A letter to my mom I’ll never send

Dear Mom,

I love you. I really do. But please, please, please, for the love of me, my sanity, and the few naturally-colored hairs I have remaining, STOP BUYING MY KIDS CRAP!!!

I know, I know, you’re Grandma and grandmas are supposed to spoil their grandkids rotten, but seriously, the floorboards are starting to creak from the weight of all the crap you continue to buy and unload here.

Yes, I know it’s your beeswax what you do with your money and yes, I understand that some of what you bring you got at a yard sale. None of that matters! It’s not about your money, it’s about MY HOUSE. Their little rooms are like a toy battlefield. There’s toys everywhere. I know that you think that’d be handled if I were more organized, but truthfully, I can’t be organized because there’s just too much crap to organize!

My kids are all now past the age where they desire to play with toys all day, so please consider buying them an experience: tickets to a concert or event; a subscription to a magazine; admission to a zoo or aquarium; heck even gift cards to the movies would be preferable to cardboard buildable robots or more pieces of hot wheels track.

When they were little, I forced a grin and accepted the mounds of happy meal toys you’d bring each month, but as I look around at all the new doohickeys that are fun to build, but take up space–I’m looking at you Geckobot–I cringe.

So please, do us all a favor and buy them something consumable–and I don’t mean food! (That’ll be another letter. 😉 )

Love,

Imma B.

 

 

 

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Daily Post Writing Prompt: “Taper”

I have yet to do one of these Daily Writing Prompt so I shall endeavor to join the ranks of the scores of others who do the post.

Here goes. Not really a story…merely an unnecessary fact about me and a new definition!

Sadly for me, when I was 13 my height hit a plateau or a taper, thus leaving this vertically challenged woman at the impressive height of 1/4 of an inch below 5-feet! But if anyone asks, I am 5 feet tall. I don’t care what the measuring stick says. I am 5-feel tall, I tell you.

Hick from the Sticks Definition of Taper:

When wrapping presents for Christmas with the young’uns, we mamas hold our finger on the seam of the paper and say, “Taper up, hon.”

Life enriching, I know and you’re welcome.

Imma B.

 

 

My Clever Son

In my house we have direct consequences for actions. Usually, they’re very definite consequences and I try very hard to tailor them to the action.

In regards to chores, it goes like this: If your chore isn’t done properly, you get to do it again and again until it’s done properly.

When my kids were toddler and pre-school age, this just consisted of at that moment redoing the chore. Now that my kids are a little older (all of mine are in the double digits-  0_o ) the rules are a little more…er…severe. If you didn’t do a good job of your chores today, you get to do that same chore again tomorrow and whoever was supposed to have it, gets a day off.

Example: you don’t get the laundry washed, dried, folded and put away today, you get to do it tomorrow–and if more has accumulated, guess who gets to do it? YOU! With so may bodies in this house, we have to do a minimum of one load per day. It’s how we manage. I’ve tried having “laundry days” they just don’t pan out because Mt. Laundry forms in my mudroom because nobody has time to fold and put it away.

Another example, if we run out of a certain type of clean dish or eating utensil (plate, bowl, spoon, cup, etc) you get to do dishes again the next day.

This sounds mean, but this rule has really helped my boys to stay on top of their chores and not leave things undone so it falls on someone else the next day. Parenting is about teaching your kids responsibility, right?

So, my youngest child, who, I will openly admit is the academic of the family and fully plans to “use his noodle, not his back” when he grows up–meaning quite frankly, he’ll do anything he can to get out of his chores because he hates work has discovered a way to outwit me (or so he thinks!).

Today, I went to open the silverware drawer to get a spoon for applesauce and found this:

Silverware drawer.JPG

Well played, Son. But do you see that nasty stain on the butterknife? That means, you’ll still be doing the dishes again tomorrow! (And I’ll be adding an addendum to my rulebook: real silverware only.)

Love my kids! Gotta stay one step ahead though! 😀

Imma Boy Mom

I’m a Boy Mom–now for anyone who doesn’t know what this term means (my brother-in-law :-p ) it doesn’t mean that I’m a boy who is a mom. No, glad to say, I am not a man. I am definitely a woman. A woman who is a mom to only boys. In fact, if you include the animals, I am the QUEEN OF THIS CASTLE. Living the last 12, almost 13 years without another woman in the house, I’ll be so crass to say there are twenty sets of balls in this house. Both me and the dog only have one set: eyes; because I’m a (cough, cough, cough) lady (cough, cough, cough) and he’s been neutered.

I live in a constant testosterone title wave.

And I LOVE IT!!!

Nothing is greater than being the only female. Sure, you still have cramps which no one else understands and for the most part my guys are so young–and at just the right height–their little heads smack right into my sore, aching bosoms when it’s my time of the month, but I love them so dearly I just turn my head and grimace.

Part of the awesomeness of being a boy mom is I can get away with things those with   daughters sometimes can’t.

