Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Ant And The Grasshopper

Before I begin, let me say that I love my children dearly. I love them differently, but dearly. They both have their own unique personalities with their own strengths and weaknesses and I'm learning to accept that.
With that said...
The ant and the grasshopper fable suits my boys well! I won't name names, but it's very clear that one is very task oriented. Though he is playful, he knows when to get down to business. He can be depended on to get finished or make progress without a dozen reminders and warnings. The other is very playful, always enjoying an opportunity to act out a scene with his action figures or sneak in a few minutes of reading from his comic books. Let's say he has a real zest for life. He needs to be reminded to do things he full well knows to do (repeatedly) and is rarely prepared. It's kind of funny to watch, because they're from the same environment. No matter how many times I fuss, nag, yell, praise, redirect, correct, it doesn't change.
The challenge for me as we progress into a new stage of parenting is to accept it. The whole nature vs. nurture argument is right here before my eyes. Their personalities have been nurtured to a certain extent, but at their core many aspects of their personalities are innate. While I can help them play up their strengths and work on improving areas of weakness, I am not God. They are who the are, and that's who they'll be.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Proof is in the Pudding

If the saying is true, I've got dibs on the first bite! This was our first week back from Christmas break and it went pretty smoothly. I surprised myself; I was very productive. Slightly grumpy, but productive.

Piano lessons and basketball practice resumed this week. MC started piano lessons, and unlike his big brother he was eager to practice. He even requested that I make a piano bag for his books, "with pianos on it, that says, 'I Love Music!'" That gave me a warm fuzzy. It only lasted a few minutes, because they soon started arguing.

JB is entering the teasing and taunting phase. The phase that most likely caused an otherwise docile classmate to haul off and assault another classmate with a rock (to the eye) at recess. I don't like this phase. I especially don't like the permanent smirk plastered on the faces of little boys in this phase.

Returning to school also means homework hour resumed this week, as well. The dreaded homework hour, and it's literally about an hour, probably has me calling on Jesus more than the average challenge. The funny thing is, you'd think as a certified teacher I wouldn't have trouble with this. But, as with every other area of childrearing, I feel personally responsible for clearing the mud. The teachers usually only send home five minutes worth of homework, but when a child is able to whiz through that sheet yet give the "alien stare" when asked a question worded differently...Houston, we have a problem! I make a habit of pulling out additional work that either reviews or reinforces what they are doing in class. This seems to work, but like everything's a lot of work.

Nothing could have ever prepared me for all of the work that comes along with being a mother. This isn't a complaint...just a fact. I wonder if I will ever have another moment of rest (on this side of Glory). I hope to, one day, but realistically I know it may be a fantasy.

If the proof really is in the pudding, I want some velvety, mousse like pudding. I also want to be sure to get the first bite!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

All Good Things Must End

Well Christmas break is over. As we get geared up for the second half of the school year, I'm hoping for better organization and a better attitude. One can hope, right?
Our first week off was pretty busy, but our second week was slow...very slow. I'm glad we had the down time, even if it meant lots of fighting and complaints of being bored. Unscheduled time never hurt a soul!
Tomorrow I'm going to try very hard NOT to do a happy dance when I drop the boys off. Despite the never ending to do list, I'm going to have a me day! I think I'll see what's playing at the theater and maybe treat myself to a blueberry muffin (my favorite).
The theme for the year is: Make time for what matters most. Instead of bogging myself down in mindless busyness, I want to focus on what really matters. I once read that you should categorize issues in one of three categories: 10 seconds, 10 minutes, 10 years. If the circumstance will be insignificant in 10 seconds it's not worth another thought; 10 minutes, consider it; 10 years, it's worth fretting about.
I'm going to try to remember the 10-10-10 rule and maybe I'll save myself some grief.

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