I wrote this Monday—technically we’re five days in today, so take today’s post, add two, and you’ll know how today went.
Today was day three of summer vacation.
We woke up, saw rain, and chose one of our rainy day field trips for the day–going to a ceramics store to paint piggy banks. Yay! We would go after Leo’s morning nap.
During Leo’s nap, the older boys got in a yelling match over making necklaces. I took the necklace supplies away, as my new policy is: if you fight over it, you lose it.
Then the boys had a snack and Rocco kept driving his Luna bar over towards Vincenzo’s Luna bar so Vincenzo said, “Stop it, Rocco,” so of course Rocco did it again, leading to “Stop it, Rocco,” resulting in another driving Luna bar, prompting a, “ROCCO STOP IT!!” and soon they were yelling and had their Luna bars taken away.
Then they decided to wash the windows in order to earn some video game time. This ended in the loudest screaming match yet, as Rocco was trying to micromanage where Vincenzo sprayed the Windex and Vincenzo was trying to micromanage where Rocco was telling him to spray the Windex. The Windex? Their cloths? Their dreams of playing video games? Gone. Poof.
Leo woke up from all this screaming, so it was time for the ceramics store. And while I didn’t feel they were exactly deserving of it, I had promised, and plus it might change everybody’s mood.
Me: Okay guys, it’s time to go to the ceramics store!
Rocco: NOOOOO! I DON’T WANT TO!
Vincenzo: *crying* *whining* *about I-don’t-care-what*
Maybe I misremember my own childhood, or maybe I have an overinflated memory of myself as a child, but I’m pretty sure if my mom had said it was time to go do something fun that I had told her I wanted to do and she was going to pay for, I would have jumped for joy.
My children are acting like spoiled brats.
Because it is only the third day of summer vacation, I still have enough sanity to not actually call them “spoiled brats.” At least to their faces.
Because it is only the third day of summer vacation, I still have some patience about me.
Because it was only the third day of summer vacation I was able to calmly tell them that there was a change of plans and we were not, after all, going to the ceramics store. In fact, I told them, we are not going on any of our field trips until they figure out how to treat each other with love, kindness, patience, and generosity.
So we stayed home on our third day of summer vacation and made some house rules and we reenacted scenes from the morning, only we gave them nicer endings. The Luna bar stopped driving the first time Vincenzo asked it to stop. The imaginary windows were all rubbed clean while the boys smiled cheerfully at each other. They jumped for joy when I pretend-told them we were going to the ceramics store.
I typed our guidelines up all fancy-like, printed and framed them, and stuck it on the mantle.
Now all we need to do is teach Rocco to read, and we should be good to go.
That the best you got, Summer? BRING IT.*
*Summer, I totally don’t mean that. I am weak. I am foolish. You are almighty and awesome and you look great in skinny jeans. Please have mercy on me and my kids. Take pity.