I have been trying to figure it out all day, I started the day in a grumpy mood. It is because of the nightmare that I walked into this morning. I am tired of fighting over the house and chores. I want peace in my home again. I have spent all day trying to decide what it was exactly that I wanted to do to teach my son respect, responsibility and gratefulness in a way that he would never forget. I wrote him the following letter when he arrived home from school:
To my one and only child,
I know you don’t want to hear this, but it is because I love you that the next week or two of your life might be a little difficult. Many of life’s lessons are hard to learn, and learning how to be a responsible member of our family will be no exception. I think that it goes without saying that you are grounded. Not just a little grounded, but the big kind. The kind that I jump into my magic time machine and go back and erase Benjamin Franklin from existence in your life. If it plugs into a wall- you don’t get to use it. You must earn the right to use electricity in our home.
Due to the fact that I believe cell phones are a safety precaution, I will be happy to charge your phone for you, and you may have your phone when you leave the house. Otherwise, please turn it in when you get home. I have taken the liberty of unplugging your video game systems and put all of your games that were strewn across my living room into a box for you. You are welcome.
In order to earn electricity back in this house, you must earn 10,000 points from the following list:
- Do the dishes -100 pts
- Take the trash out- 100 pts
- Do a load of laundry– 100 pts (wash, dry, AND put away)
- Sweep and mop the common areas- 100 pts (the mop is the squishy thing next the broom)
- Clean out the car- 100pts
- Vacuum upstairs- 100 pts
- Discover the floor to your room – 100 pts
- Clean the bathroom- 150 pts (if I were the one who missed the seat, this number would be much higher, but since I am not- I don’t feel bad for you)
- Cook dinner- 500 pts (one that is healthy and edible for all of us)
- Use $10 of your allowance to buy lunch meat, cheese and bread. Make sandwiches and I will drive you to the homeless district to give them out- 1,000 pts (while you are giving out sandwiches, please consider whether or not you respect and appreciate our home)
- Go to the elderly neighbor’s houses around us and offer to take their trash out for them every day when you take ours out. – 1,000 pts
- Write a formal apology to me and make it count- no points- but required
It will take you some time and effort to earn 10,000 points, but I have confidence that you will find a way, and that in the process, you will learn some pretty amazing lessons.
Good luck, may the odds be ever in your favor,