TIME OUT: Family love is priceless

Provided Youngest son Robbie and Robert in front, daughter, Michelle, in the back enjoying spending time with each other.

One of life’s many challenges if you are a parent, is you never really know just how your children are going to turn out, as they gradually climb their ladder into adulthood.

The educational path to “effective” parenthood is usually obtained by incorporating the way you were raised by your parents. I’m sure there is some additional fact-based evidence to support your observing how your peers were raised, too, since you were occasionally in their homes when your peeps interacted with their parents. However, the bulk of your learning was probably accomplished by remembering the ways you were raised.

The long and short of my bride, Debbie, and me parenting together, was absolutely a slam dunk success!!

We have 3 great children. For name-keeping purposes, they go by the titles, Michelle, 43, Allan, 42, and Robbie, 36.

Not that we have always or will always think they are totally as neat as peanut butter, but most of the time, Ms. Debbie and I feel we have had a trio success story with our entire brood.

Over the recent Mother’s Day weekend, as parents, we were once again blessed with surprises and gifts from them, but the greatest joy of all, was their physical presence, back with us in our nest-of-rest (i.e., family home).

No sooner did we pull in our driveway and shut off our engine, having driven home from the airport, we were quickly blessed with surprise #1. This was a HUGE Mother’s Day flower arrangement and accompanying personal note from the youngest child, Mr. Robbie. The beautiful flowers and enclosed note praised his mother for “ helping make me the man I am today”. Wow! That message was SO powerful to read!

For the first hour back inside our home, we unpacked, returning from our 6-day annual trip to Jackson Hole, WY, This unpacking was interrupted, however, by our favorite (and only) daughter, who totally surprised us (#2) by flying into our local airport from her home in north Dallas, then taking Uber out to our home. Boy, were were happy to see her, and even further thrilled when she told us she would be staying for 3 days! Frequently over the years, our children have borrowed my “surprise” visiting trick in various situations; I say borrow my trick, because I have pulled off this surprise element MANY times during my life. I absolutely LOVE to see people’s faces when I pop up in a location where I am totally unexpected!.

Well, guess what happened the next day, the Saturday before Mother’s Day??

Yes, the youngest child and other Dallas resident, Robbie, drives in our home driveway to now make it a double-surprise (#3) visit by our children. To be fair, the middle child, Mr. Allan, lives with his wife, Natalie, and 9-year-old daughter, Maya, in Juneau, Alaska. The last time I checked, Alaska is NOT in the lower 48 states. The distance in miles separating us from Juneau is simply staggering. He telephoned his mother, however, so we knew he was with us in SPIRIT that weekend in Our Town.

OK, want to know the last surprise that recent memorable weekend?

Our favorite daughter also arranged to have my surprise 2018 Christmas present delivered to me; yes, 4-plus months late, but who really (?) cares when it is as wonderful as this gift. Michelle and Robbie schemed together to purchase this unique prize for their father, #268 ( aka, ME; my alter ego name, and actually my state officiating number!). These 2 special people bought me a gas-powered golf cart, spent much time, money and physical effort into decorating it totally like the easy ride a 52-year veteran official (i.e., ME) will drive around. Yes, it is “officially” black and white striped, has several yellow penalty flags within, has a loud speaker system, is adorned on the roof with a football and a basketball trophy to represent the 2 sports I worked 52 and 30 years, respectfully. It even has a Hawaiian bobble hula girl on the back, just for giggles and grins! Michelle had it delivered to our front driveway without me knowing; once again, a total surprise (#5) to your faithful Sunday “Time Out” scribe. Double wow!! Yes, this vehicle is the bomb of a NEAT gift! Please, be sure to wave to me when you see me driving it over the many years-to-come!

So, what did the 4 of us do on that recent special weekend? Quick answers are we laughed, talked, ate, and rode this incredibly unique golf cart around our local neighborhood.

Life is good. Our children are such mindful adults,, Thank you for allowing me to share this brief, feel-good story with you, dear readers of Our Town and far beyond.

Robert Breedlove is an Oklahoma State University news-editorial journalism graduate, and a former newspaper (including News Press) reporter. He may be reached at dermrefmd@aol.com.