Friday, April 5, 2013

Sweet Friday

This week was for spring cleaning, getting back into our routine, and freaking out over
"The Walking Dead" season finale.  Seriously, do you watch "The Walking Dead"?  If not, 
jump on Netflix and catch up NOW!!  It is amazing, one of the best shows out in my 
humble, pop culture addicted opinion.  I am so sad that the season is over but boy did 
the finale close things off with a bang!
We had to practice some tough love parenting this week.  We've been begging Isabelle to
clean her room for weeks now: asking nicely, then bribing, then threatening, you get
the picture.  She is a very responsible little girl who finishes her chores everyday without
much prompting from us.  But, when it comes to her room, she's a free spirit.  Things
have gotten completely out of control and, despite our warnings, she took no initiative to
get things cleaned up.  And so, after much discussion and consideration as to how to
handle things, Shawn and I went upstairs and cleaned her room FOR HER while she was
at school.  I felt really bad about it at first: this is her space, her things, and I felt like we
were intruding.  But then, after about 10 minutes of sifting through the wreckage, I got all
Bill Cosby on her ass and my guilt turned into anger.  Is this kid serious?  Is this room
serious?  A lesson needed to be learned here, privacy or not.  We spent the next three
hours sorting, sifting, organizing, and purging.  Here's a before photo, just in case you
thought I was being dramatic.

Three hours, 3 bags of trash, and 4 bags of items to be donated to charity later, Isabelle 
came home from school and we brought her into her room to show her our work.  We had 
a LONG talk, there were tears and apologies and promises made all around.  She took it like 
a champ, though, and helped us carry all of the bags downstairs.  Despite her frustration, 
she thanked us for what we did and admitted that her room looked "awesome".

I came to a couple of realizations while cleaning my daughter's room.  1.  I have no idea
where all of this crap came from.  We are very frugal people who do not buy our
children excessive amounts of THINGS.  We don't shop just to shop: we shop when we
need things, for holidays, and to give to others.  The amount of STUFF that has accumulated
in our child's room forced me to have what we call here in the South a "come to Jesus
meeting" with myself.  Apparently, we are buying more STUFF than we are admitting.  It's
time to get real and reevaluate how many items are making their way into our home and
for what purpose.  I sent the grandparents a copy of this photo with a long message
begging them to please get on board with us and stop buying so many THINGS.  Our
girls obviously have enough, more than enough.  Let's all come together and think of
creative gifts rather than more possessions.  2.  We need a better system to prevent this
from happening again.  Nightly room checks, rewarding a clean living space, whatever it
takes.  I really don't want to have to do this again.  I blame Shawn and I just as much as
Isabelle for letting this go so far, we obviously need to be more diligent with our
inspections.  We were in the military, for God's sake.
A few links for your weekend viewing pleasure:
If you are in the Deep South region this summer, you should really check out JazzFest,
it's amazing.  While you're at it, who doesn't love a summer fest on the beach?  Check out
the killer line-up for Hangout Music Fest!
On letting children have their space.  My mother and I often debate the differences
in parenting from one generation to the next.  She refers to my generation as
"helicopter moms".  And she's right.  We need to hang back more.
Life isn't perfect and pretty all the time, no matter what Facebook statuses and 
Instagram posts would have us all think.
Speaking of honesty, this post is dead on.
The evolution of politics related to new generations.
I've been researching cloth diapers like crazy.  Geez there are a lot of options out there.
Cloth diapering mamas: please send me links, share your knowledge, help!!  Please and
thank you.
Happy Friday!!


Kelley said...

Okay, I LOVE The Walking Dead. I have a huge crush on Daryl.

Cloth diapers: We started Brixton at 4 months. Gdiapers. It was a leakfest and very frustrating. But here we are, 19 months later and still doing it. It gets better as they get older and stop drinking as much liquid. I have a whole set of SMALL gDiapers if you were looking for a bargain!

Kristin said...

I'm cloth diapering my 4 month old daughter and did the same for my almost 3- yr old, who is now potty trained (yay!!). We LOVE cloth diapering. Everything about it is so good-- it's environmentally friendly, easy on the wallet, and the diapers are just so darn cute. We use mostly prefolds (flat, cotton diapers) with a cover. It's the cheapest option and very easy. I do a wash every few days, no big deal. My husband loves it too. Check out Great website with lots if info, good products, free shipping! Can't say enough good things about cloth diapering. Good luck!! Have fun! And congrats on the new baby!

Kristin said...

Oh, and I wanted to add, I can count on one hand the number of blow-outs or leaks we've had, between my two girls combined. I think it just depends on the type of diaper and the fit... That's why we like the prefolds and covers, because the covers are an extra layer of protection against messes.

marie said...

You did a great job in cleaning the bedroom - I am pretty sure Belle loves her bedroom all neat and tidy and won't let this happen again.
Much love to you all!!

Ashley said...

Whoa, Im so with you this post - might be deserving of a phone call!!! We've struggled with these same issues with our kids. A few times family members have come visited and have asked where their 'gifts' were and my girls tell them we gave them away. The looks on their faces is a combo of pissed and surprise (bc it didnt bother the girls). Belle is VERY lucky to have yall to guide her and she secretly knows that if yall are doing this because you love her and people take care of people (and things!) they love. Love the article on 'personal space'...Ive already forwarded it to my people. I love yall!! Oh - were a great writer, but i think this pregnancy for your son is making you phenomenal!

Olivia said...

I love Daryl so much!!!! I would totally be his Apocalyptic wife if Shawn became a zombie and I had to move on. We would cruise around on his motorcycle and shoot shit with our bow and arrows.

OK, talk to me more about these Gdiapers. I thought Gdiapers were flushable disposables? Help! Email me!

Olivia said...

Thank you for all of this awesome info!!!! I am going to check out website right now!!

Olivia said...

Thank you my friend!! She was very happy once she got over the initial shock!

Hilary@MooHooVille said...

i am so with you on the "where the heck did this STUFF come from?!" feeling. i feel like we are so frugal and spare in our purchase of "things" for natalie... but grandparents & friends & aunties & uncles are such a different story. good job, mama (& shawn!) cleaning it up and helping belle see the importance of cleaning house & getting rid of the clutter. we need to do the same around here!

Vanessa said...

I think we are lucky in that we do not live close enough to most family for them to shower Alexa with gifts often. She has plenty enough from us, but even so I have to rein in H sometimes. He likes to spoil his baby.

I do remember going through a messy room phase when I was about Isabelle's age, and my wake-up call was that I couldn't find a library book that was several weeks overdue. I finally had to fess up to my parents, who paid for the book and then grounded me until I found it (it was under my bed with a plethora of other crap). Clean room after that!