Thursday, May 31, 2012

Love and Logic Magic: Allow For Mistakes

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I think as a society as a whole, at least in the United States, we have adopted a mentality that mistakes are bad. We don't like to admit our mistakes or the mistakes of our children. We look at mistakes as failure.

If you look at the lives of people who are respected, however, you will see that their lives were not a bundle of perfect decisions and actions with picture perfect results. Mistakes are not terrible--they are normal. We can learn so much from mistakes. 

We often work hard as parents to protect our children from making mistakes. The Love and Logic theory strongly advocates allowing children to make mistakes in life--especially at a young age. Authors point out that when a child makes a mistake, he learns how to correct the mistake and how to avoid mistakes when possible in the future.

As authors point out, stakes are low in young children. The long-term impact from mistakes made at age five are significantly less than than the possible mistakes even a ten year old can make. Children need to learn and understand that there are consequences in life and that consequences follow actions--for better or worse.

I first read Parenting With Love And Logic  when Kaitlyn was first born, so Brayden was right around two years old. I have always believed this to be a good and right principle. I was pretty sure it would be harder to put into practice, however, when the time came. It definitely is harder! This is a principle that is easier talked about than allowed to happen.

I have a simple example of a time I recently was face with allowing my child to face the consequences for his mistakes. I was helping in Brayden's class one morning. The teacher had been having problems with students forgetting to turn in work as the school year came to a close. She instituted a consequence of if you didn't turn in your work, you would stay in for recess and complete it. 

On this day, Brayden happened to have a missing worksheet. He couldn't find it and he thus needed to stay in for recess that day to finish it up. He was crushed to have made a mistake--he doesn't like to make mistakes. As I sat there, I was pretty sure I had seen that paper on the counter. He had brought it home from school the day before instead of turning it in. 

When I got home, it was indeed on the counter. Remembering the Love and Logic principle I had applied for years, I decided it was best for him to learn as a first grader the importance of keeping track of his papers and turning them in when he should. I knew re-doing it would have a stronger learning impact on him than if I rushed the paper to school to rescue him. 

I told my husband about it and he gave me a funny look so I started to doubt myself and started to feel like a big jerk of a mom. I really respect his teacher, so I decided to call her up and get  her opinion on the matter. She agreed with my decision to not bring the paper in and thought it would be best for him to learn from this to turn his paper in. As a first grader, all that would happen is he would lose about 5 minutes of recess as he re-did the paper, but he would learn a lot from the experience.

I don't want you to read this and think you should never apply grace and mercy when your children make mistakes. There is definitely a place for those. Just be careful that you A) are not doing everything for your child so that he doesn't have to step up and experience consequences (like you pack his library books for him every week so he doesn't forget to take them to school on library day) and B) that if the behavior becomes a constant, you allow consequences to happen. So if your child forgot his jacket one day, you might run it to him. But if he starts to get careless and starts forgetting it often, you tell him he needs to be responsible for it and if he doesn't have a jacket that he won't have one. 

Also keep in mind to allow these consequences to happen with a Strong Dose of Empathy. You don't lecture, you don't "see I told you so," and you don't point out how right you were in the first place. You just let the consequence be your teacher. Allow for mistakes and your child will learn from them and learn to avoid making more serious mistakes in the future.

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Poll Results: DO YOU DO FORMAL LEARNING TIME AT HOME?

Yes, every day
  4 (10%)
 
Yes, most days
  14 (35%)
 
Yes, days vary
  8 (20%)
 
No
  13 (33%)
 

Votes so far: 39 

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      Wednesday, May 30, 2012

      Brayden Summary: 7 Years Old

      When I look over at Brayden as he is talking to me, I see a child. Not a little child, not a preschooler, not a little one at all. I see a child. A child missing several teeth (we call him toothless these days). A child with mature concerns. As we have come up on his birthday season, I have reflected on his birth and those early weeks with him and just really can't believe he is a seven year old little guy.

