The Joys of Parenting!

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but parenting is not always a joy.

This week has been tough with my teenagers. Lucky for them they are cute!

You might be new to my blog and don’t let this title scare you.  I have something crafty and fun to share at the end of this post.

Let Them Fall

Over the last few months, Brandon has been struggling with one particular class, Honors Algebra 2.  I was watching his grades and asking him frequently what plan he had in place to get help.  I even went as far as contacting the teacher about tutoring.  However, Brandon felt like he could handle this struggle on his own.  That’s when I watched him fall flat on his face.  It was time he learned the hard way.

Don’t get me wrong.  This was not an easy task on my part.  I don’t particularly enjoy watching my kids fail at something, but when they seem to know EVERYTHING… it was time to let him be in control so he could finally see I’m not as stupid as he thinks.

Taking the Easy Road

This week Brandon approached Russ and I that he was going to drop out of Honors Algebra 2 and take the regular Algebra 2.  I, as well as the school counselor, might have considered this an option if he had done the class assignments and showed an ounce of effort.  Sadly, not the case and Brandon was sure his idea of switching classes was EASY PEASY.

Not so fast Mister! The school counselor called me, and we both chatted that he is SUPER smart and the underlying problem is not spending an ounce of time on this class.  It appears the X-box was slightly hindering his attention.

The Meet Up!

I would be lying if I told you I wasn’t disappointed.  When parenting issues come up, I immediately think about the things I could have done differently.  I picked up Brandon at the bus stop and decided to take him to Starbucks.  I knew I couldn’t get CRAY CRAY in public. This was good for both of us.

He was mopey because his idea of switching classes was not happening.  Obviously,  this was ALL my fault. I let him spill his guts.  I shut my mouth (never happens) and listened.  Once he was done telling me how he should be able to switch classes, tutoring was a lost cause, and he was only going to fail… I stepped in.

When ZERO effort is applied, failure is going to happen.  Had my kid showed a little effort he wouldn’t be in this pickle.  But just like many adults I know, he wanted to QUIT because it didn’t go his way.  If I quit, I can take the easy way out.  That suited him fine. Dang! Only 15 and just like that you want the easy road? WHERE did you learn this, son?

Thankfully we were in a public setting.  It was a genius moment on my part.

Here is the problem, there is no easy way.  Life is not easy and quitting is not an option!

Over and over Brandon kept telling me he failed.  In my eyes failing was changing that class when you never put an ounce of effort into it.  What happened to FIGHTING for something you want?  Even if we do fail at the task, we learn to get back up and start over.

The Solution!

Obviously, Brandon did not get the solution he was hoping for.  Switching classes was not an option.  Had he made an effort, but struggled that would have been an entirely different situation.  However, you chose the easy road of NOT doing anything and expecting to get off easy.

Our house will be quiet with the gaming console in the off position for a little while.  Well, until we see an improvement in the grades and attitude.  Brandon seems to think the gaming community could end due to his parents whacko thinking.  I guess time will tell.

Meanwhile… I’ll be on tutoring pick up duty on Wednesdays and watching my young man learn how to gain control of his work ethic.

Alexis and I are heading to another gymnastics meet.  There is nothing better than spending a car ride with my daughter as she makes her selfies into strawberry, dog, and a fox face at least 100x and then falls asleep.  YAY me.

Parenting has not been a joy this week, but I love them more than they will ever understand.  While they may think I’m an awful parent  (this was said earlier this week) I will march on and know that I’m developing kinder, hard working human beings.  Life is not about taking the easy road.  They must learn to try and if you don’t succeed, try again.  Don’t give up!

Big Monster Hugs

This card couldn’t be more perfect!  Despite Brandon being angry over the situation, he is loved.  A giant monster hug will be perfect for him.  I created this card using the Yummy in My Tummy stamp set.

Parenting, Yummy in My Tummy, Stampin' Up!

Tips & Tricks

  • Create the large polka dot background by using the center piece of rubber in the Monster’s belly.  I used Pool Party and Smoky Slate ink.
  • The monster was stamped onto Watercolor Paper and colored using the Aqua Painter.
  • Download the instructions to create this card HERE.

Parenting, Yummy in My Tummy, Stampin' Up!

Don’t miss out on this adorable stamp set for Valentines.

Parenting, Yummy in My Tummy, Stampin' Up!

Price: $110.00

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24 thoughts on “The Joys of Parenting!”

  1. I hear that, I used to go through the same thing when my son was younger, too much time on video games and the computer, not enough time studying and applying themselves, then thinking it was everyone else’s fault but their own. I always tell my son, it is not easy being a “good” parent. I was so happy the day my son graduated from high school. Now he is in the real world, working a full-time job, since he didn’t want to go to college, at least not yet anyway. Now he knows.

  2. Mary Lou Kleveland

    I applaud your decisions with Brandon. I deal with similar issues with my 17 year old. It is hard to see them fail when they are crazy smart but unwilling to work hard. And so disappointing too. Glad to know I am not alone in the trenches of parenting. It is by far the hardest thing I have ever done. Hang in there! You are doing an awesome job!

