You know it is going to be an awesome day when the kids fight over the timeout corners. Yes, I have more than one time-out corner in my house. On the first day of spring break my kids spent the morning taking turns standing in the corner. I tried my best to remain calm but by noon I found myself crying in the bathroom questioning my competence as a mother.
I had planned a glorious week of surprises.
I even put together a craft for the kids to do and I am not a craft mom (want to know more about my views on crafts click here.)
Play-dates, cooking, movies, ice cream, swimming, reading books out loud, playing games, and a treasure hunt were on my schedule. However, my children put fighting, name calling, hitting, screaming, back talking, and whining on their list of fun activities for the week. As the week wore on, my dreams of a perfect spring break slowly slipped away.
Weary, I asked my husband for help.
What I wanted to hear from him was, “I am so sorry. Sounds like a really tough day. How about I make dinner tonight and rub your feet for you.” Instead all he said was “Have them pick up sticks.” (want to know more about how to love your husband when he irritates you click here).
Even though my husband’s response lacked sympathy, I had to agree he had a valid point.
>> It was not my responsibility to ensure a fun break for my children; it is their job to create fun.
At 6, 8 and 10 years, they can take responsibly for how they want to spend their time. And if they can’t think of anything constructive to do with their time other than, whine, complain, or fight then I can have some helpful suggestions of my own.
My 3 lists for bored, whiny, or naughty children:
Every two to three weeks fill up a basket with summer reading books. You can get lists of age appropriate books from the library, your kid’s teacher, or check our book list for 2015:
Mighty Boys Book List: Ages 9-12
Mighty Boys Book List: Ages 12-15
Mighty Girls Book List: Ages 6-10
Mighty Girls Book List: Ages 11-14
(I left out our family’s daily expect chores such as make your bed, pick-up your room, feed your animals, wash dishes, and put away laundry.)
Wash the car
Sweep the patio
Wash the floor old school (bucket, rag, hands and knees)
Weed the garden
Weed the yard
Wash the patio furniture
Take the kitchen chairs outside and wash them.
Clean out the garbage cans
Organize the hall closet
Make lunch for yourself and your siblings
Scrub the bathroom tub
Wash the walls
Run around the house 15 times
Make 25 baskets (basketball, not weaving)
Write a story and either act it out or read it aloud to the family at dinner
Plant flower seeds in random places in the landscaping
Design obstacle courses
Make up your own Olympic games
Make an outside zoo using your stuffed animals
Create an ocean city (You may use buckets and/or kids swimming pool)
Make-up scavenger hunts
Play Pirates: design a map that lead to hidden treasure (no you can not bury mommy’s jewelry)
These lists do not guarantee smooth sailing this summer but I am hoping it will decrease my frustrations. Instead of me desperately trying to think of how to handle bored, whiny, fighting kid situations, all I have to do is point to the fridge and say, “Pick one.”
I feel better prepared for summer break, which less than 5 days away. But who’s counting?
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>>If you have another minute, you don’t want to miss Allison’s most popular post right now: Talking About the Birds & the Bees with your HUSBAND!