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Friday, March 1, 2013

A Morning Dilemma


This morning I had a parenting dilemma.  Not a big deal, but a dilemma still.  So we had a crazy-as-usual morning.  Breakfast, scriptures, piano practicing, lunch-making are usually on the to-do list before 8:00 a.m.  I did not have any time to get dressed, so I actually drove my kidlets to school in my pajamas (which for me are a t-shirt and yoga pants), with crazy morning hair, and no my no- make-up face.

 I live in a smallish, rural town and I drive my kidlets to a charter school every single day (including taking Baby Girl to kindergarten in the middle of the day.)  It's about a 10 minute drive there and 10 minutes back.  So by the end of the day, I have driven that route 6 times.  I'm pretty used to it, so normally it's okay.

But this morning just as I walked in the door from taking them to school, my cell phone rings.  It was Sweet Tween.  She'd forgotten her science project.  Yep.  The science project that was supposed to be made out of a cookie--you know the kind.  It was the project she had baked, frosted, and decorated all the night before.  It was due in 20 minutes . . . . aaaargh!


I told her I would bring it, but I was not happy about it.  I got into the trusty minivan with cookie project in hand, only to see the gasoline light was on empty.  So now, in my pajamas, crazy hair, and plain face, I was going to get gas too.  The neighbors didn't even recognize me in this state.

So as I'm driving with the cookie project secured in the front seat, I'm having a parenting dilemma with myself.  Should I teach my Sweet Tween and all my kidlets to be more responsible? (This is not the first time this has happened . . . they've all done it.)

I picture a mom in the Hallmark Card commercial.  She would have said with a smile and a hug,"Oh, it's okay, Dearie.  It's just a simple mistake." And sweet music would play in the background.  And then I picture Roseanne Barr saying to her kid, "I'm not bringing it! This will help you remember next time.  Suck it up, kid!"

Which kind of mom am I?  And is either one better than the other?  I don't know.  I end up having to take the cookie project inside the school and up to her classroom.  I'm pretty sure the office ladies did a double-take when I walked in.

I decided that Sweet Tween does need to have some kind of lesson learned from this.  She'll be charged and have to pay me for gas and delivery fees.  It seems like a fair balance between Hallmark Mom and Roseanne.

So think about it?  What would you have done?  If you dare, leave me a comment and give us your ideas too.


6 comments:

  1. You and your infinite wisdom! I definitely think that was a great choice...one I would have not thought of, so thanks for a new way of thinking about punishment and teaching opportunities.

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    1. I don't know if it's infinite wisdom, but it worked for today. Now to face another dilemma tomorrow! Haha!

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  2. When I missed the bus, I had to pay for gas for my dad to take me to school. Same idea. Anna Claire has to do extra chores when she leaves her dirty clothes in our room (after 6 years of reminders). I bet the office ladies did a double-take because you look so good even before you try. ;)

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    1. LOL! Haha, you are so funny! You wouldn't have recognized me, my friend. I like the chores idea too. We use that for when they are fighting (since they have so much energy . . . but it could work for other things like dirty clothes.)

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  3. I had to implement the same policy when we started taking the kids to charter school. We have a deadline of when they have to be ready for school. If they are not ready to walk out the door when I am, I leave them. If they can catch me before I leave the neighborhood (picking up carpool kids...and this is really only for my 5th and 7th graders) then they can still go with me on the free trip. But if I have to make a second trip for any reason, they owe me $4-5. The amount depends on the price of gas at the time. I let them know when prices are going up. They rarely go down. 7th grader recently learned that prices are not negotiable. He especially has learned that it is not worth it to shell out $5 so that he can dink around. I rarely get calls anymore, and when I do, I remind them of the fee and ask them if it's worth it. 99% of the time, they decide that it's not.

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    1. I knew I was in-sync with some good mamas! I'm glad to hear that this idea does work long term.

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