Fighting and Cleaning

Siblings and fighting…
Any advice?

Given the fact that one is 5 and the other is not even 1 year old, this shouldn’t be a problem.
Should it?
But it is

Reagan was playing with her Pollies this morning on the love seat.
Dakota was doing the usual and grabbing and tearing into them.

She was soo annoyed with him and she yelled “He is so naughty, I just want him to go sleep for the rest of the day!!”

Things improved a bit after I distracted him with his car.
Yes, it’s INSIDE the house, but hey, I am willing to pull about anything in here to keep him entertained some days. He’s not all that grumpy most days, just INTO everything!
The car didn’t last long, sad to say, and he was back over there doing what he does best.

(they are blurry but let me tell you, this kid is speedy)

Grabbing, chewing and running. She yelled at him a few times, then it was quiet.
(time to check on them if it’s quiet)
He was sitting down checking out his leg and I saw a pink jump rope was tied around his ankle.

I couldn’t believe it. “What in the world did you do?”
She very nonchalantly replies, “Oh, I actually just tied his leg to the light so he can’t get my stuff.”
Sure enough one end was tied to his ankle and the other was knotted around the bottom of the standing lamp! Just go ahead and tie the dog up!

He would not let her alone so she moved on to other things…
and sure enough, here he comes!

He took off with a few of her crayons but that wasn’t as serious in her book and since she didn’t yell enough, he went off to find other things to play with.

He loves this broom. The minute I get it out, there he is, ready to help.
He swings it wildly, waiting for it to hit something.
Is he mean or is this the boy coming out?

It is also the source of serious irritation when it won’t do what he wants it too. Seeing that it is twice his size, it’s no wonder.

I helped get the broom straightened out and he was happy.

Now we turn the tables… he is finally happy playing … and here she comes! With a dog tied around her waist, no less.
He’s thinking “Get your dog off my broom!”
and she teases him for awhile.
More screaming.
He can yell with the best of them right now!
I promise, we’re working on that.

So back to the car we go, give him his blanket, and for a change she plays with him instead of against him!

What do you do?
How do you stop it?
What is your solutions?
I know, she is old enough not to bug him and he needs to learn not to yell, I know that, but just give me some tips on helping to get that across!!!

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Today I cleaned. It feels good to have the house all clean! (minus the basement, it’s still a disaster) There is almost nothing better, then have a clean house!
But does it ever feel like you’re spinning your wheels when it comes to keeping your house clean/uncluttered?
I guess the last few years may have spoiled me… just 2 girls who were well able to pick up after themselves so there wasn’t a constant array of toys strung hither and yon. All the toys and things they played with were either upstairs in their room or in the basement.

NOW… now is a total different story. The little destroyer we have just m-o-v-e-s around here on a rampage. He goes from the toy basket, to the pantry, then over to the lids and small bowls, next he cleans out under the sink, then he’s off to get a box of crayons Reagan left on the floor and then on to Eric’s tool belt inside the front door. He leaves a disaster in his wake and this mother just despairs!! I hate clutter and it feels like it is almost to drowned me. I’m not sure what is the best solution because he has to have something to do besides hang onto my leg and cry!

And I can’t sit and play ball with him all day, as much as he’d like.
But when I’m not playing with him, it feels like I’m just following him, cleaning up as he goes.

How do you keep your place picked up?
How do you keep yourself sane in the middle of all the fighting, toys and things flying around?
Any answers?
Or helpful tips?

– – – — – – – – – – – – – –
And last but not least…
I cannot forget to blog about our pet!
Ohhh, how we love our little pet!
Do you have a pet?
We do!

Do you know what our pet is?
Really? Can’t you tell?

Says Reagan, “It’s the mostest prettiest rock I ever found. The bestest one out there. I bet it glows in the dark. Let’s put it in a glass of water and see if it glows in the dark. Well, it’s not glowing yet, but it’s not dark yet either and I’m actually sure tonight when it’s dark this rock will glow in the dark. Let’s keep this rock forever. It’s sooo beautiful.  Do you think it had a family? Do you think this rock misses his family? Do you think I should put the rock back out with the other so that it can be with it’s family?”

“Why, yes, I’m almost sure I can see it crying. You better take him back out to his family, for sure!”



19 thoughts on “Fighting and Cleaning

  1. I have no answers to your problems.  Why, you ask???  Because I am dealing with the same things.  Some of the very same things.  Right down to Dominic loving to play with a broom and Megan screaming and yelling when he wants to play with her and her dollhouse. So, she  flips the coffee table on its side and tries to block him out of the living room.   I despair somedays.  Seriously.  What DO you do about it??  


