One day as we were loading up in the van, I was struck with the fact that the way I live my life is in great contrast to the way my children live theirs. I mean, when I get in the van, I just get in. I sit down. I buckle my seat belt. When Owen gets in the van, he finds a toy on the way in that he forgot out there last time. So he tells each of us (separately) about how he found the toy, and then plays with it for a minute. He takes a drink out of the cup that he left next to his seat (even though we’ve told him a million times to 1. bring in drinks and 2. not drink things that he finds places) and then gets into his booster seat backwards so that he can look out the window. After I remind him to get buckled, he slowly slides around to forward facing and spends another 5 minutes half-heartedly attempting to buckle himself before asking his brother for help.
There are many moments like these, all throughout our day!
In honor of Mother’s Day, I present to you a photo essay entitled Mom vs. The Boys. How I do things, and how they do them. For example, how many trips should it take to get these baking items out of the pantry? For me, it’s two.
For Aidan, it’s one. Well, one, plus the time it takes to pick everything up off the floor! (This applies to laundry too! And when you carry a stack that large, it’s impossible to get the clothes all in the drawer and have the drawer actually close.)
For me, cleaning up is something that must be done. And done and done and done. So why make it take longer than it needs to?
Here’s how I clean up the game room:
… And here’s how the boys clean up the game room:
Why be in a hurry to put away all of your favorite things? Then you can’t see them anymore! Besides, “clean” is relative, and this is clean enough in their book!
To me, however, there are some things in life that deserve attention to detail. Vacuuming is one of those things. I don’t like visible dirt and junk on the carpet. It’s worth it to move a few things if I need to.
Aidan, however, does not share this sentiment.
Then there’s dishes. We dirty a LOT of dishes! Somehow, adding a fourth boy seems to have multiplied our dish usage! Here’s how I rinse dishes:
And here’s how Aidan rinses them:
(Don’t worry. He doesn’t rinse them that way anymore. So if you come to our house for a meal, there’s no need to be concerned!)
Speaking of dishes and food, let’s talk about choosing an appropriate portion of food. Here’s how I pour a bowl of cereal:
And here’s how the boys pour a bowl of cereal:
Fashion is another area in which our lifestyles differ. There are several issues here. Matching. Dressing appropriately for the weather. On Sundays, the boys pretty much wear khaki pants, a polo shirt, and church shoes. The rules have been a little more loose for Owen because I can’t find a pair of khaki pants that will stay up on his tiny waist.
Here’s how I dress Owen for church:
… But sometimes he gets dressed before I have a chance to get out his clothes for him, and he ends up looking like this:
If I had a dollar for every time he has told me that he wants to wear his sports shorts, I’d be very wealthy! It’s not just on Sundays – he asks to wear them when it’s 40 degrees out, when we’re on our way to take professional photos, etc. He loves that pair of shorts, and has recently taken to tucking in his shirts with them. But just in the front, because that’s all he can manage to tuck!
But it’s not all bad. Because the boys have reminded me that sometimes it’s better to choose the fun way than the practical way. We can’t always choose the fun way to get into the van, especially when we’re running late to an appointment.
But we can stop our school day to examine a toad in the backyard…
Or read an extra book before bed. Or maybe be not quite so frustrated about choosing the path that goes through the rain puddle instead of the path that keeps one’s shoes dry.
Life is pretty exciting with all these boys, but I am so glad that God has allowed me to be their mother!
Happy Mother’s Day!
Disclaimer: While based very much upon the truth, all photos were staged and comparisons were exaggerated for the sake of this silly Mother’s Day post.
Hannah @ Making Boys Men May 12, 2013
Thanks, this made me smile. It rang VERY true!
Anna - The Measured Mom May 12, 2013
I love this. I have a daughter (6) and three boys (4,2,1). Among themselves the boys broke four separate things in my house yesterday - a new record. The way you talked about getting into the van is JUST like it is at my house! I try to bite my tongue and not bark orders at them when they don't do things my way - it's hard!
Life IS exciting with boys -- lacking the girl drama but full of real excitement. All kids are a blessing -- and I will pray to remember that every moment of today :)
Stacy Dick May 12, 2013
This was super cute!!! Life with boys is SOOO interesting and takes much patience.
ari May 12, 2013
Very cute, Sarah. though I have 2 girls, we differ greatly on how to do things too!
JDaniel4's Mom May 13, 2013
I think JDaniel would totally agree with your boys.
Christina May 13, 2013
Your picture of the little guy getting himself dressed for church looks just like my 4 yr old, right down to the black cowboy books. Thanks for the good laugh.
Sarah M May 18, 2013
My boy is only 2.5 years old, but that whole getting-in-the-van thing I could definitely relate to. Thanks for showing me other things I have to look forward to. :)
Amy Jun 8, 2013
I can relate to 100% of this as a mom of two boys ages 8 and 5. The getting buckled part was perfectly described. Blessings to you!
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