Welcome! I am a mom to two wonderful kids, a lovely retired greyhound, and a wife to a great husband. Needless to say, there are a lot of daily messes to clean up around our house. Daily Messes is my blog to share ideas on things to do with your kids, snack and meal ideas, crafts, and holiday fun. I hope you find something to enjoy!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Boys Will Be Boys

"Boys will be boys."

I have heard this expression many times during my life as a kid, an adult, and as a mom. I hate this expression. I feel it gives an excuse to bad behavior. I have two boys, who are without a doubt boys.

Bernardo is energetic, loves to play, and his natural volume is loud. We've been working on it and he honestly doesn't even realize that his normal volume is much louder than everyone else's. We even had his hearing tested to make sure it wasn't something wrong with his ears. Nope, that's just his normal state. However, he will now sit and read or draw quietly.

Higgins is what some people would call "all boy". He does not sit still for long, which makes going out to eat a challenge. He loves castles, knights, dinosaurs, guns and swords. As soon as he walks in the door he arms himself, normally with a sword strapped to his back. Recently he wanted to wear his hoodie sweatshirt to school. It was also below freezing, so he had to wear his winter coat too. I went to the bathroom before we left to take everyone to school. We dropped Bernardo off and then I took Higgins to school. Once we get there he hangs his coat up in his cubbie. However, his hoodie is still sticking up a little so I try to fix it. What do I discover? His sword (it's foam and flexible) stuck down his back hidden under the hoodie. *Sigh*

"Boys will be boys." Yes and no. My mom had two girls and she would tell me that we used to sit quietly and play. She used to think that there wasn't a big difference between boys and girls until I had two boys. She now admits that there is. My boys do not sit still for long and play constantly throughout the day. I know that there are always exceptions: some boys will play quietly all day and some girls will be the "tom-boy". It's been shown that boys mature at a slower rate than girls, so that may make a difference between me as a child sitting quietly playing and my boys playing "good guys and bad guys" and running around the house in circles at the same age.

Higgins has a few beloved stuffed animals. Bernardo has one from when he was a baby. Neither one really wants anything to do with dolls. Higgins had a baby doll, which he did play with. However, the baby doll rode on trucks, fought dinosaurs, and generally played as an action figure. Even at a young age, they gravitated towards the boy toys in the toy stores. The closest they came to wanting a "girl" toy was a super pimped out doll house. Why did they want it? Their army guys and knights could have an awesome battle at the "castle".

I do believe that boys and girls are (generally) wired differently. However, that doesn't mean that boys should get a free pass because "boys will be boys". They still need to be taught manners and how to act in public. I know my boys have a ton of energy and need to let that  out. However, climbing over the booths at restaurants are not the right way to do it. Does Higgins ever try it? Sure. Do we let him keep doing it and disrupting other people? No. I let my boys have toy guns and swords. I do think is is disrespectful to let kids shoot at people (whether a toy gun, their finger, etc.). I have a rule that we don't shoot at people. This is both to be respectful and because when they are old enough to go to friends house alone, who knows if their friends' parents might have a real one laying around. I'm going to go out on a limb and say I support the 2nd Amendment. "Guns don't kill people, people kill people" is an accurate statement. The gun is not going to shoot itself. Just like cars don't kill people, the driver behind the wheel controlling the car causes the accident. We know people who own guns and they are very responsible, but I can't assume that everyone is so I teach my boys not to point a gun and shoot at people. When they're older I will go into more detail, but for now I am hoping that the rule is enough. I do know that not teaching them about safety is not a good option.

I also teach my boys to say please and thank you. These are manners that I see so many kids not using or being taught, which were drilled into us when we were kids. Even when we go to the store and the cashier gives them a sticker, they say thank you. Bernardo is also learning how to open the doors for people. When Higgins was in a stroller, I would be trying to hold on to Bernardo, open the store's door and wiggle the stroller through. I was cut off many times by men and women alike.

Are my boys perfect? Are my manners perfect? Heck no! However, I think that teaching our kids (boys and girls) how to have manners and be respectful of others will help them go far in their adult lives. Especially since I see these skills lacking in so many these days. When my boys are successful, I'm going to take full credit :) Just kidding...

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