      These last few months have really been idealic with Brayden. He seemed to get an extra boost of maturity or something. He has become so great with his sisters. He was great before, but he has matured into putting their needs, wants, and desires before his own. One day, he was watching a show on TV. I went into McKenna's room to get her up from her nap, and when I came out with her, he had stopped his show and started her favorite show. It was such a sweet moment. She actually likes the show he was watching just fine and I am sure she would have sat and watched it without complaint, but he decided to stop his own show and turn on her very favorite. He has been doing so many sweet big brother things like this.

      I think that something that has influenced this sweet behavior was us finding out the next baby would be a girl. He was very disappointed. He wanted a brother so strongly and he had even picked out a name for his brother. We really pondered and prayed over how to help him to be excited to have a sister. One thing we felt we should stress was that he got to be the big brother and protector of all of these sweet sisters. We pointed out how much his sisters love him and look up to him and that he could be counted on to always be there for them. I think that has made him think more about that role and he has really embraced it.

      EATING
      Eating is good with no big news to report.

      SLEEPING
      Sleeping is also good with no big news to report. Oh, I guess something of interest is something we noticed when he was two. Brayden will wake up with night terrors if he is too hot at night. Now that he is older, it is funny because he has zero memory of it happening the next day. This was often an issue in our previous home because his room was really hot. In our current home, his room is not so it has never been an issue here until recently. That is because it has been warm plus he thinks he needs about ten blankets on at night. We have been removing blankets to have as many as he can handle without night terrors. I think we have found it.

      GROWTH SPURTS
      He has had a couple of times of growing pains in the last few months.

      PLAYING
      Nothing of significance here. 

      SCHOOL LIFE
      Things at school have been going very well. He is in the last few days of school now for the year. He was recognized for his citizenship for the month of April and received an award and best of all, got to eat lunch with a deputy. I don't know if all children are like this, but my children love police officers. They are celebrities to my children. One day, we saw some eating lunch at the same place we were eating lunch, and the kids stopped and stared at them in awe. They were nice and smiled and said hi and even Kaitlyn was too starstruck to say more than "hi!" and giggle. So this was a great reward for Brayden.

      There have been several times recently that Brayden has had nice notes from school. They have done nice notes for various reasons (one includes birthday). Something I have noticed as a common trend is he always gets comments that he lets everyone play and that he will tell someone who is bullying to stop. Those comments just warm my heart as a mom! I love that he is known for being someone who accepts everyone and even someone who stands up for people. That willingness definitely stems from his "bossy" nature. It just goes to show you that pretty much any quality can be used for good. You don't want to squash innate qualities in your children--you just want to harness them in the right direction. He has been working so hard on not being bossy, but has no problem standing up for people who need it.

      He has also been getting far ahead of his class during what is called "self-start" time, so his teacher has had him reading books and testing on them. She let him start out with first grade level books that he could read in about 20 minutes. Then she wanted him to move up to more difficult books. He went up to fourth grade level, took several days to read the book, and still scored 100% on the test. You all know how much I love and value reading, so you know that is something that makes me happy, too.

      HOME LIFE
      Like I said earlier, he has been so great at home. He is working so hard to do everything right that he should. He does things without being asked (like get ready for bed). He is kind to his sisters. He is helpful around the house. He jumps in and helps where he sees a need. 

      He also recently spoke in primary and wrote the talk all by himself. I was worried, but didn't intervene. He did a great job! He even had a thesis statement, supporting information, and ended on a thesis statement again. I couldn't have organized it better myself. He also bore his testimony in church by himself and did a great job (this was another terrifying moment for me--children can be so unpredictable!). 

      CONCLUSION
      Things are just going well right now. Brayden is trying his very best every day to be the best he can. That isn't to say we never have to correct him, but overall, things are just serene. This has been a period in parenting where you see efforts come to fruition and it gives you strength to carry on and continue efforts into the future. 

