Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Things I Say to My Kids ALL the Time

If there's one thing moms really love to do, it's repeat ourselves. Actually we hate that, but it has to be done.

And for better or worse, there are a handful of phrases that roll off my tongue way more often than I'd like to admit.

Moms love to repeat themselves. Just kidding. We hate that. But here are some of the things we say, over and over...  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

"He's not a toy, he's a person!"

My kids love their baby brother, in a manic sort of way. They love to pick him up, squeeze him, hold him, jostle him around, and basically give me a heart attack because it looks like they're going to drop him. All the time, I have to remind the littler ones that he's not the same as their baby dolls (you know, the naked ones face-down and covered in marker scribbles at the bottom of the toybox? Yeah. They need to be more careful with him than that.)

"Look at this room and put away everything you've touched today."

If I knew what I was doing as a mom, I'd probably teach my kids to put things away immediately when they're done using them. But I can't be on top of them all the time and honestly, I forget. So I do the next best thing, which is periodically flip out about what a pig sty the house has become and force the kids to clean up after their last 24 hours of activity. I'm not sure what that's teaching them other than that mom is mentally unstable.

"Did you do your list?"

I don't have the time, energy, or emotional strength to nag each of my kids individually about things they're supposed to do every day (like their chores, their homework, packing their lunches, or practicing their instruments.) It's all written down and posted, and we call it The List. When I see the kids checking items off The List with a dry erase marker every afternoon, I usually think we've got a pretty good system going. Only occasionally do I wonder if they're going to go on a wild Rumspringa when they're older in protest of The List. Only time will tell.

"Take that out of your mouth."

The baby obviously inserts everything directly into his piehole, but we also have two other kids that constantly chew and suck on things that were never meant to be chewed or sucked. Buttons, nickels, craft pom poms, pieces of string, Legos, shirt sleeves, their own hair... you name it, and we've told someone to take it out of their mouth.

"Can you please answer that?"

After years of observation, I've decided no one in the house can hear the phone ring but me. Weird, right? Maybe it's just because I live in a house full of introverts, but the phone will ring and no one will even look up, letalone consider putting it to their ear and saying "Hello?" The best I can hope for is that someone will grab the still-ringing phone, sprint over to me, then press 'phone' and thrust it at my head. Baby steps.

"Talk nice and be nice."

After refereeing your 2 millionth sibling squabble, everything starts to sound the same. So I've hit on this little all-purpose gem: talk nice and be nice. Not entirely grammatically correct, but it basically covers every situation. Use a nice voice, keep your actions nice, and we don't have a problem, amiright? Sorry, kids. I know you want me to listen to every detail of who whacked who with a Hot Wheels track and whether it was an accident or not... but in the end, I'm probably just going to tell you to talk nice and be nice.

My kids will most likely have one of these 6 phrases engraved on my tombstone one day, because it's all they'll remember me saying after I'm gone. Now go put away everything you've touched today!

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kaustin said...

Your list is hilarious. Here is mine at the moment. You are not the mom, stop strangling/sitting/hitting the baby, stop speaking for your sister, did you wipe yourself/wash your hand/turn off the light.

Unknown said...

What about: Where are your socks/shoes/any item of clothing that they may have removed for no obvious reason? Stop Tattling! You sound like a heard of elephants. Get out of the Kitchen. No, you cannot have snack when our meal is still on the table! ... I have many others right now, but they are specific to potty training and what seems to be an attempt to flood every bathroom when washing hands....

Audrey Louise said...

I like the "talk nice and be nice" one. It's just me and the husband right now but I should say that more often, haha! (I kid, I kid...) I can remember when my mom used to repeat herself with phrases like, "Is the kitchen [dishes] done?", "Don't play in the living room", and "Let your brother play with you." Haha!

Crystal Green from Sharing Life's Moments said...

I need to create lists for my kids and get them laminated to hang up in their rooms so they can check everything off. That way I can just say is your list done! That's genius in my book. I am always pointing things out. I am tired of doing that everyday of my life. Especially since I think my kids should already be old enough to know better.

I love your "talk nice be nice" lesson. I am probably going to steal that lesson!

PurpleSlob said...

I thought my grandbaby was the only one! I'm having to redo my bathroom floor this month, due to her playing Noah and the Ark!

PurpleSlob said...

"Take that out of your mouth.
You name it, and we've told someone to take it out of their mouth."
I don't even wanna compare lists on this! lol
"Put away everything you've touched today." You, ma'am, are a genius!! Thank you!!

Marilyn said...

"You are not in charge of him/her."
"Find a way to work it out."
"What are you doing to help right now?"
"Flush the toilet." (HONESTLY. Who doesn't do this???! My kids, that's who. I always thought it was only juvenile delinquents and truly horrible people in public bathrooms. But although it takes .2 seconds and requires ABSOLUTELY NO REAL EFFORT, it is apparently too much for my kids to remember.)
*Sigh* I even bore myself. :) My poor kids.

Beautiful Camouflaged Mess said...

"So I do the next best thing, which is periodically flip out about what a pig sty the house has become and force the kids to clean up after their last 24 hours of activity." I may have snorted with laughter after reading this sentence - because YES! It *is* the next best thing!! Great article, and some good repetitive Mom-phrases!

Jenny Evans said...

I seem to remember going through a "You are not his mom or dad" phase, too. At the moment that doesn't seem to be necessary since I haven't said it for a while, so maybe you can hope it happens at your house, too?

Jenny Evans said...

I don't know how well it's sinking in, but I figure it's good advice even if it does fall on deaf ears half the time.

Jenny Evans said...

You know you're a parent when walking in and seeing an unflushed toilet doesn't even phase you. We're living the dream over here, too.

Julie @ Just the Joy's said...

Lol! I haven't fully gotten to experience this stage of motherhood however I'm pretty sure it already started with marriage because men don't listen either! I like the "put everything away you've touched today!" I feel like I'm constantly saying "your going to have to wait a minute please". *Sigh*

Jenny Evans said...

I remember that same feeling with baby #2 came along! I felt so bad for always telling my toddler "just a minute..." It'll get better.