Monday, January 31, 2011

And the Mommy of the Year Award Goes to...

probably any other mother but me.

Before I get to that, I have to say, we have warnings of really bad winter weather. So my computer days may be limited if we lose electricity again.

Oh, please not again.

Anyway, this is a post that has been floating around in my head...

I don't think I will get the Mommy of the Year award any time soon.

How do I know these things?

Well, my children are not afraid to tell me. One regularly tells me that I am a mean mommy. Another tells me I am not his best friend anymore (not that that was ever my goal). And another basically says I have ruined her life with her bedtime. Apparently it isn't as late as the bedtimes of her friends. Why they sit around and discuss this is beyond me...

That got me to thinking...exactly how mean a mommy am I?

I am one mean mommy.

I limit the kids' screen time. Yes, limit it. I have to admit, in some ways, if we left the t.v. on or the video games running, life would be more peaceful. But I have this thing about their brains not turning to mush. So after their time is up, the electronics go off. And usually books or creative play come out.

Hand in hand with that, I don't allow my kids to watch t.v. in the car unless the trip is longer than 2 hours. No exceptions. Even then, we watch a movie, then wait a while before we watch another.

I don't let my kids drink caffeine. I wish I could say that it was purely for their benefit, but it is mostly for mine. My kids have enough energy without any boosts!

I make my kids do chores. Oh, they will tell you that I am a slave driver. Even the 6 year old empties the dishwasher. Yes, it is a bit risky. But so far, nothing major has been broken. It can be a guessing game sometimes to find where things ended up but it is a learning process, right?

I insist on fairly consistent bedtimes each night. Again that may be just as much for me as for them. :)

I insist that they brush their teeth each morning and night.

I monitor what they watch on T.V.

I let them have moderation. Lauren thinks I am particularly mean for that one. She wants to eat them all day long.

I make them do family type events like go hiking even though they complain the whole way there (then laugh the whole time we are actually doing it).

I won't let them have t.v.'s in their bedrooms. Ever. We said maybe when they are in college if they want to buy one.

I won't buy them the newest in electronic devices. Hunter now has a very basic cell phone. That is about it.

I won't let them get on Facebook, no matter what. I am a rule follower. The rules say "age 13". I respect that.

I insist on checking on their grades frequently and regularly. I also insist that poor grades will have consequences.

I make them apologize for wrong doings, often writing a letter of apology for instances of disrespect or hurting someone else.

I make the girls share a room. Okay, really, there is no choice. We have more children than we have rooms. But one daughter lets me know on a regular basis how unfair this is and how much she wants her own room. I just nod and say, "I know, but it isn't happening right now..."

I monitor what games they are playing on Wii or PS2. I read those ratings things. Much to my son's dismay.

I have all of these traditions, like the Christmas book tradition. Oh, wait, they are the ones that insist on that one...

I don't throw big birthday parties. We just have small family parties.

I insist that they try new foods. Oh, they complain, but so far, nobody has truly gotten sick or faint from trying.

I check their homework. And make them redo it if necessary.

I make them get on the Internet out in the open.

I don't let them say things like "Shut up" or "Stupid". Just to show them how serious I am, I don't use those words either.

I make them limit how many activities they do at one time.

I rarely take them to Fun City or Chuckie Cheese. I think I am too cheap.

I insist that they go to church on Sundays. Even when they complain. (Okay, only one really does)

I also insist on praying for them nightly (in their presence).

I insist on respectful talk. Even among brothers and sisters.

I tell them what consequences will be for certain behaviors, then I follow through. No matter how fun or rather not fun it is for me and for them.

I make them sleep in their own beds. No co-sleeping here. Okay, that is mainly because I value sleep too much to do it any other way. :)

I insist on balanced meals as much as possible. Even in their lunchboxes.

I rarely buy fruit snacks. Not much nutritional value.

I make them put their own clothes away.

I insist they drink milk twice a day.

I am sure my kids would be happy for me to continue the list and probably would happily contribute, but I better head to bed...just in the high hopes that there is no snow day after all. :)

More later,

PS So, why will you or won't you be getting the Mommy of the Year award? :)
PSS Please know that I often write tongue in cheek. And these things that I do (we do) work for us. In no way am I judging anyone for running their household differently :)


  1. You are a mean mommy! ;) A friend and I talk about how it's good our boys are friends because they will be the two with more restrictins than anyone else, so at least they can comiserate together!

  2. Yeah, you're mean alright! :) Someday they'll thank you for it! I know I did. Looking back, I'm so glad my parents had many of those similar rules!

  3. love this! you are a GREAT mommy! :)

  4. Wow - you are a tough cookie :) Max often tells me that I am not his friend which I reply that I wouldn't be doing a very good job if he thought I was his best friend! I guess the mean mommy award go to me for insisting on respect towards teachers and big consequences for not listening to the adult in the room. Max would probably think it was for not letting him play his DS at the dinner table...oh the horror!

  5. Yep, a real meany! :) j/k your kids will be more well rounded, able to handle disappointment, and appreciative of the things they have because of the things you let/dont let them do now, as opposed to the kind of kids i see at school whose parents put no restrictions on them and do try to be their friend rather than rise their kids as parents. Good for you! Kepp being "mean"!


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