My middle child just told me her boogers were running down her nose. This is the child who still insists on telling me when she has to go potty, even though she's been potty trained for close to three years. Her boogers running down her nose means I am to get her a tissue and help her wipe her nose. So I told her to take her shirt and go like this, and then I show her what a shirt is used for in southern Idaho when working in the sugarbeet fields. That's the type of mother I am.
If I had to give myself a report card for my mothering efforts, I would probably earn a C in teaching them proper hygiene; D in consistency in bedtime hours; C in healthily prepared lunches; and D in proper amount of television watching.
Areas where I'm better perhaps are playing with them at the park. I get a solid A there. I'm Captain Hook to their Peter, Wendy, and Schmee (Nono is Schmee because she's on my hip most times). And I get an A for being good at wanting to scare them, but only an age-appropriate scare. Sometimes I push the scare-line boundary, however, like the time we watched Jurassic Park III together. My dad loved to push the scare-line boundary with us when we were little. His stories always involved one of three topics: old bums (beggars was an appropriate substitute, but not homeless man), rabid dogs/coyotes, and hook-armed men.
Yesterday while Kulani was teaching Hekili how to mountainbike, we went on a hike up Provo Canyon. My big mouth had to mention what scary things are found in the mountains. Lilia got spooked thinking about the rattle snakes I told her about. She wanted to turn around and go back home.
"I was just kidding! There aren't snakes in the mountains!" I barked at her, not wanting her to ruin our hiking adventure by making us turn around and go back. We continued up the trail. I get an A for being a taskmaster.
On our way down, we passed by some shady characters wearing a lot of black and smelling of a sweet smoke. Nono, the 2-year-old, was riding on my shoulders and she says, "I'm scared. It's a witch." She's into witches these days. Anytime she sees anything scary she calls it "a witch." Luckily she didn't say it loud enough for the coven to hear. I think they would have welcomed a chubby little Nono in their witches' brew that night under the full moon.
I love being a mother to these little lumpkins. I hope I don't ruin them for life.