Monday, April 28, 2008

A Blast from the Past Says Bye to Project Green

My son will be 35 on May 9 and I’ve been getting a bit nostalgic. We’re sentimental folk, me and my boy, we save things that might seem silly to others but which mean so much to us. I think it comes from growing up together and from going through some incredibly challenging times.

One of my favorite artifacts is his green mug so it seemed a fitting finale to Project Green. Thank You Anna!! I have enjoyed this and I’m looking forward to the next project. I have found some incredibly talented people while traveling through green land.

Give your eyes a feast and check them out HERE

Here are front and back views of my son’s “Hands Off My Mug” mug. It is the first mug he ever drank from! This makes it about 34 years old. It has an orange twin but the green one was always the favorite. He still uses it today.

Never one to give my last nerve a break my son would insist that the mug be referred to by its full name. So offering him a drink before bed turned into:

Mom: Do you want a drink before you go to bed?
Son: I don’t want to go to bed
Mom: That wasn’t the question. You’re going to bed, the school bus comes early, do you want a drink?
Son: I have to go to school?
Mom: I’m putting water in the mug.
Son: Can I have juice?
Mom: Yes, apple juice.
Son: What other juice do we have?
Mom: None
Son: I don’t believe you.
My face grows red and I give him “the look” so …
Son: OK, apple juice is good.
Mom: Great – here it is.
Son: Oh My God!! Where is my “Hands Off My Mug” mug!!?
He is truly stricken and puts on the face that always pushed my buttons
Mom: Calm down, I’ll switch it into the mug – green or orange? Decide once and for sure, I am NOT switching again.
Son: The green “Hands Off My Mug” mug
Mom: Positive?
Son: Yes, the orange “Hands Off My Mug” mug is for orange juice and maybe soda.
Mom: Fine, here’s your juice in the green mug
Son: In the what?
Mom: (wishing she had remembered to take that little pill) – In the “Hands Off My Mug” mug – the green one.
Son: Do you love me?

And the answer was always yes! And all these many years later I would gladly go backwards and smell the way his hair smelled right out of the bath, the feel of his hand when he grabbed mine right before he got on the bus, the way his eyes found me the moment I walked into a room and they would light up with love and trust.

It’s getting late and I think I’m going to mix myself a martini and have it in a mug – the “Hands Off My Mug” mug – the green one.


Richard said...

Dianne, this is a great story. It's very obvious you love your son a lot. Our oldest turned 37 this year and has three of her own.

There is a wealth of good memories to go with grown kids.


Odat said...

Awwww.....what a nice memory!


Law Student Hot Mama said...


I remember I had this mug that had Garfield on it. Finally the paint all came off of it (it was probably lead-based!) after I drank from it for maybe 10 years but I still remember it!

shubd07 said...

Obviously the green of the mug ..sorry .."The Hands off My Mug " mug ..makes memories grow stronger !
Very appropriate for the finale of PG too.. a lot of lovely memories there as well :)

Hilary said...

Aww nicely done. I know that feeling well.. sigh!

Betty said...

Sweet story. I still have a pet rock that my son made for me. And, a hand-made valentine from my daughter when they were very young.

Jay said...

That was a very sweet story. Cool mug too.

Lisa said...

I was laughing even as the tears welled up in my eyes when I read that, Dianne. You have such a wonderful way of reaching way down into those memories and bringing them alive again--for everyone.

Thank you for that.

35! Wow! And I am feeling a twinge of nostalgia with the end of my daughter's freshman year of high school. I can't imagine how it will be when she's a grown woman. :-)

kenju said... sweet is that?! My boy is 42 now, and I don't have his mug. :-/

Raven said...

I love the mug - and am awed that it is still in one piece after so long.

You know this qualifies for Heads or Tails Tuesday this week as well as Project Green.

I'm kind of sad to see Project Green go, but such is life, I guess.

Your son is a lucky man. Early happy birthday to him, or as I like to say "A very merry unbirthday"... and to you too, for that matter.

Cherie said...

Sweet! :D

SnoopMurph said...

Happy birthday to your son!

Okay, I just adored this post. Simply because I feel like perhaps I am channeling you when I talk to my own son-that is uncanny. Minus the green cup, of course-which is just classic and wonderful.

And now I am going to smell the freshly washed hair every moment I can (and I do anyway) and remember the feel of the little hands because all grown up happens all too quickly for all of us.

the walking man said...

27, 27, 25...the little markers they leave behind so they can find their way home if needs be. I have few of them here because they were raised somewhere else for the most part.

But I do remember the years they were not with me. And now I have to go out in the living room and take a few of the markers in my hands and hold them so this one tear can escape me.

Thanks Dianne, it is good to loose one occasionally.



Jo said...

