Summer in Westerville started before Memorial Day, so it’s been about five months of summer so far to date. “Mom time” that is…
And through the fun filled summer sun soaked days of great activities and non-stop madness, I can pause and take a bit of time to rest and reflect. There have been some proud moments for me as a mother, and then there were some not so proud moments I will truthfully admit.
I will start with my proud moments, because we moms always like to brag about how awesome we are, right?
1. I built a kick A– fort with my kids the other day, which they are sleeping in now for the second night in a row! I caught my kids carrying up the HUGE full-length cushion from our couch upstairs, one on each side of the thing trying to hoist it up the staircase. At first I was all, “WHAT ON GOD’S GREEN EARTH ARE YOU DOING???” And then I was all, “WAIT….let me help get this up there. And I have some ideas! We could put it up over here and then the other cushion there and go get the king size sheets and comforters and blankets and pillows and we are gonna build a fortress NO ONE has seen before!!!” Thirty minutes later, I stood looking at my creation as my kids squealed with delight ready to put every toy they owned inside. Yippee for them! And I bought myself a full hour of peace for me while they played in it with their toys. Unfortunately, the hour was spent on making calls to doctors and more doctors to get records sent to another doctor. But hey, it was quiet so I am not complaining or anything.
2. I have officially “adopted” a few kids at the pool this summer. Apparently they are dropped off for the day until closing and are in desperate need for things like attention, food, and a swimming instructor, as they did NOT know how to swim a month ago. They are sweet as can be and it makes me sad to think of them at the pool all day when we are not there. They are my additional children, and I am proud to call them mine when we go to the pool.
3. The very first days of summer I made a checklist for my kids to complete every day. I filled it with chores, summer school work, reading, and daily expectations. I have made these every summer to ensure some sort of structure and productivity fills our days and weeks. I am proud to share that I had it all together with workbooks and reading books lined up, along with appropriate chores given out. With each successfully checked day, they would get a sticker. As the days go by, the stickers get bigger toward the week’s end. I gave them a choice; to either have weekly rewards or a big reward at the end of the summer. With some serious negotiating, they agreed to the BIG reward at the end. (I’m all for that- much easier maintenance and DADDY can take them to the water park…WIN-WIN I say!) Am I on the ball or WHAT?
4. I cleaned my house. I know that may sound redundant and silly to claim as a proud moment, but as always, there is a story behind it. My hubby got me an Eversave coupon for a full house cleaning for my birthday LAST summer. I was THRILLED because there is nothing finer then watching someone else do all the work…. Especially the dirty work. I waited for that perfect season where you can let the house go because the CLEANING PEOPLE are coming. I knew I would use it in the spring- because spring is always crazy and I could let the house go while I ran around with all the end of the year activities and such. It killed me to not dust, clean the floors, clean the toilets, etc… as the weeks unfolded, but I knew in time the house would be transformed into the sparkling clean this cleaning company claimed. After trying to call their number and finding out it’s not in service, I googled them and emailed them to set up an appointment. After a bit of a run around, our date was set. Tuesday after Memorial Day weekend! A perfect LAUNCH to our summer! YAY!
They never showed. I emailed them and the email came back failed delivery. Can you believe it?
So I stewed in my dirty house for days and days until I finally couldn’t stand it anymore. And cleaned it myself. One big UGH.
Now on to some not so proud moments…
1. I told my kids on more than one occasion that I really really really wanted to hit them. (I didn’t, but it felt really good to say it.)
2. You know that awesome checklist I made for my kids? Well, our first week, we were on FIRE with it. And now? The second sheet for both of my kids still lies blank on the table just waiting for someone to check something off. Very sad. Hoping that maybe tomorrow we start again. Hoping.
