I started to realise why Michael Jackson dangled his son over the balcony railing ……

This morning started with a THUD.

Isabelle fell out of bed and hit the floor. It is funny how as a parent you actually wake up with the thud – you actually hear it!  If you weren’t quite a wake the ensuing screaming would wake you and loosen your bowels.

I put Isabelle in bed with me, with the optimistic hope she would self sooth and we could sneak another 30 – 45 minutes of sleep.

In theory not a bad idea. In practice, Georgia woke up with the screaming and came through to assess the damage.  Her way of assessing is talking incessantly and trying to hug Isabelle.

The talking made me cry, the hugging made Isabelle cry. I knew the morning was really going pear-shaped, when at one point I actually put my hand over Isabelle’s mouth so she could hear me say: “Okay, okay quiet, quiet, I will get you a milk bottle!”

I realise covering your child’s mouth sounds a bit high risk behaviour, but seriously I started to realise why Michael Jackson dangled his son over the balcony railing …… what ever Blanket did before that, I guarantee he never did it again!!

Isabelle stopped crying.  Eventually.

I had to banish Georgia to her room as she was not going to stop talking.  The result was I was standing make a hot milk bottle at about 06h15 this morning and drinking tea through bleary sleep encrusted eyes.

I will be honest and tell you I usually leave the morning routine to the lovely and talented Priveledge … but this morning not so much.  Kids had dressed, eaten, and were ready to go and it wasn’t even 07h00 this morning.

The day was busy, and had the usual too much stuff crammed in to it.

I always like to push the envelope, you know exactly at the point when you are about to break, I like to add just that ounce more to see if truly I can go insane.

I took the kids out for dinner.  By myself. Kennith is away.  Me. Three kids.  A table with cutlery and crockery.  How did I know it was going wrong? At about the same time that Isabelle started taking her clothes off …. for no apparent reason in the middle of the restaurant …. I managed to stop her after shoes, socks and her belt had come off …. clearly I could see the direction this was going to go in.

End of day, sitting on Isabelle’s bed getting ready to read her a bed time story, Georgia is sitting on the bed with her 1/4 cup of hot chocolate – I fill it very shallowly because she is one of those kids who will mess/spill no matter what.

In an attempt to not disappoint and remain true to form, Georgia went on to spill her cup of now lukewarm chocolate all over the bed.

Isabelle will not touch something if it is wet.  If she is wearing a shirt and wets a sleeve, even with a few drops of water when she brushes her teeth in the morning, she wants to change her shirt.

So you can imagine the joy when you pour 1/4 cup of hot chocolate over her bed … with her in it.  Is it too late to start drinking wine?

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When child services are called ….because of a blog …. no really ….

I may be coming a bit late to this party, I do not read as many blogs as often as I used to, but none the less, I do eventually get there, albeit it a bit later.

I saw this on blogher and of course, it made me a bit nervous, and apprehensive.  I raised a need-an-appointment-for-waxing eyebrow in suspicion, and asked “What is really going on here …?”

I went along to read the original story and unless I am missing something: – a son sold his calculator for Pokemon merchandise, his mom thought okay, that is fine, you do what you must, but you will need to earn the money back to pay for the calculator, which you do need for school – and oh, seeing as you sold your calculator it appears you will not have one for your maths test.

Sorry for you!

You sold/swapped the calculator = You suffer the consequences = Seems like good parenting.

Possibly I am further on the scale towards “free range” parenting, than say “helicopter” parenting.  But I personally have no problem with this concept.  (In truth out of guilt I may have stopped en route to school and bought my son a calculator, but good sense would have told me to allow the lesson to be taught and granted if I bought him a calculator now, what would stop him from swapping his duvet for a cool skate board tomorrow?)

The child in the blog post is eleven.

Eleven you can work out a few things, including you will not have a calculator for a maths test if you swap it for Pokemon merchandise, for instance.

I figure, if you can’t work this out, well then maybe you need to be kept back a grade anyway, whether you pass the maths test sans-calculator or not.

I do think as a parent we struggle to give our children everything, and balance this off against a sense of entitlement (the child’s) and a sense of their place in the world (the child’s) and guilt (ours as parents, which seems to arrive at the same time as the child).

I know far too many children who are catered to, and who have no idea what a consequence is.  They do as they please, and mom and dad, pretty much smile and nod and the child merrily skips through life thinking their sh*t does not stink.

These are loving parents, but for some reason they perceive discipline=hate my child, and they just can’t discipline, or choose not to.

I do think it is wonderful to be a child and be given toys and no restriction on rules and sleep time and all of those wonderful things.

It sounds like Disney Land every day.  Great for kids, maybe not so great for parents, or society.

I sense that by not setting boundaries and a sense of consequence we will affect how our children go through the rough (and trecarious) teenage years and thus develop in to responsible adults.

I may be wrong, but I will update my blog in about 5 – 10 years and let you know how that works out.

I am not sure what the result is of “giving in to everything our children want” being “restrictive about what we give our children” and I am sure for everyone there is a happy medium.

Yours may be very different to mine.

I try my utmost not to judge other parents, as really you have no idea what they are faced with, and how much sleep they have had, but I do roll my eyes.  Inside. Quietly, so they don’t see.

Have I told you the part where we made Connor pay for a second tennis racket we had to buy for him. (We bought the first one, because we are good parents who encourage sport and involvement, but we draw the line at kitting out the same child for the same sport a second time.)

Because he had lost the first one.

And we explained the value of looking after your possessions.

Then I found the tennis racket in a box.  I had put it in to.  After I had cleaned out my car …… yes, CPA anyone?