Oh, it was a rough Monday around here.
We have good kids. We really do. And we love them so much. Too much to leave them to themselves.
Monday was full of bickering and complaining. They were frustrated with each other as soon as their feet hit the floor. They were not happy (and showed it) about doing school work. They were even more mad when their teacher/mom said that there were corrections to be made with their math work. One little guy was being a stinker and was telling his sister to not touch his new toy….not because he was playing with it….not because she was doing harm to the new toy….but simply because he didn’t want anyone else touching it.
Really? Have you lived in our house this long and still think that kind of attitude is going to go unchecked??!?? Gracious no.
Sooo, around 3:00 I had all I could take and told them all to go to their rooms and close the door because I could not referee or correct or hear the huffing anymore. I RARELY send them to their rooms (though I probably should more often); Mack and Molly hated it. Ruby, who wasn’t the main culprit anyway, was perfectly happy being in her room, though she knew they were all in trouble. Mack kept cracking his door to peek and see what was going on—-which was laundry and vacuuming and meal planning….in quietness and peace.
I talked with Josh about why the kids were in their rooms, and he said we would have dinner like normal and then have a family meeting. Our dinner was good. Then, he had the kids clean the table and then come back to sit at the table and discuss how the day went. After gathering each one of their stories, he told me to get a notebook and take some notes down. Josh is a fabulous father. Lots of fun. Extremely generous. Gracious beyond words. And he teaches them all sorts of things. When he is not happy with how they have treated me, it gets tense. Mack tried to sit by me during the meeting time, even though he always sits by Josh during dinner. I made him move back to his seat. Josh began to lay down the law about their disrespect, their rotten attitudes and the root of it all, which was selfishness. He reminded them to mind their own business and be peacemakers instead of chaos-makers. He told Mack he wasn’t too old for an old fashioned spanking, and Mack immediately started crying. I had to make myself not laugh.
Basically, the deal is:
If you huff or puff or complain to mom or around mom about school, it all shuts down and you have to finish it with dad when he gets home.
If you are selfish with your toys, the toy gets put away immediately and you don’t get new toys for quite a while (they all have extra Christmas money that they want to spend whenever they want..ain’t gonna happen).
If you don’t mind your own business, you go to your room to remind yourself to take care of your own self and stop inserting yourself into other people’s business.
If you put something in the dirty clothes that isn’t dirty, you will get a spanking. Mom does not have time to wash clean clothes and it is just being lazy and disrespectful to throw clean clothes in the hamper simply because you don’t want to hang it back up or fold it back up and put it in the right drawer.
I went upstairs to finish some more laundry and found another apology by Mack beside my bed. He had written it while he was in his room earlier in the day. Ruby also had one that I won’t post…she is getting too old to broadcast what she writes, but it was super sweet and genuine. Here is Mack’s:
He used a shoe box cover.
“I know I have done this before but I am going to do it again….I am sorry for being so bad and greedy.”
Love that kid. I am glad he has such a sensitive heart. I hope he keeps it forever….and I also hope he will share his toys and stay out of other people’s business, too! Here’s to a better finish to the week than how we started!