Saturday, July 18, 2009

Where Was I?

Been so long, I've forgotten how to do this. Dang Facebook takes all of my internet time up, and what do I have to show for it? Bloodshot eyes and sore forearms and wrists.

We've taken in one of the nephews, once again. His second "official" living with us period (and then there have been hundreds of shorter unofficial ones). I'll call him The Burr. A week after he moved in, he came down with mono. He had just signed up for, and started, welding classes which he was enjoying. It was a shame he had to drop out. School is not his favorite thing in the world, and finding something that he enjoys that might at some point turn into a job or career is always a goal. We will try to get him in another one soon.

Since he is 15, we are now a two teenager household. With teenagers, you multiply their ages to find out the equivalent of how many adults that would be in your home. We have a 17 year old and a 15 year old, so if you multiply that it comes to...a big number. Like, a lot. There is never a dull moment. Or a stress free one.

I ride the "I feel very fortunate to be able to make a difference" vs "I should never be allowed to do this because I'm terrible at it" roller coaster, which according to a few of the folks I work with is normal for the parent of teenagers. This last week has been rough. We have introduced (reintroduced, really - but this time we are sticking with it) the concept of "bedtime". Now that there are four of us in the house, we need to be a bit more organized, if not respectful. In addition, we have set a maximum number of hours per day to be playing video games during the summer. Four. That seems really generous, but these addicts are coming off of all day and night benders. It has been a learning experience for us all, and by that I mean I've been learning just how good that bottle of Coconut Rum is and how I don't really do a very good job at work on three hours of sleep following a four hour "discussion" with the family in the middle of the night.

Since Mancub will be turning 18 in just over a month, we know we can't come down too hard on the rules. We also really want to get him ready to be an independent person in the next year (and there is a lot of catching up he has to do). He has had it pretty cushy with us so far, which is not how we intended it. In that, we have failed, or at least not lived up to our expectations. Now we are doing that uphill thing getting him to contribute to housework and cooking, taking care of himself, and planning for his future. Way uphill. But, it is very much a two steps forward sometimes two steps and sometimes just one step back. I have to appreciate the forward moves when they happen, and chill around the backword steps.

In addition to Coconut Rum (and Whiskey Sours), I've found solace in Graphic Novels, web surfing, podcasts, and walking. I also bought a bicycle. In just under two weeks, we will be going on a Family Vacation to Washington, DC. This is probably the most ridiculous thing I have ever done. I'm terrified and excited. I have to be there for one day of work, then we will spend a week in the intense heat and humidity taking the video game addicts to museums and monuments, which will excite them as much as the early bedtime I'm sure.