A Roller-Coaster Day

Today was a crazy, roller-coaster day, filled with highs and filled with a few tears. The day started with an e-mail that a chandelier I had bid on (and lost) on eBay for the office, might actually get to be mine after all. 🙂 It hasn’t been confirmed for sure, but there’s a good chance. Keep your fingers and toes crossed…I should know soon.

Next, I found this in my e-mail Inbox and I rushed to shower and dress to head out for what sounded like a fun day of thrifting for a good cause: animal rescue.

I’ve never gone to one of these. It was held on one whole floor of a storage facility.

And all the bays were filled with donated furniture, dishes, you name it…lots and lots of great stuff! There were beautiful antiques…I saw so many things I wanted to buy. It was really too crowded to take many pics. They are going to be restocking with more donated goods tomorrow. So if you live in the metro Atlanta area, go check it out. It’s for a very good cause.

I lucked out and found some great steps for Mr. Max. I have been looking for some steps to help him hop up on the end of the desk where he likes to lay while I work.

The steps I found at Pet Smart a few weeks ago were ugly, molded plastic and were $40. I found some in an antique shop a few weeks ago and they were beautiful–built in a wonderful spiral design. They would have been stunning in a library one day. But they were $65 and I wasn’t sure if they were really tall enough for Max to get up on the desk.

The steps I found today are going to work well, I think. They were only $10 and the treads lift up for storage underneath. The back panel slides out for storage underneath, too.

I have plans to paint them the same color as the desk furniture, so they will kind of blend in. The carpet on the treads is in excellent shape. Not bad for $10. The prices are really good at this sale.

When I left the “indoor yard sale,” my car wouldn’t budge from the grassy field where I had been directed to park upon arriving. The front wheels were firmly stuck in Georgia red clay. When I was directed to park in the field, my gut told me it was a mistake. It’s been raining for weeks. Against my better judgement, I did as told and now I was stuck…wheels just a-spinning.

I got out and found a southern gentleman by the name of Harry. Harry got in the car, turned the wheels straight and put it in drive. He revved the engine a bit. It rocked forward. He switched to reverse and did it again. He switched back to drive and did it again. He did that about 5-6 times and out she came…out of the trenches. He told me to always keep your wheels straight when trying to get out of a muddy hole your tires have dug. I commented that he appeared to have been in this situation before since he knew that neat trick. He just nodded and smiled.

Yay, for good people who save damsels in distress. There are still gentlemen in this world. Wish I had thought to take a pic of those wheels stuck deep in that thick, gooey, “pull-you-down-to-the-depths-of-the-earth” clay. Here’s what the tires looked like after a 25 minute drive home…still muddy.

When I got home, I sanded down the framing around the treads of the steps and taped over all the carpet.

I sanded the rest of the steps, in preparation for priming. When painting over a stained piece, it’s best to lightly sand it just enough to remove the sheen. That helps the primer adhere better. Also, it’s a good idea to use a stain blocking primer, like Kilz.

Here’s how the steps looked after I had primed them with Kilz. I used the Kilz that’s odorless. It still smells, but not near as strong as before they created the odorless kind.

After my adventure shopping and “2-wheeling” it in the mud…and after priming Max’s new steps, I covered up everything in the office and primed three walls with Kilz. I used the Kilz again because it’s also good to use over walls where you’ve removed wallpaper due to possible left over glue/paste residue. I locked Max up in my bedroom but he still managed to get out and come into the office for part of the time. He thinks he always has to be where I am.

Once I had all three walls primed, it was time to do what I’ve been dreading. :{

I said goodbye to the mural I painted when my son was in 2nd grade. It was painful sanding it down…not so much because of the work that had gone into creating it, but because it was another phase of letting go of my little boy. He’s a grown man and I’m very proud of him, but I will always miss my little boy. We were close and we still are.

I remember one day Chip and I were shopping in a local Target store for Halloween candy. Chip, was around 7 or 8 years old and he was standing about 6 feet away from me in the same isle. I would never let him out of my sight in a store. Never.

Out of the blue he called out, “I love you, Mom.” We told each other many times a day that we loved each other. I said, “I love you, too, Chip.” A woman shopping a few feet away in the same isle overheard him. She turned and said, “Oh, enjoy that while it lasts. They don’t do that when they get older.”

