After many years of working on my mental health, I feel like I am finally able to start enforcing more of the guidelines I have always wanted to as a parent but was not in the right frame of mind to do so.  So, if you don't mind, I am going to write my list here that I am planning to implement for my boys.  Maybe this will hold me accountable?  Post it on the WWW and then I will stick to it?  lol... if you are a parent, hopefully you get the underlying statement here.  

Come on, be honest, how many charts, checklists, and sets of rules have you attempted to get your children to follow so you could have some sense of order and discipline?  Discipline has the root word, disciple in it, which means to teach by the way, in case you were wondering. I liked when I found out that little tid bit, as it takes away the vision of giving swats to actually sitting down on a child's level and teaching them about the real world. The real world of actions and consequences.  But I digress.  Which if you have read any of my other blogs, you know I do often.  Lucky you.  ;-) 

O.k. here goes:
Bill and Joe,   (names have been changed to protect the innocent) 
I know we are in this new stage of our lives together where you unfortunately have to travel between Mom and Dad's house.  I hate that for you!  It's not how life is supposed to be, however it is what we have at the moment.  SO, because I love you I am writing out a plan for when you are at our apartment, so that you understand how things work around here.  I know it can be confusing if Dad and I parent differently, so hopefully these guidelines IN WRITING :-)  will help you both get in a routine here and be more at ease:

Baron Apartment-hold Guidelines and Benefits

1. Playing electronic games is a privilege not a right. Until school is out, please do not bring your tower computers to our apartment, just your laptops will do the job.
2. Chores are a privilege that allow us all to live in a clean orderly place and help us feel at peace.
3. "Extra" chores like organizing the pantry, closet or toolcart will help you later in life AND help us function more efficiently! Lucky you! ;-) 
4. Allowances are like a paycheck, if you don't show up and do the work, you don't get paid.  
5. Do something kind for someone else each day and write it down on your chore chart. Think about how it made you feel. Write that down on your chart as well.
6. Monday through Friday until school is out: No gaming until all schoolwork is complete and chores are finished and checked off by me.  Let's talk about a time frame for this.  
7. Kitchen closes at 9:30 pm on weeknights  10:30 on weekends.
8. School nights bedtime: 9:30, may read in bed until 10pm.
During the day hours after schoolwork and exercise, feel free to do something creative:
Here is a possible list, please add your ideas to it:
     + draw a picture
     + write in your Big Life Journal about what you did today or how you are feeling
     + play a board game with your brother or your mother
     + look up a new recipe for dinner or baking and make plans to cook it!
     + bake something
     + take a walk, ride a bike, do some floor exercises or play on the playscape
     + think about a project that we could build together, like a stand for your computer.
     + please write your ideas below!!!  Thank you! 

If any of these guidelines or privileges absolutely don't work for you (Bill and Joe ;-) ) please come to me with a new plan and express it in calm tones and I will see how the Sheriff decides to move forward. Please remember the Sheriff loves you and so she is implementing these guidelines to keep order in the Baron-town apartment which is in the best interest for all of us!   (if the corn content is too high for any of you, please forgive me!)


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