Sunday, July 24, 2011

Energy Drain!

It's been a while, but I have been trying a new technique with the kids, and I must say... I love it!  It is the ENERGY DRAIN system, and it has been working like a charm.  Here's the way it works:  any time the child whines, screams, says no, doesn't follow instructions, etc. you say in a very happy voice (as you put your hand to your forehead) "uh oh, energy drain!"  DD usually at this point screams "NO! I not ngy drain!"  and I say, " When you do X, that really drains my energy, how do you suppose you could give me back the energy?"  I have been doing this for a week, and so far, I have got a favorite dolly for the night, a car, a stuffed bear, the table cleared, dishes put away, and toys picked up.  It has been great.  See the key here is saying that they are to find something that would PUT energy back.
 DS2 went to wash his face the other day, and instead of getting ONE washcloth out to wash, he chose to get 4 out!  I said "oh buddy, ENERGY DRAIN."  and he said "what, what? I not cryin"
I said "I know, but when you do that it cause sme to have to do MORE laundry, and if I'm doing more laundry, I'm using up energy that I could be using to do fun stuff like take to a friends to go swimming."
He said "oh yeah, I wanna go!"  so then I said "Hmm.. how do you think you can put the energy back in, so I can do that?"
"I don't know- I won't do it ever ever again!" he said
"nope, sorry that's not going to work, would you like to here some suggestions?"
"Some kids would maybe tell their mom they won't do it again and hope that would work;  some kids might do an extra chore like clean the sink..."
"Yeah, Yeah I'll do that!"
So he cleaned the bathroom sink, and even though it wasn't spotless, he did it, and he felt good about it!
The biggest key is that my DH is on board and we are doing it HAPPY!  I can already see the kids changing in the whiny area, and it is becoming more peaceful!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Sticky Notes to remember Consequences

I have started writing things down when I need to deliver a delayed consequence. I am so bad at remembering what it was they did, or why i needed to do it, and then it slips by. But I really feel it is important, so last week when DD got a bowl of cereal and didn't eat it AGAIN, my DH saved it and told her she could have something else when it was gone. Does anyone on this earth like soggy, nasty Frosted Mini-Wheats? She obviously wouldn't eat them, so I said "no problem." And I wrote on the calendar that she couldn't have cereal again, til today. The boys have had it a couple times in that time, and she had to eat fruit. Which all-in-all she didn't seem too bothered by really. She doesn't even really like cereal, she just asks for it because the boys like it. Anyway, I have been racking my brain trying to find a way that I will remember things that happen and consequences, so i can be consistent, and follow through on things. Hope this works!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

This is Detrimental for my children!

Well, today I learned a HUGE lesson in just how detrimental it is that I learn how to implement this love and logic for the sake of my sweet, sweet children. We were at the park with a group of friends, and DS2 was pushing and hitting a friend. I went to look to see what was happening, and as I approached I heard another friend egging him on saying "hit him again!" Mind you this is a 3 year old, so it is not like a life and death thing, and it is not a HUGE deal. Except that it kind of is. Why is my son so willing to do what someone else tells him to do?

Because, as I have talked about a few times in previous posts, he has been taught to listen to outside voices. He has been taught by me and my partner in parenting (dad) that he needs to do it "my way, or I'm gonna be mad!" Wow!!! I came home and was a little bit devastated that I have done this to him. I was also a bit relieved that I have discovered this now, so I can work on fixing it, and helping him listen to his own inner voice. I told DH "I don't care what we have to do, it is important for us to do this at all cost, or it will cost our kids."

The question now is, how do I keep that in the forefront of my brain, as I teach them proper behavior? Because I am human, and a product of how I was raised, I can't just say it, and change like that. I have to continually work at it and have reminders. I have to listen to the CD's I have, and PRAY, and be diligent in my efforts. I HAVE to get out of this funk I have been in and allow my kids to take the priority.

I know I can't change over night, in fact that would be too easy. I will take this time to change, and enjoy the fact that I can change. I ask whoever actually reads this to pray for me and my husband as we struggle to make this change for the better, that we will be patient with ourselves, and with each other.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Warnings, and "what did you learn?"

