You are getting to hear lots from me this week, the kids are away.
Anyway, I have become the meanest mom on Earth. But, good news. It has been working SO well.
The chores doubled, at least. My youngest one realized I was making the new chores and quickly volunteered for the “fun” ones, while his brother ignored me, so he got harder ones. Plus, he’s older, so this seems fair to me. He did however, volunteer to mow the front lawn. Well, he asked for the whole lawn, but, I believe the push mower out weights him, and the back yard has a decent size hill I don’t think he can manage. Not that we get any rain to make the grass grow anymore, but, he mows it weekly anyway.
He still has all the cat chores. I’ve gotten stricter about what counts as “clean” for their room. You should have seen the look on his face when he realized vacuuming is an everyday chore now.
Like I said before, cable got canceled. Video games are severely limited, right now, about the only thing they can play is Minecraft, and that is only for a little while.
I’ve banned the words “I’m bored”, otherwise, I’m sure I can find more chores…the kids caught on quick.
If the chores are done, at this point, they tend to be either riding their bikes, on the trampoline, or in the pool. I must say, we’ve only had the pool a couple weeks, but it was WELL worth the money. I think the boys maybe growing gills. There is definitely a benefit to having a small yard and a small house, the pool is pretty close to the house, and I can see it from all the rooms except my bedroom, which I don’t spent much time in during the day anyway. So, they can go out and swim, and I can still take care of things inside and see and hear them, as long as I have the windows open.
They have to be in their room at 8pm. I never said they had to go to sleep, but they have to be in there, winding down. They fought me on it, because it was still light, but, a majority of the time, they are both asleep before 8:30p. Well, I should say, the oldest one fought me on it, the little one didn’t, because he is my 6 yr old narcoleptic. I swear, if he stops moving for more than a minute, he falls asleep. He is asleep moments after buckling into a vehicle. If he is cranky, he will come to me and tell me he must need a nap. But, anyway, I think the more sleep is helping too.
Soccer started as well. I have exhausted them into submission.
And, I’m exhausted! It is so much more work, and more boring, to make sure they are doing all they are supposed to, checking it, dealing with the once in awhile meltdown when I say they need to do it again because it wasn’t done right. I don’t like standing there watching my kid mow the lawn, especially when it takes him 3 times as long. But I can see how, when there are two working parents, this isn’t possible.
I felt bad originally, I mean, this has been such a change, maybe it is too much…then I thought about it. I remember mowing at his age, I remember having to help dad cut wood, in the wet mud and freezing cold, tossing it into the truck bed that was as tall as I am, then getting home, unloading the truck, throwing it all in the basement, THEN going to the basement and stacking it. Plus, cleaning up after my siblings. I have almost a dozen siblings, and we didn’t get a dishwasher until I was in my teens. Aussie used to have to take care of farm animals and was driving a tractor by the time he was 8. So, when I thought about it from that angle, I realized, this isn’t going to kill them, it isn’t bad for them.
Not only did I want this to help with behavior, but, they really are kinda spoiled, I don’t want them to grow up feeling entitled. But, like I said, they have bikes, a trampoline and a pool, we have several video game systems, they’ve been on 5 trips so far this year, I believe, with 2 or 3 more planned. I think if we just hand them everything, then I will really be creating little monsters.