Friday, June 04, 2010

Happy Campers

What do you get when you mix... warm weather, a week long term break from British School, a big backyard and a bunch of teenage boys?

It's Camping out in the backyard in a tent!
We've been blessed with quite the backyard here and if our teen son wants to have a camp out what the heck- go for broke! Our camping equipment is (yes you guessed it) it's stateside in storage-ugh! Our son's friends came over with this large tent trust me when I say that they were quite "happy" with having a place to pitch this tent. If it's the normal crew of guys that our son usually hangs out with, then there's got to be at least 5 or 6 of them in that's got to be crowded! They were up talking and laughing until wee hours but that's okay- they were having fun and that's what counts!

For the most part these teen boys stay in a tight-knit group, not letting others really into "the fold" so to speak. I consider myself to be blessed that they brought our son into this group. He was having such a rough go of it with this move here to the UK. It's not easy moving away from everyone and everything you know- especially the summer before your Senior year of High School. These kids have gone through quite a lot, probably even more so than their military and state department parents realize. They too go through that roller coaster of emotions but feel them more deeply. They quite often leave behind the best friends they've ever known, their first loves and quite frankly we pull this all away from them. This group of young men have helped my son to get over that "painful" part and have opened up a new world of adventures to him. Even at his worst they still came and made him go out- to the Lord I am forever thankful!

There are ways of "surviving it" with your teen and how to get them to love you again. It's not an easy path and there were many times when all I could do was to cry with him when he felt so lonely- but I want to say that they have passed. Our son has racked up the frequent flier miles that's for sure! He's now surpassed his mother in overseas flights! Letting go and trusting your child is the key. Let them vent, and buy them an airline ticket to visit their friends. If possible, arrange for your child's friends to come out for a visit. Between flying 2 of his friends out here to England and then flying him state side a handful of times...I should be able to get a free airline ticket soon, LOL! Andrew flies to SD again this month for his college orientation, he'll be there for 5 days and then it's back here to Bicester until Graduation day or as it's called here "Speech Day". Then he flies back to SD later on in the summer. We've not traveled as much as we would have liked but then again our boy's happiness means more to us than anything. With him back in the USA this Autumn being among his old friends at South Dakota State University, we ALL will embark on a new chapter in our lives.

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