This grainy photo is horrible, but I tried doing all the correcting methods to no avail. I found it the other day while looking for something else. It brought back some good memories. Actually it was only a few years ago, but my life before and after disability seems worlds apart! This was my son and I on a fun night at the school where I was principal.
When I arrived there, I held fast to the traditions already in place. One of them was the Father Daughter Social, which was a lovely affair. It encompassed all the girls, from Pre K 3 to eighth grade. The Knights of Columbus hall was rented, a DJ was hired, and the mothers made delicious food for the buffet. It was always held near Valentine’s Day, so there was much pink and tulle around. The dads got dressed in suits and ties, and the girls were attired in their best finery. Some of them even wore little gowns (possibly left from a flower girl gig!) Many fathers bought their little girls corsages, and there was a photo area available. The ‘couples’ danced to the music, and ate all the specialty foods. My husband and I attended, and I just loved it.
It got me thinking, though. What about all the moms? And what about all the boys – big and little? The week after, I sat with my secretary and two teachers who were mothers of sons. I asked them if they didn’t feel a little left out, and they confessed they did. As a mother of two boys myself, I understood their feelings. I needed to find a way to celebrate them as well. Thus began the planning for a Mother Son Fun Night.
I know the boys would never enjoy dressing up or attending a dance, and we needed something to encompass the wide array of ages. Basketball or other sports might appeal to the upper grades, but the little guys wouldn’t like it, and most of the moms wouldn’t have fun with it. And while we had tons of technology available to us, I decided to keep the night ‘unplugged!’ Together with some teachers and parents, we came up with a game plan – literally.
The cafeteria was set up as gaming stations. In one section, we set up tables with Candyland, Chutes and Ladders, youngish card games, jigsaws, and tabletop games. In another area, we had older kids’ board games. There were more advanced games in still another section – Trivial Pursuit, Chess, Scrabble, etc. In the center area were tables laden with food. Hot dishes like pizza and hot dogs, and tons of snack food. We had sodas, juices, and even milk shakes – all the junk food boys love.
My son was kind enough to escort me, even though he was a big high school kid. He played with the younger ones during Candyland specials, and he challenged the older ones to brainier contests. It was noisy, but the room was filled with laughter. At the end of the evening, the moms and the boys were delighted with their special event. Thus was the origin of the Mother Son Fun Night. Each year got better as new ideas came into play, but it remained a great time for moms and their little boys to enjoy each other. Too bad it had to end.