I remember feeling sad, wondering if that were true? Will my little boy quit telling me he loves me? She was wrong, so very wrong. He never did quit and he never has. There isn’t a time we speak on the phone or in person that he doesn’t tell me he loves me. Don’t ever listen to what people tell you when it comes to your children. Their experience doesn’t have to be yours and it probably won’t.

So this was hard, very hard. I sat down in a chair in his old room, now my office. I called Chip just to make sure he was ok with it. He was. He said he appreciated the mural, loved and enjoyed it for many years but it was fine now to paint over it.

I called his Dad and talked to him…just had to make sure everyone thought it was ok. And they did. His Dad just said, “Take lots of pictures.” I told him I had. He said, “Take some more.” So, I did.

Then I got busy sanding, sanding as fast as I could…trying to just get it over with. Next, I primed and primed, trying not to think about what I was doing…wondering if I could have just hired someone to come do this one wall.

I felt like crying a few times…it was hard. Then I remembered the man my son has become and how proud I am of him. He graduates from law school in just one month.  He is so much more than this wall, now…so much more.  Life is good, really good.  And, after all, it is just a wall. The wall may be gone but the memories of the little boy singing out, “I love you, Mom” still live on. They are engraved in my heart forever.

So ended my roller-coaster day. And through it all, Mr. Max was here…doing what he does best.

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Comments

  1. Ridgely (a/k/a Grandma J) says

    My very favorite post of yours. To our sons, the boys they were and the men they become.

  2. Oh bless your heart Susan. I am sitting her crying with you. I don't know if I could have done it. I am such a cry baby!

    You should frame one of the photo's and have it on your desk. That way you will have a chance to look at it in minature everyday. I'm glad that your day turned out ok in the end.

    Jo

  3. Rissa @ Hazel and Honeysuckle says

    I really enjoyed reading this post, thanks for sharing about the mural. Your son sounds like a great guy who's going places!

  4. Boy, I am teary; no make that crying! You are lucky to have such a good son and I am glad your story is different than the lady in the store predicted.

    Painting over the baseball wall had to be hard and I hope your heartache will be temporary. Good thing for cameras!

    I cannot wait to see your paint selection. The fabrics that you have shown are a great tease for good things to follow.

    Mary
    From Virginia

  5. Luncheons at the Junction says

    Susan what a day you had! I love the story about your Son. I also have a wonderful "little boy" who is now a man, and he ALWAYS, still tells me every day that he loves me. Pure joy!

  6. The Real Me! says

    The story of your son made me want to cry. What a beautiful relationship. One to treasure always.

    Great find too! Love the little steps.
    Can't wait to see the new paint job in the room.
    Kim

  7. And don't you know that when Mr Max purrs, he's also saying he loves you!!!! Sweet kitten & sweet story!!
    ♥'s
    Sherry

  8. Wonderful post… just wonderful! My son had a wall story too. Not painted by me but wallpaper. This brought back memories of the day it was time to remove it! I kept saying omg Darrell is going to middle school we need to remove the marching band wallpaper then it was high school and hate to admit it but then it was college! lol Finally the day came while he was in college. I was so shocked the wallpaper that made him wake up in the night scared and crying when he was 2 made him sad to see it gone. I did save a little piece of it. 🙂 My son is now a police officer so this is a fun story to share! lol

    You were blessed with a terrific son too! Have a wonderful weekend!
    Denise

  9. So glad the shopping was fun. So sad you got stuck…we have red clay also and it is messy! Your office will be beautiful, sad you have to cover the wall mural but you have wonderful pictures so you'll always have those to remember it by. Keeping fingers crossed for your Ebay deal…Have a GREAT weekend Susan.
    Cindy

  10. Susan it is so refreshing to read about your adventures.You are like the second Martha Stewart in the world. At first I felt like you were to perfect to be really true.
    Now I fill like you are so real with real things happening in your life like everyone else in the world. I fill as if i have known you forever.

