Just 5 short weeks left of summer vacation and I think I can make it. Here's an update on how things are going.
I've stopped cleaning the kids rooms, bathroom and playroom. I keep the downstairs presentable for visitors and my sanity. I even got a rug to cover up the worst spot of carpet in the house. When school starts I'm going through the pig stys with a garbage bag. I'm looking forward to it, actually.
Remember the chore sticks? The kids did them for two and a half weeks. Not too shabby considering I predicted the cute chore program to last only two weeks. To be fair, Ethan is sort of still doing his chores so we may end up at Chuck E. Cheese before the year is out.
I'd been concerned about the disturbing sense of entitlement and lack of gratitude my kids were displaying despite my bending over backwards to make a fun and entertaining summer for them. I've since discovered that when I do nothing, they don't complain as much. There is much to be said for setting low expectations.
Last night I finished a fabulous juvenile fiction called "When You Reach Me" by Rebecca Stead. Set in New York City in 1978 and 1979, it is the story of the events that unfolded in the life of Miranda over a 6 month period. From the first chapter it's clear Miranda is writing this story for someone, but even she is not sure who. The mystery continues to build when Miranda starts receiving strange notes, hidden in unusual places. This is one of those books where you need to go back and re-read certain chapters once you have all the answers.
I don't want to give any more away! This story is about more than just answering the questions of the notes...it's about Miranda discovering how to look outside of herself, to think of others and to offer a helping hand. It's about changing the course of a life.