So much for daydreams. The good news is that my kitchen is clean. I've recently come to a realization about myself. It's this: I'm a little lazy. You see, I've always known that I like I clean kitchen. Most nights most of it gets done, but when it comes to those last few things I quit. I sink myself onto the couch with my crochet or a good book and I'm content to let the rest sit. I hate, hate, hate it when I get up in the morning and the work is already waiting for me (when does that NOT happen when you have a household of 5 people) but I'm lazy enough that I do it. Fine with me.
Really though, the boys are getting good enough that most nights someone helps with dishes, some nights the boys work together and do all the dishes. I love it. I love being the lazy one and still getting the work done.
Here is my philosophy on chores. Want to hear it? Well, you've been reading this long... My thoughts on chores are that the squeaky wheel, it needs to be oiled and worked more. This is what I mean:
Mom: Hey (son), will you gather all the trash from the house and take it out to the bin? Then wheel the bin out to the street. Tomorrow is trash day.
Son: Mooooooom, (falling to the floor) I've been working aallll day. First I had my chore, then I brushed my teeth, then I did all of my school, and now this? *Aren't there child labor laws in WA? Is this slavery?
Mom: Thanks so much for helping me out. I really appreciate it. When you finish that work, and I wrap up the dishes we'll be done for the night! What a relief.
Son: Moooom, are you serious? Do I really have to do all of that? (Beginning of the meltdown) My brothers never have to do anything like that? They just sit around all day playing LEGOS and laughing...do you hear that? They're laughing? They're laughing! And I just have to work, work, work until my legs fall off!!
Mom: Thanks again. (And I walk away thinking, ' and you just signed yourself up for garbage night for the next month or two until you're done whining about the work.)
So it goes. **When that sweet son of mine responds to my request to take out the trash with a "sure" or "ok," then I know he can do that task anytime again without too much fuss. Just gotta break him in. I adapted this method of working my kids to the bone for 8 minutes a week about a year ago, and now my boys are pretty successfully broken in to jumping up to help me with most anything most anytime. I love, love, love it! On occasion we have a meltdown or sudden death due to chores, but it's just on occasion.
So life has been moving pretty smoothly lately. I'm recovering from my near-emotional-crisis that took me from December into February. Thanks, some of you have been checking on me. I'm so loved!
I have gathered seeds and my materials and I need to get my indoor seedlings started. Ralph and I have all these ideas about the yard this year but they just sit in our heads collecting dust. I'm determined to have a veggie garden again no matter what, and I recently ordered a handful of succulents, hens and chicks and lavender for the yard anyway. Maybe our yard progress will be haphazard and unorganized this year but I guess that would just be a repeat of the last few years. No loss. I'm just thankful I have dirt to climb around in and plants to care for, it soothes my soul, getting my hands in the dirt.
It's such a battle to keep from the distraction of busy in today's world. I found it simpler when the boys were young. It seemed ridiculous to sign them up for every activity, but as they get older I have to fight off the ideas that the boys are missing some grand experience of life. For now, we're keeping it pretty calm. We still have karate, which I love largely because the boys have class twice a week within 2 hours on an afternoon. I love it because it's 7 blocks from here and Joe and Nate have ridden bikes alone, or we all ride/ walk together. I love it because classes are in the afternoon and that keeps our evenings open for Community Group and chilling out together at home.
I think kids should just be. They should just be left to their own devices sometimes, or a lot of the time. Leave them outside. Leave them to figure out what to do. Right now I have one kiddo grocery shopping with his dad, two in the back yard ripping apart a broken wooden chair and using the legs as drumsticks. I like that. I like letting them figure out things to do. Sometimes they're destructive and I have to stick my head out there and bring them back down to planet "this stuff is still my parents' stuff," sometimes they get in fights and I help them talk it out. More often not. I want the boys to learn to navigate life. Sometimes they get hurt. I'd rather have them getting hurt in the backyard then on a stupid text-gossip-rumor.
I don't want zombie kids. Pretty sure that apocalypse is closer than we could ever imagine. Zombies, and we're growing them right in our own homes. Just feed them what they want and plug them into the closest electronic device, leave them. Pretty soon they'll be unable to focus in the presence of that orb of light in the sky. They'll be unable to speak and only make noise when their devices are removed or turned off, or heaven forbid...something goes wrong and it turns off.
There is my rant. Seriously, though, I know these zombie-kids because I've come far too near to losing my own boys. A few weeks ago I decided just to turn all that media junk off during the week. Spring is springing and my boys were getting way addicted. They get a few hours over the weekend and I'm so, so happy with the changes around here. Waking up kids!
*these are real quotes from my household
** this really, really does happen, too.
Now that you've reached the end of my blogpost, stop over and feed my fake fishies. They're cute, and I don't think I've fed them for a few months.