I have a child that gave us a run for our money. He knew the buttons to push me. One of the things that saved him from undue punishment was his sense of humor. Here is just one fun story about him.
One day my son came into the house and wanted to show me that he needed a new pair of shoes. It seemed as though I had just bought him a pair recently; so I could hardly believe the shape the shoes were in. As I looked at him I said, "You know perhaps you can earn a new pair of shoes." He looked rather frustrated by that remark because work was a bad word to him. At this point of parenting; we required that all of our children do basic chores for free and then if they wanted extra money, they could do extra chores.
At this time I suggested that he actually do his free work and then go the extra mile to earn the money for the new shoes. We decided that if he would clean his room from top to bottom and pay particular attention to under his bed; along with a few outside chores he could earn the money for the shoes.
The next day I went out and bought him a new pair of shoes and placed them under his bed.
He improved in doing his daily chores and worked on the outside ones too. One day he said he had completed the list of chores to do. I told him that he still needed to do a little bit more in his bedroom. He of course went in and straightened his bed, rearranged his drawers but did not tackle the under the bed issue. So every time he asked about getting the money for his new shoes I would remind him that he needed to clean under his bed.
Perhaps now is the time to tell you what was under his bed. Let me start with the dried half eaten food such as banana peels, dried sandwiches plus a year of dust, dirty socks, clothes, and etc. In order to clean under the bed myself; I would have had to get a hazmat suit.
I told my mother about the shoes hidden under the bed; so she even suggested to him that he clean under his bed.
On a very rainy day he came in and begged me to get him a new pair of shoes because his had holes in them and his feet were wet. I just reminded him to clean under his bed. It took a total of two weeks before he finally cleaned under his bed and found his new shoes.
The blessing to this story is that he now he has a large family and at least two of his boys are just like him. I feel the payback coming on this one!
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