Mothering Mischief – Nagging

mothering mischief naggingIt’s Monday, and once again I’m engaged in a little Mothering Mischief.

The concept is simple – tap into my creative (and sometimes rebellious) nature to make an otherwise boring task a little more fun or to come at the whole “parenting” thing from a fresh and memorable angle.

This week, my oldest son is learning a painful lesson about nagging and listening.

For the past several weeks, Watty has been getting a score of “50” in his Bible class.

(we’re blessed to send the kids to a private Christian school.)

The only way he can be getting a 50 is that he isn’t memorizing his Bible memory verse each week.

My son is getting an F.

He’s currently failing Bible.  And I’m kind of OK with it.  I believe firmly that he needs to be allowed to make mistakes and experience consequences for his bad choices.

And Bible class is a good place for it to happen.  It’s not like the grade will matter for college admissions.  Failure to memorize a verse this week isn’t going to jeopardize future learning (unlike what happens when you don’t master subtraction and then suffer from long division).

Still… It’s the Bible.  And it’s an F.

A certain level of negative parental response is appropriate.

So we talked.

I was pretty blunt.

Me:  Watty, are you going to take responsibility and learn your memory verse on your own?

He was pretty honest.

Watty:  Not really.

He was trying to ignore me, so I decided to take advantage of the situation and teach him a few lessons.

Me:  So you want me to become naggy mom and help you with this?

Watty:  Yeah, sure.  Whatever.

(bwa-hahaha!  i have you now my pretty.)

My younger son was standing there listening, so I decided to involve him.  GoGo is one of those kids that just naturally makes a good accountability partner.  It’s how he “works.”

Me:  GoGo, you’re my witness.  Watty just gave me permission to be Naggy Mom all week.

Watty: Wait! What?  What do you mean by “Naggy mom?”

GoGo:  (laughing) It’s too late!  She’s gonna be Naggy Mom!

I get to be Naggy Mom.

three life lessons my kids can learnI work hard to not nag my kids.  It sounds crazy, but it’s part of the whole concept of making them take responsibility for themselves and allowing them to experience consequences.

But this week.  It’s on like Donkey Kong.

The beauty of this is that my son is learning THREE lessons at once.

  1. Listen when a woman talks.  Don’t just “yes dear” without understanding what you commit to.
  2. Life stinks when you get bad grades.
  3. How to memorize anything.

The best part is that BOTH boys will get to be learning this lesson at once.

I’m weighing my options.

I’m trying to decide just how far I can push it. I’ve got several ideas.

I could quiz my son on his memory verse and assign him some kind of activity if he doesn’t have it memorized.  Something like taking out the trash or matching up my socks.

I could interrupt his favorite cartoon with a quiz.  Pause buttons are amazing tools when you know how to use them.

I could withhold all screen privileges until he gets it right.

It’s just a little mothering mischief!

The key is use a variety of techniques and keep him off balance. I’m going for the maximum way to annoy my son without actually disrupting MY afternoon schedule.  For pure nagging gold, I need to be able to accomplish it without expending too much effort.

So I thought I’d throw it open to YOU.

How would YOU suggest I nag my children this week?

he said I could nag him....


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Susan Baker
I have a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood and peace in unlikely places. I have two elementary school boys, one nerdy husband, and two cats. I have a strange fascination for bad puns, the color pink, socks, and books. I worry about running out of toilet paper, wine, and chocolate.. I serve an amazing God. I live an ordinary life filled with wonder.
Susan Baker
Susan Baker

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  1. I love this point: Listen when a woman talks. Don’t just “yes dear” without understanding what you commit to. That’s a good one!!!

    Good luck with the nagging. I’ve never thought it sounded fun before but now I wish I still had some kids to nag.
    Patty recently posted..Creating a Patio on a BudgetMy Profile

    • It doesn’t normally sound fun to me either! Have better things to do than make people miserable. But I figure if a week of nagging teaches my children a life lesson, it’s worth it. The sooner he learns not to “yes dear” a woman, the better!

  2. How to nag? Well, maybe it will just come naturally to you when you see things that are not done, or even started. Personally, I never want to nag at my children, except that it starts with something, then I go on and on until I feel I couldn\\\’t stop? So I take a deep breath and say to myself, that will be the last time I\\\’d let you get to me. And it ends.

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