When my son went off to college, I didn’t really think about the effect it would have on my social life. Turns out, it had a pretty huge effect. Our son’s activities in high school had put him in a close-knit group of guys whose parents all attended events together, and with whom we socialized regularly. Once the guys went off to college, we were suddenly party-less!
One of the moms had a great idea for a get-together. She invited us all to her house to assemble care packages for our boys. There were eleven women attending, so she asked us to think of something our boys would like to get, and bring eleven of them. She would supply the boxes, along with wine and appetizers.
When we arrived, we shared wine and appetizers while catching up with each other. We had a blast hearing the stories about each of the boys at school–and there were some good ones! Then we set to work packing the boxes. It was fun to see what each mom had brought. Care package ideas included: energy bars, snacks, microwave meals, drink mixes, toiletries, socks, room freshener, highlighters and school supplies. We then filled a sheet of stationery with messages from each of us, and made eleven copies to enclose in the boxes. The next day we brought them all to the post office.
Was the party a success? I can speak for the moms when I say we all had a wonderful time. It was especially fun packing the boxes and imagining the boys’ faces when they opened them. As for the boys, my son was surprised and very appreciative. He said his favorite thing in the box was the argyle socks. That was a surprise to me!
Spreading holiday cheer to those who perform important services for us all year long is what Christmas is all about. Giving a gift to your child’s teacher or day care provider may be obvious, but there are plenty of other people, including the mail carrier, school bus driver, newspaper delivery guy, doorman and garbage collector who shouldn’t be forgotten, and these thank you ideas are sure to please.
Kids and summer camp go hand in hand. But sometimes leaving home, even to a day camp, can be hard—and we don’t just mean for the kids. While they are enjoying new experiences, facing challenges and meeting new friends, we moms want them to know we’re there for them if they need us, even as we celebrate their independence.
My son is blessed with many relatives who love him and his sister dearly but, as in many families, our relatives live all around the world. After writing a letter to his Grandfather one day, he decided to write a note to his cousin in California. The note, written on one of his own personalized note cards, consisted of two sentences about how his cousin has GOT to read “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” and some potty talk humor. They are both seven. Enough said.
Any day now my son is going to come home from school carrying the contents of his locker in his backpack, which will get dumped on our front porch table (or floor), where it shall remain for at least a month. Buried in the pile will be several pieces of artwork created in art class, including a few pieces of broken pottery that weren’t meant to be crammed into a backpack.