      A goal to set for Brayden now to work on would be contentment. Some people have a natural propensity for being happy for what they have while others seem to more look at the one negative among the 10 positive things. Brayden often will have moments like this. I am not sure if it is a personality thing at this point or a maturity thing. So we are working with him to learn to see the positive and to be optimistic. Optimism is a great skill and really helps make people happy. There is so much to be grateful for, even when there are hard times. 

      FAVORITE TOY
      Favorite toy is still, hands down, Legos.

      WHAT WE ARE READING
      We are still reading the same series. I should add he also reads various picture books as well as science books. 
      SCHEDULE
      I don't want to post a detailed schedule of his day on the internet, so I will do generalities.

      Before School (day starts at 7 AM)
      Before school he does these activities:
      • Gets ready (shower, dressed, pray, brush teeth, make bed, eat breakfast)
      • Read church magazine (I like to read an article from a church magazine we get to help him have a peaceful frame of mind before going to school)
      • Plays with Kaitlyn
      • He sometimes practices his piano before school--sometimes after school
      School Day
      • School stuff
      After School
      • Homework
      • Practice piano if didn't do it in the morning
      • Video game time (three days a week)
      • Play with siblings
      • Dinner
      • Chores
      • Family time
      • Get ready for bed (in bed by 8-8:30 PM)
      Extra Activities
      Right now, he has baseball and swimming lessons. We recently finished up piano lessons for the summer and just finished a season of soccer. 

      Tuesday, May 29, 2012

      It Mattered To Me...

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      We did this fun thing at church on Sunday that in light of Memorial Day was great.

      As people, and I think especially women, I think we often get down on ourselves for not having accomplished much. Of course, this "much" is according to the world's view of "much." In truth, as mothers, sisters, daughters, friends, neighbors, etc. we do a whole lot that means a lot to people. We may not have written a book, been famous, invented something amazing, but we do touch the lives of generations.

      In church, some people shared how someone seemingly ordinary in their lives had done something simple to touch the lives of either themselves or even on up to hundreds in posterity. I thought it would be fun to do that here. We can share what someone did and what impact it had on us, and in turn, hopefully inspire each other to take heart in our "normal, everyday" roles and know that we can and will make a difference that matters to others.

      I will share a simple one. This is about my favorite teacher, Mrs. LaFlamme. I had her in seventh grade for honors English class. She was fabulous, but her strongest influence came when I was in ninth grade. I had not made it into honors English for tenth grade because the tenth grade teacher didn't like a citizenship grade I had received in Biology that year. I was a good student and respectful--this Biology teacher was the wrestling coach and would literally wrestle the boys in class, so class was a bit wild and chaotic as a whole and we all got lower than the highest citizenship. 

      When Mrs. LaFlamme found out that I had been denied honors English for tenth grade, she took action. She talked with the tenth grade teacher and insisted I be in the class. The teacher agreed to allow it, and in the end she was glad she had.

      Now, this had a huge impact on me. I not only appreciated how much Mrs. LaFlamme believed in me, but it kept me in the honors English track, and my degree was later in English. I don't know if I would have pursued English as a degree had I not been in advanced English courses. I also don't know if I would have felt comfortable writing this blog without the intense writing training I received as an English major. So Mrs. LaFlamme had a huge impact on my life. 

      At the end of high school, I recognized this impact and wrote her a thank-you note. She so appreciated it, and now as a woman who does the seemingly mundane day after day, I can see why it would mean so much to her. We do so much and get very little feedback for it.

      Okay your turn! Who has influence your life? A relative? Teacher? Leader? Friend? Please share.

      Monday, May 28, 2012

      Memorial Day 2012



      Happy Memorial Day everyone! I am off having fun with my family. Hope you have a great day!

      Saturday, May 26, 2012

      Moo Kitty Finds a Home Winner!

      The winner of Moo Kitty Finds a Home is....

      kmbutrfly

      Please email me at valplowman@gmail.com with your mailing address. You have one week or another winner will be chosen. Congrats!

