Frozen Cell Phone

I have been V-E-R-Y S-L-O-W to allow my children access to social media of any kind. They both have hand-held devices and email addresses and the ability to iMessage their family and a few friends but that’s as far as I have been willing to go. After all they are only 8 and 10 and kids should be kids. So my eldest was over the moon a couple months ago when I let her set up a Musical.ly account. It hasn’t been too bad except for me having to watch a few hundred juvenile videos. Of course, recently her sister has started nagging for her own account as well and I just can’t see an 8-year-old needing one. So I had them change the name of Presley’s account to include them both, which has not been well received by my 10-year-old, to say the least.

About a week ago (before Snowflake the Elf’s arrival) I finally gave in and let PJ download the app onto her personal device. This happened while I was trying to cook dinner and feed the pets and answer questions about homework. I was a little (read as A LOT) overwhelmed. So as my husband and I are rushing around trying to get the table set, get food on the table, feed the pets, etc., my children are leaning up against the doorway in kitchen immersed in Musical.ly and oblivious to the madness surrounding them.

Me: Presley, I fed your cat

Presley: [Silence]

Me: Now Mo’s trying to eat it. (Her cat is on a special diet and has her own food)

Presley: [Silence]

Me: You need to pick up your cat and her food and take her upstairs to eat.

Presley: [Picks up cat’s food and places it on the counter]

Me: You need to pick up your cat and her food and take her upstairs to eat.

Presley: [Silence]


Presley, without saying a word, finally picks up her cat and her food and takes them upstairs then returns to watch videos with her sister.

At this point I have just about reached my limit, but for some reason I ask my youngest to perform what I think is a simple task to help dinner get to the table a little faster.

Me: Peyton, can you please pour the milk, rinse out the milk jug, and put it in the recycling bin?

Peyton: What?

Me: Peyton, can you please pour the milk, rinse out the milk jug, and put it in the recycling bin?

Peyton, who thinks she is smart enough not to ask again, gets the milk jug out of the refrigerator, takes it to the kitchen sink and proceeds to fill it with water.

Me: You don’t have to fill it all the way, just put a little water in and shake it to rinse the milk out. WHERE IS THE MILK YOU POURED?!!!

Peyton: What? I poured the water on the milk like you said.

Unable to form a coherent thought or sentence, I grabbled her device and threw it in the freezer. I finally managed to spit out something about her not getting it back until she finished her dinner and cleaned the kitchen and that I hoped it still worked after all that time because I wasn’t buying her a new one. Then I yelled at her to take the now empty milk jug out to the recycling bin and get the new gallon of milk out of the refrigerator in the garage, during which time I quickly removed her device from the freezer and threw it on top, out of site. I wasn’t going to put myself in a situation that I would feel guilty about later.

Having sufficiently scared them into obedience they both quickly finished their dinner and cleaned up the kitchen. I then retrieved the phone from the top of the refrigerator at which point my eldest looked at her sister and said, “I told you she took it out of the freezer.” And I threatened her with the same treatment. Not exactly a banner day on the parenting front, but I guess I could call it a success.

Hopefully our elf can keep them in line and I won’t have to make a spectacle of myself again until after Christmas. Snowflake arrived the Saturday after Thanksgiving and I can honestly say it wasn’t a moment too soon. So far their behavior has improved.




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