I am infamous for my “rules”. So much in fact that when I first began caring for my nephew at the beginning of the school year, he often said “Tia, you have TOO MANY rules”. I have rules about how we behave, how we groom ourselves, about sports gear, about eating…I have rules about everything. In fact you can find my rule book HERE. Now don’t get me wrong, I am not a warden or Mommy Dearest (NO WIRE HANGARS!, EVER.) but with as many kids as I have through my house on a daily basis, the rules really do help. You have to BE CLEAR and spell everything out for them so that there is no grey area.
One particular area that had been driving me batty the past few months is when it’s bedtime and all the boys scramble for one last snack when not even a full hour before, they were TOO FULL to finish their dinner. Groaning and moaning. I’ve said NO, sent them to bed only to find that they’ve come down somehow (probably Lucas as he is the stealth-y boy) smuggled up food to their room. SOOOOO, tonight I saved their remaining food and left it on the counter for them. When they came in to get their snack, I simply pointed out to them that if they were hungry, they could finish up their dinner and have some water, otherwise it was off to bed. They all looked at me, then looked at each other and ran upstairs. Wow! It worked! Wait, maybe this is a little Mommy Dearest-ish. Isn’t there a scene where she saves Christiana’s food for days and keeps putting it in front of her?! Well at least I wouldn’t serve them it in the morning if they didn’t finish . . .maybe just as leftovers.