Archive for the ‘Discipline’ Category

When You Shouldn’t Reason with Your Child

April 22, 2014

PHOTO-Boy Crying CROPPED Dreamstime PurchaseThis was one of those parenting epiphanies.

One of those life changing “Ah ha” moments.

One of those moments when a light bulb is switched on in my head providing me with illumination, of understanding, that previously had been totally invisible to me. And it all started with a simple request from my three year old son.

“Mommy, please, turn back time.”

His reasoning was quite simple. He wanted to replay an event and change the outcome.

I will admit that I have since rethought the possible error in such early and intense exposure to Star Trek.  But nonetheless . . . there it was.  A request for Mom, all powerful, all knowing Mom, to please turn back time.

I assumed I could simply explain that time cannot be turned back, by me or anyone. And with this new and reasonable information, and all would be well with my child.

Feel the power of logic.

Are you guessing at what came next?  It would be a gross understatement to say that he did not believe me. I tried again to explain the impossibility of complying with such a request. And with each additional statement I made, he grew more and more agitated. Frankly, it’s a gross understatement to use the word “agitated”. Washing machines agitate. This was more like a food processor…on steroids. (more…)


The Best Teaching Advice No One Ever Told You

October 17, 2012

Be quiet. That’s right. Stop talking sometimes, especially at critical thinking moments. This is one of THE hardest things for me to do. Here’s how I typically get it wrong.

“So Glenn, you’ve got two fractions and you need to divide one by the other.”

He begins to think. He’s working it out in his brain. He’s sorting. Accessing. Processing.

But before he’s able to complete the newly forming thought, a little mommy bird begins chirping in his ear.

“Do you remember?”

“What’s the rule again?”

“Think. There’s something special you need to do.”

“How does that little math rhyme go again?”

Peck. Peck. Peck. (more…)

Hold That Thought. . .If You Can

September 3, 2012

Sizzlers often miss what’s going on around them. This can be a problem in many ways. Read this mom’s letter to learn about one of them.

I have a sizzler who is a great talker. The challenge is creating boundaries.  For instance if I need to change little sister’s diaper and little sister is busy playing catch me if you can, it may not be the best moment to ask to play a video game or tell me about a favorite event from 2 weeks ago. Is it even worth trying to set that boundary?  Or is it a futile cause in your opinion/experience?

Thanks for your wisdom!


Dear Sara,

What pleases me most is that you’ve assumed I had wisdom. A thousand blessings on your day.

I have experience. I have headaches. And I even have Sizzler stories I can now laugh about that typically involve some mix of fluids like motor oil and peanut butter. Whether or not I have wisdom has never satisfactorily been determined. The jury is still out. And there are days, my children will tell you, that the jury is not even out. In fact, they’re are IN, have pitched a tent and ordered Chinese for dinner.

Nonetheless, I will provide an answer based on (more…)

The I-Forgot Chores Strategies

February 29, 2012

There are some wonderful organization/chores systems out there and I suspect that almost any one of them, if followed through on with consistency by mom, would produce pretty decent results. But, did you catch the suspect phrase here?

Right–followed through on with consistency by mom.

Yeah, that’s the problem, isn’t it? There’s a good chance that your Sizzler got that distractibility somewhere, meaning, there’s a 1 out of 2 chance he got it from you.

My kids were doubly doomed; both parents are highly distractible. So what’s amazing for us isn’t that we had a Sizzler, it’s that we were ever able to produce even ONE child that was not a Sizzler. (She does exist, but asks that you hold her up in daily prayer. :-))

Here’s the problem with those organizational systems. . . (more…)