• 72°

Savor time with family despite the hassles

It was not quite like waiting for school to begin at the end of summer, but it came awfully close.
This was some time ago when our children were in their late teens and home from college on their holiday break. I am sure, not much has changed since then.
Toward the end of those Christmas breaks I, and most mothers (and some fathers) had generally had it with buying everything in quantities, avoiding the delicatessen section of the grocery stores and going to the thrift shops for a dozen loaves of bread more than once a week.
I used to encourage fellow parents of college students to “Hang in there; the Christmas break is almost over and the time nears when we can again purchase imported shrimp — or at least tender tuna steaks — and buy fruit for the week and have it last more than a couple of hours.
You can also begin to fumigate the house from the smell of peanut butter, and return to quiet dinners.”
By early December, I could hardly wait for my sons to come home for their visits.
I longed to see their smiling faces, hear their deep voices booming through the house and watch them sit around chatting with us and their sister during dinner and leisurely evenings.
The problem was that after the first 24 hours, they began to feel the need to go shopping, visit friends, go on a date, and/or movie, and from then on I was just left with an empty refrigerator and loads of dirty laundry.
Sure, they spent time with us — when they needed the car, or money, or when the time came to list things needed for their next semester.
Whenever I inspected the refrigerator, however, I at least knew they had been around, unless some bicarbonate soda had devoured all the food I recently bought and placed inside.
Just as I had gotten used to clean towels, dry bathmats and mirrors actually visible, the soggy towels, muddy mats and stained mirrors now stared me in the face again.
While they were away at college, shopping had become interesting allowing me to buy choice cuts of meat, and other delicacies.
Now it turned into trips bringing home quantities of bread and baloney. And there was absolutely no sense in buying things like French liver pate.
I did it once, only to have the boys tell me they had “helped,” by throwing out “that awful smelling stuff in the funny little can — “you didn’t want that anyway, did you mom?”
Quiet dinners became debating sessions over who got my car that night, or into resemblance of Walton Family reunion dinners with friends from all over staying for a bite to eat.
Our ‘before dinner drink,’ quietly enjoyed while talking over our day, turned into battle scenes since the kids all wanted to watch different game shows and we — like most others back then — only had one television set.
But soon, all too soon, they left and we could again take out the cocktail glasses, light the candles for dinner and put on soft music.
We would listen to the quiet, and then realize that now that they were gone, we missed them and wished they’d come back again — soon.
As parents you don’t always win, but if you are lucky you may break even and enjoy your children while they are home and for as long as you can.
Have a great New Year.
Heidi Thurston lives in Kannapolis.

Comments

Comments closed.

Crime

Blotter: April 14

Elections

Former North Carolina Gov. McCrory enters US Senate race

Crime

Salisbury woman arrested in Myrtle Beach for abducting child

Health

County updates health director job description, will advertise for position

High School

High school tennis: East beats Carson, still hopes to share NPC title

Elections

Board of Elections to purchase upgraded voting equipment using federal grant

Kannapolis

Kyle Seager drives in winning run in first game as Mariners split doubleheader with Orioles

Local

City exhausts this year’s funds for Innes Street Improvements, Municipal Services District grant programs

Landis

Landis adopts amendments to Zoning Ordinance related to signs, Planning Board terms

Nation/World

Cop, police chief resign 2 days after Black motorist’s death

Nation/World

Expert says cop was justified in pinning down George Floyd

Crime

Blotter: April 13

Coronavirus

County switches vaccines for Livingstone clinic after federal, state guidance

Coronavirus

US recommends ‘pause’ for J&J vaccine over clot reports

Education

Superintendent talks first 100 days, dives into district data

Business

‘It was an answer to a call:’ TenderHearted Home Care celebrates 10 years of providing care at home

News

Political Notebook: Local polls find increasing number of North Carolinians want COVID-19 vaccine

News

Trial begins on challenge to latest NC voter ID law

Local

Burch, Fisher, Marsh honored as 2021 recipients of Elizabeth Duncan Koontz Humanitarian Award

Landis

Landis board talks revenues, budget planning, department updates

College

College baseball: Catawba rolls 7-1 and 24-1

Nation/World

Student fires at officers at Tennessee school, is killed

Nation/World

Police: Minnesota officer meant to draw Taser, not handgun

Crime

Man receives consecutive prison sentences for sex offenses