The other day we went to McDonalds to play in the playplace. There is a part that is for toddlers, and DS2 is really TOO big to be playing on it. We have been a couple of times, and I tell him all the time not to be on it as he climbs over the little kids and has knocked them down. Well, I told him not to go over there- there is a great big thing he can run around and play on! He listened at first, but went back. I called him over again talked to him about it, and he immediately went over and got on it- again. So... we left. I should have left after the first time, but I gave him a warning. I am learning quickly with DS2 that warnings don't work. Go figure, I should have learned that with DS1 but alas, I too take a while to pick up on SOME things! Anyway, we got in the van and the friends we were with then left too, but THEY got to drive together. DS was so sad, and cried all the way home. I sure hope he is learning something by all of this. But, I have to remind myself not to say things like "you need to learn to listen," or "what did you learn from this?" or even "I hope you learned your lesson." Because as Jim Fay says in Love and Logic, they then devote their entire life to proving that they in fact did NOT learn anything!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Horizontal time

Today in an attempt to cure the nap time battle with both the 3yr old and the 2yr old(who thinks she's BIG) I said "There's a new rule for quiet time. You have to be on your bed reading a book. You don't have to go to sleep, but you have to be quiet and laying down. We will call it 'Horizontal time'. Love you." This was another way to teach them a new word too. and understand what it means. Now I say "are you Horizontal?" So far so good, it's only been 30 minutes, but I am about to lay the baby down and have some good quality ME time!

Well... never-mind! I went in to feed the baby and put him down, and discovered that the 2yr old was up in the kitchen. I tried the "are you horizontal?" thing and she doesn't care. Her room now doesn't have a door on it, because it was not intended to be a room when the house was built. We just made it that way for lack of space. So, I can't shut the door. This makes it difficult to convince her to stay in her room. On top of that she has developed quit an attitude- um yeah TERRIBLE twos on this one! She is a princess in every way, and thinks that she should get what she wants always. She tells me "no" a lot lately, and my patience has been running thin. I love my sweet girl, but I am really struggling with this nap time thing!

On the plus side- it works for the 3 yr old. He just read himself to sleep!

Friday, March 4, 2011

It's working!!!

Well I am happy to report that my 3 yr has not been helping himself to the fridge. In my last post he was not listening and getting into things when he was supposed to be napping. Later in the day, I got out some cracker trail mix for snack for the other two kids. When he asked for some I said " I'm sorry son, you had your snack earlier, when everyone else was sleeping" Oh he was MAD! But I did good and stuck to it, and stayed calm. I continued to say "I'm sorry." When they were done and left he left too and went about his day. But he hasn't got into the fridge without asking since. It's amazing to me that he doesn't have to be reminded. A big thing is giving them confidence in making their own decisions. Boundaries have to be set, that is a given, but it is so awesome to know that they can be set without getting angry, or damaging their precious little self esteem.

Now I would like to fix the mistakes I made with the oldest. That is going to take some time, but I know that it is possible, and I have really seen a change in him the past few weeks. We are beginning to bond once again, and he is even warming up to DH again. He is such a forgiving child, one of his many many great character traits.

As I write I have another little one getting into snacks... oh so sad, because I was going to make some chocolate covered peanuts for tonight. To bad my sweet girl wont be getting any! She just waled in and showed me the cracker that she climbed up to get. My response: "ooohhh, so sad looks like I'm going to have to do something about that. But not now- later. Try not to worry, but you'll have a consequence." Well, consequence is a word that she has tuned into and knows (kind of) what it means. So, "No mom!!!" was what I got as she scurried back to her room where she is supposed to be taking a nap. HAHAHAH!!!! I love when things work!! And the best part is I didn't have to get mad, raise my voice or even get up from the computer! I feel good knowing that SHE made the choice, and that I am learning to be the kind of loving, gentle, and effective mommy that I have always dreamed of!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

"That makes me MAD!"

Remember the story about the boy who drove his car off the mountain? I find myself so often reverting on this simple concept. I say "go to bed because I said so." or "don't get in that drawer or it will piss me off" and I know this is not okay, so how do I teach my kids to follow instructions? How do I get them to understand that they can't just do whatever they want? Right now DS2 is supposed to be napping, but he is up in the kitchen and I am pretty sure he is helping himself to whatever he wants in the fridge. At least he isn't in his room waking the baby like he did yesterday. So know I am thinking I should let him think he's gotten away with something, as they say in Love and Logic. Later this evening when we are having a treat- whatever it may be- tell him that he already had his treat when everyone else was sleeping. Oh yes, a treat is definitely in store!

