Relationships With Adult Children

Having just finished up a whirlwind weekend trip to California, to celebrate my youngest child’s 25th birthday (the one on the left), I can’t help but reflect on how much life has changed – for all of us. They’ll always be my children of course, but they’re not children anymore, and that’s just weird.
I know I’m not the only parent whose ever felt this way; who has pondered the question: how exactly does one embrace the changes of life like children becoming adults?
For me it’s definitely been a process, and I haven’t figured it all out, but I do work at it because as I see it, the end result (i.e. a close relationship) is worth the effort.  Some of the things I do are:  I call, text, and/or connect with them via social media regularly, which for me equates to intentionally reaching out to touch base with each of them about every two weeks if I haven’t heard anything before then.  I also look for ways to be an encourager, which I do because I feel that none of us have enough people cheering us on in life, and so I always want to be one such person in my childrens’ lives.  I also pay them real visits.  (I always call in advance to schedule these, and generally plan them as a meal out, but I intentionally go to see them because I want to see with my own eyes, how they’re really doing.) And finally, the last thing I do, is I do the best I can to celebrate holidays and special days, like birthdays, which is what carried us to California (where my youngest son now resides) this past weekend.
Below is a quick recap of our time together.
group pic at Bravo
(Dinner at Bravo Farms Smokehouse, in Visalia, CA, on our first night in town.)
big deal mug
(If you can’t be a big deal on your birthday, when can you be one?)
Some of Joels friends at his party4
Joel’s friend Amy and her kids (above) hanging out by a cornhole board during the party.  (Cornhole is a game that’s sort of like a cross between a bean bag throw and horseshoes.  I think it’s big in central California too, because everyone at the party played.)
Jonathan & Kristen at Joels party
My oldest son with his girlfriend (above) waiting for the the party to get rolling.
Daryl with more of Joels friends at his party
My husband and a couple of my sons’ friends (above) discussing tennis…no doubt.
Eating pizza
Pizza, beer and wine, with chocloate chip cookies and the best bread pudding around, from Tommy’s, in Visalia (my sons’ all time favorites) were what made up the party menu for the night.
Some of Joels friends at his party3
One of my sons’ roomates (above center), lead singer for the band Gospel Whiskey Runners, is obviously amused by their mutual friends’ story, being shared.
Joel telling story
His friends already doubling over from laughter (above), my youngest son obviously hasn’t lost his touch for story telling – despite his advanced age…
…”birds of a feather”, as the saying goes…guy telling a story at the party
So the stories grew tall as the night drew long…
people at the table at joels party2
There was no shortage of entertainment at the party…not with all the music, tall tales, cornhole games, babies (below) and of course…
The baby
awesome friends!
Joel and buddy with dogs

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