My kids love their electronics. For this, I am immensely grateful! Oh yeah, you heard me right. I thank my little parental stars for the attachment my kids have to their respective devices for one reason and one reason alone – it is the best tool known to man/woman (the parenting kind, that is)when it comes to getting kids to do parental bidding. Nothing says get your chores/homework done like the threat of losing a device – or screams curb your teenage posturing after being separated from Clash of Clans or (gasp) texting for a few days.
Little did my kids know when they succumbed to the charms of their electronics, the slippery slope of manipulation they were setting themselves up for. Their misguided devotion has most definitely been my gain!
However, maybe, a complete ban from all electronics for say something like – not doing your homework when you are told to leaving it until the last possible moment having to stay up late into the night with Mom helping you in order to just finish adequately and then being all snarky about it to boot – is sometimes a little precarious as well.
Case in point. Recently, Pre-Teen, lost his electronic privileges for an extended amount time due to…well, I think you got the general idea above. For the first few days, he walked around the house like one of those zombies looking for fresh meat (the kind that says “I’m bored” a lot). Now don’t get me wrong, Pre-Teen loves the outdoors, when the weather is nice (which it’s not) and reasonably warm (which it hasn’t been for what feels like an eternity). However, finally out of sheer desperation – i.e. looking for something to do that did not involve my offer of household chores – outside he went. I have to say, I did not pay much attention. I suspected the basketball hoop was getting some long denied attention and there was likely some random rock throwing going on, but other than that, I did not have much concern…until Pre-Teen came blustering inside one afternoon.
Pre-Teen: “Hey Mom, do you think Dad will care if I dig a hole in the field?”
Mom: (picturing something the size of your average garden hole) “No, I don’t think so.”
And back out he went.
When it started to get dark and still he had not come back in the house, my parenty senses (you know, the Mom version of spidey senses) began to tingle and I felt compelled to go and investigate. This is what I saw:
Don’t bother me, I am busy exploring a new career path!
And as the days ensued, he began to gain eager followers, or rather, enthusiastic diggers.
His brother, Teen, got in on the action:
Finally, something they can do together that does not end in somebody bleeding!
Soon, friends began to show up…fully equipped with shovels and picks for the task at hand.
This gang could come in handy come yard clean up time…
And every day, there seemed to be more work than one guy could handle.
Where will the madness end?
Pre-Teen has long since earned electronic privileges back, and still the digging continues on a daily basis, rain or shine, no matter the temperature – except now, he has a pad to play music on while he works and a phone to text friends to come over during his hours of operation.
Where it will all end, I have no idea.
But, I do know these three things…
1. The hole keeps getting bigger,
2. I have been parenting long enough to know, sometimes it is best not to ask too many detailed questions, and…
3. If you have something dead you need buried…I know just the guy for the job.
(But, he probably won’t come cheap)
Other adventures with Pre-Teen
A Decade of Wisdom
Never Sit On a Couch at a Nudist Colony
Puerto Rico Island Travels Part 2: The Clothing Optional Tour
The Day I Killed the Vacuum