Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Attitude, Kids Cleaning, and More

Dear Mom,

Since I've been sick, I've given myself a free pass and slept in. That means I haven't read scriptures as dutifully as I ought. I still do read, but at odd times of the day it is more easily missed. Then the last two days I was upset at myself when I realized that both days I'd read to the kids, but not my personal studies. Shame on me!

I have also been on edge and cranky, and today it was probably the worst in a long time as far as my attitude toward my husband. He's been quite stand-offish for the last few weeks. He had come out of the cave he's been in. It was absolutely critical that I do not shut him down! Thankfully, the Lord did help soften my heart, and I did manage to keep my thoughts virtuous from then on.

Today the kids asked to get some of their confiscated toys back. When I realized that they've been keeping their room clean, and even Peter picked it up by himself today, I consented. I handed Peter two bins, and Kaylee got a bin, and we went to get some toys from Daddy's locked office. I said they could fill up all the bins they were carrying. Peter got two toys, which were actually two parts to the same toy, and put one in each bin. He had enjoyed some of the other toys for a minute, but chose not to put them in the bins. When I did it for him, he took them out and said, "No thank you." He said that was all he wanted, and left.

Kaylee came in, and I was certain that she was old enough to take full advantage of my offer. I started helping her out by sorting out some of the little dolls and such for her, and she spotted a few ponies. I put them in her bin, and added some princesses and misc. girlie toys in her bin. It was halfway full when she said, "Actually Mommy, I am happy with just the Ponies." Flabbergasted, I happily removed my other additions, and then with that and two fairies she found, she was finished. At bed time, there was not one toy on the floor of their room.

All I've done lately, is I've gathered up anything that's been on the floor that belongs to them, including clothes, and locked it in Daddy's office. This has given us a better idea of how many toys and clothes they can handle cleaning up on their own. It's also a consequence with some teeth, and incentive to pick things up. I did find pants and shirts stuffed in the toy bins today, and no organization at all in the bins, but I can't be too nit-picky, they are only 4 and 5, and they're picking up their room without being told!

Kaylee and Peter are so close, I sometimes feel left out! It's silly, but it can cause real problems with schooling, because they often just ignore me and go off together. I try to work with each separately, but sometimes it is impossible. I want K and P to be close, but Kaylee needs to be writing her name. Peter can hardly hold a pencil. Kaylee doesn't always think she should be held to a higher standard. She could also be reading a little, and she's not.

Kevin says it was a long hard struggle for him to learn to read, while math came much easier. So it's been with Kaylee. Math is easy. She just gets it. Same with Peter. They've both taught them selves to add and subtract with their fingers up to 5, and are working on numbers up to 10. Peter did 5 and 3 is 8 the other day! We don't do it on paper yet, per our new guidelines, but they are taking the reigns of learning it themselves. They're not waiting to be taught, they are actively learning on their own. I am only facilitating, and guiding loosely.

Overall, I feel good about our family. We have our bad moments, days, weeks, etc, but the good days outnumber and outweigh the bad days. We love each other, and are working on ourselves, and sometimes if all the stars line up right, we even work together at making our family run happily and smoothly.

I laughed when Kaylee felt so sorry for a girl in her class who only has sisters, "she doesn't have a...(she couldn't remember the word for brother) boy that lives with her that she could dance with like a prince or marry when she grows up. I guess she'll never get married. I feel so sad for her..." Sometimes when she gets very upset at Peter, she says, "I will NEVER marry you!" Then when she calms down, she changes her mind again. Though she did want to marry Kevin for awhile, then Pampa, now Peter. Ah the fickle nature of woman.

I loved reading your letter to your Mother. It reminded me of how important it is to the kids that the Gospel be important to me. It also showed me how I am the leader, like it or not, in my family, and I can't just go along, I've got to build the path and pave the way! I felt inspired to try and work harder. I have now set my alarm for 4:30am, and will repent promptly.

Love you!
Ginny Lee