  11. On Crooked Creek says

    Susan,
    I have sons! Hard to watch them grow up! Still say "I love you". Enjoy every phase of their lives…invite your son into your office for tea. Open this area to him and the love will just continue to flow. Of course, you might have to share Max as well!
    Enjoy!
    Fondly,
    Pat

  12. I'm so glad you didn't listen to that woman. Our boys still say I Love You. I believe they always will!

  13. FABBY'S LIVING says

    Love those stairs! Mr. Max is so lucky.
    Congratulations on your wonderful son, it's probably the mother who raised him part of his success, with her intelligence and her inmense loving care. Good luck on his graduation, so much to be happy and very proud of, dear Susan.

    FABBY

  14. Susan – I am sitting here waiting to take my old "Mr. Max" – Norman – in to the vet to have him put to sleep – it is time, but like you, I am crying because it is so hard to let go and say goodbye. It helps to have read your post and see I am not alone and to smile at your "boys" stories – love is what it is always about. Thank you. Karen

  15. Awh, you got me on your story about the mural…I'm sitting here having coffee listening to some soft music, reading your story with tears. So sweet..and it would have been hard for me to cover that mural too. Your story about the mud isn't any different than getting stuck in snow…same principals..keep those wheels straight and rock it…glad you got out without a tow truck! Your little steps are cute…I hope you win your chandelier! Hugs…Liz

  16. laxsupermom says

    When I painted over the hills & sky mural in my now 14yo's room for his current room, I had such a hard time with it. He was to old for the "baby" decor, and I was heartbroken. I know I'll have an equally hard time painting over his current football room when he's flown the coop for good.

    It's so nice that you both have such good memories of that room. Looks like you've done a beautiful job raising him(Congrats on the impending graduation!) Now, enjoy your, much deserved, beautiful new office space. Can't wait to see the chandy if it's yours.

  17. Sarah O'Brien says

    Love your blog, come check out my blog? 🙂

  18. Oh, Max is going to love his new steps! Hope you get the chandelier that you bid on, too. Removing the mural was a hard thing to do, but you did it!

  19. Oh, my, I can hardly write through these tears of empathy. Same practice with my daughter and son (now young adults) we never part without an "I love you." You can do this. franki

  20. That was some day! Packed with alot of activity. So glad you got something you wanted so getting stuck wasn't for nothing!

  21. My boys are just 3 and 18 months but I dread them getting older! It's going so fast! Your post made me a little teary-eyed! I cannot wait to see your office when it's finished. I hope you get your chandelier!
    Jen
    Scissors & Spatulas

  22. Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions says

    Oh Susan, I'm sitting here with tears in my eyes. I am glad you took lots of pictures but I know how hard this must have been for you. When my son would pack up certain things from his room that he outgrew, I would feel sad. But then I remember that he packed them up; he didn't get rid of them and that made me feel a little better. I hate that they have to grow up. My son is my youngest and he will be 21 this year. I'm having a problem wrapping my mind around that.

  23. You are so sweet and it sounds like you were and are an amazing mother. I have a 2 year old girl and your story brought a tear to my eye. I'm certain that whatever you do to that room will be amazing and worth the pain.

    Have a great weekend,

    Aaron {the girl with the boy's name}

    mudpiesandmarigolds.blogspot.com

  24. Abcdebbie says

    Oh Susan, what a wonderful, heartfelt, post. The relationship you have with your son is so special and I enjoy the same beautiful relationship with both of my adult children. I cheered when you said "Their experience doesn't have to be yours…"thank you.
    Debbie

  25. Susan, I know what you mean about our little boys becoming men. My little boy is almost 36 (!) yet I still see that gorgeous tow headed blue eyed boy of many years ago, he'll always be my baby! While it's sad letting go of the past, those precious times and memories stay forever in our hearts!

    XOXO!
    Judy

  26. Heather L. says

    Aw, I am crying! My little boy is only two, and I can only imagine how fast these years will go by. Thank you for the reminder and for the hope for the future with my wonderful little boy.

    PS – we must live near each other, as I live about 10 minutes from that storage facility!

  27. Love this post! It melts my heart when my boys (7 & 6) tell me they love me and I hope they never stop. I've heard of dogs following their person everywhere, but never a cat! Love that Max!

