Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Sometimes I'm Just a Little Slow on the Uptake

One of my children habitually makes us late out the door in the morning.  This child, like all the others, has been taught some tactics to help us get out sooner and has even done a number of these things and found them successful, but for some reason, refuses to make them into habits.  These things include making a lunch the night before; laying coat, shoes and backpack by the front door before going to bed; laying out clothes for easy dressing in the morning....

This morning, I left said child and drove off to the school with those who were better prepared.

The rule at our house is that you're not allowed to walk to school alone, so here's the quandary....How is this kid going to get there?

This morning, finally, I laid it out.  Here are the three ways getting out the door can happen:
  1. Fed, dressed, wearing a coat and a backpack with a lunch and all required papers inside.  Arriving to school on time.  (The ideal situation.  No?)  This one includes a smiling mother and happy children.
  2. Fed, dressed, wearing a coat and a backpack with a lunch and all required papers inside but arriving late to school.  This would mean two trips up to the school for me (one with those who are in situation #1 above and those who are not).  But, here's the catch....This kind of trip because of stealing my time to take the second drive, will cost in either money or time.  This one also includes smiling mother because she realizes that there will be paybacks, but not so happy children as there is payment to be made.
  3. Possibly not fed, dressed, wearing a coat or backpack or not having all required papers inside said backpack.  This really depends on what kinds of choices that child makes for the morning.  In other words, I'm done nagging and reminding.  If this is the case, school will become a "come as you are" party.  Good times!  My honest hope is that one of my children will choose this just once.  I'm thinking it'd be the last time we'd have a problem.  This option includes smiling mother but possibly cold, hungry and most likely, embarrassed children, who are not happy.
No matter what they choose, mom ends up happy, right?  We can only hope.  I just have to stay on my toes and keep things in perspective.  I also have to keep my nose out of their problems.  This is the plan.

As far as this morning went, this particular child chose option #2.  In discussing the inconvenience of a second trip, the possibilities of paying me in the money that was just received from the tooth fairy just this morning or paying me in work after school, this child chose work.  Haha!  As a side note, this particular kid is not my most diligent worker, so I'm not going to nag with that either.  It will quickly come down to a cash reward for me if there is even one reminder.  There...problem solved for both of us.  So thankful for yesterday's lost tooth.

So, today was our last late day for the year.  It's also the last morning of stressing over their foolish choices in the morning.


Tonya said...

I love your no nonsense way of parenting. It will be a huge blessing to your kids when they get older and know how to be responsible and self sufficient.

Anonymous said...

Julie, can I just say "You're AMAZING!!!" Super great idea! - Lisa C

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