3. I ate waaaay too much cake at too many graduation parties. I mean three, maybe four pieces a party too much. I went to five different parties. Five times four is twenty. Twenty pieces of cake give or take a few. Some I lost count. Others I may have stopped because people were watching. My kids know how I am about cake. They always ask for more when they see me take more. I say no. They say “but why mommy? YOU get to eat lots more pieces of cake and we only want one more piece.” It really humbles me in a crowd.
4. Last but not least: I was up waay too late and still in sound slumber one morning, when my son comes in to wake me and tells me he is very very hungry. He had probably been up for a few hours, seeing as he sometimes is a very early riser. I moan and grumble and mumble, “get it yourself” and slide back into dream state. After tossing and turning out of my beautiful deep rem state, I go downstairs feeling a bit guilty of indulging in almost eight hours of a possible full sleep cycle, I see my poor kid just getting into the fridge with his hand on the full gallon of milk to pour onto his cereal. This gallon probably weighs more than he does. I immediately grab the milk from his shaking hand and pour it for him. I notice chairs moved to the pantry so he could reach the cereal boxes while standing on them. I now remember that in my sleepy state, he said he really wanted cereal. That was the second time he came back begging for help. I thought I diverted him with the old standby of “get a treat instead” trying to buy just a few more minutes in my bed. Apparently, the kid really wanted breakfast, and (blows me away) he did not go for the treat after all. Ouch.
Maybe I should have ended with the proud moments, come to think of it.
Lol, I can so relate to some of your not so proud moments. My boy is quite often an early riser and I too have offered a treat for sleep and I have had major Mom guilt when I see the things in the kitchen (like your chairs moved around) and realized they had to fend for themselves while I slept. We are teaching them a little independence though and that’s a good thing, right? Lol. 😉
My girl would tell you (in response to a hit you comment) something along the lines of “go for it and I’ll hit you back harder!” lol.. 🙂
Oh I love it! Thanks for making me feel better!! And oh I can’t wait for that response to soon come from my girl!!! Ugh…
Haha, well as you know she’s not quite 5 yet and is already tough and doesn’t take crap from anyone so her teen years shall be interesting.. Hehe. 🙂 (p.s. I didnt want to use my real name but im sure youve figure out who “me” is)
Oh and way cool of you to adopt the two pool kids, no doubt you’re a highlight of their summer. 🙂
NOW I know who “me” is!!! I am soooo SOOOO happy you commented!!! I love that about your little one! You will never have to worry about her taking care of herself…and for that you will be BLESSED!!! So glad you posted again so I could figure out it was YOU!!!! 🙂
Please don’t beat yourself up. We, as Mother’s, are not perfect and are allowed to be selfish at times. Know that many of us are guilty of just the same things! Ask my boys! lol They get their own breakfast every morning w/out both…ering me now. On a positive note, it teaches them to be self sufficient! As far as the check list…great attempt. Kudos to you! Am I doing it? No, but I probably should. I do make them do chores every day before we go to the pool, which they are getting bored of. Can you believe that? How do kids get bored of the pool?
Thanks so much Lisa!!!! How funny about being bored at the pool. I used to LIVE at the pool every day all summer for my entire childhood and never got bored! But those days are long gone for kids I suppose. God forbid my children have to spend much of the day at home doing “nothing”….really? Because I could have SWORN they had thousands of dollars of toys just waiting to be played with!! Geesh! We had to play outside til the moon came out and not with any toys- but with the trees and the yards and did JUST fine!
Those kids have an awesome Mom! Don’t ever doubt that fact! I can picture the little guy trying to reach the cereal and milk (so sweet!) Maybe the cereal can be moved to a lower shelf!
That stinks about the cleaning company — dislike button!
Thanks so much marcia!!! Coming from a great mom yourself, I appreciate the compliment!!! GREAT idea about the cereal being moved. I have the treats on the low shelf! HA! Thought that was good planning, but apparently not!
