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Sometimes, I Get It Right

posted 6/3/2009 10:57:46 PM |
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tagged: family, children, paint

.....And sometimes, I don't.

Very recently my four year old daughter, Becca, has made two fast friends (ages six and eight) that live in our apartment complex. They are only here on weekends and summer vacation to visit their dad and his girlfriend and I must say they have had a rip roaring good time playing with each other.

Only it seems that these two precious snowflakes have soiled the reputation of my little snow white. I let them run in the field and play and galavant as they pleased, with the understanding that whilst they were out of my sight (around the corner of my building) that the girls' father, who lives in the building down the hill across the field, would be watching them.

Only he wasn't. And the eight year old found a can of spray paint in my gardening box. Hot Pink spray paint. Did you hear me? I said HOT PINK.

They gave the apartment complex a nice girly makeover. They painted the fence, the ground, the steps, the handrailing, the drains, the man hole covers, and the side of my building. Yes, the side of the building. This all ocurred in the span of fifteen minutes while I was putting the baby to sleep.

A neighbor called the police and I had to explain to him that it was indeed my four year old daughter and her not much older friends. I was horrified to have to deal with this situation with the police and even more horrified to contact the apartment manager and owner and explain the situation. I gave my daughter a good stern talking to and her father came to get her for the night. I was at my wits end trying to figure out how to clean up the mess.

Luckily the apartment manager and the owner both have kids and they simply laughed and told me not to worry about the paint, they would get someone out with a pressure washer in a few days. Of course I know that my security deposit went ka-put.

I grounded my daughter accordingly and now she does not go outside without me at all. I have learned that I can't rely on other people to watch my children... or theirs either, apparently.

She knew better than this; she knew better than to touch my paint or to decorate the complex. The older girl I am sure egged it on but that was no excuse.

Children will be children, though, and this is so minimal, really. It's so minimal when I think about her parent teacher conference at preschool and her teacher telling me that Becca takes the time and effort to play with a mentally and physically handicapped boy when no one else will. That she helps him with his work in centers and takes up for him when someone speaks down to him or makes fun of him. It's so minimal when I think about her asking to take Candy Canes to give out for Christmas at the local nursing home and how she thought of it all by herself because she said some of those people may not have anyone to visit them for Christmas.

Its so minimal when she tells me she is going to tell her brother all about their grandmother because he never got to meet her.

And it's so minimal when she wraps her arms around my neck and says she loves me.

On second thought.... I get it pretty right most of the time.


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Jun 3 @ 11:17PM  
Yes, I think you got it right most of the time. She sounds like a great little girl and her mommy is doing a fantastic job of it with her. You're probably right about the older girl egging her on. Older girls tend to do that alot.

It's great to see you back blogging. I'm really happy to see you back, and in a better frame of mind.

Kudos to you for being a fantastic mommy and raising your little girl the right way. You know when to punish her and to love her while you're doing it.

Jun 3 @ 11:28PM  
Compared to some of the things they might have done, yes it was minimal.
And even though she knows better.......she IS 4 years old and they tend to forget. Especially when something looks like soooo much fun...and pretty.

I also agree with your point of punishing her, but I think I would have most likely had a nice little talk with the dad you trusted to watch them too..

Jun 3 @ 11:29PM  
You did right, and got it right. That shit needs to be nipped in the bud. I feel, and have felt for a long time, that a major problem with kids that translates into adulthood is being raised in apartment. I do realize that many folks have no choice in living there. But so many are rat holes exposing kids to seedy low life people and their lifestyles. Unfortunately, in some instances, the kids think it cool.

One thing my ex and I got right was to buy our home (upper middle class then, not so much now) in a neighborhood where ours was the lowest priced subdivision in the neighborhood with good schools. That way she would be exposed to other kids that had educated or stable parents and none of the trappings of low life gangsters, crime, and sleazeballs.

Jun 3 @ 11:42PM  
Well at 4 years old, be grateful it was just paint. I remember kids a lot older than that who destroyed our grade school in the community that we were raised in. When they got busted for it their parents lied and said the kids were home the whole time. Later it was found that there were witnesses that had identified them and the parents backed off their story about the kids being at home. I think you showed not only great parenting skills, but also showed that you were not going to cover for her and deny any knowledge of it. You set a great example for your daughter and you should be very proud of yourself, I wonder how many other people would have been that honest. Your daughter sounds like a great the way my 3 1/2 yr old granddaughter goes to a preschool and at the end of the year my daughter met with her teacher, she said that L has her own agenda. Yeah, she takes after her mother..........

Jun 4 @ 12:10AM  
Yeah, she takes after her mother..........
Who takes after HER mother......

Jun 4 @ 12:13AM  
Who takes after HER mother......
Ummmm yea well that's another story for another time............

Jun 4 @ 12:21AM  
That way she would be exposed to other kids that had educated or stable parents and none of the trappings of low life gangsters, crime, and sleazeballs.

Sadly, that is not always the case. Too many people today fail to take responsibility for their actions or their children's actions...regardless of income. More than where you live, it's important to PARENT your children. Be involved with them. Give them rules and enforce them. Love them. I think that is what we need to give our children.

But, yes, when we can sacrifice a bit to give them a better life (vs. more THINGS), we should.

Jun 4 @ 6:36AM  
LOL, when my cousin was about 5 years old, she found some spray paint, and gave the neighbors yellow corvette a "touch up".


Jun 4 @ 9:40AM  
I'm laughing But, I'm only laughing because it was a "girly makeover" by a 4 yeaqr old nonetheless. Who couldn't laugh at that??

Now, I don't htink her intentions were placed with bad intent. Not at all.
She was having fun. However, your are correct. She KNOWS better!!

I don't know how many times I catch myself saying that phrase to my daughter........."But, you KNOW better!!!!"

Kids will be kids, you did the right thing.

Offer to hire the pressure washer. Might be cheaper than losing your deposit.

Jun 4 @ 1:14PM  
I'm sorry hon.. I couldn't help chuckling. I know it's not funny.. it's just.. remembering some of the shenanigans my kids got into... yeah.. a bit of paint.. no broken windows or anything though. You did good, Mom!

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Sometimes, I Get It Right