So, here I am supposed to be giving advise, but I am asking for it. How do I teach my kids to STAY OUT of the fridge, my junk drawer, etc. w/o saying " because It's mine," or "that makes me mad"? We have tried the locks and things but DS2 just breaks them off. So it is a matter of teaching him responsibility. Which is what this Love and Logic is all about. Feed back is great, so bring it on, and for now I am going to try several different things. I will report my findings at a later post!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Traditions of our fathers

yeah about the everyday posts... just doesn't happen! Ah well, sometimes I feel like I go one step forward and two steps back. I love my kids so much, and I want to teach them, but sometimes I forget that they have to experience things one their own. I have to allow them to DO IT. I can't just protect them, and hide them from the world, or force them to do what I want them to do. Who's to say that MY way is the best way anyway? Yesterday, a child in my Primary gave a talk. It was on King Lamoni and Ammon. If you are LDS, you have all heard this story a million times. But the way in which this kid gave the talk even got me thinking. It was that good! Go figure the kid comes from what I consider to be GREAT parents!
Anyway, he started like this: "King Lamoni wanted to be a good king, but he only knew the traditions of his fathers. He hurt people when they made a mistake and killed people that didn't do what he commanded. He did not know any other way to rule his kingdom."

He told about how Ammon came and shared the teachings of Jesus with Lamoni and his people and how the people became a peaceful people IN TIME. I was reminded how important those words are. IN TIME. So often we learn a new skill, or a better way and expect ourselves to change over night. And, when we don't we beat ourselves up and then regress. Sometimes we even give up because it is not going the way that we think it should, or we are struggling with applying the lessons to our own life.

In this case I am talking about Love and Logic but it is so with so many aspects in our life. We have got to stop beating ourselves over the head, when we slip up. Think of it this way: Has any of your kids ever done this: observed other people walking, practiced once or twice, then suddenly took off running with out falling.

Um I'm going to say NO! More likely they crawl for a while, work on standing up on their own, walk one step, crawl some more, and PRACTICE a lot. But they keep at it, and add a little at a time. That is all we can do- a little at a time. I am doing so much better than I did a year ago, or even six months ago. I am aware of what I need to do, and at times I regress, and I forget. But I only know the traditions of my "fathers" so I have to retrain myself to a better way.

Thanks for reading , and I hope that I have offered some inspiration. Please spread the word, and comment if you have any suggestions for me.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

how to deal with Whining

Yesterday DH and I were talking and he suggested that I write in this blog more often. That I make this as a journal entry, and be completely honest with my mistakes and accomplishments. I also want to touch on lessons learned and give a link for love and logic so me readers can go check it out themselves. They have a great email system you can sign up for and get little tidbits of information, and suggestions. There is actually a seminar coming up March 5th in the Salt Lake area. It is a morning session for toddler and preschool parents, and an afternoon session for general information. I would love to go to both, but due to finances I will have to miss it. Too bad cause Jim Fay will be there, so if anyone else is interested I would HIGHLY recommend it!

So, on to today's post. Whining! Agh, nothing drives a mommy more crazy than hearing her child WHINE! Well I guess talking back is right up there too. The little ones have been REALLY whiny lately and the older one has had a mouth on him. He claims that he needs verification on what "talking back" really is, so I told him that if he is responding to an instruction, request, or other, with an attitude attached, then we would consider that talking back and disrespectful. Then I told him "you know when this is happening ha?" Hmmm... that left him speechless. So, when DD was whining this morning, I used the energy drain method I have talked about before, and said "sweetie, when you whine I can't understand you and it REALLY drains my energy. So you are going to have to find a way to give me back my energy. Are you going to pay me back with your toys, or money?" Her response was great-"I got money's!" She ran to the table and got a penny that she had been carrying around and gave it me. "I all done now mommy!" Not a whole lot, but she is 2 years old, so it will do for now, because she showed that she understood the concept. Then my oldest who witnessed this and piped in "what do I have to pay for talking back?" "hmmm.." I said "not money, you don't care about that. You will probably have to pay me back with an extra chore. Bummer."

There are so many ways to use the Energy drain method, and I am not very skilled with it, because it so happens that it only skims the subject in the package that I have. there is a whole CD devoted to the subject, with LOTS of ideas I am sure. That will probably be our next purchase. Another example I heard was when the child comes to to ask you to do something for them, ie: take them somewhere, iron clothes, help with a project; you use the energy if say you have been doing their chore all week, or they had a particularly bad attitude one day "I'm sorry, but I have been using up all my energy to do... I don't have any left to take you to..." I have not tried this one yet, but I'm sure it works like a charm!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Owning our feelings.

