There’s a Fly In My Soup

From time to time I am going to vent in this blog. If you don’t like violence, bad language and are not allowed into PG-14 movies, leave now. I mean it. Go away. I’m pissed.

As I’ve previously announced, I’m an only child. This is a curse and a blessing. More often a blessing. I wonder aloud many times what I have done giving my children siblings. Will they grow up and hate each other? So far I’ve not seen that side of things. They may have shown signs of wanting to kill each other when they were young, but they have seemed to grow out of it and at this point in time are getting along. Rather well, if I do say so myself. I am just the mom, tho’, so it’s possible they are holding long-term grudges that I will know nothing about until I’m long cold in the grave.

This brings me to my brother-in-law and his family. Part of me wouldn’t be so bitter toward his parenting skills except when our children where young and he and his wife had none, they were always quick to judge our children. Quick to jump in with a scolding or to scowl when a misbehaving two-year-old had to be taken outside the restaurant and allowed to walk off some of that energy. Now they are the perfect parents. Ask them. They’ll tell you.

I have many stories to prove my theory that their two boys are the spawn of the devil, but today we’ll just regale you with one such story.

First you must know the background. My DH is a farmer. He’s been a farmer his whole life – without a choice. He was drafted into military service back when there was still a draft, and before he went in he helped on his familys’ farm, and when he returned after serving his four years there was never any question that he would be helping on the farm again. It wasn’t even brought up – it was expected. He is the oldest of three children and his sister, although just a couple of years younger, was treated very differently. That’s a whole ‘nother story.

His brother, six years junior, was far enough behind in age that he really never got into the whole farm thing growing up. By the time he was old enough to help, DH was back on the scene and between him and his father they had it covered. Fast forward to about 10 years ago when FIL passed away. DH took over the farm operation and proceeded to do pretty well with it. MIL often talks about how BIL never got the chance to farm. BIL is living in la-la land. He thinks farming is coming out to work at 8:30 in the morning and leaving at 1:00 to ‘pick up the boys’. Or do this or that. There is always something. His wife is a great list maker and runs the family with an iron fist. He is a bit of a pussy and just lets her order him around. (I never have, nor will I ever make what is commonly known in these parts as a ‘Honey-Do’ list.)

BIL has two boys that are now 8 and 14. They are indescribable (is that a word?).

BIL has been pushing the oldest one toward farming since he was born. Buys him toy farm equipment at every chance, lets him do things way younger than is smart or safe. Sees our kids doing that stuff and figures if they can do it, then his kids can. He forgets his kids are 7 years younger than our youngest! Plus, our kids were raised around this stuff and taught from an early age to fear that equipment and to respect it. His kids just act like coming to the farm is going to Disneyland – without the parental supervision. You have to understand. My BIL thinks he is paying attention to what he’s doing and to his kids. He hasn’t a clue.

A couple of weeks ago the older boy called up DH and proceeded to tell him he is in FFA (Future Farmers of America to you city-folk) and they have a project to work for a farmer. DH says ‘no’, as he can’t drive, didn’t want to have to pay him, and really didn’t want him around to have to keep an eye on him when there is nothing for him to do. Wouldn’t trust him to run any equipment, etc. You get the picture.

Today. BIL was off work from his ‘real’ job and came out to help DH combine corn. The boys’ school got out at 1:00. Older boy was at home watching his little brother. He supposedly found out that BIL was in the field and got so mad that he had a hissy fit and threw a hammer through the garage door (which prompted SIL to get off work and take him out to the field where…duh…he wanted to be in the first place). He then was allowed, by BIL, to hang out until about 3:30 when BIL had to go home because “No.2 son is home by himself”. HUH? So, the way I understand it, Boy throws a temper tantrum and gets rewarded by a.)getting out of the reponsibility of watching his brother b.) getting to go to the farm just as he wanted to c.) causing Dad to leave work early to go home and do the job he was supposed to do. DH made some comment to BIL about it and was told “Boy’s in trouble now!” Ooookkkaaaayyy… if you say so.

Family. Gotta love em. I mean, you really have to. It’s written somewhere.

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Middle-aged. Anti-social. Mom. Grandma. Town-raised farmer's wife. Iowan. Want more? Come read the blogs.

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