Alex is an emotional kid. Blames himself for a lot of things, cries when he's confronted with one of his mistakes. He gets a lot of that from me, though I've learned how to let a lot of things go over the years. He's also very singularly minded. He focuses on one thing and everything else disappears. That's good for what he's working on, bad for keeping track of other stuff. (Yesterday, he wore one of Craig's shoes to school without realizing it until he got there. They have the exact same tennis shoes, just in different sizes, and he wasn't paying attention, lol.)
House rule is homework has to be done first before anything fun (unless it's a scheduled or family thing). Last night, I'd promised him a game of something after dinner. I only had about ninety minutes before I had to go pick up Alicia from softball practice, and he raced around to get everything done so we could have the whole time.
This morning, five minutes before we have to leave for school, he's sitting in the office, finishing up a report in his pajamas. A report he "forgot" he hadn't finished. I sent him upstairs to get dressed, then talked to him about it on the way to school. He started crying almost right away because he assumed he was losing game privileges for the weekend, punishing himself before I ever said a word. I had never planned on punishing him for it, though I was clear on elaborating how homework isn't "done" if it's not printed up and in your backpack. The truth is, he's been working hard, trying to be more diligent about his homework in general and getting caught up from a missed assignment back in December around his birthday that made his grade plummet. I told him all that. I made it clear that Craig and I saw what he was doing, that we were proud he was trying so hard, and that bumps in the road were to be expected. He still got teary. And I know he was lying about being done. He was so fixated on getting to play a game with me that he didn't want anything to get in the way of that. I just worry about his self-blame because I remember what happened with me when I was a kid. I don't want him going down that path.
It's easy issues. I know the lying is typical of the age. Testing boundaries. Trying to stay out of trouble. It's just frustrating.
On the flipside to frustrating, Alicia has a Valentine's dance after school today and asked if she could wear make-up for it. Correction. She asked me if I would help her put make-up on for it. I had purchased a huge kit/palette set from Sephora for her birthday, plus mascara and nice brushes, which went over better than I expected. Alicia is not obsessed with appearances. She's more tomboy than anything else, plus thinks that if someone doesn't want to like her for what she really looks like, then that's their problem. But when she and her BFF had to wear make-up for being under the lights at their Christmas concert, she'd complained about having to use BFF's to get ready. (And then, a month later, absolutely refused suggestions we do makeovers at make-up counters in Macy's on our girl's day out with BFF, complete with rolling of her eyes.)
So when she asked me to do this for her? I smiled and said, "Of course." We didn't do much. Just light eye make-up and a little bit of pore correction. She seemed pleased with it in general, though complaining (of course, lol) about it looking and feeling a little weird. She's growing up. First day at school ever wearing make-up. Time is just flying by.