Monday, February 27, 2012

nom, nom, independently

A hugely important part of J's day is eating.  He takes well over 40 minutes to eat each meal.  This is great as I feel that he's learning to listen to his body, feed himself, and develop a healthy relationship with food.

There is a learning curve when it comes to J knowing how to feed himself.  It can be tricky and frustrating for him.  To assist in this learning, we provide him with an opportunity to be independently successful if he is hungry separate from meal time.


While he does not know how to pour himself water, I do place his hands in the appropriate position on his pitcher.  We pour the water together and he drinks from the cup by himself, something we taught him very early on.  (It's a shot glass!  We bought a package of 6 at IK.EA and they are the perfect child-sized drinking glasses).  I also leave some food on the table for him to come and go, eating as he pleases.

By providing him this independence, I am already watching his abilities and confidence soar.  He does not have to scream and beg for food, leaving little room for poor attachment to eating.  This is our goal.

He then practices standing to burn off some calories.  C'mon walking before the first birthday!  Only 3 weeks to go...

Do you provide any opportunities for your child 
to eat & drink independently?  
Have any success stories you wish to share?

Sunday, February 26, 2012

damn it feels good to be a stay at home mom

As of tomorrow, I will officially be a stay at home mama.  Declaring that statement is music to my ears.  However, I will also be a work at home mom for some 8 hours a week.  AND, I'll be going into work 1 day a week.  So I guess I'm a WAHM, SAHM (thank you, ma'am).

I am nervous that I'm not going to be able to juggle everything effectively.  It is so hard to make sure that J receives enough attention, that the house receives enough attention, that T receives enough attention, that I receive enough get the point.  This is a challenge that I am up for, however!  (I'll update next weekend and let you know if I'm eating my words).

J started swimming lessons this week.  Visiting my parents in the middle-south, the heat is unbearable unless you are in the pool - so J has been skinny dipping since 3 months.  He loves the water and will splash, screech, and laugh.  Wanting to capitalize on this, and hoping to thwart the fear of swimming that so many children seem to have, we began classes with parks and recreation.  He will go 2 times a week for the next 4 weeks and, most likely, we will sign up for another class at that time.  Gratuitous baby butt and swim suit shots to come!

Enjoy your Sunday!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

After 11 comes 12

J is officially 5 days past his 11 month birthday.  Meaning we are swiftly encroaching on his first birthday.  FIRST BIRTHDAY!  I shudder and celebrate, cry and sing with joy at our little man.  How does it go so fast?

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

call it what it is

So I don't mean to go all Negative Nancy on you again, nor am I someone looking to pick a fight with other parents.  However, let's get one thing straight here: spanking is a cutesy name for beating.

If you spank your child, you are beating him.

I belong to many mother/parenting Yah.oo! listservs.  I think they are phenomenal resources from finding out where to buy a gently used Ci.ty to the best infant swim classes in the area to listening to advice on infant b.m.'s.  <---Yep, I went there.

Recently, a mother sent out a plea to her fellow mothering comrades.  In sum: My 3 year old is batshit crazy.  He won't listen.  I'm out of my mind.  What do I do?

E-mail responses were sent directly to this mother with an anonymous compilation blasted out to the entire group.  I read every. single. response.  Why?  Well, I knew something was going to rub me the wrong way, and who doesn't love a little argument within one's own mind and then a relevant blogpost?  

I digress.

Here is the most stunning, stop in my tracks, find the husband, sit him down on the couch, read and scowl response that I came across:
We spanked/ spank ( typically developing) daughter. (we also have a daughter with Special needs but she is not spank-able YET). When she was younger we spanked a lot more than we do now. We used a wooden spoon and called it Mr. Ugly. We would say, "do we need to get Mr. Ugly?" It was a nicer way in public than saying I am going to spank you or you need a spanking. When we thought she was old enough to be spanked I took her to the store to buy the wooden spoon and explained to her that this will be used to discipline her. We always spanked her bottom (it was hard at times as she would thrash around). you want to make sure that it does sting a little or they won't get the message. This punishment worked works for us. What we have learned is that you have to be Consistent. If you are not consistent then the child will figure out ways to get what they want or get away with bad behavior. you can say over and over.. I am going to get Mr. ugly... ditto ditto.. you have to just do it!I had a harder time being consistent in public. I would take my daughter to the truck and use Mr. Ugly. (yes I had to carry a smaller one in my purse for a while).We took a Dr. Dobson study on Discipline. it really helped us! I do not have many friends that spank. They use time out but feel that this way of punishment has worked for us. http://www.beliefne Family/Parenting /2005/02/ Do-Not-Spare- The-Rod.aspxA funny not... when at friends home and they are using a wooden spoon my daughter was for a while terrified as to why it was out of the drawer and being waved around! :) look mommy... Mr. Ugly..... :)

Wow.  WOW.  Mr. Ugly?  Wooden spoon?  Terrified child?  Under what circumstance does this necessitate a smiley face!?!?

I am deeply distraught by the fact that this parent not only found this behavior acceptable, but adorable!  She even states that they may most likely will use this same tactic with their younger child; a child with special needs no less.  In times like these, I am so thankful that the compilations to such questions are anonymous because it would take all of my willpower not to retaliate on this individual.

Now this is where I ask a question.  
However, none of this is up for discussion in my view point. 
It is what it is: TRAGIC.

How would you respond in such a situation?  
Would it be appropriate to blast out another response to the entire group, 
condemning spanking beating?

Sunday, February 5, 2012

parental intentions

Overheard at the park, a father and his 4(ish) year old son

Dad: Let's go!  We're going to go see mama.  Are you ready?

Son: No!  I don't wanna go home!
Dad: I didn't say we were going home!  I said we were going to see mama.  Don't you want to go see mama?
Son: Whine, bitch, cry, squirm, protest.
Dad: Do you want me to call so&so's parents and say she cannot come over today?  Do you?  Do you?  Because you're showing me you do.
Son: *Shakes head.*
Dad: Fine then, let's go. *grabs hand* You need to be a better boy.  You're not a good boy.

Okay, so maybe there is nothing glaring or overt about what I have issue with.  A father was frustrated that his child did not want to leave the playground (I mean, seriously, are we so surprised?!).  Instead of asking the child if he was ready, the father could have made a statement that they were leaving.  Then, when the child protested, the father had many options but threatening?  Probably not a good motivator, at least not a healthy one.  

My biggest problem, however, is when he told his son that HE is a BAD BOY.  Yikes.  What's the take home message for this child?  Not that his behavior was naughty, disrespectful or negative but that HE as a PERSON is BAD.  While his father certainly did not mean that this child was inherently a bad individual, I'm not so sure a child could make that type of distinction.  In the child's mind, I'm willing to bet he heard, "I am bad."

This conversation is a valuable reminder to me - be thoughtful with your words, even in frustrating times.  With the best of intentions, I recognize that I will not always be able to speak respectfully to J.  However, I will try my darndest to "label" a "behavior" and not my child based on his actions.  In turn, I hope that his self-esteem and self-confidence are never questioned nor negated.

ANNNNNNNND here J is having a blast.

What do you think about this situation?  
Do you think I am being too nit-picky and not giving this father enough slack when it came to a frustrating situation?  
Have you seen any parent-child interactions that rubbed you the wrong way?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Sh*t Crunchy Mamas Say

I'm so embarrassed - 90% of this I relate to.