Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Man of Action

As a distracted mother, I often catch my kids playing the Wait-It-Out-Game. It goes something like this:

Mrs. Olsen: Please go pick up the toys downstairs so we can go do something fun.

Offspring: Okay! [disappears]

Mrs. Olsen inside her head: {Oh right, I need to finish cleaning my bathroom}.

...ten minutes later

Mrs. Olsen: Are you kids ready to go do something fun? Did you pick up the toys?

Offspring: [pulling out more toys, games, blankets, etc]. But MooOoom, So-and-So isn't doing their part?

Mrs. Olsen: Just a second!
{remembers a pot about to boil over on the stove. While in the kitchen, realizes that visiting teachers are coming over in 30 minutes and the counters have crap all over them. Starts picking up the backpacks and shoes from the main room to take to kids room when she realizes she has sour laundry. Drops shoes in the hall to switch out the laundry and hears the doorbell ring. Remembers she told a friend she would babysit and invites them in. Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah spinning her wheels and running in circles}.

You get the idea.

So there are times, I am loathe to admit, that my kids can simply wait it out (particularly on crazy days like this) and can easily get out of doing what they are asked to do.

But sometimes you have days to make up for it. Sometimes you are actually on the ball. And sometimes you have a sweet, cautious, middle child that, when appropriately separated from the pack, is doing his part to
L I S T E N & O B E Y .

There's a few jobs this kid is trained to do, and do well. Every week he makes the rounds returning shoes to appropriate bedrooms, replenishing toilet paper drawers in the bathrooms, unloading the dishwasher, and even sorting laundry.

Check out this kid's tongue, a true indicator of his concentration level.

Since Mrs. Olsen is becoming proficient at forgetting to switch out laundry, Vanilla Wafer recently added another chore to his list of regulars: Switching the laundry from the washer into the dryer.

So yesterday, when I yelled across the house: "Hey Wafer! Can you please come and empty the dishwasher?" I watched him immediately run to the laundry room. I knew he would wonder what was going on since there was NO clothes in the washer. Not wanting to be fruitless, he simply emptied the clean clothes from the dryer onto the floor.

Know what? It made my heart melt. It melted because of his quick response, his lack of excuses, my not having to ask twice, and his moving forward even though he didn't quite get it. Then my melted heart was smothered in chocolate when he still proceeded to unload the dishwasher after I reminded him the DISHwasher was in the kitchen, not the laundry room. Thanks kid!

Thanks for making tremendous efforts on your amazing drawings:

Thanks for being the reliable pillow for your sister:

Thanks for being the sweetest boy to your aging mother.

“Whatever you think you can do or believe you can do, begin it. Action has magic, grace and power in it.” - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


Wade and Marilyn said...

I love your insights into parenting! Wish I could put my experiences into words like you can.

Rands Family said...

That was so funny. You are a great mom. I sometimes feel like you that I put my kids off because I have other things to do.

LGH said...

Amber, wow, you are a good writer and a great mom. What blessed kids to have you for a mom.

jennaloha said...

Love it.

And you can't be an aging mother. Because that makes me one.

Kristen said...

What a sweet boy! I need to give Eliza regular chores, too. It's brilliant!

Nat said...

I LOVE each and every one of those pictures of your adorably obedient vanilla wafer. The dishwasher story melted my heart as well. What a kid!

Anonymous said...

I often wonder if I could separate my children, would they be more obedient? I have one stinker that seems to make the others smell, too.

Love the pictures--especially the pillow. So awesome.