just say that?”

On the road 

Trunk contains many pairs of cargo shorts and exactly one spare pair of shoes. 

Back seat contains one very nervous about-to-be college freshman. 

Front seat contains two sad and anxious moms who got almost no sleep last night. 

Rochester, here we come. 

Musical shorts

M is busy packing for college.  Yesterday, as I helped him stuff clothing into duffel bags, I tried to explain why bringing 8 pairs of cargo shorts to a school in the snow belt was perhaps not the best use of space.  I then held up nondescript pair of shorts #8: “Besides, are you sure these are yours and not E’s?”

He wasn’t sure, and then agreed that if he didn’t even know whose they were, they didn’t need to go to college with him.  So I put them in my room, and we kept packing. I agreed with him that bringing 2 winter pajama shirts and 3 undershirts was a good idea, but that based on how they flunked a sniff test, they needed to be laundered first.  By this point, we were laughing so much that the cat (who normally gets stressed out and hides when packing is going on) just sauntered into M’s room, hopped up on the bed next to a stack of clothes, and started to give himself a bath.

Later E and I looked at pair of shorts #8.  We decided they were a pair the neighbor kid had just given M as a hand-me-down, but that E was more likely to use them, so she kept them.  E had a pair of shorts she was going to get rid of, but I realized they’d fit me, and put them in my drawer.  While looking in my drawer, I found a pair of salmon-pink shorts that I never wore, and we realized from the size tag that they were a pair E’s dad had bought when he was ill, and the same size that M wears.  Since M currently seems to go for a preppy vibe, we gave him the salmon-pink shorts.  He liked them, although wasn’t sure if they now needed to go to college with him.

Quite the successful round of musical shorts!

E grew some marigolds from seed this year that are the tallest marigolds I’ve ever seen. Here they are, next to our meter-stick for comparison.



She’s also grown a few different varieties of gorgeous lilies, including one variety so blossom-laden that we had to stake them to keep them from falling over.



A bee’s-eye view:


I love that my wife has such a green thumb and I get to enjoy all this beauty. Critters love the garden as much as we do, and not just the deer which ate some of the lilies. We’ve got a lot of bumblebees that enjoying pollinating the flowers, and E pointed out this dragonfly who posed just long enough for my camera.


I always thought of Jesus as a really focused kind of guy, but based on the hymn we sang at church on Sunday, evidently even he slacked off sometimes.   M and I were smiling at the rather idiosyncratic musical suggestions — not an uncommon event with the New Century Hymnal. We liked the “not fast” too. I guess that means you can sing it like a dirge on a gloomy day after some major tragedy. Or you can sing it at a moderate pace in the middle of a typical service. Just don’t schedule it to be sung last on a beautiful summer day when everyone is eager to rush home.

Between home re-organization, and getting M ready for college, our minds are on overload with logistics. M headed up to New Hampshire to spend a few days with my parents, and we later discovered he’d taken 2 out of 3 phone chargers from our house. I drove all the way in to work today before discovering I’d left my laptop at home, which meant a long day at the lab computer, alternating between using network files and dealing with email on my phone. Not sure how E is faring today, but she better not need to charge her phone as part of it.

Proud parent here, elaborating a bit more on the end of last night’s post, after E and I found some papers that M had left on the coffee table. He was given an entire page-long write-up on why he was named “Staffer of the year” at the camp. Among the reasons:

This den leader is often known for his calm, relaxing manner when working with the campers and remains very polite to everyone even when he is given a challenging den. He is always one to step up when no one else does, especially in the mornings when he is the first and sometimes the only one to be with all of the kids in camp at the gaga ball pit. I applaud him on his continuous energy and efforts with the kids, there is never a time where I have seen him slacking. You can always find him giving all the kids piggyback rides or playing dinosaur tag with the kids and the staff or yelling jail break from the staff lunch table. I commend him for his desire for a challenge and staying positive throughout the day with the children.

I don’t know whether “jail break” is a game, or an alert when one of the kids has made a break for the woods. Based on what M has told us about his days at work, this camp attracts a fair number of kids with serious emotional or behavioral issues — which also explains the comment about a challenging den. E and I are are so proud of him, for how well he has dealt with all of the kids, and made camp so positive for them. He may be only 17 years old and a second-year counselor, but he is definitely very, very good at this job!


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