After Declan received his mission call, he found the next couple of months of school to be hard to finish. The crazy kid didn't want to have to write any papers that semester so he decided to stack his schedule with math classes. I'm not talking addition and subtraction type math classes, I'm talking Calculus 2, Microeconomics, Logic (some math class that deals with probabilities and such), and Statistics classes. After he received his call he said it took everything in him to stay dedicated to his classes. Somehow, whithin the matter of one evening, all those math classes seemed to become less important while his mission prep class and his temple prep class seemed to become so important. He said it took everything he had to finish off that semester with good grades. He actually ended up with a couple of B's and was quite disappointed, but I thought he did great considering the "mission distraction" and the difficulty of his courses. In mission prep he was challenged to share the gospel with someone, and was blessed to be a part of sharing the gospel with a friend who converted and was baptized that semester. I think it is safe to say he passed that mission prep class.
When the semester ended and he returned home he had a little over a month until he left. I knew he would be completely stir crazy by the time he left, so I sent him to New Mexico to visit and say goodbye to a big chunk of my family, had my baby brother come visit during another week, and I tried to keep him busy with lists of things to do before he left. He became a master at using the line "But it will be two years before I can have this, or do this, or eat this, or whatever else this again". This line was used for everything from staying up all night playing games, to laying in bed until 2 in the afternoon, to going to this resturant or that, to anything else he could come up with. It was funny because one day I happened to see an email from his good friend Nic Mower who is on his mission in Spain. Nic told him to be sure to lay the " But it's my last time for 2 years" thing on thick the last couple weeks because "mom's can't resist that line and you can get almost anything you want." Those tricky, tricky boys! I do have to admit, it is a hard thing for a mom to resist though. So needless to say we didn't get as much cleaning and organizing done as I'd planned, but we did get in a lot of his "last time for 2 years" wishes.