      Friday, May 25, 2012

      Remedies for Reflux/Heartburn During Pregnancy


      First of all, the picture has nothing to do with heartburn other than the fact that the baby I am looking at in my belly is causing my heartburn. That was a week ago. 

      I had this plan to write this post on remedies for reflux/heartburn while pregnant and then realized my ideas are pretty weak. I think they are ideas pretty much everyone knows. Just in case not, I will share. Or if nothing else, it will get the "obvious" out of the way to make room for the life-changing ideas I hope you have for me (hey, no pressure).

      Reflux during pregnancy is something I have basically always just suffered through. I have had it quite severe with each pregnancy. For my current pregnancy, the burning isn't so bad, but the effects of the coughing due to the burning of my lungs are pretty, um, annoying to say the least. Here is my list of ways to deal with it.
      • Mylanta: This has been my go-to since Brayden. My doctor said Mylanta (remember those commercials? Well, he did). He also said I could drink a whole bottle at once and not hurt the baby, so I felt good with Mylanta. I still use Mylanta today.
      • Avoid Reflux Foods: There are certain foods that will cause you to have more heartburn than others. Avoid those if possible. Sometimes, I just crave something I know is going to cause me issues later on and so I still eat it, but most of the time I anti-crave the reflux rousers. My neighbor swears that Tabasco sauce reduces her reflux. Swears. So you might be surprised what works for you and what doesn't.
      • Stay Propped Up: Just like you do for a baby, you keep yourself in an upright position for as long as you can after eating. You might also need to prop yourself while sleeping. I find this to be uncomfortable, but sometimes it is the only chance I have to sleep.
      • Don't Eat Late:: Along a similar train of thought, I avoid late night food. I eat dinner and that is it unless I have some huge craving. I even limit water, which works well for the whole bathroom-visits-in-the-night thing. The effects of what I eat when and when I lay when are very obvious to me this go-around with the coughing. The coughing is an immediate effect, so I am careful and sensitive about what I eat when and how long I stay up (lots of coughing with a weakened pelvic floor is bad news. Enough said). 
      • Eat Smaller Meals: Eating less more often might help you minimize the reflux.
      • Don't Get Empty: Same train of thought, don't let your tummy get empty. Except for at night when you will be sleeping all night (hopefully!).
      • OTC Reflux Medication: With the coughing, my doctor (you might remember, new doctor with McKenna since my previous OB moved to the East Coast) suggested I take some OTC reflux medication like Zantac or Prilosec OTC. That makes a big difference for me. I take one pill once a day. 
      • Stay Ahead: I used to wait until the burning was terrible until I took Mylanta. By the time McKenna was pushing on my stomach, I learned to stay ahead of the pain. At the first sign of heartburn/reflux, I take some Mylanta. I don't get bad flares anymore. Staying ahead of it works SO.MUCH.BETTER than fighting the fire once it is there. 
      Those are my 8 tips. 

      Now, what tips and tricks work for you? Even if something I said worked--or didn't work--, please share that so other moms know what is most likely to help them in this situation. I would love to hear some new remedy I have never heard of though (speaking of, I was just reading through this post from when I was pregnant with McKenna and there are several interesting reflux helps ideas there--so read those comments for more ideas)!

      Thursday, May 24, 2012

      Can it be too hot to sleep?

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      "Please don't blame [poor sleep on] changes in the weather--it is never too hot or too cold to sleep well" (Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, page 226).

