Monday, October 3, 2011

Well, we tried...

Conference weekend, we decided that it would be a good idea to just be home and be lazy around the house. Let the kids play, build forts, play dough, bikes, friends, etc.

Ideal Friday night- get treats for a movie, and all cuddle up as a family and giggle and laugh at a silly movie, until all the kids fell asleep and they would be quietly carried to bed.

Actual Friday night- I got off work late and was annoyed that DoDa and Tage had been hanging out while Lulu and Bobo, were still at Day Care. (whole nother post...) I suggested that Tage pick up the kids and take them to pick out treats and I would meet them at home, make some dinner and we could then watch a movie. I ended up pulling up as they were pulling out of the daycare and so I jumped in and we all headed to the store together. Normal whining insued as we debated over what we were going to get for dinner. Then we all ate dinner on the front porch, while I finished the dishes that I had been neglecting for the past week. Kids ended up playing at the park til it was dark, then we started a movie. There had been a few episodes an Lulu's back talk which had made everyone on edge. That, coupled with her constant wiggles during the movie which caused Bobo to be kicked and Tage to be dodging crazy feet, only added to the annoyance. Bobo finally fell asleep. Crazy legs went to bed angry that she didn't get her story because it was too late.

Ideal Saturday- Sleep in, while kids giggle down the hall. I get up and make Conference Crepes, and Lulu's friends comes over for a play date. We watch conferenence while the kids run around the neighborhood. Then go to the splash park. Turn a movie on for the kids while we watch the 2nd session, then head to grandmas to play while the boys go to priesthood session. We would come home and let the kids sleep in the fort.

Actual Saturday- Now that I'm writing this, after the fact. Our day went very much as planned. Except Tage got called in at 3am and ended up sleeping in til 10am. Which worked out to be okay, anyway. So the day went as planned, but ended with the kids not falling asleep in the fort, and asking for another movie around 10pm. They were all exhausted and I could tell the sleepover was not going to work as planned. I said sorry, it's too late and sleeping in the fort isn't working. So, everyone needs to get in bed. You'd think I had just told them all that I was going to cut their toes off! Dramatic crying with an exagerated shortness of breath progressed to " I hate you" and kicking things around the room. Then comes Tage, puting Lulu in her bed and stating the rule of back talk. I, regretably, take his assitance personally as though I'm not capable of handling the situation. And then we end up inserting ourselves in the middle of what was a simple outburst from little kids' disappoinment. Tage went straight to bed, and I fell asleep in front of the TV. SO SO DUMB....

Ideal Sunday- Sleep in, wake up to kids giggling down the hall. Family breakfast together. Sit quietly and watch conference, while the aroma of cookies in the oven fills our peacefull, spirit filled home.

Actual Sunday- Emotions still run high from the prior, "no fort sleepover" outburst. Everyone is on edge with every whine, or misbehavior. Lulu continues to push every button, and takes every opportunity to back talk, or boss her little brothers around. (correcting years of poor parenting habits, that have led to bad behavior habits, is exhausting!) I, in turn take every opportunity to defend, and point out good behavior. I look for anything that resembles good, to try to insure myself that I'm not an utter failure as a parent. This continues to put Tage and I in the middle of a child war zone. We finally talk a few things out, get to watch the 2nd portion of conference....with continued conversations of "go to your room. We don't talk like that. Go back to your room, we don't act like that. Again, take another break until you can be more pleasant to be around." We end up with a pleasant evening with family.

Kids are going to continue to be kids. Parenting is going to continue to be challenging, frustrating, and exhausting. I need to figure a way to find more of the rewarding happy moments of parenting.

How easy one forgets that these frustrating moments still existed in my previous life, and my single life. It's so easy to blame and point fingers at the one person that is different in my life. But, as I said a quick prayer in my heart tonight, I was brought back to a moment...As Bobo was yelling for me while laying in his bed, I walked into my bedroom and remembered living at my Mom's house and crying in the bathroom, while the kids yelled and yelled for the 30th time that they needed me for something...when they were suppose to be in bed over an hour prior. These moments have nothing to do with Tage being here, things are much better than they had been because of Tage and his persistance and patience.


  1. This is so true. My husband is in the military and leaves for extended periods of time once in a while. When he gets back home, we all go through an adjustment period and get used to one another again. When the kids act up or he has a moment where he yells, I have sometimes had the thought that 'it wasn't like this when he was gone'...but who am I kidding? lol. Oy.

    Hope things are great! Love your updates. - Stina

  2. Honest post Marcella. You are such a great writer and have such a way with words and feelings. I was wondering about you as I haven't heard anything from you in a long long while.

    There is a really great parenting audio and DVD program that is really REALLY good. Its called Scream Free Parenting. Sean and I really liked it and it put us both on the same page with our different parenting styles. My only regret is that we would have found it sooner but late is better than never! You can find it on Amazon and its worth EVERY penny (its not cheap).

    Keep writing!

  3. Your post brought back a zillion memories. Beautiful writing! My solution came in a different way - I was handed the book "Children the Challenge" from an elementary councelor ... funny now but not really then. I felt embarrassed, felt like I was failing as a Mother and trying to remember I was doing my best. I read it and implemented each chapter before going on - one day after finishing 3/4 of the book, I was still more frustrated. Nothing they said I should do was working, tempers flared higher and I was more confused. In the book they gave two examples, one was what they predicted was happening (it was right one!!) and the second of what one should do to create a peaceful outcome (I got everyone wrong! no wonder there was not peace). I voiced my frustration one day in the car, Doug kindly said, "I sounds like you are mad because they are not reacting to the consequences and you think they should." That's when I knew I was owning their reactions. I wanted full control of how I acted and how they acted. I also knew I was doing my best and how they reacted was how they choose to react. I continued reading the book and in time, peace did come -- not always just more often. :) You are amazing! the reason I know is because you find ways to be even better today than yesterday. Life is a journey and I'm glad you have entered ours.