  3. GREAT post and the BEST way to wake up with a great cup of coffee. Your story is SPOT ON and I love that you share your passion and reminder of Parenting is a constant challenge. WOOT-WOOT to you and BRILLIANT for going to Starbucks (smart move) and I will be cheering him on with his Math! Super message….thanks for making me smile!

  4. Thank you for being another parent out there that does the right thing by our children. I know how hard it is with 4 teenage boys and a 10 year old girl. Good news is that my 18 year old has actually apologized for what he put us through and I am so proud of the young adult he has become….. it’s all worth it.
    Love the card also. Thanks so much for your inspiration.

  5. What a great idea – taking him to Starbucks. My son is,13 and would rather play on his device than anything else. It’s a constant battle and being an older parent, i can’t figure out,why he wants to constantly take the easy road. I keep waiting for that lightbulb to go on! it is not easy being a good parent. Thanks for your great post, it made me feel that I am not alone. I’ll be rooting for your son – he’s got a great Mom!

  6. I could’ve wrtten this post too! My son is 16, almost 17 and we’re right there wth you! Kudos to you for being a great parent. He will thank you some day ?

  7. Amen sista! My kids 4 and 6 think I’m the worst. How dare I not let them play in the trash can! LOL!!! Your advice about not quitting was just what I needed to hear today. FOR MYSELF! So thanks for that inspiration! XOXO

  8. Mary Alice Bellis

    Oh, I thank God I am through the teenage years, but it’s never really over. I applaud you for being tough and hanging in there. It’s not easy. I went through struggles with 4 kids. I shouldn’t say struggles, as the first 2 were pretty easy. Good students and hard working, and the next 2 were harder. The difference was I was at home with the first 2 in high school, and working outside the home with the second 2, and didn’t have the energy to put up much of a struggle with them. I allowed my fourth child to drop out of school, because he struggled with a learning disability and couldn’t stand school any more. I thought I could convince him to try an alternative school, but he never would. Now I have a 30 year old living at home, with a lousy job and not much ambition. I wish I’d done it differently, but he also had made his choices. Be tough, and don’t let them give up on themselves.

  9. It is tough being a parent these days!!! You are doing an amazing job and I commend you it! Yes, it is hard seeing your children fall with the choices that they make. You are amazing to share this on your blog…which I appreciate because as a parent of a teen and going through similar issues, I see that there are other parents out there who are going through similar battles, so we as parents are not alone!! Thank you Thank you!!!!! (my youngest of 4 is turning 16 on Monday… she will not be getting her driver’s license because of her grades and the no effort.. 🙁 ).
    Your card is just stinking cute!!!! I looked at this one as being only for Valentine’s, but you have let me “see the light” and I think I need this one now!!! LOL!!! Consider yourself hugged!!!! You are a fabulous mom!!!

  10. Love your card–and your story! Great insight to go to Starbucks!! Super Mom!! As others have said, we too are in the game limit mode–our 16 year old was setting his phone alarm to wake up in the night to play one line. Attitude changes, lower grades, …all the typical. So glad to hear others deal with game challenges. I keep telling myself –this too shall pass–sometimes like a kidney stone! Hugs sent your way!! We will survive!

  11. I loved this post as I have my own bright under achiever in my house. It can be so frustrating to see him be lazy and not apply himself. Your post was an encouragement to me. Thanks.

  12. I think we can definitely encourage each other. Parenting is tough and especially when you have to make your children aware of their own heart issues. It’s been a week, let me tell you.

  13. Oh Kathy, you know I can relate. I have watched my child’s life spin out of control due to the gaming world. Playing the game is not the problem as you and I both know. It’s when these games become front and center of their universe and responsibilities wag behind. I’ve been part of his problem by supporting the gaming… buying the games, the cool chair… and so on. Of course always thinking he would make every effort to be responsible. HA. Not happening. SO now it’s back in my control and I have one VERY unhappy teenager on my hands. SO be it. Under my house, he will follow my rules. We have rules for a reason and I pray every single day he will learn from them. I loved your comment, it’s definitely like a kidney stone. Oh my word is it EVER. XOXOXO

  14. Mary, thank you for sharing your story. I want to encourage you. We are good mothers. We can only do so much, and at some point, they have to make a choice to have the desire to be more than just a couch potato. This parenting stuff is hard, but by no means do we take the brunt of their laziness. Sometimes I have to look in a mirror and tell myself; I am a good mother on the days I don’t feel it. Especially on days, my 14-year-old daughter tells me she hates me. Yes, life is hard dear children. They have no idea, and it’s just the beginning. Again, thank you for sharing. It takes a village to raise children.

  15. It takes a village my friend and a lot of encouragement from mothers around us to be the light to our children. #wewillsurvive #somedaysiwonder

  16. Starbucks was the perfect place for us not to get crazy. Ha ha ha. I could feel my own anger creeping in. I knew I had to act appropriately in a public setting. Thank you for reading Ruth. XOXO

  17. Stacey, THANK YOU for sharing your encouraging words. It’s good to hear they do respond later if anything. I know it’s definitely worth it in the long run.

  18. Thank you, Susan. It’s been quite the week dealing with Mr. Unhappy Pants. I know it’s worth it in the end. Trying to remain hopeful and encouraged. I’ll drink more coffee because that is what makes this girl smile. XOXO

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