Tuesday, July 20, 2010

WMW: 5 daily conversations with my kids

This is in response to Working Mother Wednesday's prompt: Top 5 things you say to your kids on a daily basis.

As I started to write these down, I realized that I don't just have things that I say to my kids. We have mini-rote conversations. It's like our own little spoken rituals.

1: Momma gets rhetorical
Momma: "How many things can I do at once?"

Kid: "one. But..."
Both my kids know the correct answer. I cannot multitask. When the barrage of requests and questions start, I blurt this out.

2: Avoiding multiple trips up and down the stairs

Momma or Daddy: "Who needs clothes?" Common question asked from the top of the stairs. The kids are already downstairs watching TV. Are they clothed or still in PJ's?

Zero to two kids: "Me!" Followed by a parent gathering clothes as needed.
Momma or Daddy: "Here you go!" Tossing of clothes from the top of the stairs.
Kids: "Thanks!"
3: Poop

Momma: "Where are you supposed to poop?" Asked while changing my son's poopy diaper.

Son: "In the potty."

Momma: "Where did you poop?"

Son: "In my diaper."
He looks at me with that mischievous smile. We have been struggling with getting our son to do #2 in the potty for 6 months. He wears underwear all day -- and stays dry. We put him in a diaper at night because he can't hold it all night (his bladder is the size of a pea). Literally 5 minutes after he gets the diaper on, he poops. We repeat this conversation every night. For the last 2 months, he has not received a treat after dinner because he refuses to poop in the potty.
4: Bedtime threats

Momma: "...or no stories!" The standard threat to get my son to get moving to bed faster. Usually works like a charm.

Son: "Noooooooo!"

5: Good night

Momma: "Good night sweetie."

Son: "Good night momma."

Momma: "I love you."

Son: "I love you momma."
Momma: "Don't call downstairs asking for anything else, OK?"
Son: "Ok, momma. I won't. Can I play in my bed?"

Momma: "5 minutes."

Son: "Ok. I'll count to 5."

Momma: "Night-night."

Son: "Night-night."

I walk back downstairs to read a book with my daughter. Within 5 minutes:

Son: "Momma?!!"


Funky Mama Bird said...

We did the "...or no stories!" the other night for the first time. Shockingly effective.

Julia said...

yes, threatening a child with no stories/ no walk/ no treat/ works. sometimes i try to just get them to do it by telling them that it makes mom happy when you clean up your toys. now let's see how fast we can do it... count to 10!!

Lisa said...

I am full of threats, but have been reading this book called Positive Discipline that has sort of altered my view on taking things away as a consequence. Well, to a certain extent at least. They still don't get a treat if they choose not to eat.

Kristen T. said...

I'd also recommend Love and Logic. It's a good read. I'm a former Special Education teacher, and we practiced "applied behavior analysis" on even the most extreme bad behaviors (maybe I'll blog about it one day!), and it was amazingly effective and well researched. Though I was a "classic Sp. Ed. teacher burn-out" case, it gave me skills for parenting that I am so happy I have.

Hasn't helped with getting my little guy to poop in the potty though!

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