Monday, August 1, 2011

Summer Frustration... in a single-serving size

There are no Caprisuns in my refrigerator. You will not find any canned Cokes, Sprites, or even Publix brand sodas that I ordinarily keep on hand for the kids. This summer has been the season of less around here... keeping on hand bare minimum items needed for daily function.

The reason is two fold. On one hand, we haven't had the money to buy all the extra things that my kids enjoy as treats. Between baseball and the down market, we haven't been swimming in extra money around here! And that has left the pantry a little more bare than usual ~ not empty, just not over-flowing like my children have grown so accustomed to in their home! The other reason is a simple law that proves itself true: if it's there, they will eat/drink it ALL. When your house becomes a bubbly place of social activity (for instance, swimming hole of the neighborhood), whatever is there will be devoured no matter where you try to hide things.

It's not that I don't want to spread the love around or share with others, but it's difficult to watch this generation of overly sugared, prepackaged children. They don't understand the notion of, "Gee, I'm thirsty... let me grab a cup, put some ice in the bottom if it, and turn on the faucet." They believe everything good (including water) must come in a package, whether that be in a bottle, pouch, or aluminum can. I can remember the day when a Coke was special, not expected. Water almost always came out of the faucet in the kitchen; when it didn't, it came form the hose in the yard. We ate at meal times. If I were really hungry, a real treat was a peanut butter spoon, maybe even a few crackers to go along with it. We didn't just stick our noses in the pantry or fridge at all hours of the day.

I know I can't change the way the world operates now, but I find myself so frustrated with the general lack of appreciation of my very own kids. How they'll open a box of cereal and walk around with it. How I bought a box of Nilla Wafers on Friday, and they were gone by early afternoon yesterday. It's tough right now, and making it even tougher on me is this perception that I should feed (literally and figuratively) their need for convenience.

I feel like I am ranting a little here, but I have no doubt it will be understood by many.

So what's a Crazy Mama to do? I don't know... I honestly don't know. I am trying to make wiser purchases at the grocery store, tell my kids no sometimes on snacks, and generally just reduce their consumption. But it's tough, incredibly difficult, to change the way I discipline them and to reshape their own thoughts about what they are entitled to around here. I guess I'll be in constant prayerful consideration on the matter... add another thing to pray about. It's an ever-growing list!

1 comment:

carrie said...

We had problems with Todd wanting special treats just because they tasted good not because he was really hungry. We began giving him what we felt was appropriate and then telling him if he was still hungry he could have carrots or raisins. If he was really hungry, he would eat them. If it was just b/c of the taste, he would not eat. Could you put in baggies the amount allowed and tell them that is all? Just a though. With 2 eating, you could put each of theirs in a separate bag and let that be all for the day. When it is gone, it is gone! Just a few thoughts. Hang in there, school is back in session soon!