Jim Fay tells a story about the kid that was a friend of his sons. This kid ended up going to a party where he drank and then drove off a mountain, killing himself and five of their friends. He says his mom was a very involved mom, and kind. BUT she made one mistake in the way she taught him how to make decisions. She would say things like "you do it MY way or it's gonna make me mad." and then when he made a mistake she would say "Oh you made me SO mad! I can't believe you made me so mad!" Teaching him to make decisions based on who was going to find out and who he was gonna make mad and how he was going to keep that person from finding out. Not teaching him how to take responsibility for his actions.

I keep this in my mind all the time now, as I have been guilty of this so many times. In Child Development and even in psychology we are taught to use I statements. Saying things like "I feel sad when you do that." HMMM.... that is teaching the poor child that he/she is responsible for the adults feelings. So, in trying to teach my children that they are responsible for their own feelings, I MUST show them that I too am responsible for my feelings NOT them. This is a challenging thing, because I was raised thinking that I was responsible for everyone else. That it was my fault that I was taken from my parents, because I must not have been a good enough kid, I caused problems for my parents. Then later, it was my fault that I was taken advantage of- that I must have asked for it. But I realize now that I was not at fault in either of these situations, I was taught that in my upbringing.

Today I went into the bathroom and found my DD in the sink with water all over her shirt. I said "oh sweetie. that makes me so sad when you do this." and then I stopped cold. CRAP!!! I'm not supposed to say that, what do I say now? Okay, recovery.... " because now I have to give you a consequence, and man I don't want to have to do that." See it is okay to show feelings and express that you are upset.


It is okay for me to say "oh I'm so mad, I don't even know what I am going to do.... I'm going to have to give you a consequence, but not now.... LATER!" Because I own me feelings, and don't put it on the child. This is still a challenge. But I am working on it, and now I am aware!

Also, we need to be aware of their feelings. Saying things like "how sad for you," and "bummer" lets them know that you do care about their feelings too.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Brain Dead

So it's been awhile, but I have been doing stuff with Love and Logic. Just not anything exciting... until now! The other day, my DH was doing a GREAT job with being calm and saying "no problem" Even though DS1 was whining a bit about his responsibilities, we were both calm and collected. In several of our CD's it talks about going "brain dead" and repeating a phrase when the kids try to argue or begin to whine. Like: " I love you too much to argue." or "I know" so I tried it! and the funniest thing was that it was like text book!!! It says that the kids will hate it and say things like "I hate this love and logic thing," or "can't you just spank me and get it over with?"

DS1 was TRYING to argue about his room, and I said "I love you too much to argue" He kept going, and I repeated "I love you too much to argue." He then said "I hate this stupid program!" and stomped out of the room. DH and I started to giggle, and we were so excited. It was like we saw the results, and restored faith in the program and in OUR ability to get rid of the demons that control our dysfunction. We know we will still have set backs, which we hick-upped the next day, but we are continuing to move forward! Yeah for this and for redemption!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Worse before its better

So DS1 has had a cold for about a week, it reached it's peak yesterday, but no fever, so I sent him to school. Today, he wanted to stay home, so I said "well I have a lot of cleaning to do around the house to get ready for our visitors tonight; if you stay home, you will need to help." I grew up with parents who would not let me stay home unless I was puking, or had a fever, so I have adopted the same thought. So, since he was not really sick enough to stay home by my book I gave him a choice. We are all about giving choices at our house now!

Well. here it comes the "it's going to get worse before it gets better." part. I always do smoothies in the morning, and the kids all get a great big one for breakfast. Since DS1 is fighting a cold we focus on fruit and juice and no dairy or wheat (which causes more phlegm). So I packed it full of stuff today (more than usual, and much more than MOST people get in a day!). I bustled around the house cleaning and straightening things, because I also had to go to the store, so I wanted to get it all done before DS3 woke from his morning nap. I asked DS1 to get the Bathroom cleaned up (this is his ONE chore). He refused, because it is not Saturday. I told him this was a special circumstance and needed his help. nothing. Spent an hour cleaning his room (which was supposedly cleaned last night). So I said "you'll need to have the bathroom done before you next eat."
DS1 said "I'm not doing the bathroom!"
me "Well then I guess it's going to be a long day."
Him " I want to eat!!! I never get a breakfast. You never let me have a good meal!"
me "I'm sorry you feel that way, you are welcome to eat when the bathroom is cleaned."
again he told me he wasn't going to clean th bathroom. All the while I am trying to tidy up the house, and the other two kids are dressed and ready to go to the store.
I finished what I had needed to get done, before going to the store, but DS1 was still sleeping so I got some grapes out and washed them and had the kids come in my room to watch a movie. This was to get away from DS1 who at this point is now tipping over my chairs, screaming that I don't care about him (because he is obviously starving), and throwing all of the cushions off the couch. Trying desperately to get a reaction out of me and failing, so he is getting more and more violent.

