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Stories

Stories, observations, and reflections from a life of raising boys

50 Things A Boy Must Do

Jenifer DeMattia

When I became pregnant for the first time I prayed for a boy. Even though it really wouldn’t have mattered, I always envisioned having a son. And now I have two. I had many people tell me typical things to expect like they were trouble and pretty much disgusting. But I always said you never know. Not all boys are the same. I was convinced I would be the ultra hip mom who let her son be whoever he was and not try to force “boyish” things on him like trucks and sports. But as it has turned out for me, boys have proven to be almost exactly like the warnings I received. Just like a magnet, they have always been attracted to bugs and dirt. But their spirit and tenacity is what pulls me in. Their never-ending quest for mischief and adventure. Watching them do what they do is the ultimate road trip. It’s exciting, exhausting, and the best adventure I have ever had. Boys are incredible. And watching mine has assured me there are several things a little boy must do before he grows up and discovers how truly messy life can be. 

 

1. Build a secret fort in the woods and tell everyone.

2. Poop in the woods and tell no one.

3. Use dirt to get the mud off.

4. Drag a stick along a metal fence.

5. Go racing down a hill on a bike. Feet in the air, petals spinning out of control.

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6. Make a mud pie and actually take a bite.

7. Throw rocks into water.

8. Watch airplanes take off and land.

9. Be the airplane.

10. Fart in the wind.

11. Lick a dog’s face.

12. Pee in front of large groups of people.

13. Jump on a bed, a couch, and just about everywhere else.

14. Eat a cupcake without using hands.

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15. Build towers. Out of sand, out of dirt, out of toilet paper rolls, out of anything.

16. Show their parents how far they can stretch their “wee-wee”, and say, “look, it doesn’t come off!”

17. Go on a treasure hunt.

18. Crash a car, a train, boats, trucks, motorcycles, everything.

19. Roam the yard in nothing but rain boots.

20. Wear a superhero costume on outings. Not in October.

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21. Make a cardboard rocket ship. Then blast off.

22. Let the tide bury their feet.

23. Pretend the floor is a sea full of sharks.

24. Have a shaving cream fight and wash it all off in the sprinkler.

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25. Have a snowball fight and get hit hard in the face.

26. Fart in the bathtub.

27. Squish a lightening bug on the sidewalk to make a neon streak.

28. Lick a worm just because.

29. Feel the mud squish between their toes.

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30. Transport everything in a wagon.

31. Pee in the pool.

32. Jump in a leaf pile.

33. Camp out in the back yard. Come inside because it’s too scary.

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34. Make a homemade volcano erupt.

35. Do a cannonball and make a huge splash.

36. Watch the movie Peter Pan.

37. Climb a tree so high they can’t get down.

38. Squeeze out a whole tube of toothpaste. Then attempt to put it back.

39. Swing so high, they almost flip over. 

40. Make up a song about butts.

41. Run the bases of an empty baseball field.

42. Jump from a rope swing into the water.

43. Knock over a store display.

44. Cry because the ice cream fell off the cone before the first bite.

45. Have rocks in his pocket.

46. Climb a hill and roll down.

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47. Wear a bowtie and underwear.

48. Go through an entire box of Band-Aids in one day.

49. Sleep hard, but not long.

50. And dream of doing it all over again.