For example, nobody questions it when I wear my hair pulled back in a sloppy bun, or worse have a ratty old ball cap on my head. Which is almost all the time. When I do wear nail polish, people are actually so surprised they always compliment the color–even if it has chips after only a few hours. Cutsie shoes? Don’t have ’em and not a problem. I spend my days in sneakers or boots. Makeup is optional and my perfume is buried in the bottom left cabinet of my bathroom, collecting cobwebs.

IT’S GREAT!!!!

As for “mom things” like Target and Pinterest… Never got into those. I was a young mom who struggled in the poverty pit for years, followed by writing a break-out book series and suddenly having a fledging career develop almost overnight that required 12-hour workdays in order to support my deadbeat (now ex) husband and his irresponsible spending. BUT, now that my kids are getting a little older and I’ve given up the life of a slave to my computer AKA an author, I just might find an interest in frequenting Target. I might even branch out and peek inside Hobby Lobby, too!

Pinterest is a little easier to “visit” as I can do that wearing my yoga pants and a faded t-shirt in my living room. And that is exactly what I did an hour ago. I even created a “Boy Mom Board”. If you’re bored and care to check it out, click here as WP is being a doo-doo head and trying to make me upgrade to “business” plan (costing almost $25/month) in order to install the Pinterest plugin. I THINK NOT. At least not until I have more than just my mom reading my posts on a regular basis. 😀

Anyone else here a Boy Mom? What’s your favorite part? Do you ever feel like you missed out on not having a girl?

Is it time for school to start back yet?

Nope.

My kids have been out of school for two weeks and it already feels like an eeeeteeeerrnittttttty!!

If you’re anything like me, you’ve scoured the internet to find them fun things to do. Only, your kid isn’t interested in any of it. That’s my situation. I’ve found dozens of those 100 summer activities for your kids. Most things on those lists require about 3 hours of prep time by me, followed by 10 minutes of activity time of which only about 2 of those 10 are spent happy to be doing the activity by them.

No, thank you!

So here is MY Summer Activity List I came up with for my kids:

 

Imma B.-2

  1. Read a book.
  2. Run around the backyard 10 times and try to beat your previous time with each lap.
  3. Rollerblade around the block from sunrise until lunch time.
  4.  Get on your bike and go ride around the neighborhood.
  5. Use rocks or larger pieces of mulch to be your “walkie talkies” while you pretend to chase down the bad guys. (The imaginary ones, in your head only–let’s not start our own branch of crime prevention in the neighborhood.)
  6. Play a board game
  7. Scribble down the driveway with sidewalk chalk.
  8. Have a water balloon fight.
  9. Swim.
  10. Find a bug and adopt him as your friend.
  11. Make a mud pie or have a mud fight.
  12. Sort, count and roll your spare change.
  13. Pull your younger sibling or a younger neighbor in a wagon.
  14. Walk with a group of friends down to the closest gas station and buy a popsicle.
  15. Have a dance-off with your friends.
  16. Make a voice recording of yourself–and friends.
  17. Have a lip syncing competition with your friends.
  18. Play soccer, football, kickball, baseball, basketball, etc.
  19. Set up an obstacle course in the backyard.
  20. Recruit some kids and play capture the flag.
  21. Draw.
  22. Write a story.
  23. Run through the sprinklers.
  24. Do flips in the backyard.
  25. Hoola hoop or jump rope.
  26. Take your pillow case outside and use it to bunny hop across the back yard.
  27. Create a new game outside.
  28. Read a magazine.
  29. Give the dog/cat a bath.
  30. Make lemonade, popsicles or ice cream.
  31. Find a cardboard box and “sled” down a grassy hill.
  32. Play with your toys (we all know kids have thousands of them).
  33. Make a bracelet with string and beads.
  34. Learn to play a make-shift instrument.
  35. GET OUTSIDE AND USE YOUR IMAGINATION!!!

 

If none of these suggestions entertain your cherub but you don’t want them in front of a screen all day playing games or watching movies, suggest one of the following and they’ll vanish and entertain themselves no questions asked:

  1. Clean your room
  2. Clean the garage
  3. Pick weeds
  4. Mow the lawn
  5. Dig a ditch

You’re welcome. 😀

These might sound a little “old school”, and well, that’s because they are and guess what, they worked! When I was a kid (and I’m not that old!!) I was outside all day long. My mom shooed us outside as soon as the sun came up, sometimes even before, she hollered for us at midday and when we came we found a paper plate with our lunches waiting on the porch. Then it was back to playing until the sun went down. And ya know what? We liked it!

My kids complain that I’m mean or unfair because I limit their screen time. I do play with them, but not all day long. I’m their mom, not their playmate. I have spent several summers planning and orchestrating a fun activity each day and guess what, I’m plumb worn out. Sure, going to the zoo, aquarium, an amusement park or something similar once a summer is a must–but planning a field trip and scheduling their day all day long, every day is not realistic. Not for me, and honestly not for most moms. So if you’re one of those moms who is trying so hard to do different activities all summer long with their kids, but feel like you’re failing. You’re not. It’s a nearly impossible task. They’re kids and they need to learn to entertain themselves. Don’t feel bad about letting them come up with their own ideas or just being bored for a little bit.

Cheers,

Imma B.