Oh, that really touched me, Dianne. So precious. Thank you for sharing that peek into your relationship with your son...just beautiful, it made my heart hurt in a good way.

Little tots fresh from the bath are just pure bliss! I loved the part about his eyes finding you the moment you enter a room :)

bobbie said...

What a great post, Dianne. You and your son make a great team. And is there any feeling better than a damp child, wrapped in terry cloth, wriggling around in your arms? They do smell so good!

Matt-Man said...

Ha. That was cute. Here's to you and the Hands Off Mug. Cheers!!

Minnesotablue said...

Diane: You touched my heart again. Now you just pour a second drink in that beautiful mug.

Dianne said...

richard - a wealth of good memories - exactly! and I see you were a young parent as well.

thanks odat - peace

law student - LOL at the lead based!! I also have my son's Spiderman Dinner Set and it is a mess. Cracked and paint flicks everywhere. Spidey is but a shadow of his former self.

thank you shubd07 - and extra thanks for using the mug's full and proper name :)

Dianne said...

hilary - the universal Mom feeling - as jo said - makes your heart hurt in a good way.

betty - I have a trunk of all those wonderful creations but I must say I never got a pet rock! that's one creative boy you got there :)

jay - my son loved that it wasn't "baby-like" but was cool like a wrestler's mug he used to say. He was obcessed with wrestling.

lisa - thanks so much for such kind words. I love that I can trigger emotions although my son says that makes me a bit of a pain at times :)
I remember HS - my boy never went LOL - but he was the most clever truant they ever had.

kenju - that mug has been treated like a delicate treasure. The orange one looks awful since it wasn't the favorite. I'm sure you've got lots of treasures too.

raven - he's trying not to think about 35, says he's old. so what does that make me!? I haven't gone back to HoT yet since my schedule is so rough - I hate to start and not finish. The photography projects are so great - I can write as little or as much as my remaining brain cells allow.

Dianne said...

thank you cherie :)

snoopmurph - all grown up happens in a blink of an eye. hugs to Connor and Ian.

oh mark - the little markers they leave behind ... I adore you.

jo - Craig Ferguson (my late night love) recently quoted his son's Mom on the subject of parenthood. She said - "it's like walking around with your heart outside your body for the rest of your life" - guess that's where the good heart hurt comes from
I heart you.

bobbie - I always wished I could bottle that baby smell :)

matt-man - cheers to you too!! thanks for coming by.

minnesota - I was thinking of having some orange juice in the orange mug! ;) too early for vodka!?

Leighann said...

Dianne that was an awesome story! I hope the mug, you know the "hands off my mug" mug, can be passed on in the family!

Shelly said...

Loved the story Dianne, no kids here but I absolutely adore my niece, she loves it when I tell her stories of when she was little. She's all grown up and in college heart flutters a little when I think her her. Guess that's as close to a mother's love as I'm going to get.

CG said...

What a lovely story...I was laughing through my tears!!

Akelamalu said...

Great memory. My boys are 37 and 32 and still know which buttons to push! :)

pink dogwood said...

Great story - your son sounds like my younger daughter who does not let me abbreviate either. Thanks for sharing great memories. And remember that the green one is for martini's with green olives and the orange one is for orange juice and vodka (or maybe mimosa :)

Dianne said...

thanks leighann - I know my son will make sure my grnadchildren will be as annoying - uh - aforable about the mug as he was.

shelly - my nieces make my heart flutter as well, one is graduating college this year and the other high school. love is love shelly :)

cg - laughing through the tears - that's what I've been doing a lot of

akelamalu - I don't think they ever stop pushing buttons :)

pink dogwood - I really like the way you think. mimosa's for breakfast this weekend!!

Bob-kat said...

Isn't it amazing how everyday objects can become imbued with so many memories? What a great finale to Project Green. Thanks for sharing :)

Ramblings of a Villas Girl said...

Hi Dianne! Early Happy Birthday to your son.
What a great story. Even though at the time you may have thought you needed that little pill, what a sweet time it must have been for you and your son. I am very happy that you and your son have a good relationship and a lot of fond and funny memories with many more to come. Enjoy. Lisa

Anndi said...

Awwwwwwwww! I have to admit, I kind of teared up there. How sweet!!

"Do you love me" LOL.. yup, they sure know how to butter us up don't they?

fermicat said...

Great post! That mug will make your martini taste better.

Dianne said...

bob-kat - I find the simpler the article the deeper the memories, like my Nana's tea pot or this mug :)

thanks lisa - we are a memorable lot ;)

anndi - every time he thought he'd pushed me too far out would come the "do you love me"
clever little things

fermicat - last night's martini was delicious, I may need to have another this evening.

Pagan Sphinx said...

That was one sweet story. You and your son are lucky to have each other.


tt said...

