the bairns

I totally dig my sons. 

I am of the ardent belief that God gave them to me because, while at times they can be Totally and Completely Exasperating, the majority of the time they enrich my life in immeasurable ways.


To get to the enriching part, I first have to discount the times they act like God never gave them brains.  

For example. 

Youngest son gets his Very First Aeropostale t-shirt last weekend, to which he has formed a serious attachment.  As in something akin to coveting.

Which is very bad.  I know.

But.  As a 9-year old, it’s all about being cool.  And apparently, Aeropstale is cool. Hard to pronounce.  Even harder to spell for that matter. 


It doesn’t come up in spell check.  You get ‘Apostle’.  And ya’ll know an Apostle shirt would be a totally different animal. 

But.  Aeropostale is allegedly very cool.  To a fourth grader.

Did I mention it’s COOL?



Youngest son wore the Enviable Shirt two days in a row, one more day than I would ever wear something before it took a whirl in the washing machine. 


On Day 3 he wanted to wear his OCSHHIHWD to his Wednesday afternoon golf league.  Because then everyone would see he was cool.   



He calls me at work and asks me if I can wash it before he went golfing.  Considering I work until 5:00 pm and his golf league begins at 1:00 pm, I would have to say … umm … negatory. 

See?  Case in point for Kids Not Using Their Noggins.

After much pleading and assurance he can’t possibly wear anything other than
THE  T-SHIRT, I instruct him to ask his older brother to wash it with a load of other clothes.

You see. 

One must be very specific with my children.  Because had I not added the clarification ‘with other clothes’, oldest son would have proceeded to wash that one item.  In the Big Washing Machine.  On the Great Big Super Duper Load setting.  With lots and lots of hot water.  And detergent.  And fabric softener.

Fade to black.

I call back a few hours later to check on their progress.  Youngest son says oldest son just left to go to the university library to get books for his research paper.

Pardon me.  I must pause a moment.

The fact oldest son is in college should shed some light on the fact that he is clearly more than capable of following simple instructions.

But.  Never assume anything in life.

It will only conjure Great Disappointment into being.

The story goes …

Oldest son apparently picked up the shirt, sniffed it, deemed it to ‘still be clean’, and tossed it into the dryer for his brother to ‘get the wrinkles out’.



Yes, Great Disappointment.

Oldest son is terribly fastidious about his appearance.  He never wears his own clothes more than once and takes two showers a day.  He is the poster child for I Am A Very Clean Man.

The fact he would send his little brother out to play golf on a hot day in a previously-worn shirt?  Very un-cool. Makes me awfully sad.

Okay. Let’s get real here. 

I totally wanted to clobber him.

Being out of arm’s reach, I resorted to sending him a Really Nasty Text Message.  I even used phrases such as PROPERLY WASH.  In capital letters.  Ending with ‘ … knock off the half-assed way of doing things.’ 


He didn’t respond.



We had a little Come-To-Jesus talk that night. 

And then, I slept light knowing he was plotting my death.


I arrive at the office this morning to discover an email from oldest son.  The email was time stamped 4:22 am. 

4:22 am.

He had just finished his research paper, and he wanted me to review it for him before he turned it in.  The email also asked that I please not mention to his father what time he sent the email.

Did I mention it was 4:22 am?  As in nearly dawn.

The fact oldest son keeps backwards hours drives his father and I totally insane.  And if he thinks I’m Mean Mom … he knows that father is Even Bigger, Meaner, and Louder Dad.

I know. Hard to believe that’s even earthly possible, right?


If y’all are wondering why I posted The Secret of the Really Late Night Email here and have no worries about hubby reading it, rest assured he’ll never know.

And y’all don’t have his email address to tell him.

So there.

Because, my friends.  He doesn’t read my blog.

Don’t believe me?  Watch.


Wait.  Waaaait.

See?  Nothing.


After all the bad things I just sputtered off about on oldest son, I have to take a moment to impart that he is a brilliant writer.  And I enjoy reading his papers.  Because.  Well.  They make me awfully proud. 

I think, ‘Wow, that’s my son.’


And for all the times they make me crazy, there are a hundred more times they make me feel incredibly blessed to be their mom.

Dirty T-Shirt in the Dryer Incident, notwithstanding.


2 thoughts on “the bairns

  1. LOL, Lisa! That’s not the way to do laundry? 😉

    Glad to hear your son is so good at writing papers. I dread editing my kids’ school writing. *sigh* I often end up asking, “and what did you actually MEAN to say here?”


  2. He’s actually started in the pharmacy program, but now wants to transfer into English/journalism at Michigan State. He’s always been a good writer, but it’s only been the past year or so that he’s started hitting his stride, discovering how very much he enjoys writing.

    I notice when I read his papers he’s using what I called ‘grown-up words’, and not being fearful he was going to sound pretensious as a 19-year old using them. He said, you mean academic words? By mutual consent we agreed he was using ‘TWENTY-FIVE CENT’ words now. Ha ha!

    As a writer yourself, you know it’s only the process of continual writing that will make one better. So I encourage him to write, write, write! 🙂

    PS: This week his professor told him he was the (and I quote) ‘best writer in his class’ and asked him if he was interested in tutoring. This is the second professor that’s asked him to do this. I’m thinking ‘good on your resume!’. DO IT!

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