Saturday, April 6, 2013


Today I learned, let me clarify, RE-learned, that General Conference makes me grumpy.

I know. That is the exact opposite sentence most moms with blogs will be writing today. I have no doubt that I can learn a lot from them. But this is my reality. I refuse to act as if everything is perfect all the time. Don't get me wrong. I have a wonderful, wonderful life! It's a wonderful life, but it's not perfect.

As the speakers were talking about the roles of mothers in the home being of utmost importance, which I TOTALLY agree with, I was having a dialog---aka irrational argument---with my whining child over how the entertainment provided to keep boredom at bay was too confusing, mostly because said child opted not to read the instructions. I was pretty huffy about the whole thing.

It's become a pattern for me to be entirely irritated with one or all children during conference for behavior that is very consistent with being a child, but in which I feel that during conference they should be able to restrain so I can actually hear part of a talk. Yes, I know I'm being unrealistic and unfair.  Doesn't mean that emotionally I don't head down that crazy path every six months. Despite my pep talks to myself to do the contrary.


Hours later, as I sit down to type this out, debating on whether or not this will actually be published, I realize that this was actually the first year all of the children stayed in the room. They were relatively quiet. I really had many opportunities to listen, but I was so hyper sensitive to every last thing, prepared to stop any shenanigans before they became distractions, that I found unnecessary things to be grumpy about. Fantastic. So the kids are getting it and this wakadoodle insists on acting like it will always be a challenge.


Still, there is tomorrow. 

Anybody else notice that being a mom is hard some days and you make a ton of mistakes? Kids, I really, REALLY do love you! If I didn't I would have stopped trying years ago.

After the last session ended at 4pm, I told the kids they have two hours to finish their Saturday chores. We were going to Nana's for girl's night, starting at 6pm, during the Priesthood session, but wouldn't be able to go if the chores weren't completed. They weren't challenging chores. Stuff they do every Saturday and 2 hours was more than enough time to get them done.

2 hours came and went. The three boys got their jobs done. Karaia would work for awhile and then jump on the tramp. She decided to use 30 of her minutes putting 10 dishes in the dishwasher, and then played around with the blow dryer while the bathroom sat waiting to be cleaned.  It took me about 20 minutes to make the rounds checking everything off and have the boys make adjustments.

Karaia knew she would be able to go. She is old enough that I felt comfortable leaving her at home. But at 6:30 when I was just walking out the door after checking off all the boy's jobs, she ran up and said, "I'm done! I get to go!"

I had to make a hard decision. We've been having more and more situations with Karaia extending the time it takes to complete something we've asked her to do. The dawdling has begun to interfere with other people getting their jobs done and no amount of rewarding or punishment so far seems to make a difference. I decided she still had to stay home. Even though we left late, we had all been working very hard and finished at the scheduled time. I felt uncomfortable rewarding her slacking just because she happened to finish just before we left.

She was so sad.

I was so sad.

I was a hard mom moment.

Still, I would much rather her learn that I mean what I say right now than for me to have to tell her she can't go to Prom, or something like that, later in her life.

Oh, I hope this one sticks.

I really don't want to have to see that sad face again.


Tobi said...

Way to stick to your guns! That is so hard to see that face, but your perspective on this lesson is so true!

You are amazing!

Humble wife said...

I am new to your blog and I have four children but I am about 15 years ahead of you in their ages. I promise it gets easier and one thing I learned is that my standards and expectations are far higher in comprehension than the children's. I would definitely make a special treat for dinner tonight to celebrate how incredible they were for your church conference, because in truth, it sounds like they did well.

For your daughter and giving her a task and then following through on your word~excellent. I also would perhaps buy a timer so she can hear the ticking to know she has something to she will be more aware of the need from now on and the timer will be a tangible reminder that is not mom coming up behind her telling her to finish.

Your family is adorable and it has been a delight to visit to see one so strong as a mom!!

Take care,