Growing up I looked forward to Saturday morning all week-long. I couldn’t wait to pour a bowl of cereal and plant myself in front of the TV with my siblings for a morning of cartoons. Flash forward to this morning: my son woke me up to get him a bowl of cereal in front of the Xbox. He has several boys from school playing a rousing game of Ark Survival on a private server. They are all sitting in their own living rooms playing a video game together and chatting about school, Christmas and YouTube. Is this the end of Saturday morning cartoons?
It’s that special time of year when we are reminded as to how much it costs to raise a child, and how little we get in our tax credit. Let’s face it, none of us have children for the tax credit. And, whether the Federal Government acknowledges or not, we are still going to make sure that they get a good education, healthcare, home, all of the necessities and non-necessities (Xbox, toys and vacations). Being a parent will not give you any tax advantage. The advantages of being a parent are the joy during the holidays, the ability to go to kids movies and not look ridiculous, going to Disney World and acting like a big kid, crazy birthday parties, Nerf battles (boys), tea parties (girls) and opportunities to explore the world with your children and see it in a new way. What are your advantages of being a parent?
When my son was a baby, toddler and little boy, I was very indulgent, a push over as my husband would say. But, as he gets older and there are more demands on him at school, I have had to become more assertive with him, taking away the TV, Xbox and playtime with his friends. While it’s not my favorite way to be, he doesn’t seem to respond to any other approach. We tried giving him rewards for getting his work done, but that doesn’t seem to work anymore. It is only punishment that seems to motivate him. So, it’s no more Mrs. Nice Guy—at least for now. How do you motivate your children?
- Your house is finally quiet!
- Your children just left for school on the bus.
- There was weeping this morning at the breakfast table.
- You made lunches for school this morning.
- The Xbox is off.
- You are not tripping over toys.
- Your diet has started.
- Your husband is back in his office.
- You are catching up on your house work.
- There are no more parties.
My son is changing so often that I have days that I wonder “Who’s on First?” First, his friends change on a regular basis, so I have to keep a phone book just for his contacts. I use to schedule play dates, but I was told recently, “Mom, we don’t play anymore. We hang out!” And, just when I thought I knew what he wanted for supper, he changed what he wants to eat. Tonight, he ate hot pepper on his supper. Something that he would have refused to eat a month ago.
I’m just getting started. The songs he wants to listen to have changed as well. He has gone from Elmo to AC/DC in what seems to be a blink of the eye. I have stopped buying CD’s that he won’t like in a month. We have found the Microsoft Xbox Music Pass very helpful, because it allows him to listen to the songs that he likes at any given time. How do you keep up with all of the changes?
After watching an amazing Clash of the Titans last night with Ohio State beating Alabama, my son and husband decided to have their own clash in my living room. Starting with an Xbox Connect tennis match to rival Jimmy Connors and Ken Rosewall, my husband and son were jumping and screaming slamming the ball at each other. Smart, I just stayed out of the way.
Because my husband won the tennis match, my son demanded a climbing game that finished his father. Finding my husband down for the count and my son dancing around the living room, I yelled “Lunch!” Are your sons and husbands very competitive? What games do they play?