Awww...he's left giant foot steps on your heart....they do that...and we wouldn't have it any other way. How sweet of you to share. Happy Birthday to him and YOU...

Anna said...

This is a great last green! Thanks for having fun with it and sharing it with me! Make sure to check back at my blog periodically to see about the next project!

Carletta said...

Hi Dianne,
I loved this story. Here's a toast to you and your son!

Hope to see you around in Anna's next project.

Quiet Rage said...

What a great post. My son will turn 20 in May. We "grew up" together as I was very young when I had him. Thanks for putting thoughts/memories to words.

Dianne said...

thank you pagan! we are lucky :)

tt - "giant footsteps on your heart" - what a lovely way to put it.

anna - I'll definitely check back more than periodically! Your photos are far too beautiful to miss.

carletta - You'll definitely see me around, you are all too good to miss :) thanks

quiet rage - Happy Birthday to your son! and thanks so much for such a lovely comment.

Michael Manning said...

Dianne: You sound like what we would term as "the cool Mom on the street". I loved the episode of "the look". Savor those memories and know you are always creating new ones.

Have a great day Dianne!!!!:)

Dianne said...

michael - I am pretty cool if I do say so myself LOL thanks so much for saying it for me
Happy Hump Day!!!!!!!! :)

CAROLYN said...

What a sweet story & memory! It IS important to keep those colored mugs catagoried with the proper drink, lol! Does your son still do that? :)

Knight said...

That was so so so sweet I think my heart might have stopped. I can't believe you still have the mug. I mean the green hands off my mug mug of course.

Farmer*swife said...

I love the child conversation. We do this kind of thing every night.

Your post is another reminder that it goes by so quickly so I really have to remember the kids childhood and enjoy the moments.

My Gramm had gotten the "Koolaid" cups way back in....well, way back. The 70s is when they came out I think.

So, then my cousin and I "inherited" them at Gramm's house and we'd always fight over "Watermelon Man" cuz' that was the coolest cup.

So one time when she was visiting and I wasn't she put her name and the year in black permanent marker.

There were actually two Watermelon Man cups, so I didn't complain.

I actually inherited those cups in reality as I cleaned from Gramm's old house. Just yesterday I considered mailing the identified one to my cousin -- but, I too love the memory so.

Nice post and Happy Wednesday!

Kim said...

You're awesome. That's it. You just are.

Dianne said...

carolyn - he doesn't color categorize the drinks as much anymore LOL but he still has an amazing list of quirks - I think I'll post about them for his birthday :)

knight - we once discussed my cremation and putting the ashes in the 'Hands Off My Mug' mug - we had to just laugh when we realized we were serious. and thank you for using the mug's full and proper name :)I love your heart.

farmer's wife - definitely enjoy all the moments, I know how daily life can be but we all need to remind ourselves to not sweat the BS. One of the best compliments my son ever gave me was when he said that, when he was young, he knew I was exhausted from work or trying to have a bit of a social life, but all he remembers is all the stories I told, all the baths I gave, the Easter egg coloring, letting the football team track mud - all those wonderful moments. I'm so glad I listened to my heart. I do have to admit the bedtime talks could be a bit trying :)
Love your Kool-Aid cup story. I wouldn't part with it either, maybe visitation.

awwww kim! ya gotta be awesome to see awesome

Newt said...

Awww, that was a sweet story. I still have certain cups preferences for certain beverages - plastic is better for water and milk, glass is better for soda. Yeah, I'm still weird after all these years.

timtim said...

Love this story. Thanks for sharing and thanks for visiting my little blog!

OneDaisy said... the shore whore has gone incognito. Stop by and see the new site if you'd like.

Leighann said...

Popping in to check up on ya Doll :)


Dianne said...

newt - I have to drink milk from plastic and soda from glass too! See you're not so weird, or we're both weird. Weird can be cool :)
I hate the way milk looks as it leaves a film on glass - just awful.

thanks timtim - I like your "little" blog and will definitely visit again.

onedaisy - I stopped by and read the story of the shoe whore's demise. I bookmarked your new place :) thanks for telling me!

Awwww leighann - I need someone to check on me! this doll is pooped out, I've been doing data entry non-stop for days. I take a break every now and then to try and catch up with my peeps but I'm so behind. And I have a post almost written - maybe later tonight.
I love ya my twisted sister!

Jeni said...

Loved this story! I would imagine in years to come, Mandy will have memories like that about Maya and her fixations about certain cups and utensils, etc. My kids weren't that specific about those kind of things. But reading your words about things you remember about your son, etc., now that hit me where I live ya know. Brought back the smell of his freshly washed hair, his pudgy little hands and how trusting he always was -still is for that matter -about so many things. Each of my kids stirs up different memories of when they were very small but the freshly washed hair scent was one that really came through about my son.