      So I am reading along through HSHHC and come across this line--and I am totally surprised. I obviously have a strong disagreement with this statement--just read my post Some Like it Hot--Sleep That Is. I kind of think most people would agree with me--I think most of us have been either too hot or too cold at least one night of our lives and we didn't sleep well that night. In most post linked above, I included this info:

      "Experts agree the temperature of your sleeping area and how comfortable you feel in it affect how well and how long you snooze. Why? “When you go to sleep, your set point for body temperature -- the temperature your brain is trying to achieve -- goes down,” says H. Craig Heller, PhD, professor of biology at Stanford University, who wrote a chapter on temperature and sleep for a medical textbook. “Think of it as the internal thermostat.” If it’s too cold, as in Roy’s case, or too hot, the body struggles to achieve this set point. 
      That mild drop in body temperature induces sleep. Generally, Heller says, “if you are in a cooler [rather than too-warm] room, it is easier for that to happen.” But if the room becomes uncomfortably hot or cold, you are more likely to wake up, says Ralph Downey III, PhD, chief of sleep medicine at Loma Linda University..." (source)

      Now, I think Weissbluth is a sleep expert--no doubt. So then I think, why would he make such a statement? I think the answer lies in the context of the statement. In this section of the book, he is talking about the importance of not overstimulating a child (which he defines as keep up too long). He is cautioning parents not to keep baby up too long and if you do, baby won't sleep well. He then makes his statement to not blame the temperature. I think (my interpretation) what he is trying to impress is the importance of waketime length and to not fall into a trap of blaming what isn't at fault. He does make several of contradictory statements throughout the book (like, Never wake a sleeping baby versus wake baby if needed to preserve future naps), so he will make a strong statement in order to make a point without using qualifiers and caveats. My assumption is that this statement falls into that category.

      I think temperature is very important to consider for good sleep. We need to be dressed appropriately for the temperature in the room. As things have warmed up this summer, we have had to remove several of Brayden's blankets he loved to sleep with during the winter. When he gets too hot, he has night terrors. You obviously aren't sleeping well during a night terror.

      In the end, despite this one-liner in this book I respect, I still stand by my belief that temperature is an important factor to consider with good sleep.

      Wednesday, May 23, 2012

      Love Our Work

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      Have I ever mentioned that I don't particularly enjoy doing laundry (um, yes, here and here and I am sure other places as often as I can toss that in)? I know I am supposed to be working on finding the joy in doing my laundry and being appreciative that I have clothes to wash, but I get some sort of strange satisfaction out of having this light-hearted, and yet strong, dislike of the laundry.

      I used to be able to do all of the laundry in one day. When we were first married, Friday was laundry day for me. After Kaitlyn was born, I moved that to Monday. It has since grown into a two day event and has encroached itself on my Tuesday as well. 

      And you know how things are just harder when you are pregnant? If you think I dislike laundry when I am not pregnant, you should talk to me about it when I am pregnant. Bending over is about the most monumental task you can give me right now. I have some good little helpers, though, and they love to help with the laundry, so they do lots of bending on my behalf. 

      Back to the laundry growing. I am hoping it is just because I am pregnant and not as efficient when I am pregnant, but laundry is starting to creep into Wednesday. Wednesday! Three days of laundry! Why, I wonder. I thought about this and realized something. These people living in my house (also known as children) are just getting bigger. They get bigger every day, and as they get bigger, their clothes get bigger, which means the loads of laundry get bigger! And we are about to add another person to this mix--a whole other closet full of clothes to wash! And then she will just get bigger. 

      This was my line of thinking last Monday. Tuesday morning as I studied my scriptures, I came across this quote:

      "Learn to like your work. Learn to say, 'This is my work, my glory, not my doom.' God has blessed us with the privilege of working. When he said, 'Earn thy bread by the sweat of thy brow,' he gave us a blessing. Men and women have accepted it. Too much leisure is dangerous. Work is a divine gift." David O. McKay

      Don't you just love (and by love I mean hate) when that happens? There you are reveling in your own self-pity--even if it is with a healthy dose of amusement--and the Lord leads you to something like this to, well, put you in your place?

