Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Santa Card

As soon as Toby was old enough to grasp the concept of Santa Clause I started using that as a way to get him to do or not do anything for the month of December. Many of you might recall my moment as the worst Mom ever when in the middle of the night Toby kept getting out of his bed and coming into our room. Todd, in his eternally patient way tried to reason with Toby but was having no success. So after listening to this for quite some time I flung my sheets off, stomped as loud as I could down the hallway and I stood at his door and told him that if he got out of bed one more time Santa would take all the toys he had made him and throw them into the fire. Yep, that was me. And although I was not proud of that moment as a Mother, I must say, it worked. He stayed in bed and went to sleep after that. Although, I'm sure the damage done will manifest itself later on in life.

So I figured that the day after Halloween was not too early to start pulling out the Santa card on my kids. Christmas is already everywhere in the stores, so why not in my discipline toolbox? I've used it twice already. Ben was having a tantrum about his clothes the other night, which is usual these days. He wanted a very specific combination of pajamas. So I finally reminded him that Santa was watching him and was going to put him on the "naughty list," if he kept it up. Once again it worked.

But last night it backfired on me. I was on the phone with Todd after I had put the boys in bed for what felt like the 50th time and I was fed up with Ben making every excuse his little 4 year old brain could come up with to get out of bed. So I went back up, tucked him, and in a very rude and angry tone of voice told him that if he gets out one more time he would be in big trouble and then said, "And remember, Santa Clause is watching you."

To which he replied, "NO!!! HE'S WATCHING YOU!!!"

Todd busted up on the other end of the phone and I had to giggle to myself as I walked back downstairs. Do you ever feel like you start acting as bad as your children sometimes? I love these boys. As naughty as they can be, it's the moments that follow that remind you how fun and sometimes funny parenting can be. Or it's the conversations that follow the long timeouts after the worst tantrums in the world, where you see how sweet and sensitive your children really are.

So here's to us all staying off the "naughty list" this holiday season. Brace yourselves...it's coming.


Ann said...

Hilarious! Could you hear me laughing from New York? A poignant and timely reminder from a wise(...) 4 year old. (I acutally called Ryan that once and he still reminds me frequently).

Melissa said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE all your stories. They crack me up. You should write a book for "boy moms" :) Still laughing about "Santa Watching you!"....

Trish said...

So funny! And so nice to know I'm not the only parent out there with the "Naughty List Threats!"
Your boys are getting so big and too cute!