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!