Sucking out all the fun

Last night, I was met with a milestone in my job as a nanny to four (most of the time) wonderful kids. 

I’m not exactly sure when it started, but 2nd has started to get a tiny bit of an attitude. Last night I got a full case of it after dinner.

We always have dinner kind of early now. Which is great because it gives the kids the chance to play outside (after homework is finished) since the weather is warming up. But that warm weather also comes with its challenges. Safety is the biggest one.

2nd and 3rd wanted to ride their bikes last night. No biggie. I opened up the garage, and they pulled out their bikes, each putting on their helmets before setting up on the sidewalk. I made the outrageous assumption that 2nd was just getting off training wheels since she was very unsteady on her bike and needed me to hold it up for her. Her outrage at this assumption was met with an “ooo I’m sorry! I don’t have kids, I don’t know when kids graduate out of training wheels.” Then 3rd proceeded to tell me just how long all the kids had been without training wheels. So bonding moment I guess?

The mom was outside with me for the first little bit. Right before she went inside, she told the kids her safety guidelines for their bikes. Mostly, “don’t pass that point on the sidewalk, and don’t go on the road.” The only reason to go on the road was if they were going past where they weren’t supposed to anyways.

So the mom goes inside, and I’m watching the two speed down the hill on the sidewalk. As soon as the door closes, BOTH of them go past the limit and ride all the way back on the road. I stop them on the way up to start another run and pull out my very best stern teacher voice.

“Um no, this is not ok! You just heard your mom say you can’t go that far up because we can’t see you, and you can’t go on the road.”

“But we have to go on the road to avoid that one pavement stone”

“which is past where you are supposed to go so it doesn’t matter. If you don’t want to listen to the rules then you can go in the house right now.”

2nd “NO.”

“That’s not an answer. You have a choice you need to make. Either you listen to the rules, or you can go into the house. Leave your bike by the garage, I’ll put it away later.”

3rd kind of grumbles but keeps walking up the hill to the spot where they start going down, but 2nd just walks her bike to the garage. 3rd asks if she is coming and she yells (in a very convincing teenager voice) “NO. T sucked all the fun out of it.” The door to the house slams – and I’m down to watching just one kidlet outside.

I have to admit, I kind of felt a little bit of pride in that moment. 2nd knew I meant business and wasn’t going to back down, and instead of listening to the rules and continuing to have fun, decided to just go inside and sulk for literally the rest of the evening. Over two and a half hours later when I left for the night, she still wasn’t talking to me.

3rd eventually ended up in the same position. Took one more run down the hill and went past the limit, and kept going! There is a big bush at the point they were told to stop at, and after that, I can’t see them anymore, but they can still see me. He keeps telling me he can see me, but I was calling him back because I couldn’t see him. So 3rd comes up and the hill and I pull out the teacher voice once more (I seriously hate using my teacher’s voice. It’s not a nice voice.)

“Did we not just have this conversation?”

“It’s boring! I’m sorry that you are old and can’t see me all the way there when I’m young and can see you perfectly! It’s my life and I’m making my own choices! It’s not fun and I’m doing it because I want to have fun and you can’t tell me what to do, this is my life and I’m deciding to do this (it carries on for a solid 3 minutes)…..”

“ok, I listened to you, now you need to listen to me”

“No, it’s my….”

“NO. I listened to all you said, and I heard you. But you need to listen to me. You heard your mom give you your rules. These are safety rules. I will stay out here with you as long as you want but you need to follow the rules or we are going inside.”

“No, I make my own choices. This is my life and I do what I want.”

“No, you are 9 and you need to listen to the rules, or I will go and get your mom.”

He started up again with his little rant about it being his life and blah blah so I just went and got his mom. I’m not in charge of discipline (which I was happy for last night) and when he gets into those moods you just gotta let him talk himself out. His mom came out, he lost his bike for the rest of the night (even when his dad came home early from work to go for a bike ride with him), but they stayed out while he was on his skateboard I think. He was actually talking to me when I left which was nice.

At least now I know that if I put my foot down, I can suck all the fun out of doing the wrong thing and have the activity stop HAHA. ooooo the power!

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14 thoughts on “Sucking out all the fun

  1. Omg, let me have talked back like that when I was a kid and my momma would have made me pick a switch off a bush so she could whip my ass with it, lol. Good job on holding your own against their attitudes. Kids can be damn scary.

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  2. And if either of them had gotten hurt because they disobeyed the rules, they would have tried to blame you, naturally, since you were the adult and were supposed to be in charge of them…I remember how that worked when I was little (only I didn’t just get privileges revoked when I pulled that attitude with my grandparents, who raised me). I’d love to hear them try to pull that “No, it’s my life and I’ll do what I want” with their parents…they think they can pull that with you cause you’re not their mom, but let them pull that with their parents who actually set the rules and CAN discipline them, and see how well that goes over. 😛

    Just wait till they’re teenagers and pull that stunt…

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    • Oh no – they pull it with them too. It wouldn’t have worked in my house growing up either. These kids don’t really need a lot of discipline, they really are great kids. So when something like this happens when there NEEDS to be some discipline, it doesn’t happen…or it doesn’t happen well. Tonight had another example of one of them needing it. But now I’m starting a tough love campaign where I’m going to be strict. And it didn’t make one of them very happy at all tonight. But that’s ok! haha

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      • It was the exact opposite when I was growing up, but I was raised by my grandparents too. If I was stupid enough to take an attitude with them, I learned my lesson real quick. 😛 Of course my grandfather’s attitude on discipline was “Spare the rod, spoil the child.” You know, I don’t think that phrase means what he thought it meant (and now I sound like a character from The Princess Bride 😛 )

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        • My parents were the same. Very strict but also very trusting once we got older. Which I think is probably the best way to do it. Although our disciplines were mostly groundings or having things taken awag. Much easier to do that when there is only one tv or computer in the whole house and only dial up internet haha!

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          • Mine never trusted me, apparently they were under the impression I couldn’t cross the street without help. If I was lucky, I got grounded from my stereo (I hadn’t had my own TV since I was like 7) and by the time I got a computer, it sure didn’t have internet access, so all I could do with it was play PC games and type (which at the time was fine with me, the internet wasn’t prevalent till after I left home anyway, so there wasn’t anything for me to miss…my computer had Windows 3.1, that’s how long ago that was). By the time they got me I was the only kid left in the house (my aunt was 17 at the time so she was still home, but not for long as she got married a couple years later) so I was raised as an only child. However, I was the furthest thing from spoiled you could get. For a supposedly Christian man, my grandfather sure had a mean temper (which is why my dad left home at 16 and moved in with his older brother).

            I see kids today flat out disrespect their parents and other adults, and I want to tell them so badly, “You know if I talked to my grandparents the way you talk to your parents (or whatever adult), my grandfather would have planted me in the back yard!” He would have too…especially if I was stupid enough to cuss him or my grandmother out, he’d have knocked me across the room. Of course if I was that stupid, I’d have deserved it… 😛

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