Sack of coal soap - Yummy SudsGracie and Annelie must not truly care about getting presents from Santa, because they have been at their all-time bad this week. Like, the worst. Aren't they frightened by the idea of being on the naughty list? Doesn't the threat of not getting any presents from Santa and his elves mean anything to them? I'm beginning to think they might actually want coal this year.
Kids fight. That I know. After working in childcare for years, I have seen my fair share of 4-year-old cat fights... but Gracie and Annelie are taking things waaaay too far. I've had it up to my eyeballs with self-help books that haven't worked one bit. The naughty step, a la The Super Nanny, works great... for the four minutes they sit on it. Then they're back to their usual fighting, screaming, kicking, biting, destructive little selves.
The other day I snapped. Gracie and Annelie were sweetly playing in the backyard and I was watching from my studio window while I worked on a custom order. I could see them over by the slide. They love to cover it with dirt and rocks and then take turns sliding through it. Little did I know, Annelie and Gracie were actually a step behind the slide, taking a brick to the canvas bottom of my garden swing. After punching a hole through it, Annelie used her super-human strength to rip out the entire bottom of one side. It took her 2.5 seconds to do the damage while I scrambled outside in my pajamas, working hard to contain my temper lest the neighbors think I'm psycho, while hissing through my teeth that they better GET. INSIDE. RIGHT. NOW.
Can I just tell ya... Santa was PISSED. He was veeeery close to packing up all of their Christmas presents and donating them to the local children's home. But I didn't really want to do that. I'd actually like my kids to have fond childhood Christmas memories, rather than holiday trauma from not getting a single present. So I packed up their dress-up (devastating) and ALL of their Barbie stuff (again, devastating) and put them on the top of the closet, not to get back for four entire days. THEN I put them to work with a soapy wash cloth and they spent an entire hour washing my wood floors in silence.
Mad Santa Pin Back Button - Susan Urban Designs
Did they learn their lesson? Uh, no. Not a chance. It only took a minute before they were cat fighting and scratching and hitting and knocking each other off the swing set. When Santa sent them a video email (seriously, if you have kids and you haven't yet made them a video from this website... what are you waiting for??!) and informed Annelie that she has been working very hard at being nice to her sister, Annelie just shook her head and informed him back that she just pushed Gracie off the swings and pulled her hair and made her cry. She was very matter-of-fact about the whole thing. Like, "Listen Santa, if you actually think I've behaved myself for even a second this year, then you don't know jack, cuz I've been a wretched beast."
We're three days from the night when Santa and his reindeer fly over our house with his big bag of toys... and at the moment, my kids are getting coal, a letter from Santa himself, letting them know just exactly why they are getting diddly-squat... and maybe just maybe, he'll leave a couple of presents in my care, so that I can pass them to the kids if they are truly being good.
Moms, here's your chance to unload your years of wisdom upon me. I know I'm not the only mom out there with high-energy preschoolers with behavioral problems... so any advice is appreciated. We've cut almost all sweets and sugars from their diet, they don't eat things with red food dye and they only watch a little educational TV in the morning... so what gives? When they are good, they are very, very good... but when they are bad, they are horrid. Help!