  28. Nellie's Cozy place says

    Morning Susan,
    You did have a roller coaster day.
    Yea, letting go of our lil or big peeps is gutwrenching sometimes for sure, but it is very gratifying seeing and watching the great adults God is turning them into! I have found myself praying many many times, Lord please help me let them go…..
    and He does!! Praise His Name!
    Sounds like your Chip has been a great joy, and yes, they do still say they love you after they are grown, much to our JOY!!
    That was an amazing mural by the way, very very beautiful and I imagine he enjoyed it so very much.
    I remember after my son moved out,
    and it had been about 6 mos., we had repainted his room as my daughter wanted to move into his room, so I didn't think much about it guess cause we still saw him a few times a week, then I read somewhere that you shouldn't redo
    their room for at least a year, and I thought Oh NO!!
    We were still in process with the room, when one night he and his
    roomies came over, and he wanted to
    know where the stuff that was in his closet was, and I said oh, it's still there, and I remember him sitting on the floor in his closet
    looking at things, and thinking of my gosh, that is the only piece of the room that is still his, and I felt sooooo bad, and wished I had
    read that article sooner! but oh well! He was 20 then and he is 33 now, and seems to have survived it pretty well, and still loves me!! lol
    These transistions are not easy, and because they are so new and different sometimes we aren't quite sure what we should do….but you were wise to ask!!

    Hope the rest of your weekend is great hon, and so glad that gentleman came to your rescue.
    Blessings, Nellie

  29. Sue @ Not the Good Scissors! says

    I am a Mom of two grown boys and let me tell you, they can melt your heart faster than anything. There is a special bond between a Mother and Son.

    I know you took lots of pictures of the mural and if I may suggest taking the best picture and enlarging it a bit and frame it and put in your office. That would be a wonderful complement to your beautiful office.

    Have a great weekend! Sue

  30. Happy Cottage Quilter says

    Oh Susan, what a beautiful post. I've got two boys who were very close to me. My middle son still hugs me and say I Love You, but my baby who just started college has distanced himself some. He still lives at home, but he doesn't hug me anymore, or say those precious words. I really miss it. I think they are all different, and they try to find their way to manhood in their own way. Enjoy your son. He will make some sweet girl a wonderful husband one day.

    Jocelyn
    http://justalittlesouthernhospitality.blogspot.com/

  31. Hey Susan, This is my "all-time" favorite post, so "personal".
    You are always hosting TT and MM, and seems we never really get to know "YOU", I love this post!
    Chip is a wonderful son and you have done a great job raising him to be the perfect gentleman, you are blessed to have him and have a close relationship.
    Soooo getting "personal" ain't so bad, here in "blog-land".
    ~JO
    LazyonLoblolly

  32. sueskitchen says

    Working in tandem with you Susan. Our daughters bedroom, first the oldest and then the daughter in the middle is currently being renovated for a shared office/lounge area for myself and my husband. We have primed, painted and rebroadloomed. Hoping to get the light fixtures in this weekend and maybe some of the furniture. I would love to have enough done to show on Met Monday. It is a little weird to look at the room and remember our little ones, however, we should pat ourselves on the back for raising some fine, upstanding citizens.
    Sending this one with ♥…because I know how you are feeling.
    Susan

  33. Frugal Mama says

    Tears here too! My son played baseball all through his childhood years. He still plays on an adult league. So that mural really touched my heart.

    We moved out of my sons childhood home the year he started college. He was crushed and never did sleep in his bedroom in our new home. He'd crash in the family room when he came home. The boy hated change. Yet, he still told me he loved me.

    Fast forward 11 years… he got married this past August and this weekend told his dad and I that we're going to be grandparents. Now that room he never slept in is going to become the nursery for his child. It took while but we're building memories here too!

  34. Stop by often, but don't comment. Today I am-I really like the idea of framing a picture of your son's wall and including it in your office. Now, on to dry my tears. Wish my kitty was as calm as yours–mine still acts like a kitten after five years. ♥♫

  35. Well you made me cry. LOL

    That animal welfare sale looked awesome. I'm so glad you went to check it out and how ironic to find something for your own cat. Max will just love his stairs.

  36. My Little World says

    You almost made me cry- I'm still not over it and my children are still small.

  37. Dear Susan, what a nice story of you and your son I'm still teary. I have two little gilrs who by the way are 24 and 21 and we still say I love you everyday. I'm lucky that they are still home they commute to nursing school. My mother also lives with us now and we still tell each other I love you everyday we never stopped either. I'm looking forward to the day when I have grandchildren so we can extend to another generation the I love you.