I took the kids in the room with the grapes and some crackers. we ate and watched a movie. I ignored DS1. Grandma called and said she was coming over, so I told her what was going on. She said she would take DS2 and DD to her house. YEAH!!!! That way I don't have to try to shield them from his rage.

Grandma came, so we went out to the living room to find that DS1 had completely torn it up- couch was moved, my big chair tipped over, lazy boy tipped. yeah, stuff everywhere!!! DS2 said "that's not good!" and I said "oh too bad, looks like there's going to have to be a consequence- later." and DD said "oh, shoop!" I think she thinks she's TLC (if anyone remembers them and their Shoop song!). Ha ha little humor there- just some relief. I said good bye to them and made sure to mention that they were going to get ice cream at grandma's house.

Funny thing happened when Grandma left, DS1 said "sorry mom, I'll clean up the mess."
I said "I know." And went back to do what I was doing. He then carried on about being hungry and did some more pouting, but he did the bathroom and cleaned up the living room. It's 1pm and he is finally eating!

I know now why Jim Fay says Kids are "drunk" on emotions. Have you ever tried to reason with a drunk? Have you ever talked to one? It is ridiculous! One minute they can be spouting off all sorts of profanity and nonsense, and the next they are all "I love you, you are so great!" as if the other never happened. THAT was DS1 today. For the last half hour (yes it all only took a half hour to do!!) while he was doing his work, he was whistling, and checking in, telling me all about "pirates of the Caribbean X-box game." What the crap?!! I will NEVER understand this boy!

So on to the consequence. WHAT do I do? I can't just let it go, but I have no idea what a good "natural" consequence would be. Any suggestions would be great! I am proud of myself however for not giving in to his tantrum and reacting with more anger. Believe me, I wanted to. I am so happy that i have found something that works, even though I am SOOOOO not perfect at it, there is light at the end!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Delayed Consequences

So, in my many classes in Child Development, and years in Child Care, I have been taught about immediate and natural consequences. I always struggled with this, because I can't often think of a good one on the spot. Also many times I am so mad, frustrated, or surprised that I am not in the right mind. Jim Fay calls this being "drunk on emotions;" and you can't reason with a drunk. He uses this phrase also when talking about the kids who are upset about a consequence. He says "save the words for happy times." The L&L philosophy is to delay consequences, a new concept for me.

I like the concept because this allows me to step back from the situation by simply saying "oh, looks like I'm going to have to do something about this... but now, later" I then can consult with others, with DH, and think of a good LOGICAL reaction to what has occurred. Problem: I forget!!! I say this and then go about my business. When the time comes for "later" I often forget. I struggle with finding stuff that will work for DS1 especially.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Threats, reminding, and Warnings

In L&L, Jim teaches that consequences need to come just as they would in the real world. That in the real world we do not get warnings and reminders, so we act accordingly. For instance; when DS2 is getting into the fridge all day long, my response is often "stay out of the fridge." Followed by an exacerbated "GET OUT OF THE FRIDGE!" Then after about the fourth time, I march over, with the green spew I talked about before coming out of my eyes, and I slam the fridge shut, grab him by the arm and march him down to his room (which is in the basement which doesn't have a door), for time out. He of course is up point three seconds later, and the battle of staying in his room for timeout begins, until I give up because I can't make him stay.

What should happen is that the first time he gets into the fridge I say "ut oh, looks like you are having little bit of trouble remembering the rules in our house. I'm going to let you have time in your room to think about it." And take him to his room (which would have a door with the lock on the outside, so he can not get out). He would scream and throw a fit for a minute, then I would start the time, unlock the door and tell him he can come out when the timer goes off.
The problem here is that 1. his room doesn't have a door right now, 2. I am often feeding DS3, and can't get up to do this, or 3. I get frustrated that I have to go over this with him ALL the time. I forget that he is three and that I am going to have to continually work with him. I forget that he is testing me, and when I get angry I am failing miserably!

