Friday, June 17, 2011

Life Lessons.

One of the hardest things for me as a mom is letting my kids learn a lesson the hard way or even worse - imposing a consequence in order to teach them a life lesson. Yesterday was one of those days at our house.

I'm sure in a few years we'll laugh about this but today its still a bit raw.

I'm a pretty careful shopper. I like nice things but I won't pay full price. I like quality over quantity. Nichol, Olivia, and I went to the Outlet mall to do some exchanges and fill in the clothing items the kids still needed for summer. Bath and Body Works is having a great sale and they had a couple of the items I had been wanting and they were on sale. I picked up a few things for Silas at Gymboree and a baby gift for a friend before heading home.

Nichol brought the bags in and promptly put them on the kitchen floor next to the trash can. The night went on, we had dinner, I had a meeting, our house was its normal craziness. The next day Nichol looked for the bags but didn't find them and didn't mention it to anyone. Skylers job is taking out the trash. He dutifully did his job and was very thorough in it. Our trash is picked up Mondays and Thursdays.

Thursday afternoon Nichol asked where her new clothes didn't take long before we all realized to our horror what had taken place. I had FINALLY found my FAVORITE pair of linen pants. They are no more. There was some responsibility to be taken and although all of this was a series of unfortunate events there were consequences. Two kids' wallets took a big hit yesterday. It pained David and I greatly to implement this consequence. We have some of the most gracious children as they realized painfully how this could have been avoided.

I think we'll have some of the most responsible, detail oriented, aware kids in Florida after this experience. I can tell you Nichol will not deposit her prized summer clothes still in the bag by the trash can and I can promise you Skyler will be looking in department store bags before throwing them in the trash. It was a spendy yet important lesson learned in our house.

I know we've all done crazy stuff - what things have you thrown away by accident? I can't tell you how many times I've been dumpster diving looking for things either I've tossed or others have tossed.


Unknown said...

Your transparency is so refreshing! We struggle with consequences like this in our home as well. Life lessons can be hard on kids and parents, but praise God they can be learnt early and even greater consequences avoided later in life. Oh, and I'm pretty sure a few years back someone in our house trashed our dvd remote...we've moved and it still hasn't turned up! lol

Unknown said...

Life lessons are hard (on everyone!). But they are one of the greatest teachers. Praying for you guys!

"Are These Kids All Yours?" said...

Consequences stink, and yet necessary.....even when sometimes I think I cry more than the kiddos.

The B Family said...

Oh no! I remember when I was in high school I got the brilliant idea one year to hide all of my thoughtfully selected and purchased-with-hard-earned-babysitting-money gifts in our garage in a black plastic lawn bag. I came home after one final shopping trip, tape and scissors in hand and ready to start gift-wrapping, only to discover the bag missing! My Daddy had put it out on the curb that morning! The tragedy was softened a bit in the end, not by finding the presents, but by the hilarity that ensued. My mom and I came up with a brilliant (and obviously, very naiive) idea that since the bag had only been picked up that morning, we should be able to drive over to the dump and retrieve it from the other neighborhood garbage. I can only imagine what the sanitation workers thought as they watched us (dressed in twinsets and penny loafers, I'm sure) walk in, get handed hard hats, put them on--ready for business, and get turned out into this gigantic trash receiving area with a literal MOUNTAIN of trash (and you can imagine the smell). It didn't take but a minute for us to chalk it all up to a loss and a life lesson learned! We still laugh about it!