No…Not Thirteen Again! East Texas Moms Blog


Thirteen was a memorable year for me. And not when I turned 13….when my son did!

All of a sudden it was like aliens invaded his body. One minute he was playing Nerf wars with his little brother, and the next he thought Nerf was so beneath him and childish.

Some days I didn’t know if it was safe to leave him alone with a pencil while I was in the other room, and then other days I was asking him to watch his little brother while I ran to the grocery store.

For two and a half years I’ve wondered what it will be like when my daughter turns 13.

Well folks, the wait is over.

It happened right around her birthday. One day she woke up and instead of being her usually sunny and 72 degrees cheerful self, a storm blew in and the temperature of the house dropped to right around freezing.

Her older brother walked into the room to ask her a question and she tore into him like a dog eating steak scraps off the floor. She queued up her momma voice, cocked her hips, pointed her finger and told him where to go and how to get there.

He literally walked out of the room, shaking his head, motioning with his hands and mumbling to himself: What did I say wrong…I only said…what in the world…

I know this because my husband sat silently in the corner watching the whole thing, holding back snickers.

Poor guy. He was clueless as to the mood swings of girls.

I looked at my husband and said, should we tell him what’s going on?”

“No,” he replied, thinking deeply. “Some things they have to learn on their own!”

I think it’s safe to say we’ve often felt like our 13 year old changes into what Tim Hawkins describes as a boat driver while tubin’ in Minnesota!

(BTW, if you haven’t see this video and need a laugh, pause reading and watch it NOW!)

Oh, but it gets better! One day, my thirteen year old does a flip while entering the kitchen, stops and sees her older brother eating something. and wanting to start up a conversation, she says – 

Hey…what’s your favorite thing?” 

To which he replied “Come on! Why do you ask me these things? You get frustrated when I don’t take you seriously, but this is why I don’t! I don’t even know what you mean. Just don’t talk to me unless you’re going to be serious.”

I literally heard my daughter stand there open mouthed and think HOW DO YOU NOT KNOW I AM SERIOUS. “That was as serious a question as it gets for me!”

Later that day we were driving to Tyler to run some errands and I thought I’d stir the pot again. After all, isn’t that the privilege of being the mom?!

So I asked my girl, who was sitting in the back seat –

“OK, so what’s YOUR favorite thing?”

To which she quickly popped her head up to the front seat and replied, “Abby (her dog)… and sunshine and …..”

My son cut her off there, craned his neck to look back at her and said, “Which is her favorite thing today. If you ask her the same question tomorrow, she’ll say flowers and butterflies and if you ask her in 2 days she’ll say yellow cars and movies. It changes everyday.”

I tried to contain my laughter but I’m pretty sure it leaked out somewhere. He’s learning so much.

One question. So many lessons. So many different perspectives.


What more can I say?

Do you have any funny thirteen moments? We’d love to hear them!


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A native East Texan, Julie Steck struggles with captious thinking and can fear one wrong decision will permanently ruin her life. Through the grace of God and the love of her husband she has learned to recognize the voice of fear in her head and not let it have a vote, freeing her to enjoy life’s choices. Julie met her husband Adam on the banks of the neighborhood trailer park pool where Julie worked as the pool attendant, and Adam obviously needed swimming lessons. They never looked back after that first day and married two years later at the ripe old age of 18. Today they own Southwest Steel Buildings in Mineola while raising their 3 kids, Caleb, Mackenzie and Zach. When not writing, Julie enjoys date nights at Wasabi, supporting overseas missionaries, staring at the mountains in Colorado and remodeling their kitchen over the holidays. To find out more, you can check out her book No More Secrets: Set Free from Fear, Shame and Control by Discovering True Grace or follow her blog at