while bynum and matthias play Wii fit for 30 min, graham and sol might be playing a board game
while matthias and graham are building legos, sol and bynum could be playing a video game
all 4 can go play in the sprinkler for 30 min to and hour
we all eat lunch together
all 4 go to different rooms and read a book/rest for an hour. (this part happens every day)
you get the picture.
but my sweet angels insist on arguing about EVERY LITTLE THING. i mean even passing each other in the hall requires a referee! i'm pooped.
so yesterday about an hour after lunch i was at maximum overload with the arguing -- so they cleaned their rooms. (i guess i should explain that i like the floors to be clear at night, so they have to pick up before bedtime. that usually means toys get stuffed in totes that they don't belong in, but the floor is clear.) i drug all the totes out from under their beds and took the lids off -- as well as the ones in their closets and they sorted. the rule around here is "everything has a place -- if you can't find it's place mom will find a new place that is not in the middle of the floor at our house". so, they spent the next couple hours sorting and griping about sorting, but not arguing with each other.
i (as patiently and mary poppins-like as i could) explained to them that i would love for them to play all day and not have to do chores, but i was at my wits end with the constant fighting, hitting, tattling, whining, etc. so we talked about how we could fix it and promised we'd all have a better day tomorrow.
that tomorrow is now today.
for the last 3 hours we've been cleaning. sigh. today they helped me do the baseboards of the house. that was the initial "break from fun". i thought surely that would help them refocus and motivate them to get along. i was wrong -- they were literally picking at each other on the way to the sink to rinse their rags! what in the world! so they also got to dust the furniture, doors and cabinets.
and now -- they are playing quietly, laughing, and working out little tiffs that are par for the course with 4 boys. things are looking bright and shiny on our side of the street -- including the house!
i feel like a mean mom.