parenting is tough... video games and screens in general to not make things any easier


  [hahy-pur-buh-lee]  Show IPA
noun Rhetoric .
obvious and intentional exaggeration.
an extravagant statement or figure of speech not intended to be taken literally, as “to wait aneternity.”

it is so hard for a parent to motivate their child
actually... it is impossible for a parent to motivate their child
the best the parent can do is stress attendance and the importance of practice
motivation comes from within

for school and in life
attendance is vital
attendance in body
attendance in mind
school has homework and so does life

it is hard for a parent to get their child to do things... any things
it is even more difficult for the parent to get the child to move if that parent is competing with screen
video games entrance the children more than television
but most of the time the kids are "dual screening"
that is television and device
be that device iPhone, iPad, or Mac laptop

the Kindle never got very high in the rotation
the laptops are used more for gaming than for information or education

it is so hard to guide the children
it is almost as if I need to be present for them to stick to the task

if I send the boys back out the alley to pass the soccer ball in less than ten minutes they are hitting each other with sticks or arguing who has to climb the fence to retrieve the soccer ball

it is tough...
Dean learned to ride the unicycle... he taught himself
but honestly... I could not just send him out to the alley to practice
if I sent him out to the alley he would be inside inside of 15 minutes
so... I went out and interacted with him
I tried to learn to ride the unicycle, I took his photos, I gave him encouragement and instruction

then... we excelled forward
that was the launching pad 

Dean and Grant are very different animals
Grant is head strong while Dean is "happy go lucky"

both boys have a competitive drive
but their drive is expressed in different ways
while they are both strong athletes
their efforts are very different

they have very different body types
this may dictate some of Grant's effort to muscle things
while Dean leans more towards finesse
this can be seen on skies or on the soccer field

these different body types and these different personalities offer up a different set of challenges
Grant is not a contrarian... but he up to argue just about anything
argue and offer up excuses

Grant and I lock horns
it is not easy... I hate the process
sometimes my tactics are better than others
other times I only get my way because I am the father
not because Grant comes to understand I am right

now mind you... Grant will often later realize I was right
right to force him to go for a hike
correct in making him go for a bicycle ride

I try to tell him that we all have to contend with inertia
only I may not use the word inertia

I voice that I understand the desire to sit back after a long day
yet I make myself ride my bike
I make myself walk the dog longer than around the block
I make myself to things I think I do not want to do
then once immersed in them I am thankful that I am doing them

that is why that Capitalist Philosopher from the 80's said JUST DO IT

Dean and Grant are different
Grant gives me a fight every time
Dean only gives me a fight sometimes
last night Dean and I were discussing whether or not he should go to Karate the following morning

so... with camp coming up Dean will be missing a fair amount of karate
Dean's logic was that this one practice would not add up to anything
to which I disagreed
as life is cumulative and it is not just missing that one practice... but it is also the practice that you missed for your cousin's graduation dinner and then the practice you missed because you came home late from the field trip 

there are always reasons why practices have to be missed
there is no reason to build on this list
in fact... it would be best to chip away at this list
it is all about priorities

putting things in order
we try this with video games
homework and activities must be finished before screen
but really...
this just causes the boys to race through their homework so that they can get to their screens

if the top grade is not being achieved
then the homework is not being done
the new school system seems to understand more that it is about learning the material than getting the grade
there are opportunities for make ups and do overs
which will help the child study the information that they did not do the home work for or did not score well enough on the test due to lack of preparation

study... do the homework... then pull up the grade
the grade is the carrot
but really.... it is more important to allow the do over so that the information is learned

it is about the process more than the product

older brother\younger brother
there are all sorts of biological\sociological\and psychological components

the second child gets so much information passed on at an earlier age
in so many cases they can not help to be more mature... well, more mature in some ways
yet there can be the dynamic of the younger child that leads then to use what tools they have... crying and complaining being a powerful tool
especially if they are the baby of the family

as the youngest of three I did not have a chance against my older brother and even older sister physically
so I used the only weapon I had... baby of the family
and well... my mother and father enabled that behavior by giving into it

okay... this is a bicycle blog and not Parenting today
but this is what was on my mind
just tuned the boys bikes up for mountain bike camp next week

but really... it is mountain biking at camp
not a mountain bike camp
awesome... but it is not some session with coaches at Valmont park
it is riding the bike in the woods with some counselors and some other kids
totally awesome! 
but mountain biking at camp and not mountain bike camp

funny thing... I never got this rant full circle
it drifted away from hyperbole
so I will close with what I wanted to say

last night I was trying to tell my older son that he has a choice to go to karate or hang with his cousins
then I mentioned that his cousins kick butt at soccer because they never miss a practice
how they would go to soccer practice or soccer game and then hang out
but not hang out instead
to that... my son claimed that I always compare him to Eric... which is not true
they are very different children who express their athleticism in very different ways
but... the example of practice in his cousins' live is a good example about how to choose is to know that there is no choice

I tried to switch gears...
Dean started talking about other activities... there was mention of skiing and his going to all of his practices... to which I chimed in... "so Dean, there was a day when you chose..."
to which Dean immediately cut me off... "no, not that story... that never even happened"
to which I responded... I used this story because it is a hyperbole
which got dean on his device to both define and then show that the pronunciation and the spelling contained an "e"

we got side tracked by the technology then got back on point
the point that he was in the habit of making the wrong choices
selecting the video games or the screen over real life things
things like reading, playing the guitar, and of course my a favorite... sports

I did not push it... I felt it was a good conversation
his mother came in the room and asked him if he was going to karate
to which Dean responded, "I do not know, I will decide in the morning"

and I could not contain myself...
"if you do not decide that you are going the night prior... it is unlikely you will go"
there is too much planning and prepping
getting your head right
knowing what time you need to get out the door
and whether or not you know where your gear is

I was okay with him not going
but I wanted him to understand the weight of the choices
I value his hanging out with his cousins
but I think he could do both
go to karate... then meet up with the cousins

the cousins who are about to come over for a sleep over

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