Thursday, January 11, 2007

Huck Finn'd...

So, here are some photos of Lincoln and his new favorite possession. Yes, it is a mop. He got a little broom/mop set for Christmas, and was highly disappointed that is was just a "fake" mop. I, being the exceptionally perceptive mother that I am, saw yet another opportunity to "Huck Finn" my child. In case you may have forgotten, in the Huckleberry Finn books, Huck gets the others kids to paint a fence for him by making it seem like such a fun job. I like this thinking, and have implemented it in many situations around the house. Hence, I have two little boys who now think getting to wipe down the potty, wash dishes and do laundry are special fun jobs. The conversation goes like this...

Lincoln "Mom, can I put the clothes in the dryer?"
Mom "Well... I don't know. I mean I really like to, and it IS a big boy job..."
Lincoln "Oh please Mommy, I will do a good job, see my strength?" (flexes muscles)
Mom "Ok, just this once, we'll see how you do..."
(and before long Emerson is in there too going, "I wanna help")

And that is how two boys came to love the privilege of bringing me their dirty clothes, loading the wash machine, and having me chuck wet clothes at them to go in the dryer. Now, if you should choose to start using the Huck Finn methods around your own home, here are some helpful tips...

1. Make it like going to the laundry room is something just for Mommy.Literally do NOT let them come out with you for a while. You think I'm kidding... whose kids let them pee alone? Anyone? Nope, and do you know why? They know we do not want them in simply apply the peeing/showering principle to other areas.

2.Act like its your most fun job,and you really do not want to share it. The proof of this is the fact that any child can have a toy sitting for 6 months, they don't play with, like it or even notice it...until another child picks it up and deems it "fun". Then they want it...badly. Again, apply the principle. (this is more technically termed, "Toyous-i-want-itis")

3.Do not give up the whole farm! This is very tempting. Seeing the interest, you hand the reins over quickly. DON'T. You must hold back part of the chore in order to keep the Huck Finn method working. Examples: I do not let the boys put the laundry detergent in the machine yet. I swear I think they are holding their breath for that day. I do not let them wash dishes, only dry, and on occasion rinse. Remember to err on the conservative side, or BOOM... you will be whitewashing that wall all alone again.

So, that takes us to the mop...
I saw how clearly saddened Lincoln was by the "fake" mop. I told him IF he was a very good boy all week, we would go find him one at Target. So, we went, and there it was...a lovely silver mop...about as manly a mop as I could find. And it was on sale for $5.58. Sweet. The best part... the look I got from some lady who heard Lincoln say...

"Oh, thank you Mommy. This is the most beautifulest mop I ever had seen."

I think she thought he was drugged. But we came home, and after waiting three days (another helpful trick) we broke out the mop, and together we mopped the kitchen. He was adorable. He loved it. He worried about getting it all clean. An hour later he even tried to declare that the floor was dirty again. Sweet... Mopping = Fun. (But in accordance with the Huck Finn methods he was not allowed to fill or dump the water...yet...) :)

And, lest you think I am a horrible mother... Here are some pictures that my little man took with my camera. He took a bunch, and I was really surprised and proud of the funky angles, objects, and subject matter he chose. Here are a few favorites...

This one his beloved blanky, just in case you were wondering what the mass of tangled silk was...


  1. adrienne10:12 AM

    LOL! Love his pics!! I need to post some of Aj's! LOL

  2. This is too funny Jude!!!! I will definitely be following your advice and trying to implement some strategies around here!! Love that comment he made at Target. And you know if nothing else from this entire experience you will be able to show your future DIL that yes he did once mop a floor :)

  3. OMG you seriously brighten my day every time you post! I'm at my desk at work cracking up right now! I guess I do the Huck Finn thing too...I just didn't know what it was called! My son gets to empty the dishwasher-but only the silverwear. He likes to dust too.

  4. This is darn right HILARIOUS!!! This is one of the funniest post I have read in a long time...and just like always I have to mention my favorite line!!

    "The best part... the look I got from some lady who heard Lincoln say...

    "Oh, thank you Mommy. This is the most beautifulest mop I ever had seen."

    If she could have called child welfare she would have!!!

    And those pictures your son you know how many years people go to photography school to master some of those angels...he has a good eye for such a young age...he must take after his mother ay!!

  5. My goodness girl - you are just SO funny!! I haven't laughed like that in ages. You are truely a cool & totally fun mum!! TFS Simone xxooo

  6. How sweet are the pictures.


  7. OMG he is a chrmer! You just better tell him to pack away those muscles till he is at least 25!!! LOL!!!!! And we all know your master plan. To convert him to take over the house work! Yeah, you can't fool us! LOL!!!! Have fun with that little guy. -Karla

  8. your son is so cute, could I borrow him, I have to do a little cleaning this weekend and I could use the help, lol

  9. what an awesome mommy...AND how cool are your names? Jude, Lincoln, and Emerson, totally made for Hollywood.

    I see where my problem is, I let them follow me everywhere. I've only just begun shutting doors. Definitely gonna try your methods. :)

  10. oh I loved reading this!! What a great idea. However I have no children to practice this on, love the concept. Loved the photos too.

  11. ROFL!!!!!!!!!!!
    Jude this is soooo funny.... You make me want to mop your floor....
    Hasn't your little man got a great eye for detail with his cool picy's.. Love the lamp one..
    sorry it's taken forever to reply to you.. thanks for your gorgeous comments... I haven't heard of Casting Crowns.. but I think you'v Huck Finn'd me there and I'll be off this week to invest in some tunes...

  12. You're a genius. I see a book deal coming your way! :) You crack me up! I too have done this trick before but didn't realize it had such a fancy name. Thanks for sharing!

  13. Totally cracking up! I used to do this with Lexi except she pretended she was Cinderella. I guess that makes me the evil mom! LOL! I love those favorite is the light bulb!

    Oh & I just remember how I bought my friends boy a "vacuum" for Christmas. It was a toy but it did work too. When he got it, he opened it up, used it, and then proceeded to tell me how dirty my carpet was! Gotta love them!

  14. I can't wait until Lincoln sees through your ploy and decides to exact his revenge. I think it's called the "rebellious teens"....

  15. That is awesome! My son has an affection for the vacuum and mop, may have to try a little of that on him! He vacuums with a play vacuum now and likes to help the standard one. Just not quite enough strength.

    His pics are priceless too. Always neat to see what kids with tak pics of.