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I can tell, it’s going to be a VERY LONG, HOT SUMMER!

Picked up the boys at 11:35 yesterday after their last day of school.  Two seconds after entering the car they got into their “usual fight” mode and one, in particular, was deciding that he should go with “sassing” me.

Got home before noon.  One was hungry.  The other had had a pizza/cupcake party in his class.  Supposedly the other only got goldfish.  Not really believing that line, but went ahead and fed him: a ham (4 oz of ham mind you) and whole wheat sandwich, carrot sticks, a huge apple and water.

Two hours later-he swore to me he was “starving grandma“.  Okay.  Gave him a bowl of cheerios and 2 s‘more brownies with some hot chocolate.  Figured that should hold him until his mom came.   

Younger one was now hungry-fed him the same.

Then came the first meltdown of the summer season.  Sigh.  It was 107 yesterday, so there was NO WAY I was taking them to a park or outdoors.  They had a new checkers/chess set from their great-grandparents that Uncle Adam picked out, so I gave it too them.

You probably see where I went wrong-I was trusting them to actually cooperate with each other and play the game nicely.  Too much to ask of a 9-1/2 and 10-1/2 year-old.  One started making noises and the other started poking his brother.  I told them to stop, even said take a time-out to re-group, but NO!  They kept at it until one was crying into the dogs’ couch blankets and the other was saying, “It’s his fault, he was making a noise!”

I took the board/pieces away, shut down the TV and told them we were about to have a “chat“.

Laid down the rules:

Meals:  I was not going to feed them 24/7.  They’d get breakfast when needed (i.e.-when their mom had to be at work too early to feed them), a snack, lunch and a last snack before 4.  I was NOT going to be a short order cook.  They’d be given 2 choices:  what I’m offering and go hungry.

Activities:  Told them at their ages that I should be able to expect good behavior and fairly decent listening skills-park/pool activities would be done and finished before noon.  I was NOT going to sit in triple digit temperatures and drag food and drinks everywhere.

Whatever special things grandpa and I would do with them would be in direct relation to what behaviors we were dealing with-no way would we take them out in public and be embarrassed.

If they were spending the night, I’m expecting them to put their dirty clothes in the correct hampers and make their beds in the morning.  There would definitely be the following chores:  cleaning the bathroom they used, helping fold and put away the laundry that they had added to my normal amounts and they could easily help set and clean-up the meals they partook in.

When they left for the comforts of their mom’s car, I followed them out and let her know about our “chat“.  Seems mom had just had the conversation with them not but the night before!   

With days always in the triple digits and no indoor activities-save our weekly maker/reading camp at the library, this summer could be one of the longest in history.

Steve and I hope to get them to the community water park either early morning or late afternoons, we hope to take them to a couple of movies and make use of the library programs as much as possible, but most of all-we‘re hoping to just make it through unscathed until the end of August.

Pray for us!

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