#1- My 2 youngest kids don't read well. I don't think this is entirely my fault since the oldest can read fine and was homeschooled from the beginning of 1st grade through 8th grade. The 2nd kid, Ben, was homeschooled through 1st grade and then attended off and on (mostly on) a special needs school since 2nd grade and has been privately tutored for a year, and is still not reading well. Then, there is the last kid, Autumn, who just doesn't give a rats ass about reading. For months in a row she reads and seems to make real strides, then she stops and it seems she regresses. So, what is my point. Well, here's the frickin point:
THERE ARE NO GAMES TO PLAY (WHICH ARE INTERESTING TO ME OR THE REST OF THE PEOPLE IN THIS HOUSE WHO DO READ) THAT DON'T INVOLVE READING!!!
Now, if I had a bunch of kids like Rob than maybe the not reading wouldn't matter because I could assign a reading kid to a non reading kid and play games. But that is not my life so there is no point in going on.
#2 Okay, so let's say that except for Jenga, Twister, Don't Break The Ice, Go Fish and War, there aren't any other things to play. So, of course, there are movies. Well, all the cool new ones are 8 flipping bucks a piece to go to. There is a cheaper theater 15 miles north of here. But that is another 8 bucks, because my gas guzzling Honda Odyssey gets 13 MPG and at $4 per gallon that is 8+dollars to drive to the theater. Still, though, I can't go to the movies everday. Even if I go once a week, that leaves me with 6 other days to fill.
Revisting #1 because they don't read they don't write, so I can't even get them emailing friends or writing on their own blogs (which they have and which contain mostly you tube videos of animals being stupid).
#3 Read to them. Oh, I would love that except one of them wants to hear Junie B Jones (books I really do adore) and the other one want me to read him comic books (and they literally put me to sleep).
#4 Going outside??? Not in this heat. We are members of the pool across the street, but since I just had a piece of my arm hacked off due to a melanoma threat, pool time is reserved for after 3pm and preferably even later.
#5 Playing with toys....these are kids of the new millenium...they don't play with toys...they beg for them and then throw them in a box never to be seen again.
What does this leave?
#6...my personal favorite...PLAYING WITH FRIENDS! I would have kids over here everyday, but Ben's friends have outgrown him. This was made very clear during his last stint with CCD. He is still about 10 years old in his head and gets along better with kids 2 to 3 years younger than he is. Time with his peers only ends in tears. Plus, other normal families go on vacation with each other and even other relatives. Vacationing with our relatives would be an exercise in fatality (you read that correctly...not fultily...FATALITY). And vacationing together just ends up being a nightmare. Ben is an absolutely awful traveller. After our recent trip, with Kath and her family, to the Renaissance Festival I have vowed never to go anywhere with friends and family again. Oh, there was nothing that Kath and Rhett's kids did. We love going places with them. They are a part of the precious few who understand what we go through. No...it was Ben. I'm sick of hoping we will all have fun and then it ending with a meltdown of epic proportions. So, I will go to a concert with Andrew & Robert, I will go out to dinner with Robert, I will take Autumn to Ice rink and let her skate for hours, and I will take Ben to a movie...but I am NOT doing anything with them as a group. I hate to keep pointing the finger at the kid, but I'll be damned if Ben doesn't 'F' up every family outing. It all boils down to this: If Ben aint happy, aint nobody happy.
#7 What do we get left with? Watching hours of endlessly repeated Disney/Nickelodeon/Cartoon Network shows. In Ben's case hours of XBOX 360 Live killing aliens with friends across the world while playing Gears of War. In Autumn's case, playing Zoo Tycoon or Ty Girlz or Barbie World until her eyes glaze over.
What sucks is that I can think of so many things to do. I love to read. I could sit and read all day...that or listen to music and find new groups. I just found out about "Switches". They are good (to me). Frankly, my younger kids lack of ability to find something interesting to do annoys the hell out of me. I am a first born and was always great at entertaining myself (as is my oldest, Andrew, God Bless him). My youngest seem to need to be entertained by others or they just veg. I just want to be put into a cryosleep chamber until Fall...or even better....put them into a cryosleep chamber until Fall. I just feel horribly guilty that their lack of motivation is my fault.