Saturday, January 26, 2008

And the Answer Is...

Chris took the boys to the party. I was all for making them hand over the present and explain why they had to leave but Chris had been the most frustrated by the morning antics, so he took point with regard to the party. He would clearly not do well on Worst Daddy Ever!

When they got home I nabbed both, sat them down and quietly explained how frustrated Chris and I have been lately. I told them that Chris and I feel like we must do all the work - even though Lars holds the dishes and silverware, Chris or I must stand over him and herd him through the task, plate by plate. Ross brushes his teeth only while being stared at. Neither one of them get dressed in the morning without the aid of a parental drill sargent. I heaved a sad sigh and said how Chris and I are just so, so, tired of it. We want to be the cool parents - the family who has fun together, going to interesting places and doing exciting things but we can't - our coolness is entirely squashed by our children.

Then, I told them about the revolution. Chris and I have realized that we're doing too much! We have to send the kids to school and they have to be dressed appropriately for the weather. Dinosaur footy pajamas are warm enough for January, are very modest, and there's no rule that says one may not wear them to school. If they doesn't bother to get dressed on a school day, they'll go to the bus in his PJ's. If they don't brush their teeth twice per day, we won't bother to schedule cleanings with the dentist (they LOVE our dentist). Her work twice a year is not enough to keep their teeth healthy and there's no reason for me to pay all that money if they're just going to let their teeth rot anyway. Chris and I will make sure the kids know the schedule and are alerted with plenty of time to get their things done but the actual doing is now up to them! Chris and I feel better already, with all that grumpiness about having to chase the kids around off our chests.

So, we're already 16 hours into the new regime and I'm sure you'd like to know how it's going! Here's a little play-by-play:

7:30pm - Mama delivers The Talk. Shockingly, children actually listen.
7:42pm - Children are sent to get ready for bed.
7:52pm - Children are in PJ's, teeth are brushed; they get tucked in. Not bad!
8:20pm - They think we don't know they are still up, playing. We snicker about the 5:00am hockey wake-up they're headed for and let them dig their own grave.

5:00am - Daddy wakes children, who are unhappy about having to get up. Daddy points to clothes they should put on, announces that breakfast is downstairs.
5:20am - Kids are mostly dressed, Lars has eaten a breakfast selected from things that were set out. Mama fields a special breakfast request from Ross, tells him he should choose from what's out, gets her own breakfast from the table.
5:30am - Car is packed. Lars is mostly ready, including having brushed his teeth. Ross is still grudging his way through breakfast.
5:32am - Ross wedges his feet into shoes, is handed a pile of clothes he should be wearing already and is sent to the car. "IT'S COLD," he shivers! "Yup," I say.
9:50am - Hockey has been played, bags are in the basement. Kids are told to hang their gear and put the laundry into a basket. Lars is reminded about his friend's birthday party this afternoon and told that he needs to be ready at 12:30 or he won't be able to go.
10:30am - Kids still in basement, playing. Hockey gear still in bags. Chris is enjoying a nap.
10:40am - Ross came up for a snack. I sent him back down until his hockey things are taken care of.
10:50am - Lars came up for a snack. I sent him back down, too.
11:01am - I'm going to make myself some lunch, since I need to head out in a bit for my own hockey game. It's looking like Chris won't need to take Lars to the party this afternoon, as the kids are never going to hang their hockey stuff, so they won't be able to come up out of the basement!


MMrussianadoption said...

oh no. I hope it gets better through the week. I feel kind of bad though for whoever's party it is. They are counting on their friends to come make their day special. I know we are disappointed when people call last minute or don't even bother to call to say they cant make it to something we have been planning for awhile.

Spice Girl said...

Oh please.

If one of my son's friends is abusing his mother, I don't want him at the party.


Spice Girl said...

Oh, and BTW, 2 points for you.

Grandmoo said...

PERFECT! Now get a nice loud alarm clock and make them respond to it to get up for school and hockey (start with hockey). If they're not dressed and ready for school, send them in PJs, but if not ready for hockey, don't take them. I bet it will only take ONCE. (BTW, did I ever tell you that one Yof your uncles refused to brush his teeth for about a year when he was about 11? You could write your name in the green stuff that accumulated on his front teeth. Gramma just reminded him that it's not cool to be toothless in sixth grade. I think he started brushing eventually.)

karen said...

Lars made the party! He was late, but his hockey stuff was taken care of, he was washed, his present was wrapped and his card made.

@mmrus: I messaged the mom so she'd know we were having trouble. They only sent the invitations last week, so I didn't feel too bad about short notice! Also? I figured Chris would cave again. He's all full of heart like that.

@spice: Thanks for the +2! My average has been way down since Paige had that kid...

My disciplinary action for Sunday might involve bringing one or both of the boys to my hockey game. I'll bet there's nothing quite like having to sit on a bench for 45 minutes with 14 moms who Know You've Been Bad.

*pab said...

You are my (s)hero!

emmay said...

You should seriously consider starting up a parenting class in your area. Many, many more children need a mom like you!