Huckleberries Online

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 6, 2006, 10:05 A.M.

BrodH20: Are the Urchins Spoiled?

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The Otis and I sometimes feel like we're spoiling The Urchins. I feel that way when I buy them Lucky Charms. When I was a little girl growing up, my mom strictly purchased no-sugar cereal. It was always Cheerios for us. Or Kix. Or some other fairly bland and mostly sugarless brand. I let my kids pick out their cereal. Sometimes that means they are eating blue cereal. Or red and green Captain Christmas Crunch. Stuff that doesn't look appetizing through my adult eyes, but the kind of cereal I always wanted my mom to buy for me when I was a kid. I feel like we may be spoiling the kids when we let them stay up late with us. I remember having a 7 p.m. bedtime when I was little. How I hated trying to go to sleep when it wasn't even completely dark outside. I still haven't decided if I let my kids stay up later because of some subconcious protest of my own childhood bedtime, or if it's just because I miss the kids while I'm at work and I just want them close to me when we're all home -- Mommy Dearest/BrodH20.

DFO: I certainly wasn't spoiled as a kid. There were too many of us for my parents to spoil any one of them, although my grandfather preferred my sister Charlotte (who now works at the local cancer center) over me -- and made that evident. As a parent, I spoiled my kids somewhat. Parents should, to a degree. But I also made them work for things they wanted. They both have a strong work ethic now.

DFO: Were you spoiled/Do you spoil your kids?

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D.F. Oliveria started Huckleberries Online on Feb. 16, 2004. Oliveria's Sunday print Huckleberries is a past winner of the national Herb Caen Memorial Column contest.