As I sit and write this tonight, DS2 is supposed to be in bed, but keeps coming up. We keep telling him to go to bed, and are getting frustrated with him. I finally went down with him and said "if you come up again, you will not be going to playgroup tomorrow" I then walked up the stairs and thought 'oh crap, I am not supposed to warn him!' See, it is so much more effective if they don't KNOW what the consequence is going to be.

I find myself always reminding DS1 when he is supposed to be doing a chore. He gets distracted so easy, and I am constantly keeping him on task, and getting frustrated while doing it. I am so glad that now I can learn to just let it go, and allow the consequences to come. What sucks, is delivering the consequences!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

History- why I am doing this.

I am going to start by giving a little bit of history of myself to explain why I am doing this. When I was born my mom was mentally handicapped, and my dad was old. There were four of us (ironically 3 girls and 1 boy), each about a year apart. There was NO control, and at last resort, my dad (when he could actually catch us) would pull out his belt to discipline us. When I was 7 years old we were put into a Foster Home. We returned home for a short time, but were permanently placed when I was 9 years old. I grew up not knowing what would happen from month to month and wondering when my home was going to change. The "parents" I had for a long time had taken all four of us in and had two of their own. We were to say the least a shock to their little family and she (the mom) had an extremely difficult time keeping her emotions in check while trying to teach us. You might say that it appeared we had been raised by a pack of wolves, so she had her work cut out for her. She resorted to anger, frustration, and fear. As a Junior in High School, I was moved once again to a family who was absolutely amazing. They knew how to do it and they knew how to keep their children's self esteem in tact. But I was 16 and of course already knew everything, so what they tried to teach, I fought. Plus, for the first time in my life I had freedom, so I went wild!

When I had a child of my own, I just wanted to be the Coolest mom. I wanted to give my baby everything, and was not going to be like the mom's I had. I thought I had figured out the best of all of them and was going to be the mom that everyone wanted to hang out with. I studied Child Development and received a Bachelors Degree. Yep I thought I knew it all! Then, he got a little older, and I realized that I couldn't control him, but that fear set in of something happening to him, or that he would make the same mistakes I did. And my instincts crept in before I realized it, I was yelling and screaming and as a friend of mine once described it- green spew was coming out of my eyes. I knew this was not the way, and felt horrible every time I lost my temper with that sweet little spirit., but I couldn't let go of what I was taught.

DH's sister-in-law told us about a program called "Love and Logic" a few years ago, but I thought that all we had to do is pray, and the child would fit what I wanted. Then I wouldn't HAVE to yell, scream, or get angry. Oh boy, was I ever wrong!!! And deep down I knew this but not ready to accept it at the time, I avoided it.

Over the last year I have done a LOT of praying as I have struggled with my own issues and have learned that the only one I can control is ME. I have studied the scriptures and have learned about taking responsibility for me, being a good example, and LOVING my children. I have always loved my children of course, but am now ready and able to SHOW them in every way.

My Christmas present this year was a "LifeSavers Kit" of "Love and Logic." I have listened to all of the 8 CD's, and am reading the book. I still have a long way to go, but now I can show my children that I have control of myself. One of the biggest steps they teach about this program is giving control over to the child, and in turn gaining control. It is forgiving myself of the mistakes and moving on. It is allowing myself to be the mom I have always wanted to be, by not worrying so much about what other people might think. Their choices are not an exact reflection of my parenting; because they have their own mind.

So "LL Cool Mom" is my name and cool mom is to remind me or to ask the question "Did I keep my cool?" I created this to write about the good things that I see happen, the struggles I have in applying the program, and then to ask for suggestions at times for what to do in certain situations. Jim Fay (who is now my best friend) says that we can't raise our children alone, but we MUST rely on our friends to help with the tough situations that can and do come up.

Love allows children to grow through their mistakes
Logic allows children to live with the consequences of their choices.

I will try to update my blog daily with opportunities I have to use the program, or failures I have had. I have found that if it is something I have to be accountable for to others, than I think about it more, and will (hopefully) be more successful. This is RAW, honest, and sometimes I am sure, emotional. So PLEASE bare with me as I share. I want to come out of this with happy, responsible, caring children. I want to LIKE being a mom again, and I want to STOP feeling so defeated.