      So I need to learn to like the work of laundry. And I really should--because these kids are only getting bigger! This work of laundry is only getting more monumental (and yes, you had better believe that as soon as they are old enough they will be in charge of their own laundry). I don't know why it is so hard for me to learn to like laundry. In general, I really enjoy work. I am a hard worker and get great satisfaction out of cleaning. The laundry thing is just my personal battle. Maybe it is because I can't just do it and get it over with? I have to sort it, then wait while the machine washes it (and yes, I am grateful I have a machine to wash my laundry), then wait for it to dry, then fold it, then put it away, and there is always this large chunk of time that it is taking up space in my "to-do" list of my brain.

      I am sure we all have our own personal battles. Whatever yours may be, you might want to join me in learning to like that work. I know it isn't an easy battle, but I do believe it can be done. I just need to figure out how to like this never-ending task of laundry. 

      Tuesday, May 22, 2012

      Help Me Out: Room Sharing Tips

      We are on our countdown to when we will move Kaitlyn and McKenna together to share a room. They are 5 and 3. We have never had children share a room before, so I am looking for your tips! What can we do to make the transition smoother and have the most success? Do we put them to bed at the same time or stagger bedtime? What rules work for going to sleep?

      Please comment with your tips on room sharing. Thanks so much!

      Monday, May 21, 2012

      Preparing for Music

      image source
      I  love music. Love, love, love. I love many forms of music. Beyond listening, I love to sing. I am currently the choir director at my church and I just find such a great power in music.

      Something that amazes me about music is that it appeals to any type of "brain." The logical brain can do music because music has its black and white component (literally in the notes!). It also appeals the the creative brain because you can do so much with music and there is much room for interpretation.

      My husband and I both come from musical backgrounds. In fact, we met in a choir. So we both have a high value in music. Because of that, we have thus far started our children in learning to play the piano at the start of kindergarten. Brayden started then and Kaitlyn is scheduled to start then. Recently, Brayden's first grade teacher commented that she can tell he plays an instrument--she can see the benefits of it in the way he thinks. 

      There are may claimed benefits to music. Here are some lists for anyone interested:
      Now, whether or not you are a big believer in the benefits of music, I think one thing that cannot be denied is that music is fun for children. Music is also usually taught in schools. On Becoming Preschoolwise has a section on how to prepare your preschooler for music in school.

      "Children should be introduced to music ASAB (as soon as birth!) or sooner (page 126). Here are some ways to expose your children to music:

      1-Have music as part of independent playtime

      My children all love having music as part of independent play. They each have an iPod (that we got for cheap off of our local classifieds) and an inexpensive iPod player. This one is our current favorite. Initially, we did some classical mixed with toddler tunes for Brayden and Kaitlyn. With McKenna, however, I exclusively played church songs for her during independent playtime. I plan to follow the same path with our next baby. McKenna (now three) does now listen to a variety. She has hundreds of children's primary songs memorized from her years of church songs. I love walking through the grocery store and listening to her sing, "I am a child of God!" and "I love Mommy, she loves me, we are a happy family!" McKenna has a real passion for singing. 

      "Stock up, because music is such an enjoyable way to learn, and it is good for the soul" (page 127). I completely agree--good music is good for the soul. Folk songs, classical songs (while Baby Einstein has its share of media problems right now, I do not hesitate to say their CDs of classical music are fun for children), patriotic songs, church songs...I am also into "mainstream" music and I like to expose my children to at least one good song from every artist I respect. 

      2-Sing Along

      Your child might naturally do this or might need you to get him started. We do a lot of singing at our house. I make up songs constantly. We sing in the car. I sing before every nap and bedtime. We have fun singing. Don't criticize the "pitch" of your child. Most children sing at least a bit off. Encourage your child to sing and love it.

      3-Rhythm Clapping

      After first reading this idea in preschoolwise, I started doing it with Brayden. You clap a pattern and have the child clap it back. As your child's skills improve, you increase the difficulty. You can translate this activity to fit into a variety of settings. A long wait at the doctors office can be made more interesting with some leg tapping. Being able to clap a rhythm back that you hear is a great skill to attain. 

