Sunday, April 3, 2011

You People

     I love my kids.  Really, I do.  But being a single mom, I have so many things I am responsible for all on my own without constantly cleaning up after everybody.  We aren't in sippy cups, get only 1/3 of the food in our mouth stages, they are teenagers.  Well, I know I am rushing it, but the youngest is 12 1/2 so I consider him already a teenager.  I have one simple rule:  JUST CLEAN UP AFTER YOURSELF.  They must think I am making it up, but it is a very simple thing.  I just spent a lot of time last week getting the house clean, straightened up, armed with drinks and food and snacks for my forever grazing teen children.  Seriously, they are bottomless tanks.  It is a full time job feeding everybody.  I get so irritated when I go to the grocery store and the little 16 year old check out girl looks at me and says, "You must be having a party."  Or, "Wow, do you get your monthly groceries at one time?"  I look at her for a moment, waiting on the urge to smack her in the head to go away and then lie.  I used to say, "No, my kids eat like pro football players and I will probably see you again in 3 days."  But, now I just lie.  "Yes, we are having a party."  "I am having family over for the weekend."  "It isn't all mine, I buy for someone else also."  I would really like to say, "Are you kidding me?  You are a teenager, do you have brothers, a boyfriend, or are you just completely unaware of how much food you hormonal, sleeping people eat?"  But, I don't.  She is someone else's child and I wouldn't want her mom to scream at my kids that way.

 Back to my simple rule, if you just clean up after yourself the house will look at the end of Spring Break just like it does now.  They don't believe me.  I think my boys are in training for college, because the den ends up looking like a frat house with empty cans all over the coffee table and clothes all over the place.  I tried to explain how simple it will be and we won't waste our Spring Break cleaning if they will just follow that one rule.  Well, Saturday our 1st day of break,  I  pulled them in from playing basketball outside (thinking great they just burned off what I just fed them 30 minutes ago) and gave them a tour of their things around the house.  They know when I start calling them "You People" I mean business.  I guess I have to separate myself from them just a little to take the "mommy will do it for us" out of their heads and swap it to a more "do I know you" tone.  I love them I really do.  My daughter, I will say, does clean up after herself.  She does help me and she does her own laundry. I know it isn't always a gender thing, because I knew girls when I was her age that were messy and boys that were neat freaks.  Bless her heart, now if we can just get the frat boys on board to do the same.  If not, I may never get them married off.  (I really don't want them all married off and away from home, but that may be the only way I get a clean house, unless of course, one has 4 children, gets divorced, then comes back to live with mommmy.  It can happen.)

                               Photo by jovisala47


~*Lisa*~ said...

Oh this has made me laugh! I was one of those messy teenagers! Don't get me wrong, I'd pick up around the house, and my mom left me daily chores. But my room? good luck finding the floor! =) And now? I'm a cleaning machine! I can only imagine what my boys are going to be like as teenagers!
And I'm glad I'm not the only one with grocery store issues! When they were on formula, I'd buy 8-10 cans of formula at a time, and the check out person would either give me a strange look or say, "oh stocking up for the month?"...Nope this will last me a week if I'm lucky!
So is it "easier" when they're teens or at the toddler stage that I'm in now??
Great post! Things to look forward too! =)

thesisterhoodofspiritualsinglemoms said...

I am so glad you liked it! It is easier in that they aren't so dependent on me, I go to my sisters and I forget how you have to fix them a drink, snack, change diapers, help them with their clothes. But, now they fix their own drinks and food and get out their own clothes and don't always clean up behind themselves. I enjoyed them so much when they were little, but now I love that we can watch the same TV shows and movies and have real conversations. The hard part is them driving, going places without me, and I just can't be everywhere with them. Every stage is fun and has goog and bad. I just wish they could stay the ages they are now forever. I don't want them to keep getting older. It goes way too fast!