Posted in Parenting, Personal

Surviving the Teen Years

 

Hello everyone. I hope all is well with you. I’ve been busy this week with kid duties and writing. Although, I had to take a break for a couple of days because I got stuck on how to continue my story. On the second day, I went for a run and wouldn’t you know it, all I needed was some physical activity. The plot bunny worked itself out.

Then I got my first MS back from my friend/mentor, Sam, who’s finding all my little peccadillos for me. She truly is amazing and I love her! So, I’m planning on diving into that tonight and making my story that much more awesome!

Photo on VisualHunt

But enough about that. I struggled to come up with a topic for today’s post, but while in the shower, I thought of one and so without further ado, here it is.

I know it’s hard to believe but my kids love to push my buttons. They love to get under my skin, and they will take every opportunity to do it. For example, I hate it when someone burps or makes the farting noise at the dinner table. So of course, my boys do this every chance they get. I’ll be sitting there eating my dinner and one of them will start with the fart noise. I’ll look up from my plate and they’ll both be giggling. Here’s a typical scenario.

“Okay. Who did that?”

The boys will look at each other and start giggling harder. “We don’t know,” they’ll cry in unison. I’ll look at hubby, but he’s no help whatsoever because he’s laughing, too.

“Knock it off. You know I don’t like that sound at the dinner table.”

They’ll grow quiet until I look down at my plate again and that’s when another healthy fart sound will ripple through the atmosphere. Of course, things only get worse from this point on.  Every time I look down at my plate one of my little cherubs will rip an even louder one than the last time.

Photo credit: juhansonin on VisualHuntCC BY

I didn’t know what to do and many a meal has been ruined for me because of the shenanigans of these two adorable scalawags. Then one day I had an epiphany. I could be just as irritating to them. Instead of me getting all upset and ornery, why don’t I get on their last nerve like they get on mine? The light bulb in my mind turned on. I knew of a way to do it.

So the next day, while at the dinner table the little tricksters started in with their fart noises. I was  twirling spaghetti around my fork when one of them sent the fart sound out into the atmosphere. I immediately dropped my eating utensil and stood up and started singing.

Photo credit: screenpunk on Visual hunt / CC BY-NC

Yes. Singing. I started belting out the lyrics to the song “You are my sunshine.”

Photo on Visualhunt

After all, we could all use a little more sunshine in our lives, right? 😉

My boys’ reactions were instantaneous. They both covered their ears and started wailing. “Stop! Stop singing!”

And that’s when I was able to negotiate a deal. I told them I wouldn’t sing if they wouldn’t burp or make disgusting fart sounds. They agreed.

I will add a little side note here. My boys loved my singing when they were babies. I used to sing them to sleep. As soon as they entered the murky waters of the tween and teen years, they turned and no longer enjoy my musical talent.

See how quickly a liability can turn into an asset? It’s all in how you use it. Am I right or am I right?

You’re welcome. We parents need to stick together so we can all survive the teen years.

Photo credit: Kevin Rheese on VisualHunt.com / CC BY

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post today. Do you have any parenting tips you’d like to share? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

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Posted in Family

Success! We made it through the first Week of School!

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. The first week of the new school year is under our belt at the Orchard household. It seemed to go smoothly and there were no tears the first day.

I interpreted this as a good sign, although I’ve found something very interesting. Boys don’t seem to like school as much as girls do. I remember when I was younger I loved school, getting back together with friends and buying new school clothes. Unfortunately, my boys don’t have the same attitude.

Therefore, I tried to find out why and this is what I’ve found:

My boys don’t like the structure of school. They love being able to choose what they want to do with their time and when they want to do it.

I’ve also found that they think school is boring. They’re not interested in what the teacher is teaching them. This is unfortunate because these are the years where they learn the building blocks they’ll need for future endeavors when they will be interested in learning.

These are the two main issues that we’re facing right now. To combat this I’ve tried to find books the boys enjoy reading. I was fairly successful in getting them to read every day for at least ten to twenty minutes over the summer (minus vacation time). The books they enjoyed were “The Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series, “The George Brown Class Clown” series, and  “The Michigan Chillers” series.

 

I know some of the books at school are outdated and the topics don’t interest my boys. You know how boys are they want to hear about burping, farting, and anything funny. 🙂

I wish the school day could be a little more flexible for my kids. I’ve always given them choices and I feel that if kids were able to choose when they did math as opposed to being told to do math, we might see some happier boys at school. I know this is hard to do with thirty students in a classroom, but it’d be interesting to see if it worked.

I’ve also heard of schools that are geared more toward boys. One school near me takes the kids on walks to view nature and discuss science. They also spend a tremendous amount of time outside, which I find beneficial for boys.

These are just a couple of ideas I had. What do you do when your child doesn’t want to go to school? Do you have any tricks that work for you? I’d love to read them so leave a comment!