      4-Note Singing

      Rhythm clapping is something I often did in tryouts for various choirs, so I added another activity we did at tryouts. It was singing notes back. The conductor (or accompaniast) would play out a sequence of notes and I would have to sing it back. I do this with my children. It helps improve the ear. I start with three notes and do common intervals. 

      5-Instrument Toys

      There are lots of packs of toy instruments you can buy. Children love these loud things.

      6-Music Class

      I haven't ever taken one, but there are various "Mommy and Me" or "Kindermusik" classes out there. When the time is right for your child, you can also start formal lessons. Take it child by child and talk with the teacher about what he/she recommends. Don't feel the need to rush. We have started pretty young so far. Our reasoning is that our children have both been more than ready for kindergarten. We knew it wouldn't be  an intellectual challenge and we wanted something to stimulate the mind. We also have half day Kindergarten here, so we have plenty of time for lessons and for practice. In my opinion, the first few months are the most challenging as the child is learning a new skill and exercising those fingers. After that, skills all build on top of themselves. 

      Saturday, May 19, 2012

      Moo Kitty Finds a Home {Giveaway}

      Today's giveaway is of the book  Moo Kitty Finds a Home . This is a story of a cat whose owner dies and the cat is then put out on the street. Some kind people help the cat get to a shelter where the cat is eventually adopted by a new family.

      The author, Valerie Lee Veltre, studied creative writing at East Stroudsburg university.  She was inspired to write and illustrate her first book, Moo Kitty Finds a Home, after she rescued real-life Moo Kitty and gave him a forever home. She believed the resulting children's book would help educate young readers about the importance of animal rescue, and especially adult pet adoption.

      Kaitlyn loves cats. When we started reading this book, she said, "Mom this isn't very happy!" But she enjoyed it by the end and has wanted to read it again since. It is also fun for us because we got our cats at a shelter. 

      If you would like to win your own copy of  Moo Kitty Finds a Home, enter below.

      For Your First Entry: 
      Become a follower of this blog. Then leave a comment. If you are already a follower (the thing where your cute face pops up with all the other cute faces of people following), comment telling me so. 

      Sample Entry 
      I am a follower!


      For Your Second Entry: 
      Like Chronicles of a Babywise Mom on Facebook. Already do? Tell me so. Comment saying you like it.

      Sample Entry
      Hi! I like Chronicles of a Babywise Mom on Facebook!


      For Your Third Entry:
      Free Entry! But you have to enter to get it.

      Sample Entry
      Entering for free!


      For Your Fourth Entry:
      Have you ever adopted from an animal shelter? If so, what?

      Sample Entry
      Yes, cats.

      Entry Rules
      • You must leave a comment in order to have an entry.
      • You must leave a separate comment for each entry. This is not so I can get lots of comments--it is because it makes it a million times easier to choose a winner. It takes less time, and less time is good. Plus, it makes sure I don't miss an entry.
      • You don't have to do all four entries...for example, if you just want to follow this blog, you can just do entry one.
      • One entry per comment.
      • Up to four entries per person.
      • You must fulfill the rules of each entry for each entry to count. If I see the entry is not valid (did not meet entry requirements), I will disqualify your entry. Trust me, I check.
      • Entries will be accepted until Saturday, May 26 when I choose the winner.
      • The winner will be randomly selected at random.org
      • The winner will be announced Saturday, May 26.
      • If you would like, you can add your email address to your entry. If you are the winner, I will email you to let you know. You do not need to add your email address in order to win. I understand not everyone wants to share their email addresses with the world. I will announce the winner on the blog, so you can check the blog Saturday to find out if you won.
      • Once the winner is announced, you will have one week to contact me or another winner will be chosen. Be sure to check back. The only thing worse than not winning is to win but not realize it in time!
      • Open only to US mailing addresses.

      Thursday, May 17, 2012

      How Do I Love Thee?

      image source
      How does a child love--what drives a child's display of love and affection? In The Five Love Languages of Children, Chapman and Campbell say that while adults strive for unconditional love and often reside in reciprocating love, children aim for neither. "Being immature, a child loves in a self-oriented fashion" (page 123). Children are not concerned about how loved you feel--their focus is on how they feel.