  38. Susan, you knew you'd make us all cry over the mural story and your sweet, sweet son. (sniff, sniff). As a fellow mother of grown children I feel your sadness.
    I can't believe you got those steps for 10 dollars!!!

    Janay

  39. Dragonfly Treasure says

    Such a moving post…off to get a tissue ♥♥♥
    *hugs*deb

  40. It is so hard to see kids grow up! We are very lucky, like you, that our kids grew up into responsible adults and have jobs they both love! Congratulations to your son on his graduating from law school.
    The room is going to look wonderful when you are done and Max really is my favorite of the room so far. What would we do without our fur babies?

  41. Cindi @ Rustique Art says

    You're right…mine still call and tell me they love me. My heart sank when I read what that lady said…bless her heart. I still brag about how my boys were never shy about hugging or kissing their mom in front of their friends. Funny how those memories just came flooding back. Thank you for sharing your memories.

    Sweet story.

  42. poindextr says

    You're a good mom, the best. The evidence, as you know, is already in your heart. Give Mr. Max a soft squeeze for me. Sweet kitty.

  43. Sigh. Posts like this combined with pregnancy hormones! Not good. I remember when the mural was painted, and it's hard to see it go, but you'll love your new office.

    I'm not surprised he never stopped telling you he loves you. In your house, that's as common as, "Hey Mom! What's for dinner!"

  44. The little boys grow up and move on but we are always their mommies. My eldest just turned 28.

  45. Donna~One Simple Country Girl says

    Wow! What a bittersweet day for you. But you, that mural isn't really gone. It's still there under a fresh coat of paint and it will ALWAYS be there. You aren't getting rid of it, just covering it up with new adventures to come and new memories to make. I like the suggestion someone else had of framing a small picture of it to place somewhere on your desk. Hope you have a great weekend!

  46. Wonderful post….filled my eyes with tears because I have an office in my oldest son's room and the other sons room is now a guest room. Some days I miss the chin-up bar on the door frame, the "Keep Out" signs (mostly for the brother) or the dirty socks and clothes on the floor. Really its not THOSE things I miss, it's the bodies and life that filled those rooms…..I'm sure THAT is what you miss most. My sons are 33 and 28 and they still tell their Mama they love her! Yes! Toni
    \

  47. The bond between mothers and sons is unlike any other. I have not painted over a mural like yours, but have said good-bye to other meaningful things from my son's childhood. As you said, the important things are forever engraved upon our hearts and permanently etched in our minds. They also continue to be spoken by those little boys grown into men. Hugs to you, and treasure those sweet memories.

  48. Southgate says

    Susan, my eyes have watered for weeks with this southern pollen. Yesterday and today were the first days in weeks they've felt normal, thanks to the rain, and here you have them watering again! Beautiful post.

  49. Funky Junk Interiors says

    Oh… the mural part is so sweet. I went through the same thing with my son's farmland mural. It was hard coming to terms with my baby gone. But I got over it quickly. I painted another mural that would last him until he was a tween. 🙂

    Donna

  50. A Perfect Setting says

    Tears are streaming down my face lol!! My son graduates from high school in a few months and I haven't thought much about it, but times such as these mark the end of an era, it's so bittersweet. I want him to spread his wings and live his life, but part of me longs to keep my arms around him forever. The mural was so special, but I'm sure you will have many, many more cherished times with your darling son!

  51. Susan, you have made many of us teary today, what a wonderful heartfelt post.
    The wall will be a sad memory, but the memory of your young son saying he loves you across the store, is one made of gold. You cannot paint over that one!
    Mr. Max, bless him, is one spoiled cat and if he could speak, I am sure he would say the same thing to you.

    Note to Karen up thread, I have been there with my very much loved cat of sixteen years. It has been ten years since we said goodbye and still miss her. Sorry you have to do this. More tears now!
    Meg

  52. What a ride!!! You saved the best for the last dip and curve!

  53. Awwwww, Susan, that was a heart-squeezer post. Yep, I've joined the weeping club. It made me think of my own "boy," who is now a married man living far, far away.

    Just the thought of painting over that awesome mural would have made me sad, too. But now, on to the NEXT phase of life. You really did a great job on that mural, by the way.