The good far outweigh the not so good! Thinking about summer checklist rewards, I sure have been there done that! Thinking back to doing this Jennifer at that age, the long-term reward never seemed to work without little daily and/or weekly rewards to spur her on and tide her over for the BIG reward, and sometimes ended up re-negotiating and completely ditching the long-term reward in favor of seeing some action! Adopting the kids at the pool is so YOU Chrissy! Your kindness & attention, and your sunscreen & snacks – your mothering – you will never know how much of an impact this will have on those kids! Because of you, their summer will be much more fun and much less lonely! They won’t soon forget!
Aw thanks so much Diana! Those words make me smile and are so encouraging! I agree that the small more immediate rewards are probably the only thing that will motivate the kids. I probably need to do both! Back to the drawing board!!! lol
Lynn hampton says
You know I can relate! Lol! Life is crazy! You are an awesome mama!
Yes I know you can relate!!!! lol 😉 Right back at ya honey!!!!
Hehe…yesterday I told my oldest I was going to punch him in the face if he didnt shut up…excellence in parenting. All of that as my peaceful newborn was nursing. Sometimes I reek of hillbilly white trash!! But then I rub their backs as we snuggle during family movie night and cover them up when I go to bed at night…hopefully when they are seated in the therapists office, I will have given them enough material!!
Ha! I totally have the visual of you nursing and saying that to him!! HILARIOUS! But how sweet that you always, in the end, love the HECK out of those children!!!!
Hey- I saw that cool fort and the look on their faces when they just HAD to show me how cool it was! Being spontaneous and going with the moment like that is what makes for excellent parenting. And I am laughing my head off that you actually told them you really wanted to hit them… how real!!! We all say things at times we regret… and we are human.Summer is awesome – but it tests parents beyond belief. That’s why as a teacher I know parents appreciate us a little more in the summer when entertaining and finding new ideas for what kids should do is always a challenge!!
You NAILED it! I find myself asking at times, “when does school start again????” They have slept in their fort every night since Monday! They play in it every morning too! Best “investment of my time” yet this summer!!
Fun post to read Chris! Except that your NOT so proud list is really not that impressive. I could do much better… 🙂 yes, simple solution, 1/2 gallons milk and cereal on lower shelf will buy you an extra hour of sleep every morning!!
I’m waiting!!!…. Comon now! Spill the shame!!! Make me feel better about my parenting! TRUMP me!!! LOL Yes- must move cereal and definately buy the half gallons…. 😉
Oh my that fort was just the best fort ever, even better than the forts I made with my bother when I was younger. Their faces just glowed with joy as they were telling me the background to the best fort on this universe.
Reading about his difficulties on that bright and early morning just reminds me of when my mom would stay up writing more and more poems so late that early in the morning we would somehow be “starving” and want food now, but my mother didn’t want to budge. We very quickly learner how to climb on the countertops being that moving chairs were way too loud. These kids are so lucky to have a mom to feel the guilt and actually climb out of bed and help them get their long awaited breakfast. I wonder how long it will take you to know who this is?
I KNOW WHO THIS IS!!!!!!! You CUTE SWEET PRECIOUS thing!!! How come God made you so amazingly special??? Your light just never stops shining now does it? Thanks for your AWESOME comment!!!!!! I bet you and your brother had awesome forts too!!! 🙂
Such an honest and REAL post. I get it all. Every moment. And totally relate. Great work here! 🙂
Thanks sooo much Ashley for taking the time to read and post a comment!!! You KNOW how much that means to me!!! Especially since you are getting more and more busy with your blog!! 🙂 Remember us little ones in your fame!! lol
Angie VanKannel says
Nobody can chow down cake quite like you!!!!! I’m guilty of letting my kids sleep too late. I’m up every day at 6:15 & so enjoy the quiet that I put off waking them later & later. Then get frustrated w/they stay up too late at night!!
Why yes my friend!!! You have been witness to many birthday parties and many many pieces of cake devoured by yours truly!!!! HA! Enjoy the quiet and summer is the perfect time to play late and sleep in for the kids! 🙂