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    It’s all about teaching them the life lessons

    April 29, 2008

    I feel bad for you all.  I mean, how many times should you have to read about me being a moron?  At least I’m so overwhelmed that I can’t keep a daily log of my behavior.  Well, actually I do.  It’s called Twitter.  I am forever cheating on my blog with twitter.  But anyway.  Case in point about my half-assed parenting…

    The Husband sent me an email the other day when he was upstairs and I was downstairs.  Maybe I was too far away?  Maybe his phone didn’t work?  Maybe he was scared of me?

    “Do we have $400 for a boat?”

    I would say that this would constitute a true LOL moment, but I promptly treated his email as I do all unsolicited emails.  I deleted it.

    Two days later he tells me that he has to go pick up a boat that he found on Craigslist.  He tells me that it is only $300 and that he has been saving his lunch money for months to get a boat.  If only he was this dedicated to saving for our children’s education.  I find it fascinating that he was looking to pimp the family budget for $400 two days before but now he has $300 himself.

    So we all hop in the truck to buy the boat from a man wearing a Grateful Dad tie dyed shirt.  The circa 1971 johnboat has seen better days, but really, haven’t we all?  My husband hops into the passenger seat and off we go.  Because I’m sure I can drive a truck and a boat trailer. 

    We drove to the local park and I backed that trailer up like a champ.  Like I was MEANT to put boats in the water.  We all climb into this boat and I notice the water on the bottom of the boat.  Actually my children notice it because they begin jumping up and down in it.  The Husband rows away from the dock and I think very horrible things.  Things like how long it will take to forgive him if we all have to swim to shore.  In the rain.  In the cold water. 

    I couldn’t really keep thinking these things because it took all of 2 seconds to realize that The Baby was going into that water if it was the last thing he did.  He spent about 20 minutes with a leg over the back until I finally gave in and lowered him into the cold water.

    “That’ll teach him.”

    Until he screamed with glee and then The Boy was pissed off that HE couldn’t be in the water too.  So now The Husband is rowing the boat with me holding The Baby trailing behind in the water and The Boy hanging over the side giving us a blow by blow of what is IN the water.  The Husband made a smart ass comment about how The Baby will now expect to go into the water every single time we go on the boat and I asked him how that would be different from The Baby attempting to go over the side of the boat every single time we go on the boat. 

    Life lesson:  My children don’t learn lessons.  When am I going to learn?  Clearly tonight is not the night.

    K:  (yelling down the hall) EAT!!!!  Come brush your teeth!

    The Husband was standing there brushing his and he glanced over.  He knew where this was going.

    K:  No, you didn’t.
    TB:  YES.  Yes, I did, Mommmmm.
    K:  Let me smell your breath.

    The Husband stared at me.

    K:  What???  12 years of habits die hard.  I’m a kid’s worst nightmare.  If he thinks he hates me now, wait until high school.
    TB:  NO!
    K:  Let me smell your breath.  I want to see if you really brushed your teeth.
    TB:  No, you can’t, Mom.  It’s not YOUR breath.  It’s MY breath.

    The kid had a point.  And still had to brush the damn teeth. 

    Okay, so maybe what happened is his father held his head and I put a knee into his chest and brushed his teeth as fast as I could.  Unless, of course, you are child protective services.  If you are, disregard this post.  And the whole damn blog, for that matter.

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    1. Meg says:

      Funny about brushing the teeth. I will say to my boys, who are plenty old enough to know better, “did you brush your teeth?” and they will reply, “yes.” And then I have to clarify: “TONIGHT JUST NOW did you brush them?” And THEN they see I have closed their loophole and reply, um, NO? Like today would have been different from the past 3,650 days. UGH.

      April 30th, 2008 at 3:33 am

    2. MelissaS says:

      I show my ds my mouth full of fillings and say “do you want your mouth to look like this?” And then I tell him about the little girl down the street whose mother *didn’t* put the knee to her chest, and now she has 10 cavities. She’s 6 years old!! At that age, don’t they only *have* 20 teeth? Where’s DYFS for that case??

      April 30th, 2008 at 6:46 am

    3. tvtown says:

      A few years ago my brother in law was visiting us…he was 13 at the time. I asked him if he’d taken a shower…he said yes. Of course he hadn’t. I casually mentioned it to my wife and the kid was grounded when he got home to mom.
      It never ends…

      April 30th, 2008 at 7:19 am

    4. Jen Zug says:

      I call it a successful boating trip if neither iPhone went into the water. Tragedies like that break up marriages.

      April 30th, 2008 at 7:34 am

    5. Shannon says:

      Hah, my oldest will be eleven on Saturday and I STILL have to smell his breath. Only now when I say ‘let me smell your breath’, he will admit that he hasn’t done it yet.

      April 30th, 2008 at 8:47 am

    6. Tara says:

      My Son always replies to the “Did you brush your teeth?” question with:

      No, but I ate a minty candy!

      He thinks it is about breath only and not preventing tooth decay.

      April 30th, 2008 at 9:47 am

    7. the mama bird diaries says:

      I can totally picture that whole boat scenario. sounds very relaxing. 🙂

      April 30th, 2008 at 12:32 pm

    8. Jennifer/The Word Cellar says:

      And now I realize that I haven’t brushed my own teeth today. That’s not good.

      April 30th, 2008 at 5:13 pm

    9. Bellamomma says:

      Note to self: No Boats.

      I’ll learn your kids’ life lessons for them!

      April 30th, 2008 at 7:06 pm

    10. myra says:

      and i thought the teeth brushing thing was only happening at our house…

      good luck with that boat.

      April 30th, 2008 at 7:38 pm

    11. Occidental Girl says:

      Amen, sister.

      May 1st, 2008 at 10:03 am

    12. Marelle says:

      [thinking in my head . . . boat? . . . this can only end badly . . . ]

      But, in the end, I can totally relate.

      I really love my boy. But, I really don’t like him when I have to brush his teeth and fight with him every morning!

      May 1st, 2008 at 4:40 pm

    13. Ask Wifey says:

      Too funny. Glad to hear my husband isn’t the only one who saves his lunch money for things like boats and in my case video games. Ha!

      May 2nd, 2008 at 5:55 am

    14. jen says:

      do you remember standing at the dock while dad pulled away in *his* $300 boat that had never been tested while he waved and sang “god be with you til we meet again?”

      you could call it bad parenting or just reliving our childhoods.

      May 3rd, 2008 at 2:28 pm

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