    Hope the rest of your day rocks. Susan

  54. Cindy (Applestone Cottage) says

    Oh Susan,
    What a tear jerker! My son will be 32 in May and boy do I know how you feel! Little boys and their Mom's have such a special bond. When he was little he thought I was the most beautiful creature alive! My daughter, who is almost 21, and I have a very close relationship but she never thought I was as beautiful as my son did!
    Thanks for sharing this beautiful post with us!
    Cindy

  55. Victoria says

    That was such a sweet post! Very, very touching indeed. What a darling mural that was and I'm sure your son enjoyed it and will always have memories of it!

    My 3 boys are 17, 19 and 21 now and they also still say I love you constantly, they hug and still let me kiss them to pieces too:)

  56. Can I go? The sale sounds FABulous! I'll be there in 4 hours via Jet Blue

    Be sure to take a lot of photos. On the other hand maybe not, I may start to get REALLY jealous of what I missed out on.
    Cyndy

  57. When they're young and not sleeping through the night, you think you'll forever be sleep deprived. But as time passes, you realize just what a short amount of time we have them with us before they move on to create their own niche in the world. And then they bring us GRANDCHILDREN!!!!! 🙂

  58. Awwww, that was so sad. I'm a little teary eyed too. I think Jo has a fabulous idea in framing a picture of the mural for your desk. Life moves on but we still have our pictures to remind us of the fun times.

  59. I am sitting crying with/for you. And that lady was soooo wrong. I have six kids all grown and married and on their own except one almost 18 yearl old son at home. All of my kids including the 17 year old son telling me they love me all the time. They grew up with me telling them everyday and sometimes several times a day that I loved them. They have always expressed their love for me. Maybe that lady didn't say it enough or show it enough for her kids to want to express it to her in return.
    Enjoy your wonderful son and the man he has become. And enjoy your wonderful office and the special place it will soon be.
    Cricket
    http://cricketscafe.blogspot.com/

  60. Designs By Pinky says

    The steps look like they will be perfect for Max1 I know how hard painting that mural was but it is time now. He is such a wonderful young man and wil be a great success, from what you said! My son (and Daughter) also tell me every time I talk to them that they love me! That lady was SO wrong! Thanks for pointing that out to your younger followers. Come on over to see what I did today if you get a minute! XO, Pinky

  61. Oh my goodness…I'm bawling Susan! What an absolutely beautiful and touching post!!
    Laura

  62. The Country Nest says

    Susan,
    I am crying reading your post…I have been home sick and watched so so much HGTV. I saw a zebra wall today that was painted over, the homeowner loved it so, but not good for resale, so they framed a section of it and hung it on the wall. What about taking one of your pictures and having it put on a canvas to hang on the wall.
    I was happy to read the I love you Mom part. My son is 37 and he still tells me he loves me and never ends a call without saying so. Even when he was deployed with all his soliders around, he still said I love you Mom. Now I have never stopped telling him I loved him either and I learned that from my Mom. Thanks for a beautiful post Susan.
    Hugs,
    Donna

  63. Modern Country Lady says

    Susan, you look way to youg to have such a grown up son !! 🙂 I have no children sadly and feel so happy for you that you are so loved and have such a good connection with your kid-that and that you have such a great companion in Max.great steps! I wish I could go antiquing with you!!

  64. Vickie H. says

    God bless you, Susan. Such a touching post! Thank you for sharing.

  65. Grammy Goodwill says

    Erasing the mural and Max both made me cry. I, too, have a grown son who still tells me he loves me, but my beloved cat died in November after 16 years of following me around. I'm still sniffing.

  66. I am so sentimental……tears welled up in my eyes as I read about your baseball wall experience. Truly, I do understand……and I am so proud of your Chip growing up and loving his mom. My son is 45 and he calls me almost daily from far away. It doesn't get any better than that! You are entering a new phase in your life and it is like "growing pains"…or labor pains, but I can assure you that with a son like yours, you have nothing to fear and only the best life can offer to look forward to!!

  67. Ispirato Design says

    Aw that is hard. I had to paint over my nursery room mural last year. It made me cry! Sounds like you have a wonderful son and that is a blessing for sure!

