Schoolbag by cartoonist Maeve O’Keeffe

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Why don’t kids do tedious tasks like cleaning schoolbags?

Why do Moms do everything for their kids, even cleaning schoolbags?    Have you similar memories or stories to share? Post to my blog or email [email protected] 

With summer holidays racing by, I’m getting a small bit anxious about organising the back to school gear.  Husband got the task to bringing the boys shopping for schoolbags and trousers.  Traumatised after a horrific ordeal of Confirmation clothes shopping with our eldest son last year, I let Daddy-O deal with it.  They duly returned with the required items only to dump them in the corner of the living room with all the other clutter.

Uuh!  Sometimes it’s just easier to pick things up yourself rather than waste the time and energy nagging them to do it.  I put the stuff away but spotted Junior’s battered schoolbag, waiting to be dumped.  “Did you empty that?” I asked.  “Think so,” he muttered, barely raising the head from his computer game.  “Check it,” I ordered.  Several hours later the torn, broken-zipped bag still lay untouched on the kitchen counter.  “For heaven’s sake, didn’t you clear that out yet?”  I grabbed it, went through the pockets and, sure enough, found a stash of bunched up copybooks, broken pencils, bits of plastic rulers, setsquares, Christmas cards and – I don’t believe this, the sponsorship card and money for the school fundraiser that should have been handed in aeons ago.  Exactly the same thing happened last year with his bigger brother’s bag clearout, with me sheepishly submitting the money months later when school reopened.  What is it with these boys?  Grrr!

What does it take – nagging, bribery or a pocket money ban to get a boy to do a simple task?  I’m still trying to get bigger brother to do more outdoor painting while the weather is dry.  But no, the enterprise bug hasn’t bitten.  The money he earned for painting windowsills was spent on a coveted computer game – mission accomplished and no more motivation.  Raring to rant “When I was your age I’d have LOVED a paid summer job,” I held my tongue.  His pal would be calling later, so no point in dragging out the messy turpentine, brushes and paint.  But whatever about clearing or organising schoolbags, the outdoor painting is one job I will not succumb to.  Must stick to my guns, delegate and not let these canny guys deliberately dither and drive me to do everything!

Maeve O’Keeffe, the Frazzled Mammy!   ©Maeve O’Keeffe 2014

Maeve O’Keeffe is a Cartoonist, Illustrator and Journalist in Cork, Ireland 

Contact by e-mail   [email protected] or tweet@frazzled_mammy

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