Monday, January 11, 2010

Mama Mia...

Today might not be the greatest day to blog about my children. I am fairly certain that today, if allowed, I would have sold my children to the highest bidder on eBay. Okay, that's not true. They probably wouldn't have even had to be the highest bidder. Just the first one.

This is how I always feel after leading a girl scout meeting. Trying to shepherd 19 girls into doing something semi-crafty in a limited timeframe without losing my mind makes me fully confident in the fact that those "19 kids and Counting" people are completely out of their gourds. However, the second the clock hit 8:30pm, I carted the wee ones off to bed and have been able to calm down a, I think I am good.

Anyway, Justin and I read the first 3 tips from the book "Raising Confident Girls," and have spent the last week trying to implement them every day (and usually just with Rileigh....if you give Addison a piece of chocolate, all is right in her world for at least a week...she's easy).

1. Help her to believe in herself: Here they suggested trying things like allowing your child to take on some personal responsibilities. When I read this, I knew exactly what I was going to try for the week. Rileigh wants to take showers. One problem. She treats water like boiling acid that will sear off her entire face if it even comes near it. Yep, its that bad. So we have spent countless mornings with me yelling at her to actually get her head wet and making her get back in the shower to rinse out the shampoo she has smeared everywhere, but has barely rinsed out. It can get pretty ugly. This week, I vowed to keep my temper in check and help her to learn to shower on her own in a way that prevents her from being the smelly kid in class and still allows her to do it on her own. We discovered if we hang a towel over the door of the shower and she can wipe her eyes every 5 seconds....we can get it done. I stand outside the shower and mimic what she should be doing....and so far its been a success! No yelling, no leaving the house with shampoo hair!

2. Show her you understand her. This was my favorite one to practice. One of the suggestions under this tip was to show your daughter that you value her uniqueness and tell her what you treasure about her. Rileigh is not short on uniqueness! Justin and I made a deal that for one week each of us would randomly tell Rileigh one thing everyday that we loved about her. This was a great way to really think about Rileigh and caused me to look at her with fresh eyes. I had fun coming up with particular treasures. Por ehemplo (going bilingual on you all!) Justin told her one day that he loves that she has fun with everything she does and goes into situations with a positive attitude. One day I told Rileigh that admire her because she is always willing to try new things, no matter if it involves doing something or going somewhere where she doesn't know anyone....and she always comes out of those situations making new friends. We loved telling her these things....and by the way her face lit up, I know she loved hearing them as well.

3. Approve of who she is even if you dislike what she does. This really had to do with discipline. I was thankful to have a strategy to work on this aspect. I know it is not shocking, but I am a yeller. I hate that I am a yeller, but I do it. Under this tip, it gave suggestions on how to approach situations in which you child is showing a behavior or doing something you don't approve of. One thing suggested was to remove "good" and "bad" from your vocab when talking about behavior as it could be taken as a reflection of herself, personally, rather than the behavior. Instead, they suggested talking about the particular behavior. For example--"When you yell while I am on the phone, it makes it very difficult for me to hear the other person and it not very polite." That was a lame example, but I am doing this on the fly. I kick booty on this this week. I kicked booty because it was my mission to kick booty on this. I notice a SIGNIFICANT change in the harmony of the house because of this. No fighting...just talking. And what do you know, Ri is much more perceptive to this than my yelling. Shocking, I know. In fact, I think I did better than Justin in this category this week (even though he is NOT a yeller). Maybe I will get to steal his #1 dad trophy. Yessssss!

Okay, well I need to wake up Justin so we can read the next 3 tips for the upcoming week. So far, so good. I am digging this book.


1 comment:

  1. You guys are pretty amazing parents already....i think that maybe you should knock this better parenting thing off before you make EVERYONE else look bad. (when i have kids will you come do a crash course for me???)