…in which I am Mean Mommy.

My kids are way too much like me.  When I was three, back during the baby-bust of 1975, my mother tried to get me into the kindergarten Sunday school class, since there weren’t enough kids my age to run a preschool program.  She made her pitch, and was asked one make-or-break question:  “Can she use scissors?”

Mom took her victory in one hand, me in the other, and gave me a crash course in scissors that very day.  I’d spend *ridiculous* numbers of hours of my early school years cutting crazy-complicated snowflakes that defy any measure of patience I’ve ever had as an adult. 

Back to my kids:  they love scissors, too.  The part where they differ from me?  I very quickly learned that leaving infinitesimally small pieces of copy paper all over the living room floor was a sure-fire way to up the volume in suburban home.  My girls seem to be a lot slower on the uptake.  And I’m tired of it! 

I *love* their creations, but I am MIGHTY tired of spending a half-hour or so after their bedtime down on all fours, cleaning under the homeschool desk! 

*I* cut paper into a cut glass bowl; they cut and cast it to the four winds!  Crayons get lost all over the house, I step on them in the dark, and crack!  Crayola crumbs!

So here’s the mean part: I have started denying them scissor and crayon privileges if they don’t clean up after themselves by bedtime.  The first time I gave them tons of warning that they’d lose them for a day, Big D actually said “that’s ok, we don’t want to use them tomorrow anyway.” (I could *swear* that I heard a bit of preteen sass in her voice when she said it, but I’m choosing to block that out until her age in years is more than I have fingers on one hand.)

Next time I took them away for two days, and they *still* didn’t get it.  Big D drew some (lovely) pictures in just pencil, but they STILL DON’T GET IT.

They have the crayons out now, since they need to make cards for Daddyman’s birthday tomorrow.  I’m keeping the scissors, though.  We’ll see how it goes….

This entry was posted in ain't a bowl full of cherries, arts and craftiness, childhood of origin, rant. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to …in which I am Mean Mommy.

  1. Greg Strong says:


    I know this is way off topic, but I found this neat little spacial 3-d food project and thought maybe you’d be interested in doing it with the kids. 🙂

    • Siggi says:

      Oh, that IS cute, Greg! Thanks!

      I would have been hard pressed to think how to make an apple into a math project with anything other than fractions, but that is pretty cool! Thanks!

      • gregory strong says:

        I’m glad you like. 🙂

      • Siggi says:

        Not only do *I* like, but one of my readers tweeted about it, and I’ve seen it retweeted since. That little comment is getting some reach! >:)

  2. Bon Crowder says:

    Stick with it, Siggi. As my Little Brother would suggest – extinguish the behavior. (He’s a therapist here: http://www.CollaborateInTherapy.com)

    He would encourage you to not go crazy and hollering all over the place, but calmly refuse to allow scissors.

    Although, I’m not sure how your’re supposed to figure out when they have learned if you don’t ever give them scissors…


    • Siggi says:

      They didn’t clean up again last night, so no craft stuff until Thursday. It *has* to sink in eventually, eh? Please? I am a very crafty person myself, and I’d really like to be able to do projects with my kids, but I’m simply NOT doing them with kids who not only don’t clean up after themselves, but who actively drop stuff on the floor!!\

      Thanks for the support, Bon! 🙂

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