  2. I’m sorry, but all I could do was laugh! Tying up the dog, indeed! LOLOL I’m still laughing. I don’t have any answers except to say that it will get better. But it might get worse first. lol  Seriously, I think with my 3rd one I learned to relax more. They grow up so fast and when you look back you wonder where the time went and why your messy, cluttered house mattered so much! I know all about children fighting though, too. Keep teaching and training them and somewhere, sometime, you will see that it paid off!


  3. I think I could have almost written this post too. Sounds all too familiar! Elaina did not get into half the stuff Connor does.  I told Steve I feel like all I do is go in circles cleaning up. No advice here, but we are definitely in the same boat! Just wait til he discovers what a stool is for! (or maybe you don’t have a stool around) Connor recently figured out if he gets the stool he can also reach the drawers! 


  4. I don’t have advice on the fighting or the clutter.  If you saw my house (that I cleaned today) you would know why and if you would hear the fight that just happened you would also know why.  You know, children are so different.  My first three just didn’t get into stuff like the last three and the baby just takes the cake for destroying and making messes and bothering the others when they try to play.  I think it’s partly that I don’t take the time to teach her like I did the first ones and partly just that she’s such a go-getter.I really wish I could have good words that would help you.  Instead I will keep checking back here, because I could have written this nearly word for word.  If it helps you at all, know that with three little people four and under my house probably looks a lot worse than yours.  And oh…the fights to keep little fingers out of Lego creations and Polly Pockets and new markers!!Right now I’m trying to grin and bear it.  I keep thinking another year will make such a difference.And I love the rock. P.S.  I wish we could hire you to take our family photos.


  5. I think the siblings arguing thing is just part of life. I have an 11 year old and a 3 month old. Today he was moody, crying all day long. Finally my 11 year old asks, “cant you put bub in his swing on the porch, he needs sunshine”. LOL…that was a plea for silence and he is 3 months old.De-cluttering and a tidy house, what is that? My house stays cluttered regardless of how much I organize and pick up. It is VERY lived in!I love your pet, at least you don’t have to feed it and pick up after it too!


  6. If you could see my house right now, you would feel better. And I do not have a baby to blame it on either. Love the idea of big sister getting sick of it and just tying up her brother. Gotta give her an A for originallity. 🙂


  7. I’m with Esther. Come and visit my house. Your children would feel right at home, like my grandchildren do.One of my boys was coming downstairs this week where the children had been playing the night before with little people and houses. ‘Since when is this acceptable?’ he grumbled. I just shoved them out of the way so no one would die during the night falling over them. They went to a lot of work to make it look like a little town. Even if you put up with it all your life, in the end it’s the happy memories that count, right? Of course I can say that now. That doesn’t mean I don’t like the house clean  but I don’t sweat it if it’s not. Well, actually sometimes I do!


  8. Fighting never stops…..when they get older they just argue loudly….love the rock…we have cousin rocks here….my kids have stashes of em…that I periodically release to their families 


  9.  I understand the problem, it happens at my house all the time.  My kids baby-proof by dumping their stuff  (train-tracks, dolls etc) on the kitchen table and play with it up there.  Now the baby learned to climb up the chairs and onto the table.   They started moving all the chairs away from the table, so she can’t climb up.  This means my house is in a constant mess.  Sometimes I just make them play with her roming around in the middle of them, and this usually backfires on me when both of my older kids completely spaz out.


  10. Oh dear I feel for you!!  Mine does his picking in the morning before the bus goes and after the bus drops off again in the evening.  I babysit.  The rest of the day it is constant activities…not formally planned by the mother.  The broom is a huge hit here as well. Some of the kitchen cupboards got locks after I saw him sucking on my floor wax bottle…That has helped with clutter 50%, since the one cupboard we left unlocked is the tupperware lids:(.  He has to have something to play with and those are at least harmless.  the biggest problem we have here is that he is tall enough to reach into drawers… I’ve had him come running to me happily with my sharpest pointiest knife i own, swinging it quite proudly.  I was pretty scared about it, the way he swings things around.    He is getting better, so maybe there is hope for you!  You saw how wild mine can be…  He actually will sit and look at books for quite awhile, loves to be read to, and will play toys unsupervised pretty nicely- even when the older children are here, when the mood is right.  It happens that what counts:)   Just don’t tell him what I’ve been saying…it will be all over!


