Since I went back to work last year, my kids have done summers at home.
:insert the public outcry, "They're how old?!?" here:
Answer: 14, 12, and 6. And provided that many kids begin babysitting for pay at age 12, by my calculations, I have a 2:1 caregiver to child ratio. Plus the age-old #whenIwasakid spiel. And, just for good measure, no one's been lost, injured, or malnourished in the meantime. So, it's ok, thank you for your concern!
They do a good job for the most part. There are 3 parks in the vicinity; they occasionally ride their bikes to Kids Bowl Free; there are friends and adult neighbors around to socialize with; and church activities like VBS have broken things up a bit.
But, left to their own devices, they would spend far too much time on their screens. This results in a rather post-modern parenting reality for me of having to ensure the child locks are in effect for the Xbox, Netflix, Comcast, the computer, and our wi-fi before I leave every morning.
Even doing this...we've had a struggle of late with them getting their chores done every day.
Now, y'all know that I just started a new job, so there's that transition. There's also the fact that the mister has had 3 surgeries in 9 months, the last of which was the end of June and has rendered him unable to bear weight on his foot for 6-8 weeks. Therefore, it is imperative that the kids carry their weight, because this mama's got a lot on her shoulders right now.
Enter last night, and the girl child really wanted to get together with her friend whom she hasn't seen much of this summer. Said friend has two younger brothers that our youngest plays with at school and they have fun together on these visits.
So I said sure. But there were strings attached.
Not only would she and her brothers be required to get all the chores done before she went, but I would need photographic evidence texted to me before said outing would be permitted. Might as well get the most out of that family smartphone plan, right?
It worked like a charm.
At approximately 11:40 a.m. the texts came in rapid succession...
Disclaimer, my teenager gave me full consent to post the following pictures. They are unaltered, appearing just as they did on my phone.
|Laundry folding in progress|
|Not enough room for the 1,000 words this pic conjures|
|There was a vacuuming mishap, |
so she swept the stairs.
With. A. Broom.
|Rosie was unloaded and seen here, |
is in the process of being loaded up
|I ordered them to eat leftovers for lunch. |
Photographic evidence that they complied.
If you give a girl a [smartphone] camera, stuff gets done.