Penelope has begun the very serious business of undoing any order she can find in the house.
- Emptying books out of bookshelves? Check.
- Taking clothes out of drawers? Check.
- Removing dishes from cabinets? Check.
- Pulling papers out of trash bins? Check.
- Dumping out the church bag? Check.
- Snatching dishes out of the dishwasher? Check.
- Barging in and parking herself in the middle of any board or card game in progress? Check.
- Extracting important papers from the back of the bike trailer while in motion? Check.
Oh, also ... Penelope thinks that pushups are a fun game just for her. I have to try to hurry and finish before she crawls up and gets in the way.
Moses is really impressing me as a big brother. I hear him kindly explaining words and meanings and grammar (as far as he understands them) to his little brother. He'll gladly run and get dishes or shoes or other things that Linus needs.
There are still flare ups, of course (usually over a car), but the funny thing is that as soon as Moses goes in for the hug and apology, Linus will hand over whatever they were fighting over with a smile.
You'd think Moses would cotton on to that ...
Linus started a fun game where he'd end any prayer (even in public places) yelling:
I. no. say. AMEN, Mom!
To which I was supposed to say,
Ok, say "amen" Linus.Then he could say it.
It didn't take long for Woo to have enough.
Guess what, Linus! We all just say "amen" at the end of the prayer. Welcome to the party!!Linus thought this was hilarious and chortled,
I. no. wel-come. to. the. par-ty. Dad!!!But, he hasn't done it since.
Woo gave the kids back-to-school blessings this week. You should have seen Ruby's face and the look she gave Herbie as Woo said, "Your Heavenly Father is very proud of you, Ruby, and He has chosen you to be the oldest child in our family ... "
Ruby has no problem making friends at the park. She usually likes to play tag with them, and then show off by climbing up a pole. This week she had two boys on the ground looking up at her in what, I think, Ruby mistook to be admiration.
It's because I live close to the park! I get lots of practice!
I have no idea what this is, but I'm sure it made all the sense in the world to Ruby at the time.
Labor Day morning:
Me: Ok! Let's do some chores, and then you guys can go outside and play!
Herbie (indignant): It's Labor Day, Mom!We're supposed to work ALL day!!
Alright, if that's really what you want to do ...
Herbie was extremely pleased to catch his first fish this week on his Daddy Day.
He was very, very proud of himself.
Maybe a little too proud.
I've never experienced it myself, but there really seems to be something about a good catch that makes a man want to brag and maybe embellish a little.
- Talking reasonably to him or giving him choices does not work.
- Yelling back at him does not work.
- Rewarding the other kids for not throwing a tantrum does not work.
- Threatening to punish him does not work.
- Ignoring him does not work.
- Punishing him or sending him to his room until he's quiet works to a point. He's still mad, and likely to flare up again in an instant.
This is what works:
Hugging him on my lap while he describes whatever perceived injustice someone has inflicted on him. I say nothing (even if it's about me) until he's completely done. Then I suggest he give the person who's wronged him a hug, a kiss and tell them one or two nice things about them.
This is the only thing that fizzles all the anger out of him, and allows him to go on with his day.
Last year we had Ruby spend a few minutes upstairs having quiet time when she got home from school to help her unwind from the stress of the day. At least, until she'd gotten used to her new life at school.
But, I'm starting to think that having them both sit on my lap for a hug for a few minutes after school might be more effective.
It's cheesy, I know, but I've certainly felt tired and cranky and like the whole world is against me before. Sometimes all you need is to feel that someone loves you and is on your side.
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