  11. The constant fighting is what I CAN NOT handle. Screaming puts my mind in a spin and I completely feel like spazzing out. Since they are 3 and 6 now, I make them sit on the couch, take the toy away, or have them play alone in their room’s. It always helps, till next time. sigh My boys never went from one thing to the other like that as baby’s. Maybe I better get ready for number three! Sounds dangerous! Cleaning up mess’ are one thing that I have not been able to teach my boys. They go from one game/toy to the other without picking up. I know it is my lack of teaching at this age. But keeping after them to clean it up before you start with something else, seems hopeless. I can do it WAY faster. But I understand it is NOT benefiting them any. I heard say once that whatever your child can do himself….should not be expected of you. Alex fixes his own cereal, gets dressed (with constant reminders), carries his plate to the sink (sometimes) but it pretty much stops there. Every now and then he takes trash or slop out.  When I realize all a six yr old could do…..I about panic at how little he does do. My fault. He is slow and whiny. So I let him go. Good mom I am . :/ No answers. where are all those mom’s who do? Maybe it just goes away (the fighting) as they get older. Our’s finally did stop, just before we got married. lol


  12. I could cry with you. I know exactly how frustrating it is! These things are the same things I deal with, but they multiplied when #3 came along. So when you get answers, please share them with me. Older wiser women tell me all the time that these are the best days of my life. What? HOW IN THE WORLD is that possible? Their children must not have fought and screamed like mine do. Because I can not believe it can get any worse.


  13. Oh, I hear you.  These are the days of messy house and fighting.  My boys actually don’t fight *that* much, I don’t think.  It goes in spurts.  For two weeks they are terrible, then suddenly they play and play.  But that 5 yr / 1 yr (I had that, too) was about the worst stage.  Liam was old enough to be assertive instead of thinking Adam was super hero; and Adam wasn’t used to being questioned.  They were doing pretty well this summer, but now that Adam is in school, it’s taking some work again.  Liam waits for him all day long only to have Adam come home and be used to thinking about no one but himself.  It can easily take them 45 min of fighting to get their roles figured out again and then they’re *relatively* happy w/ a few outbreaks.But the mess.  OH THE MESS.  And the N O I S E.  Seriously, boys have GOT to be worse than girls w/ that.  The noise and the bounciness and the whacking around and the jumping and the hurling and the slamming and the bouncing and the looking for the hammer to bang down the walls stuff.  Seriously, there will never BE a house big enough or damage proof enough to grow boys well. 


  14. I don’t know that i have any advice at all.  I do want to say though that it is a STAGE of life and it does get easier and you get out of it and don’t even realize that it happened and you actually can at times forget the intensity of those yrs.Our youngest is 5 and yes, the 3 boys still can have their squabbles but it’s still DIFFERENT because you can TALK to them and you SEE progress….  i don’t know how else to say it but that it gets better eventually.Hold on and i promise…. you will be past this stage someday and looking back will sometimes wonder how you survived.  I wish back then i would’ve just not thought my work so important… i’m learning that now and i think maybe that is even helping me enjoy my family so much more today.  


  15. I am right in the middle of this, too!  One day they play together so well I hardly hear anything from them (well, besides for giggles and nice talking).  The next day they are fighting all. day. long!  Oh, I get tired of it!!!!  I didn’t read the comments, so I may be repeating—-Sometimes I have Zachary set up his train track on the table.  –Sometimes I think HE needs to learn to give in and have him let Ian join him even if it’s toddler style–I pray with him about his frustration and ask Jesus to give him ideas for playing nicely with Ian.–Last night it was blocks, and after praying we made two piles.  I showed Zachary how to say, “Here, Ian, look at these blocks,” and get him started on his (Ian’s) pile.  He had to do this over and over, but he was so sweet about it.  –Sometimes I put Ian in a highchair with a few small toys or snacksI try to remember that this is all about teaching them how to live like Jesus, and sacrificing their pleasure for another person’s.  It helps me to put in perspective and know that the many, many, many, many trips to the living room are not just pointless.  The mess?  Sigh.  I struggle w/ this a lot.  Someone told me to save time by cleaning up only at naptime and bedtime.  At first I couldn’t stand it; now it doesn’t bother me enough. 😦   But not wanting to clean up the clutter is why I’ve never let my babies play w/ Tupperware.  Ooo, I can’t handle it.  The broom thing must really come with the stage.  But after all that godly advice, I’d have to admit there are plenty of days when Reagan’s solution sounds pretty smart.


  16. @singingrachel – I agree with you 100%! It seems like forever when you’re in it, but then years down the road as they go through totally different stages, you can almost forget how hard those early years were! My boys get along well now, for the most part, but there still are times when it would be easier if they were little and you could smack their little behinds. I do remember the stage (between about 8 and 12) when I used to tell the boys that I don’t remember EVER fighting like that with my siblings! 


  17. @twofus_1 – Those are some good words.  I am afraid prayer is often the farthest thing from my mind as I make the many trips to the livingroom.  Thanks for some good options for those of us stuck in a rut. I think we could be praying a lot of the day sometimes. 🙂


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