  68. Oh Susan…..I'm bawling! What a beautiful and touching post!!! Laura

  69. Very touching. You made me tear up and think of my 18 year old son, who says "Hey beautiful! then hugs me kisses me on the cheek and says "I love you" when he gets home from work…I also feel very blessed indeed. 🙂

  70. Wow Susan! I thought I was actually going to get through a day tears – and then I read your post and started remembering the day I sent my last one off to college. I was so proud of myself because I didn't cry on that Sunday afternoon. But then came morning – I walked by his room with everything in the closet gone and his dresser drawers empty and I lost it big time! He's now 37 and a wonderful husband and father, but I have days when it still seems like yesterday. I hope things are better for you tomorrow!

  71. The Polka Dot Closet says

    What a sweet post, my son is 30 now, so it hit close to home. I just talked to him on the phone, he lives in DC and I am in Orlando he said "I love you", I said "I love you too"

    Carol

  72. Michele / Finch Rest says

    I read this post and wept like a baby………..then read it to my husband and cried again.

    All I can do is give you a virtual hug, and a big high five for being such a good Mom.

    And a thrill knowing how amazing this room will be, your new awesome work space……..because life is always changing, eh?

    I urge you to have a nice pic of that mural for that very wall when you are done. Good Feng Shui.

    Will be waiting for that awesome final reveal right around the corner!

  73. Anonymous says

    I do believe our furry family members can be very sensitive to our emotions and moods. Perhaps, your current little boy, Mr. Max, wants to stick by you, trying to be a comforting companion while you are going through the changes in your "big" boy's room.

    And, Max IS adorable !

  74. Awww… now you are making me cry! I have just the one daughter and she is now five and it is killing me. I can't have more babies so she is all I have and she just isn't supposed to grow up on me! The other day at the dentist, they said her two bottom teeth were starting to wiggle and they may go soon. I had to go to the bathroom and get myself together! It goes by so fast! I know you are proud of your son and it sounds like you have such a wonderful relationship. I pray that my daughter will tell me I LOVE YOU everyday and I have a sneaking feeling she will!

  75. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says

    Thank you soooo much for your comments today. I've been out of town all day in Macon, GA on a ramble with the Georgia Trust…and though I could moderate comments, I wasn't able to respond until now. I can't tell you how much all your comments have meant to me today. They have felt like a huge hug. It's been so comforting to hear YOUR stories and to know you have felt all these same emotions.
    Karen, I wanted to tell you my heart breaks for you today. I had to do the same thing with 3 kitties…one at age 16, one at age 17 and one at age 18. Each time I had to take them by myself…hardest thing ever, a million times harder than painting over this wall. Thank God I have the most caring vets and they were a great comfort, guiding me in making the right decision when the time came. I will pray that God gives you great comfort and peace as you go through this. Grammy Goodwill…my heart goes out to you, too. Will have you both in my prayers this evening.
    Thanks so much for all your comments. I read them all again this evening when I got home and I truly feel so blessed to know each one of you.
    Hugs and much love to each of you,
    Susan

  76. Little Brick Ranch says

    That was so sweet it made me tear up…and I don't even have kids! Congratulations to your son who is clearly gets a lot of his ambition form you…you went through all that with the sale and the car getting stuck and still managed to come home sand and paint! I would have been exhausted! Great post!!

  77. Judy @ Southern Style Home Decor says

    That one brought tears to my eyes. I'm so happy to hear you are still so close with your son. I have twin boys who are 6 and one of them is extra, extra, lovey dovey with me and I have often wondered if that will go away when he gets older. The other day I took him to the dentist and he blew me a kiss from the dentist chair. OMG I hope these moments last forever. Congratulations on your son graduating and hopefully he will live close to you so you can see him all the time.

  78. Anonymous says

    What a beautiful post. I can't imagine how hard it was for you to paint over that mural. But like you said, the mural and all the wonderful memories of your son are painted on your heart, and that's what really matters. Your son sounds like a wonderful person, and maybe one of these days you'll be able to paint a mural on the wall of your grandbaby's nursery!

  79. I just wanted to give you (((((HUGS))))). I am a wienie when it comes to my son. He is a teen now, but he will always be my little boy.

