MamaBlogger365 – Those Three Little Words by Jennifer Covello

Let me begin by saying that I do not permit the use of bad language in my home. Even the word that describes the passing of gas is not allowed. If a colorful word is muttered by my children, it usually results in some type of discipline that hopefully instills in them that there is no need for this type of language. Being an author and a lover of words, I know there are a plethora of words for them to choose that don’t cause people to cringe or look away in disgust.

However, despite all of my efforts to have a “clean mouth house”, there are three words that my children continue to utter that I simply cannot seem to stop. I’ve tried taking away TV and electronics. I’ve tried assigning horrible chores. I even went so far as to put my pre-teen and teenage children in time outs. Nothing has worked.

They say them every day. Every day. Sometimes as much as three and four times. The repetition is getting to me. And now, since my eldest son has spoken these words over and over for so long, his younger sister is now mimicking him. It’s like I hear it in surround-sound.

I’m at my wits end.

I know you’re asking what could they possibly be saying that’s so bad? What are these words? Jennifer seems like such a good mother. Why can’t she get a handle on this?

I hesitate to share them for fear of offending some of you, but I don’t know what else to do. Maybe someone reading this has a solution for me. I can’t be the only one, can I? I don’t often ask for help, but it’s time for a change. And isn’t the first step in asking for help admitting you have a problem?

(Here comes the disclaimer. If you’re holding a small child while reading this, I urge you to cover the screen or put the child down. I wouldn’t want to be the cause of another mother having to go through what I go through on a daily basis.)

The three words are… (Deep breath)…

“What’s for dinner?”

Eeek! I said it! I’m so ashamed. I thought I was raising my children appropriately and to use good language, but clearly I’ve failed miserably. For every time I hear these words, I cringe in horror. I panic! I look out my door for Super Nanny to come to the rescue. I pray the neighbors didn’t hear!

Perhaps some of you hear these same words. Perhaps you even have an answer. I, having prepared meals for my children for more than 13 years, have no words left. I have no more choices to offer. No more fun ways to prepare chicken despite having watched Rachel Ray make “sammies” out of left-over “EVOO-encrusted chicken patty thinga-ma-bobs”. I got nothin’.

And here’s the kicker. I really do like to cook. Some people say I’m a good cook. (Those people would not be my children.) But now? The sound of those three words can send me into such a tizzy that it takes at least a 30-minute meal to recover.

I don’t know how my own mother cooked dinner night after night for six children. Times were different then, I guess. You ate what was in front of you and you never said, “Chicken again?” (Well, unless you wanted to go to bed on an empty stomach!)

So here I am facing that bewitching hour once again. I know my children are going to utter those horrible words any minute now. And once again, I’ll have no answer. Maybe we’ll go out? No, we did that last night. Maybe the kids won’t be hungry tonight. Not likely. Maybe one of you will appear at my door with a delectable dinner to die for! Ok, now I’ve lost it.

If there’s anyone out there who can sympathize, I’d love to hear from you. Until then… you’ll find me with my head in yet another recipe book wishing for the next Iron Chef to come to my rescue.

Bio: Jennifer Covello is the owner and founder of Frittabello, LLC, a baby gift business. Ms. Covello has authored and published an award-winning baby journal, “My Life” and a children’s book, “Frittabello and his Angel.” Her products can be purchased online or in various upscale retailers in Fairfield County, CT. Ms. Covello created and sponsors Bumps, Babies & Beyond baby expo.

To fulfill her mission to help moms, Jennifer offers “Put Your Love on Paper” baby journaling workshops for parents to start and finish their baby journals, recently featured on Better CT. Additionally, she facilitates “Moms to Mompreneurs” workshops which assist moms who want to start a business.

Jennifer is a frequent contributor to various online magazines including “Natural Nutmeg” and “Tots to Teens”. She was also a contributing author to “Moms to Motherhood”, a Gratitude Project book and a mommy blogger for Working Woman Magazine.

She has been featured on local and regional radio and TV programs for her insights about her journey from corporate to mompreneur as a single, full-time working parent.

Jennifer is a native of Long Island, New York and had a corporate career in IT and Marketing. She is active in her local school system, having served on numerous committees focusing on the improvement of special education services. She holds a B.S. degree in Management Information Systems from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and an M.B.A. in Marketing Management from Pace University, New York.

Jennifer resides in Norwalk, CT with her two children.

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Photo credit: mconnors|MorgueFile

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