Friday, November 22, 2013

Learning how to play... Again.

Recognizing and admitting that you have a problem is the first step to overcoming it. So, for my very first post, I have a confession to make...

Hello, my name is Erica and I've forgotten how to play.

(Hi Erica)

I've become an adult. A boring old adult who stresses over time and deadlines, and needs coffee to survive. Long gone are the carefree days of childhood when I could just sit and color in a coloring book or play "mommy" with my baby dolls.

Now I'm a REAL mommy and my heart resides outside of my body in the form of a perfect, little, almost-two-year-old boy named Josiah. As a single mother who's living with family, I'm usually so concerned with keeping up after him and cleaning up messes as they happen, that I feel like I've become stricter than I probably would have been if we had our own place for him to destroy. It makes me sad honestly.  

When the kids (My almost-two-year-old niece lives with us too) play with the Mega Blocks, they know that if a block goes in their mouth, it's game over. If they start scattering the blocks all over the place, ESPECIALLY under the sofas, game over. They also know how to clean up the blocks when play time is over because, let's face it, I don't want to pick up 80-something pieces by myself multiple times a day! I also hoard certain toys and puzzles in my room to avoid messes and don't like it when the pieces go missing, or when crayons get broken during coloring time. Please tell me it's not just me!


I don't know how to have FUN! I know that I need to loosen up a bit (ok, A LOT) and I need to let the children direct the play. I've read that on all of the cool mommy blogs I follow. But even though some of those other mothers may have more than one child, no one seems to be in my same boat. 

I know this blog is named after my son, but my niece lives with us too and the kids are so close in age, they might as well be twins. My niece has been through lots of change this past summer and maybe because of that, she has become somewhat of a bully to Josiah and can be very jealous around him as well. It's finally rubbing off on Josiah too now. We're hoping it's a phase and try our best as a family to work with them on these behaviors. But until then how as a parent, can I play when the kids almost always end up fighting or hurting one another? I feel like I just spend most of my days happy that I kept them both alive and well, you know? Like I'm more of a referee, if that makes any sense.   

I'd always pictured myself being a COOL mom. I want to be *THAT MOM* that all the mommy bloggers portray themselves as. I understand that it's probably an unattainable goal considering that those mommy bloggers have REAL kids and REAL lives too. A girl can dream though, right? I want to set up tot trays, and sensory bins and do all of the crafts I've pinned on Pinterest! And I've tried, believe me I have! But both kids are so different that what one may enjoy, the other might not, and to give each kid something different to do would only result in all sorts of tantrums, melt downs and fights. No thank you.

I'm trying to learn, I'm desperate to learn! How do daycares and teachers do this with a bunch of students? God bless teachers! I need help!

This blog is where I want to share my honest thoughts on motherhood (and Aunt-hood) and the process as I learn to let go and let these kids be kids. Just a warning, there will probably be plenty more questions and cries for help along the way! 

So tell me please, how do YOU play? If you have multiples close in age, how do you survive? If you're a teacher (bless your heart!) what's your secret?! 


  1. My nephews are a couple of months apart and one fights to be first place in everything!! I'm all for competitiveness but it isn't fair when I hear the younger one say "he's trying to be the boss of me" or " I won and he's saying I didn't."
    So.. When I'm around I try to treat them with as much individuality as i can. Try to sharpen up their stronger traits but not let the other one feel any less important.
    I told them to go to the room and I had them come up with some short film ideas. Less then two minutes in the younger one comes out and says "Titi, he doesn't want to listen to my ideas, he doesn't like my ideas!" SIGHH Why cant we all just get along! Right! NOPE!! lol So I had to give them each a note book sit them down in the same room just along side one another. I was trying to teach them that they both are creative in there own way! That we can incorporate both of their ideas! That their both equally as creative!

    Do you think it worked? My big one said "Titi my ideas are better.... RIGHT?"

    1. LOL! We will never win! I love that you told the kids to come up with ideas for short films! :)

  2. Hi Erica! I haven't been part of a blog in so long, this is so cool! Thank you for the invite =)

    Anyhoohaa, The fact of the matter is kids are kids. Ours are at the age where tantrums are intolerable to the ears, stubbornness leading to everything being BROKEN, yes means no and no means yes. So i have been where you are once matthew started learning how to use his hands efficiently and play with his baby toys. I was on constant alert and could not relax. Then i come to the realization that if i continue to be this way, if i keep getting frustrated over his third box of broken crayons and his desperate curiosity to touch things that aren't his... then he will never satisfy that part of his development to explore and learn things, to figure things out and how and why they work. Telling him NO for everything and not letting him make a mess and be a kid ( but he cleans after himself too) lead to his tantrums. Not kidding, but right before i gathered my thoughts to write this Matty knocked his cup of milk to the floor after i told him several times not to jump on the couch, because i saw it coming before he did. I didn't get upset. I said "Look Matt! Uh ohhh! How did this happen?" When he makes a mistake or gets a boo boo, he demonstrates how it happened. I then told him thats what happens when you don't listen to mommy, you made a boo boo. He even learned to clean up after himself using a rag. When he makes a mistake i let him knowledge it, when he is curious i give it to him but i am always right there. To me, that's just how they grow as an individual. Matt is my only child so far, once we have a second one i will probably be where you are now with your niece and Jo, lol. But maybe getting them to do something they both enjoy might help and PRAISE them when they do a good deed. Then they will enjoy doing anything and you can finally relax and glue your hairs back on your head, lolol. Hope this helped my friend.

    1. My hairs are definitely falling out lol! No not really, but I HAVE noticed some gray (dun dun DUNNN!!) lol. I know I need to let up, and I have since I initially wrote this. Yes there have been more messes and more broken crayons, but it's great watching the kids explore. But the fighting.. The constant fighting for EVERYTHING.. That hasn't been resolved, even when both kids have their OWN thing, they still find ways to fight! Kids…

      Thanks for your suggestions and telling me about Matty! I still can't wait to meet him!

  3. oopps acknowledge. Not knowledge