Dear children,

I love you very much, and certainly do desire to keep the lines of communication open.  Unfortunately, due to the number of lines I need to keep open, I would like to keep non-essential chatter on said lines to a minimum.  Many items are brought to my attention each day that are no strictly appreciated per se.

For example, if I wanted to know exactly what goes on in your movie/show/video game, I would watch/play your movie/show/video game.  Please limit your “MOM! Do you know/Did you hear/Did you see/Guess what {fictional character} does when {other fictional character/event} happens…” comments regarding these items to a minimum.

Similarly, please recall that, generally speaking, I only desire to admire your TOP 3 ‘coolest’ things (UNrelated to the aforementioned) that you do/say/think/experience per day.  These cannot be accumulated or ‘rolled-over’ and are non-transferable between siblings.  Therefore, please be careful to limit your impulse of asking me to admire every little thing you do accordingly by carefully choosing the things you wish to share.  This will be of great assistance to me as I endeavor to avoid “No, dear, REALLY, I just don’t care right now if you can {swing high, jump far or multiple times on one or multiple feet,  stick your tongue out a long ways, make a funny noise, count to 100, speak a ‘foreign language’ or whatever amazing feat}” syndrome.  I do my best to be interested in the details of your lives that are important to you, but one can only be interested in so many ‘super cool’ things per day before becoming underwhelmed.  At this time, 12 per day is my limit.  Thank you for your consideration.

Please note that extra patience/allowances for such recitals of awesomeness may be obtained if

1) You have not just irritated a sibling DOING whatever the awesome thing is

2) You did not interrupt a conversation with another living being, nor something else I have just told you not to interrupt.  Like, say, a sibling’s bedtime.

3) You did not tap on my leg and say “mom!” multiple times in quick succession without allowing me time to actually respond.

4) It has absolutely NOTHING to do with Diego and sounds NOTHING AT ALL like ANY of the songs from that show.

Sorry, Diego, you’re a pretty neat show, but anything + obsession quickly loses it’s ability to interest others.  This it not that different from when a girlfriend meets ‘the one’ and focuses all conversation on him.  Don’t worry, when Nata gets less enthused by you, I’ll not feel antagonism welling each time I hear your theme song. 

5) It is something I notice and take interest in of my own volition and at my own convenience.

6) It has educational or long-term value.

7) It is not shown to me during a time slot in which you are SUPPOSED to be accomplishing something else.

8) You are the only child near me at the time and this circumstance has held true for the last hour.

9) It pertains to whatever activity we are actually pursuing.  (By all means, demonstrate your awesome skills to crack eggs or flip pancakes when we’re making supper, or show me the ‘super-awesome’ way you rinse a dish with the sprayer whose existence you only just discovered when we’re cleaning up.  Please show me how well your ‘claw’ works at putting away your clothes or how neatly you can write the letter ‘W’ during school time.  Feel free to draw my attention to how well/far/strangely you can throw a frisbee/ball when we’re already playing catch.  Anything in this line is perfectly acceptable anytime.)

Other possibilities for the allowance of extra awesomeness will be added as they are realized.

I think if we all work together on this issue, I should in good conscience be able to look in your eyes each time you come to me to share an awesome moment in your life and sincerely enjoy the interaction along with you.

Thank you for your consideration,


PS – I very much want to hear those 3 awesome things and maybe even a few items of interest from your shows/games/movie each day.  Also, real conversation about real things and *questions* are always welcome.  Love you!

*Questions defined as those items of interest not readily answerable by your own observational skills.  One example of a non-question: “Are we there yet?”  If you have not yet noticed the pattern, this will always and ever be answered by “Have I parked the car? Are we getting out”, “Do you SEE {location to which we are headed}”, or “Well of COURSE we are.  How about you unbuckle and get out now” accompanied by a 60 mph speedometer or other obvious indication that we are decidedly NOT ‘there’ depending on the sarcasm level.  A second common example: “What are you doing?” asked at the bathroom door or when I’m doing any other obvious activity -if I’m looking at an open book, for instance, it is likely that the answer will be “I am reading”- will receive a similar level of consideration in the answer given).  If you have any residual confusion about the difference between ‘Question’ and ‘Non-question’, please don’t hesitate to ask.