An Italian-American living la dolce vita in the Deep South

An Italian-American living la dolce vita in the Deep South

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Post Prom Thoughts

"Are you crazy?!"

The question was asked repeatedly over the last several weeks by everyone who heard that Joe and I had volunteered to host the post prom party for the Junior class.

After a while, we started asking it of ourselves.

Were we crazy?

42 students? Here? In our house? On prom night?

As it turned out, we weren't crazy at all because here's what we learned:  if teens are given high expectations to rise to the occasion, they will.

And while I don't pretend to know everything, here is what worked for us:
  1. The party had a beginning and an end.
  2. There were chaperones.
  3. We provided different areas for the kids to wander: rec room (music and dancing), dining room (food), back deck (drinks ... canned sodas and bottled water), and the outdoor brick patio with a roaring fire in the fire pit. By providing movement throughout the house there was no loitering in the driveway or front yard ... something Joe and I, in consideration of our neighbors, wanted to prevent. The different areas also provided places to go for those who didn't want to dance.
  4. Because state law forbids teens to drive past midnight, parents made arrangements to pick up their teen or have another parent bring him/her home. Everyone got home safely.
  5. We let the teens be part of the planning. My son and his friends were in charge of the music. On Friday they moved furniture (including a pool table) out of our rec room, and set up the stereo sound system. They did sound checks, and had me walk around outside to see if the music could be heard from the street. On Sunday they returned to reverse the entire process.
Everything went perfectly and we didn't have a single problem ... not one.

On Sunday evening Joe and I brought a plate of cookies to five of our immediate neighbors as a thank you for being patient. They all said the same thing: they couldn't believe that, with 42 high school students next door, how mannerly and considerate (and quiet!) everyone was. This, more than anything, made us very proud of of them. They represented their school very well.

the sound system ... you can't see the lights in the other three corners of the room!

getting ready to go pick up his date

Nicholas and his prom date

the guys

prom guys and gals

Friday, April 20, 2012

Life Lately: See-through Shirts, the Prom, and Sibling Revenge

~1~ Today is Mass day at our sons' high school, which means a Mass uniform of long pants, long sleeve shirt, and a tie.

One son comes downstairs (I am not telling which son) dressed properly. Pants? check. Belt? check. Unwrinkled shirt? check. Tie? check.

EXCEPT, he has on a Penn State undershirt and you can see all the words right through his dress shirt.

Guess who had to go back upstairs, remove his tie and shirt, and start all over again?

~2~ Yesterday I am sitting in carpool lane, reading quietly, when I notice that students were coming out wearing jeans, t-shirts and sneakers.

Guess who forgot it was out of uniform day?

~3~ We're hosting a little thing called an after prom party at our house this Saturday. Our son's friend is in charge of the music, has been compiling a playlist for weeks, and will be setting up his stereo in our rec room.

EXCEPT, they are not calling it a stereo ... it's a sound system.

Should I be worried?

No? Well listen to this: today they are all coming over to set everything up, and they cannot ride together because the speakers will not fit in my son's car.

Can I be worried NOW?

~4~ I know, you're probably thinking one thing: what about the neighbors? Well, yesterday Joe and I went door-to-door to forewarn everyone in our cul-de-sac. Everyone was supportive, and as luck would have it, our immediate neighbors will be out of town.

I am smiling here.

~5~ One more prom thing: I have everything organized. Tables beautifully decorated with tons of candles, twinkling lights everywhere, indoor and outdoor seating areas, a fire in the fireplace and in the fire pit outside, and luminaries lining our driveway.

The only thing we cannot control is the weather ... and right now it's iffy, at best.

~6~ Actually, I lied. Here's another prom thing: last night my brother called Nicholas to get the scoop on the prom. At one point he asked Nicholas, "You know your Mom is totally going to embarrass you, right?"

What? Whatever could he mean?

That does it. Somewhere I have a photo of my brother at his prom ... oh, this is going to be good. Stay tuned.

~7~ For your enjoyment, a 30 second video on what an elderly father does with his ipad. The video is in German, but you'll totally get it. I couldn't stop laughing.
Dear Tizi, click on the link :-))

*now, go visit Jen at Conversion Diary. She is writing from the EWTN studios.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Life Lately: Angry Birds, Skeletoes, and a Prayer

~1~ Angry Birds. Evidently it's a craze, but I've never played. Not once. But over Spring Break the boys got an Angry Birds board game, and we spent many evenings building structures and launching an angry Giant Red Bird to knock down some cute little Green Pigs.

It turns out I am pretty good at launching the Giant Red Bird.

It also turns out I am pretty good at knocking over the cute little Green Pigs.

Which was making everyone else quite ... angry.

Go figure.

~2~ Skeletoes. I understand the concept but (and this is just my personal opinion) I think they look ridiculous.

During a recent visit to some outlet stores, I was wandering around a shoe store and picked up a pair to get a closer look.

And I discovered something I never, ever knew.

Skeletoes only have FOUR toe spaces; evidently, the fourth and pinkie toes share a space.

For some reason I found this incredibly funny.

~3~ Jonathan is concerned for my health. This afternoon he came up to me, put his arm around my shoulder, and said I was looking tired and that I probably needed a break.


He was really wanting me to cave in and let my fingers do the dialing for the nearest pizza take-out joint.

But I've got his number ... my son's that is, not Papa John's.

~4~ Today someone asked me if I've lost weight. It's ridiculous how such a simple question can make me insanely happy ... how it can make my day ... heck, how it can even make my entire week.

I was so happy I celebrated by having dessert.

~5~ I don't know why, but somehow this looks like it would be a fun place to have a glass of red wine.

~6~ When we were on vacation I got tired of everyone complaining and/or rolling their eyes when I wanted to take a picture.

So I started taking pictures of trees.

Trees are much more cooperative.

And they pose very nicely.





~7~ Finally (and this should have been #1) pray for us. A week from this Saturday we are hosting at our house a post prom party for the entire junior class.


**now go visit Jen for some more Quick Takes.