The joys of raising teen boys

I think I have figured out why teenage boys are so darned adorable. It’s a self-preservation thing. Kind of like why babies are cute and look like their fathers for the first day or so.
The hardest part of my empty-nest challenge is the absence of teenagers,
especially those goofy, hilarious, energy-charged boys.
Of course, I dearly love my daughter and all the young women who are friends of both my children, but anyone who has children knows that during the teen years, girls can be just scary. And boys are just hilarious.
I was at the local thrift store recently when a half-dozen tall, grinning, teenage boys blew through the door. It was glorious to behold.
I swear they sucked all the oxygen out of the room with their uber presence. They ricocheted around the store, searching for costume ideas, and I found myself just standing their grinning and watching them.
I started to just laugh, and continue to chuckle even now.
They walked around with silly hats on their heads, tried on oversized jackets, teased each other relentlessly and, to the amazement of the staff, did not break anything. 
It was better than any anti-depressant and I was sorry to see them roll back out the door in about five minutes, moving on to their next diversion.
I try to spend as much time as I can around the under-25 set, where I absorb any excess “youth” they simply radiate. I swear I get a boost through osmosis just from being in the same house and hearing them laugh.
I just heard some great “raising boys” stories from an acquaintance who raised three of them.
Like the time one walked down to the shopping center, which has a “shortcut” across a very marshy area on the way. He came home with mud up to his armpits and one shoe. He probably didn’t take that shortcut the next time … but then again, he’s a boy, so he might have.
Another great story came after son No. 2 cut himself badly on a gardening tool. Blood shot all over the nearest wall, dripped across the patio and through the house. As mom packed him in ice and hustled him off, her parting words to her other two boys were, “Clean up the blood, guys!” And, of course, they did, without a whimper.
It’s can be a crazy, dangerous world out there, but I suspect those boy-types wouldn’t have it any other way.

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