I might be labeled a big KopyKat, but the truth is the truth; I like creating memories, too. I love pictures and I love telling stories.
I get visitation with my kids every first, third and fifth weekend of each month per the standard divorce decree. Unfortunately, my kids are 500 miles away. Consequently, my travel time is immense; but that works into my favor. My kids are trapped in the car with me for long stretches of time. Our favorite time killers we use during these trips are story telling and music appreciation. Whichever child gets "shotgun", usually commandeers the radio as soon as we enter the vehicle. I have been introduced to so many new bands that I would never normally listen to that I am finding my own taste in music morphing into some new sense of being. Bands like Paramour, Weezer, Fall Out Boys, Panic at the Disco, Jurrasic 5, Black Eyed Peas, and many more are finding their way into my Sansa player and onto my flash drive that I use at work with more and more frequency. As much as I am helping to pass my families memories onto my children, they are helping me make new ones.
This past weekend, I had the pleasure of my kids company. I left Thursday evening, drove to Austin and spent the night. Friday I picked them up and we returned to Austin where I had their birthday gifts waiting in the hotel room. They each got the normal cards stuffed with cash; a calender for each with all the family birthdays, anniversaries and addresses, two Cd's (Fall Out Boy and Sheryl Crow for the girl, Offspring and Rolling Stones for the boy). Saturday we went to brunch at Trudy's, hit Toy Joy for some trinkets, went shopping for clothes (Austin fashion style rocks!!!), hopped over to the rugby field for a couple of games and then headed to Llano for a wedding reception. The reception was very nice. My kids got to see people they haven't seen for a few years and viceverse. Sunday morning was for us. We spent a few hours swimming in the Llano River, jumped off the dam a few dozen times, had some lunch and then started the journey home to Houston. All in all , a very nice weekend. Both the kids want to bring friends and visit the river again and that is fine with me. I just hope that when they have kids of their own they will remember that family times are to be cherished, friends with weddings and other milestones are dates to look forward to, and that no matter the distance you visit with the ones you love (and then let everyone else know what they missed). The hardest part of the whole weekend, as usual, was dropping my children off at another man's house. Men, please, love and cherish your wives and families; or end up like me, wishing you had.