Archive for the ‘children’ Category

2010; The Year In Review

January 2, 2011

Greetings All,

And welcome back to the Stewart News Network (“We report, you repeat”). Later this hour, we’ll show you how to determine if your family cat is a Marxist (hint; most are), but at this moment, we pause to send you to most joyous of Christmas and New Year’s greetings, and welcome this opportunity to bring you up to speed on Stewart-related events.

Our lead story tonight…all is well in the Stewart household. Oh, sure, we have our share of trials, tribulations and unfortunately positioned dog urine, but in the grand scheme of things, we are blessed, and hope the same holds true for you.

In a developing story, Master Jack, now 11, has launched a bold initiative, Take Back The Education Process, by being home schooled for this, his fifth grade. Under the astute instruction of his mother, he is receiving a real American education, free from the mind-washing menace of government lies. Outside of the classroom, Jack continues to follow his passions of baseball, swimming and horseback riding.

Breaking news…Beno, now 21 (!) will be returning for another semester at Towson University in January. Beno is currently a Junior, majoring in mass communications, which means he will be perfectly poised to bring about the downfall of the liberal, east coast media elite. When not challenging the canons of academia, Beno enjoys basketball, fraternity life and the wheels of steel.

Of course, the lead story of 2010 has to be glorious, grassroots uprising of the C-Party (a.k.a. Cindy). This defiant Director of Domestic Operations made headlines this year with her inspirational challenge to the Beltway power elite. Rest assured, however, this newly acquired influence has not gone to her head. Cindy remains steadfastly devoted to her family, her community and, of course, bear hunting.

Meanwhile, the controversy surrounding Hank’s birth certificate rages on. Hank somehow continues to hold on to his Vice Presidency at Green Team, despite his having never produced certified proof of being born. He counters that he has publicly presented both mirth and girth certificates, yet critics maintain those don’t count. Hank continues to fight fires and write about beer, and has joined the zoning board of his local village.

That concludes this edition of the Clan Stewart Annual Letter. We hope the new year will bring you good health, joy and prosperity. Be sure to stay tuned to the Stewart News Network for the latest Stewart news, including an update on the innovative No Child Left Behind At The Mall policy.

Clan Stewart

The Hand Off

September 1, 2008

This weekend C. and I delivered B. to college. We moved him into his dorm room, helped him secure his meal plan, pick up his student ID, set up a bank account, buy his books…the complete disaster.

B. was uneasy throughout the process, champing at the bit, anxious to shoo his parents off like stragglers in a bar after closing time. I didn’t take it personally. I felt exactly the same way 31 years ago when I was the one moving into a dorm room. Fine, I love you, thanks for bringing me up these past 18 years, now go, go, go…get in the car and let me start figuring this thing out.

We came back to campus the next day for a parents’ orientation seminar—something they didn’t have when I was a Freshman, but was actually somewhat informative and helpful. By Day Two, B. seemed to have formed a fast relationship with his two roommates, and was already complaining about the food (I think he’d had one meal in the dining hall).

He also complained about his Orientation Counselor. He complained about the weather (which was, in all honestly, kinda crummy). All this complaining made the next thing we had to do that much easier. After helping him schlep a few more supplies up to his room, it was time for us to bid our firstborn child goodbye (at least for a while). We pulled him out of his room, so his roommates would be spared the scene, and I talked to him in the cinderblock hallway. I reminded him about the sacrifices many people had made for him to be there, and how proud of him we were. I encouraged him to keep an open mind and stretch beyond his comfort zone. I stressed to him the importance of making good decisions—regarding time management, studying, partying, friends, money—everything. C. and I each gave him a final hug, he went back into his room, and we descended the cement staircase.

Considering what a soft touch I am with emotional situations, it’s a miracle that I didn’t tear up like the Nile at that point, but I didn’t. For one thing, B. made it easier when he said this was really not much more than just going to camp (something he’d done for many summers), and that we were going to see him again in a month (at Family Weekend). I think another reason is that this just feels like such a natural progression to me. It would be like crying at the changing of a season.

B. has been fiercely independent for many years, and has pretty much come and gone through the house on his own schedule for months now, so not having him around the house on our first day back doesn’t feel that strange. I’m sure the enormity of his absence will hit me in the coming days and weeks. This is a huge rite of passage. The handing off of a child from childhood to semi-adulthood (and semi-childhood), but right now this doesn’t feel momentous. It feels natural.