Thursday, January 20, 2011

Home Sweet Home

We had a really lovely weekend. Saturday evening, we had a nice meal (although we brought the average age of the patrons down by about 40 years!) not too far from the hotel. Sunday, we drove down to Hallendale, to check on David's grandmother's apartment, where we'd stayed last April for Passover. Then we stopped at one of the 26 kosher places in Aventura to get deli sandwiches. Then I watched my husband drive 105 mph on I95 to get back to the hotel. He was SO happy :)

Had our sandwiches poolside, and relaxed. Sunday evening, a very expensive Italian dinner in Palm Beach. We were the only customers sitting outside (gorgeous by our standards, too cold for those southern wimps).

Monday it rained most of the day.Worked out, showered and dressed, checked out, had a quick bite, then hung out on the patio for a few hours. Then off to Grandma Doris' house again.

Took her out to dinner. Watched my 99 year old grandmother drink a beer, eat jalapenos, and down half a rack of ribs!

Had a lovely time just hanging out with her.

Tuesday was gorgeous, so we were poolside most of the day, which was especially wonderful since it was snowing and slushing back home. Had to do a lot of over-the-phone mothering, to arrange rides and reschedule after-school activities.

Our flight was only delayed by a little over an hour, so we landed in Boston at 11pm. Got home, kissed my kiddoes, and that was that.

Well, not totally. In the morning, the boys continued to complain to me over breakfast. They were VERY glad to see me! And when I got back from driving them, Sofia glommed right on to me for a long time. Yet my parents assured me that the weekend was wonderful.

Well. Yes. As long as you have their perspective. Which is "parent by strictness and threats."

My dad's major flub was this: in trying to get Sofia to clean up her toys, he threatened, "If you don't clean them up, I'll throw them away." Ok, how many of you think THAT worked? Of course not. Sofia thought it was a great game, and tossed a whole bunch of toys into the garbage bag! (Which my dad had the courtesy to just hide in the bathroom...)

My mother insists it's all about being stern. "Micah has you too wrapped, he cons you too much. I tell him to do something, and that's it, he just does it."

Uh, yeah. When my mother says "jump" you do not ask "how high" because you are SUPPOSED TO ALREADY KNOW!


I appreciate them taking care of the kids, but I wish they understood more. And no, I do NOT tell them. For one thing, I am my own person now. I moved away to not live under their rules. For another, they ARE my parents, and I do owe them some respect. And they are very loving grandparents. And yes, it's nice that they will occasionally watch the kids so I can escape with my husband!

So I don't muddy the water, and I coach my kids. Let's face it - not everyone they will encounter in their lives will be exactly how they expect. So they need to learn to cope with a variety of personalities.

In a somewhat similar vein, both boys yesterday said they had been "yelled at" by teachers for misbehaving when they had not been doing anything. In both cases, they were sitting with kids who WERE misbehaving. So I explained a few things:

1. the teachers at their school almost NEVER "yell"
2. Some of the kids really do misbehave, and the staff constantly had to be "on" them
3. If you sit with someone who is misbehaving, the teachers might actually think that you were doing something wrong, just because of proximity.
4. Kids who misbehave frequently can sometimes tune out. If the teachers also address the other kids around them, it makes them pay a bit more attention.
5. If your friend is misbehaving, and you do nothing to stop him, then you SHOULD be reprimanded. You SHOULD help your friend behave properly, BEFORE the trouble starts. Peer pressure is very powerful, and if you can use your own pressure for good, than you have a responsibility to do so.

Enough parenting. Assuming they have school tomorrow (another storm is expected), it'll be a busy day - Sam has appointments in Ashland public school both before and after school, plus a stop at the orthodontist. Then I wait impatiently for David to get home from work so I can go meet my girlfriends and head to Maine for a Girl's Weekend! YEAH!