      If a child feels low on the love, he will typically act out in some fashion. Chapman and Campbell suggest parents ask themselves "What does my child need when she misbehaves?" (page 124). The authors say that wondering how to correct behavior before first addressing needs then we cannot fix the problem--until the child feels loved.

      "When a child obviously misbehaves, what he has done should not be condoned" (page 125). So the authors are no suggesting we ignore inappropriate behavior. The point is that punishing behavior that is motivated by a need will not correct the behavior on a long-term scale. If a child is acting out because she needs more time with you, putting her in time-out or taking a way a privilege isn't going to correct the behavior, and when behavior doesn't change, correction did not take place as we read in the -wise books.

      There are of course other reasons a child misbehaves that are issues to address. Sometimes children misbehave because they are in pain--teething, sickness, etc. all contribute to less than desirable behavior. Hunger and thirst are other contributors, as is lack of sleep.

      As was mentioned earlier, you don't condone behavior even if the behavior was motivated by something like "I was throwing a major fit because I was so tired." Exactly how you react in situations where you can easily see the behavior has an outside influence really should vary with age. The two year old throwing the tantrum when she is getting her molars in should get more leeway than the five year old screaming and crying because she is tired. 

      I always explain to my children that even if they are tired, hungry, upset, etc., they do not get to be unkind or disrespectful. A huge goal in life is to learn to handle life with grace even when we are experiencing undesirable circumstances. As a mom, I get tired (especially with a new baby), and I know when I am tired, I am less patient. Does being tired excuse my lack of patience? No--absolutely not. It does explain it, though. I can know I am not just some grumpy person who needs an attitude adjustment--I am a tired mom. However, even when I am tired, I need to be patient as hard as it is.

      And we adults all make mistakes right? We all lose our patience when we are sick or tired. If we feel like we are not loved we can get snappy with our spouses. It happens. Because adults do it, we know children will be even more prone to it than we are. We want to teach our children that they control their attitude and that they are not victims of circumstance. We also want to teach them to be kind, respectful, and obedient despite the obstacles of life. 

      And we need to take measures to remedy the situation. If the child is acting out because she feels unloved, we need to do our part to meet those love needs. If it is because she is tired, we need to make sure we are getting her down for naps/rest time/bed time on time. When my children act out for reasons of love tank issues or physical issues, my first step is often to hold them in my lap until they calm down. We then talk about the appropriate way to act and how we need to be kind even when we don't feel good. We then move on to a consequence if needed.

      As you reach discipline issues, remember your child's love needs and that the way she displays love--her motivating force--is different from yours. I think children have a great capacity for unconditional love, but if a child is feeling insecure in your love for her, she will react strongly as she seeks reassurance for that love. Be sensitive to those times and those needs. Doing so will help you to have greater success with your discipline and correction.

      Related Posts/Blog Labels:

      Wednesday, May 16, 2012

      Poll Results: WHICH BABY WHISPERER PERSONALITY IS YOUR CHILD?

      Angel
        8 (12%)
       
      Textbook
        22 (33%)
       
      Touchy
        16 (24%)
       
      Spirited
        15 (22%)
       
      Grumpy
        1 (1%)
       
      Doesn't Fit Any
        1 (1%)
       
      I Don't Know
        3 (4%)
       

      Votes so far: 66 

      Angel
        7 votes
      Textbook
      7 votes

      Touchy
      0 votes
        Spirited
        6 votes




        Grumpy
          Doesn't fit any
            I don't know
            1 vote

            RELATED POSTS/BLOG LABELS:


            Reminder: You can leave comments on poll results posts if you would like to add to the poll after it has closed. This would be helpful for those who have more than one child, those whose children have reached certain ages after a poll closed, and those who didn't visit the blog while that poll was open. To find closed polls, click on the poll results link above

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