  80. Oh my goodness. Your post brought tears to my eyes! I'm looking at my 4 boys as I write this (after a LOOOONNNGG day at Disney), and suddenly I'm really sad that they're growing up. I hope that, like your Chip, they never outgrow telling their mom that they love her 🙂

  81. Oh, I am crying while I'm reading this post. Happy tears of course. You have such wonderful memories with your son as a little boy and will always have them. He sound like such a good kid! I have 8 and 5 1/2 year old boys and wonder what it will be like when they are older. They are so affectionate now..I will surely miss it. Definitely one of my favorite posts!
    Hugs, Marianne 🙂

  82. Kristine: Lakeshore Cottage Living says

    I have 4 children ages 11,8,6 and 2 and this post just makes me want to go and hold them and kiss on them. Thank you for reminding me that this time is precious.

  83. Anonymous says

    I have been following your office renovation and…Oh, how I too have been dreading you painting over that mural! Now I am sitting hear crying as I read this post…my two boys are 2 and 4! I can just imagine how you felt…I can only hope and pray that my two little guys still say "I Love You" down the road as your sweet son does! Thank you for a wonderful post- glad you took lots of pictures to last you forever!

  84. Piorra Maison says

    OMG I am bawling my eyes out. I have such a similar thing that needs to be done. my 17 yr is still sleeping in the room but I am so ashamed that he still has elephants and giraffes on his wall. I have 2 boys and my oldest girl just moved to NYC last year, At the same time my youngest announced he wanted to move in with his Dad to be closer to school. All my children still say I LOVE YOU Mom! You are so right every child is different. I am so proud of my children and yes they are so much more…So Grateful.
    What an emotional post. you have touched so many Moms and shared something we all have to go through…Letting go of our babies and seeing then as adults.
    Thanks for sharing
    Caroline

  85. Thanks – for more than you realize!
    BTW, Shutterfly does great wall art, any size. Friends recently did a three-room makeover for a sick friend when her husband took her out of town for a week. We snapped a pic of a wall everyone had signed (they'd been meaning to re-do it for a long time but the illness interfered). It had to go, but we knew she'd be sad. Shutterfly turned it into a great piece of wall art we put on a shelf back on the wall. Treasure your memories one way or another.

  86. Dear Susan, my kids are 8 and 12 and I already miss them being little kids!
    What a sweet mom you are, and for that reason you have raised a fine man! Congratulations!

  87. netminnow says

    Even though I label your feed "house eye candy", your blog is really so much more than that. It's inspirational not just from a design viewpoint, but from a living-a-good-life standpoint. I am not as "productive" as you are but this post reminds us that the activity is ultimately directed to only a few ends, the most important of which is to make a good life for ourselves and our families. Family love is the best way of making a good life that I have found and it's wonderful how your post reminds us. I feel so blessed to bask in the same kind of love you've written about here. I hope some of that love is what is reflected back from what I tried to pour out along the years. Now to go "poke" the kiddies on facebook 🙂

    PS, this made me cry, too. I have trouble letting go of "things" because I irrationally think the memories reside there. Thank God for photographs.

  88. I am not sure how I got to this part of your blog – I was admiring your Valentine Tree tablescape on FB and then what do you know I am reading about your "rollercoaster of a day". As I sip on my second cup of coffee, and wait for the FedEx guy to deliver a package that I have to sign for I had a little time just to enjoy reading your blog. Now I am in tears and already fear missing my little 12 year old boy when he leaves home. I am sure I am going to look just horrible when I have to sign for this package but your blog truly touched me and made me realize how I need to pull out my camera more often and preserve what I have today. Thank you … I really enjoy reading your blog.

  89. Susan BetweenNapsOnThePorch says

    Francine, so sorry for the tears. Yes, definitely relish every single moment. They pass waaaaay too quickly. I am soooo thankful for all the photos we took because now when I look back through the albums, I am reminded of so many special moments/days that I'm sure I would have forgotten if not for the pictures. Big hug sent your way! ♥

  90. PatinCal says

    I, too, went through the “painting over the mural trauma” in the boys’ room. But once it was gone, it felt good. What no one, even the boys, knew was that I had never really finished it; so the evidence of my procrastination was forever erased. lol

  91. You did a great job on that mural. Maybe you can do one of those “print on canvas” (own printer or Costco) and hang on the same wall. And send a duplicate for the grandchild’s room.

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