I’m the mother of boys. I’m tempted to end my blog with that sentence. If you’re the mom of boys, you understand that pretty much sums it all up. If you are the mother of girls, you probably watch in bewildered wonderment when you see a mom like me with rambunctious boys. In fact, before I had my own kids, I was a teacher and I thought I knew a lot about kids. I always presumed that the boys that were very physical and talked in a certain way MUST watch a lot of violent TV. Then my boys came along and crushed my previous perceptions as they made up shows with their stuffed animals calling them “violent shows, the kind we’re not allowed to watch.”
All of this talk about boys brings me back to our family fun weekend. This weekend we had a “secret mission family fun night”—and my boys were thrilled! (I include my husband when I say my boys.) I loved it because it kept them occupied all weekend, and relieved some of my responsibility in the kitchen. (It was a nice break for mom on Mother’s Day weekend.) Let me explain.
Our family fun night started with my husband arriving home from work stealth-style—he snuck in the back door without anyone noticing. Our family dinner set the mood; we called the kitchen “the mess hall,” dinner was at 18:00 hours and it was served cafeteria style. Since the boys were now in the military, they were treated like soldiers. Moms don’t wait on soldiers (which means they were responsible to get their own drinks, with no “mom, can you please get me some more water?”). As the army cook, I told the rules of the kitchen and plopped their food on their plates (army creamed beef, noodles, corn and fruit).
After dinner, it was time for the secret missions to begin. I had a pile of index cards, each with a different mission. (Some missions were dual-purpose, also completing a chore that needed to be done.) Here are a few examples:
~Underground caves: Search for and capture enemy possessions (find things in the basement for the upcoming garage sale).
~Clean up remnants of enemy bombs (bird poop on the deck!).
~Enemy bubble attack—see how many enemy bubbles you can get.
~Training mission—target shooting with water guns.
~Mission: Enemy frog has been spotted in the backyard. Your job: capture him! (I hid a plastic toy frog for the kids to find.)
~Cushion fort building
The kids loved the water guns and the frog mission, and my husband was thrilled to mow the lawn on his “tank” while still having fun as a family. The boys made up their own secret mission using a marble ramp to knock over plastic army guys. Did I mention the grand finale dessert? The kids loved the “bomb the ice cream sundaes” (ice cream sundaes with mini-marshmallows and candy-coated chocolate “bombs”).
Sweet, simple, and exciting for boys. It was a great family fun weekend. Yes, I’m the mother of boys—and I love every minute of it.