Zac spent tonight washing walls. He had been busted for scratching graffiti into our kitchen table. The positioning of said graffiti was most unfortunate as it sits just above the dinner plate position at the head of the able. Through a stroke of luck, however, Mick was not sitting in his usual position at the dinner table this evening. I was. My first reaction upon seeing the offending indentation was to draw in breath sharply. Zac's knee jerk reaction to my uncharacteristic dinnertime behaviour was to announce "I didn't do it." How could he know what he hadn't done if he had in fact not done it. Clue number one. Clue number two was the repetition of the phase "I didn't do it." I didn't need any micro expressions to tell he was lying to me. Clue three came by way of a spelling test. I asked Gus to spell the offending word and he had to ask if it had a big 'c' or little 'c'. (It's not that word) Gus was exonerated. Zac made an attempt to cover his tracks by writing a lower case where the graffiti had an uppercase, but his 'k' gave him away. His handwriting was a match. Now to the punishment. This was no ordinary misdeed and so needed a less than ordinary consequence. So I gave Zac the Enyo washer and told him to wash walls until bed time. With a minimal amount of posturing he did and in the process confessed his crime and entered into a productive discussion about restitution. An hour later and many walls washed he went to bed and I avoided a dramatic meltdown, his and mine. Some time today I was asked to ponder the question 'What have you done today to make you feel proud?' I can now say that I feel proud that I handled a stressful family situation without threats or raised voices (screaming) or smacking. So that when my Visiting Teachers came over (I had forgotten they were coming) as the children were all going to bed I did not have to explain the tension in the house. Instead they were surprised that I was already laughing about the matter.
Do not scroll down if you are easily offended or if me posting this will change your opinion of me for worse.