My Basil Moment

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It’s not always with my daughter when I’m my most crazy. On the first day of my 9 year old’s grounding of all things electronic, I had to venture to Benbrook to pick something up while she was at school. And by Benbrook, I mean the other side of the free world.

Since I had no idea where exactly I was going I had to use my GPS, and special thanks to the complete failure of my cell provider, my GPS kept going out on me. It went out right before I was to exit the toll road so I missed the exit. This resulted in my paying more fines. So thanks for that! I won’t mention any names, but it rhymes with B-Smobile.

I finally get to the general area where Benbrook is only to find out that now there is more of it. The expansion of this sleepy town has exploded. I passed a street called Calf Pasture (no..I really did!) only to find that there is no longer any cows. Or pastures. They’ve all been paved over and there are houses now.

As I’m on this windy road that I was quite sure would take me somewhere to Austin if I wasn’t careful, my GPS had failed again as I went over a hill and the road dead ended. Not only did it dead end, but it ended at a railroad track. That in of itself isn’t a bad thing. However, as I sat there looking at the railroad track I realized it had no desire to get out of my way.  I had no idea how to get to where I needed to go.

I had no paper maps since I let my daughter draw on them when she was 4. I didn’t print anything from Map Quest. I was stuck, and that’s when I had my tantrum.

It looked something like this:

It was not my proudest moment, and I’m sure my phone really wasn’t bothered.  However, I felt better.  While I’m certain my tantrum didn’t make the train move, I’d like to think it did because the train moved right after and I was able to get on my way.  I finally found the house I was looking for.

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Homework!

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My daughter doesn’t realize this, but I’ve actually been torturing her with homework since she was about three. Sure it looked different and it was a lot more fun, but it was still technically homework. Every time I played with her, it was secretly homework time. All those bed time stories? Those were homework, too.

However, it was while she was in kindergarten when I realized that homework would be a complete pain in the ass.  She proclaimed to me one day while I went all Reading Specialist on her that I was her mom, not her teacher.

Fast forward to 3rd grade and I have to now assert all my hideousness in our homework routine.   That’s the key folks.  If you want to be a complete horrible monster when it comes to homework you CANNOT under any circumstances let them do the following:

  • Turn on the TV
  • Go to their room
  • Look at your phone

I know that a lot of you are thinking that the TV is background noise.  WRONG!   It’s not.  Not when you’re a child who hasn’t learned how to filter out things while doing something tedious.   And really, who can filter things out like that?   When I’m paying bills or doing something else I don’t want to do, will it help me if I’m watching Dr. Who?  Hell no it won’t!   I’ll completely miss my deadline and just keep hitting play.   Mastercard can just wait.  What can’t wait in that instance is Ten looking all…well, Ten like.  (Sorry Non-Whovians.)   If I do this and I’m an adult who knows better, do you really think a child can tune out PBS?

I know what you’re thinking about number two on my list.   To be truly horrible and hideous you can’t even let them go to their room!   This is where they will trick you.   You’ll think that they are just going to be doing something helpful like feeding their fish, or putting their laundry away.  No.  Believe me when I say this, they will be sneaking some sort of electronics under their bedspread and try to hack into your wifi account to buy new games for their Nook.   Lucky for me, I don’t even know my wifi password!  If I don’t know it, you can bet my kid can’t figure that bad boy out!   This act will get you hated through dinner time, but trust me.  NO BEDROOM!

It shouldn’t be rocket science, but number three is very important.  If you’re distracted by your phone and fooling around with the monstrosity that is Facebook Messenger, your kid will see and, all of a sudden, will fake doing homework while you’re distracted.   Then you’ll check it later and realize it’s all wrong and then the real nastiness ensues.   My favorite homework tantrum this week was when she threatened to tear up her paper.  I shrugged and just said, “It’s your grade.”   She then defiantly slammed her paper on the table and told me I was hideous.

Heed my advice, please.  Save yourselves the headaches.   Have them come home, sit at the table, and get busy.   And rest assured, you WILL be hideous because they will cry and throw a complete 2 year old tantrum over missing their favorite show because they have science homework!

Just yesterday, it was proclaimed to all who would listen that I’m ruining my daughter’s life because I have her get her homework before we go ride bikes.

Don’t you want to be a bad mom?

Since I’m the most hideous of all moms ever created, I thought maybe you’d like to join my club.  If you’ve been sitting around being the greatest mother in all creation, you’re missing out!   Stop sipping on your wine and being your kid’s best friend and follow this basic rule:

Say no!    Do it often and do it with conviction.   When you’re standing in the check out aisle in Target and it’s close to dinner time and your kid starts complaining about everything and wanting chips and soda because they are hungry, don’t give in.  It’s that simple.   Will they cry and call you hideous?  Yes.  Will they stomp their feet and proclaim that you’re the meanest creature on the planet?  You bet!   Will other mothers look at you with disdain?  Possibly.  Should you care?  No.  You know that you live less than 10 minutes away from Target, and you can get home to actual real food before your child dies of hunger.   You know this and so does  your child.    While you may be tempted to give it, don’t do it.  Not even once.

Just don’t let them see the Snicker bar you snuck in the basket to eat later when the children are in bed.

“You don’t care about my happiness!”

I don’t care about my daughter’s happiness anymore.  Allegedly.  In my defense, however, when your 9 year old gets angry at your phone because it’s stuck due to the space hog Facebook Messenger and consequently throws your phone across the room out of anger, you have no choice but to put your own phone in Time Out. I’ll be honest.  I want to throw my phone sometimes, too.  It happened the other night when the GPS completely rendered my battery useless.  I wanted to throw it across the room and curse out Samsung, Google Maps, and the makers of my battery.  I didn’t though.  This is partly because it was my fault for actually using my GPS in my own hometown.  Well a lesser suburb really.  How was I to know people actually lived that far South of Fort Worth?   Still, I didn’t throw my phone.  I didn’t have a tantrum.  Nor did I panic when I realized I was practically in another county without a reliable phone or its charger.  I didn’t do any of those things because I am an adult. I can hear my phone dinging now in the other room.  It’s clearly unstuck.  However, my daughter is now quiet in her bed.  I still hear her mumbling that I’m the worst mom ever.    Hopefully in her dreams she’ll remember that we also laughed today, but for now I’m okay with being the worst mom ever in the history of moms.  I believe in boundaries and consequences.