Thursday, May 22, 2008

Who's the Boss?

Let me just say right up front that I am not above bribing my children. There are times when you need them to do something and the only way to get results is with a lollipop, or if they are able to watch a movie, or whatever... 

Well, yesterday I was trying to get my room straightened up as the laundry was trying to take over. The girls sensed I was attempting to do something productive, so naturally they immediately clung to me like glue, needing anything and everything that would tear me away from my project.  So, I tried to bribe them to help me.  The bait: ice cream.

ME: Girls, if you help me put this laundry away, then you can have some ice cream. 

BELLIE: OK Mama. (she immediately begins picking up clothes and handing them to me.)

GRACE: OK, this is what I am going to do. I am going to go downstairs and get a piece of paper and a pencil. I will come back and make a list of everything that you need to do. Now, when I get back you better be cleaning Mama, this room is a mess.

So I am standing there looking slightly dumbfounded as she descends the stairs to get her list making supplies. I hear her coming back and actually think to myself. "gee I better get cleaning or Grace will be mad." And yes, I do see that there is a problem with this.  

Then she perches herself on the edge of my bed and begins her list. 

GRACE: Oh wait! I have an idea. I will draw a letter and you will pick something up that begins with that letter, OK Mama? Won't that just be great? Ok, now here we go. 

(Sidenote: How clever is that? I should be doing that with the girls, NOT the other way around? I don't know where the child gets these things from!)

At this point, Annabelle is getting a little tired of cleaning without her sisters help. She has lost patience with Grace's list-making. I see her stop and think for a second about what to do next, and then she makes the decision to join Grace on the bed in what I can only assume would be an assistant position. 

The next thing I know, I am being directed by my 4 1/2  and 3 year olds on how to clean my room. For a second, I am annoyed at the fact that they are watching and I am cleaning. I am mumbling under my breath that they are SO not getting any ice cream. But then I realize that I am meeting all my objectives: the room is getting cleaned, the girls are not fighting, whining, breaking anything, or doing anything else they that might do to make me mad, and it is even a little bit fun. 

So, I win. I am supermom, hear me roar. And after dinner, they did have a bowl of ice cream. 

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