It’s Spring Break week in Auburn, which means the Children’s Day Out program Linus and Oliver attend is closed, which means I’m grumpy. And sure, you may think it’s hard to stay grumpy when it’s 80 degrees and sunny outside, but you’re not currently consoling your toddler because his baby brother grabbed hold of his hair and pulled until there was a bald spot are you? I didn’t think so. So don’t tell me when I’m allowed to be grumpy.

Sorry. I didn’t mean to yell at you. Actually today hasn’t been half bad because the grandma cavalry arrived. I’ve been saving my mom’s visit for a time such as this, and when she pulled into the driveway, it was a little like Gandalf arriving at Helm’s Deep, which I suppose makes my children analogous to Orcs, which is a touch harsh, though Linus did jab his brother with a fork on Tuesday, so maybe not that far off.

Even though this week has been rough, I hope Spring Break will be something I’ll look forward to in the future. When the boys are bigger, I can see us taking them to Disney World or something, although my family never took Spring Break trips when I was growing up. In fact, we didn’t even call is Spring Break, we called it AEA Week, and it was basically a week of constant bike riding interrupted only by Little League practice or brief dips in a friend’s freezing cold pool. The best thing about AEA Week — and I don’t even know if this was actually true but we thought it was — was the belief that our teachers were not enjoying a week off, but were instead sitting through some mind-numbing seminar on proper blackboard techniques. Not that I didn’t like my teachers, I liked them all, but there’s nothing wrong with wallowing a little in the suffering of the person who assigns your homework.

It wasn’t until I got to Auburn that I started calling it Spring Break, and honestly I don’t remember any of my four Spring Breaks during college. And before you say something, I don’t not remember them in a it’s-all-a-haze-where-did-this-eyebrow-ring-come-from sort of way. It’s just that I never really did anything exciting those weeks. I either went back home to Glencoe or stayed in Auburn and delivered flowers for the Flower Store, and neither of those two things really screams, “Woo hoo, Spring Break!”

I guess the one nice thing about Spring Break in Auburn as an adult is a week without students, or traffic, or waiting for a table at restaurants. Tricia and I took advantage of that, and the free babysitter, tonight and celebrated the 15th anniversary of our first date at Mikata. It’s funny to think of us back then. We were just kids. And if I could go back and offer my former self one warning it would be this, “Beware the ides of March, Children’s Day Out is closed that day.”

Chad Gibbs resides in Auburn and is the author of “God & Football,” “Love Thy Rival” and “Jesus Without Borders.” To learn more about Gibbs’ projects and to purchase his books, visit

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