last night the hubs had a cometojesus meeting with the kids to discuss their piginess. the boy (who's 11) is the the disaster king. he moves from room to room leaving a trail of books, shoes, toys, dishes in his wake. we have discussed this over and over again. the girl (13) isn't quite as bad about this...but she does tend to nest in one spot and turn it into a pig sty. while the hubs touched on this issue, reiterating that even though i am home during the day this does not mean i am the maid (thank you very much), his main focus was their bedrooms.
each kid gets $5 a week and for that they are to keep their rooms clean, put their laundry away, feed the cats/dogs and clear off the table each night after dinner. the do not keep their rooms clean; they put their laundry away after i've told them 2-3 times; the girl feeds the cats in the morning but the boy only feeds the dogs if told to on the weekends (i do it otherwise); they do clear of the table.
this could have been a relatively simple conversation. part of it is our fault because we don't enforce these rules and there are rarely consequences for not doing them. the hubs laid down the law last night. you will clean your rooms. that would have been it. but....the girl got sassy.
"why do we have to clean our rooms, nobody sees them?" she asked with that tone in her voice, you the one.
"because you should take pride in your room." the hubs said, calmly but forcefully.
"you want me to take pride in a ROOM?" she asked, like he'd just told her she had two heads or something.
i raised my eyebrows, shocked that she was taking this dangerous path. the hubs looked at me like, oh no the hell she didn't.
"yes, i want you to take pride in your room. would you not take a shower and go to school in dirty clothes?" he asked.
"yeah, i would. it's not like anyone would pay attention anyway." she said in that insolent, goth, emo persona she reverts to when she is pinned in a corner or pissed or upset. (ok, so more and more often.)
the hubs voice raises a little, he's not yelling, but he's being stern. the australian shepherd starts going nuts. she gets ansty when there is tension in the house, i kid you not. she prances around and wants outside and jumps up on your lap (she is not a lapsized dog) she has even jumped on the back of the recliner to lay her head on my shoulder before.
there is more back and forth, the hubs' blood pressure is rising. the girl is sitting in the recliner, acting all dismissive and nonchalant when she's not spewing forth disrespect. the boy is standing in front of the hubs at attention almost (on his own, not because he was told to) and quiet tears are running down his face. he does not back talk. i think if anything he's learned it's a bad idea from his sister.
the hubs lays the smack down on them....no tv and no computer until the rooms are clean. they have until sunday afternoon. this is gracious plenty time because seriously, if they just went in there and spent a solid hour, maybe two, those rooms would be military spotless. but of course it never works that way. they drag it out.
cut to today afterschool. the girl had to stay after for her leadership club. the boy got home, i reminded him no tv, no computer and i'd be back in 10 minutes. i picked up the girl, tried to make small talk and she answered me in clipped tones. when we pulled in the driveway she sat in the car doing her homework for nearly an hour. i let her. the only thing she said on the way home was that she knew they needed to clean their rooms but why did we have to pick on them the night csi was on and she was going to use her stay up an extra hour pass?
the hubs gets home, the kids are sitting at the table. i know their thoughts. they're thinking if they are sullen and dejected enough the hubs will cave. he stands firm. they go to clean their rooms. the girl comes out in 20 minutes and says she's done and wants the hubs to check it. he asked her if she was sure it was clean. she got huffy AGAIN and said "well we don't know what your standards are!" (this is a stall tactic because they both know what i expect of a clean room, we've been over it a million times) there was more back and forth. they continued cleaning. she then reverted to something she has not done since she was in kindergarten and got in trouble.....the dramatic sobbing as loud as she can from her room, ensuring that we will hear her. we ignored it.
during dinner she hung her head, was silent and still sobbing quietly.
the hubs got hard ass on her and made her go to the boys' karate class with him tonight rather than having the extra time to clean her room. she will be bored to death. and pissed. he warned her, several times, that the disrespect and surliness and attitude will not win her this battle. he warned her that he can make her life much more miserable than she can make his.
and so readers....i think we will be having a battle of wills this weekend at chez creative kerfuffle.
my sil just made me fucking day with this bit of info....but it also serves as an example of just how freaking small the world is, even on the interwebs.
a friend of hers on fb made a comment on someone else's fb page and my sil recognized the names as being someone at the hubs' company. omfg---the hubs' lucky-sperm-boy boss's wife has a douchey blog. ok. i will be nice because i'm sure if i were her friend i wouldn't think it is douchey, but, i looked down her list of blogs and they are douchey too. again. so mean and snarky of me but these are....how can i put this....uncool mommy blogs. let me explain. of course those of us who blog and have kids write posts about our little hellions from time to time. some brave souls even post pics of their spawn and are themselves...right out there on their blogs (unlike me who hides behind this ck facade). anywho...the boss's wife uses her full name and posts a jillion pics of her kids and that's pretty much all she talks about. oh, and? how HARD her husband works! i seriously think the hubs might have a coronary when i show him that post. boss dude is the poster boy for a SLACKER; does not work regular hours (and if his wife thinks he's working hard where the hell does he spend all of his time?); he's on vacation all the time (and there are pics on her blog to prove it). oh....i could go on and on. but it just brings me joy that she has a public blog and i can lurk on it and then snicker at her. from afar of course.
Sigh. You should see my child's room.
I can't relax in a room that's a mess. The strange thing is that no matter how often the clean their room, I go in the next day and it looks like it did before they cleaned it.
As you can see, it's an issue here too.
Our kids are 21 and 18 and live at home so we can afford to send them to the local college.... which means I shut their doors before my hubs comes home to avoid the edgy energy that will send our border collie into a bundle of nerves.
Also, my cursor is all over that last paragraph trying to find a link to the douche blog...
The room thing is a huge issue here. I want my kids to have respect for their things, plus respect for the fact that their father and I clean the rest of the house, clothe them, feed them, take them places. But the battle sometimes isn't worth it. Of course, if I clean their room and then they trash it, what have I bothered to do it for?
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