Our daughter got invited to go boating today. It's the last weekend before she starts high school, she's completed her summer reading logs and has already emailed them to the teacher, and it's supposed to hit 100 degrees. There was no reason to say no... except my own jealousy.

So I agreed, with the condition that the clean her room.

Imagine my surprise when I went to wake her.
"It's 7:00," I said rather gruffly. "And I thought you were supposed to have cleaned your room so you could go."

She just blinked at me.

I used to teach parenting classes. I do know about consequences and follow through and how kids need rules and boundaries. I know she needs to know that when Mom says something, she means it.

I'm also aware of the 14 year old tornado that would have been released if I had done what I should have done, and not let her go. I know how disappointed her friend would be, who I'm sure was only allowed to invite one friend and she chose Kennedy. But these are just excuses.

At times, I am a marshmallow mom, and I'm sure that has contributed to fact that our home often looks like a frat house, that our children often argue and fight, and the fact that I do way more chores than anyone else.

And I'm gonna crack down, really. I've already announced that stuff left in the living room will be dumped outside. With school starting this week, new chore responsibilities will go in to effect. Bedtimes will exist once again... at least for the younger two...

I post this not seeking any support or condolences, but more as a reminder to myself that I really do need to get a little tougher. Most of you are probably guilty of the same behavior, at least once in a while (except for you, Lisa Souers), so maybe you need the reminder too.

I'm also hoping that Kennedy will get wind of the post and suffer a little embarrassment at the picture. Feel free to send her a note :-)

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    Anne Caffery said...

    Love this post. Looking back I can tell you clean rooms are overrated. You're doing great!

  1. ... on August 21, 2011 at 3:02 PM  
  2. mlabberton said...

    Trust me, with my daughter now 28 and 25, it will get better. And all of those crazy teen years that made me go gray, were actually worth it because, believe it or not, our little darlings actually listened!

  3. ... on August 21, 2011 at 7:14 PM  
  4. christina said...

    Thanks for your reassurance, Anne and Melissa. She's a little beast, but I think that beastie-ness will take her so far in life.

    And Anne, please don't share your thoughts on clean rooms with her. I'm not a neat freak or anything (just look at my desk), but when she takes my tweezers or favorite anti-frizz hair product, I need to be able to find them!

  5. ... on August 22, 2011 at 4:30 PM