Friday, August 27, 2010

Planet Mickey Mouse and Viagra Falls

Today had quite an interesting "flair" to it.  In the morning, Makenna decided to take my IPOD which I'm always leery about and put it in her backpack.  I told her I didn't really want it there but she said, "wait mommy, listen....I'll put it in my backpack, take it to the car and when we get there you can say "please" and I'll give it to you....okay?" 

I reluctantly agreed.  A few minutes later she decided to add another little trinket to her backpack and at that time I asked for my IPOD.  She said, "You need to say please."  "Please?!"  "Okay mom, here you go, see wasn't that easy?"  Easy, I thought, to hear myself coming out of your mouth?  Not always easy, but usually amusing.

On the way to preschool I heard her talking about the planets and she started to name a few.  I wasn't sure if she got this from preschool or if she got it from reading some of her books or cartoons.  Either way I decided to go with it and we listed off all the planets (although I had a hard time remembering Mars was a planet and not a candy bar) and I still counted Pluto as a planet - I dont' care what they say.  She got pretty good at naming them except Uranus sounds more like "your-eeee-aaahhhs."  Plus, when I asked her later what her favorite planet was she decided Uranus was it - of course she picks a funny sounding one that has way too many jokes to go with it, but I digress. 

When I picked her up later from preschool I decided to keep rolling with the whole planet thing so we started talking about them again.  She then added Planet Mickey Mouse to go along with planet Pluto.  I told her there wasn't such a planet and she wanted to know why.  I have to admit I was kind of stumped with that one.  She also added "space" and "planet" as planets.  Those were easier to explain as to why they were not planets.

It was also cute to watch her tell her friends goodbye for the day after I picked her up.  She was yelling their names and saying goodbye.  Two of them (Aloina and James) came up to the fence and she told them goodbye and that she was going on waycation (vacation) and would see them next week.  She stated it like she was informing them as if, "don't worry, I'll be back and all will be alright," kind of tone.

The last thing was as I was putting her to bed talking about the vacation we are taking.  She asked, "Where we going mom?"  I told her Niagara Falls.  She said, "Viagara falls?"  I said, "yup" and we'll have a grand ole time!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Night Time Crisis

Makenna has just come across a new reason to get out of bed shortly after we put her down…her fingernails. For the past two nights she’d get out of bed around five minutes after putting her down to have a fingernail cut. Somehow it’s keeping her up and she’s unable to sleep.

I got smart and cut them all last night. I can’t imagine that she’ll come back at me that her toenails will now keep her up but I wouldn’t be surprised either. She’s usually pretty good about going to bed, and usually staying in bed, but lately she’s been on this kick of needing to be covered up again. Even if it’s only been five to ten minutes since we last covered her up. She’s even gotten up in the middle of the night, come downstairs, in the dark, to inform us that she’s uncovered.

We’ve taught her how to cover herself up but it doesn’t seem to hold water in her opinion. Anymore I let Chris handle all night time crisis. He’s able to get right back into bed and sleep. I on the other hand start thinking about how much time is left before I have to get up, all the things that I have to do in the morning, how I can’t seem to fall asleep like Chris and the list goes on.

Plus with her needing to go potty in the middle of the night, I’m not sure if I’m in for a marathon poop session or if it’s just a quick trip to pee and I’m not willing to find out. I figure it’s quality time with daddy anyways.

Hopefully this explains her grumpiness this morning in trying to wake her up.  She was not willing to get up unless daddy came up to get her and I wasn't willing to wait that long.  I then had to go down and wake up my "second child" who was not to happy about how I woke him up.  I apologized and expressed my frustration.  I went back up to get my youngest child and told her in no uncertain terms were we waiting for her daddy to get her up.  This prompted shouts of "just leave me alone" and other unacceptable comments.

Off to the naughty step we went.  The rest of the morning went better after this initial hiccup.  She had a good day at pre-school and did fairly well at gymnastics.  Unfortunately the "mouth" came back as we left gymnastics so she lost all the pennies she had earned for the day.  We started giving her pennies for her piggy bank as a reward for being a good listener at pre-school and any time she is exceptional.

I figured I'd roll that reward over into gymnastics in trying to keep her focused.  I told her for every section that she does well in (meaning stays on task and pays attention and doesn't start fighting or arguing with the other kids,) then she'd earn a penny.  I planned on giving her the pennies until we started leaving and she again started being mouthy.  I had just told her that if she talked back to me again she was going to lose them and about a minute later she mouthed off - so she lost them.  She wasn't happy but accepting.

It was cute to later hear her say, as she was going to the bathroom, "Mom, leave me alone!"  I stayed back out of the room and then I heard her yell "Mom?"  Kind of like, a "where are you mom?" type yell.  So here she tells me to go away and then in the next breath she's yelling to see where I'm at.  Funny.

I forgot to mention that we got a letter from my brother Brant and unfortunately he had to return a couple of pictures that Makenna had made for him because of the sticky stuff that Makenna had put on it.  I thought this might happen.  Makenna's reaction was funny.  She said, in regards to Brant being in trouble, "Mom?, can he say he's sorry?"  If all of life's answers were just as easy as that.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


This weekend seemed to be a lot about reminiscing. Friday was fraught with a lot of things to get done and not enough time. On top of a party for Chris’s work (which was really nice and had lots of yummy food,) we had to get ready for his parent’s 50th Wedding Anniversary Party.

I met a lady from our church (L. Smith) to decorate the church that Chris attends. She had all these great ideas for decorating and they came out great. One was to have Chris’s parents come up with some pictures to put on the tables for people to look at. This would be overlaid with a clear tablecloth so that people could still sit and eat and look at the pictures.

The funny thing is that Chris’s parents took to this task and provided us with way too many pictures. We still put about 90 percent of them on the tables though. It was neat to look back at pictures at even myself through the years that they had stock-piled.  Joan also had her original wedding dress, shoes and some other nostalgic items.  She even had the dress she was engaged in.  I have no clue what I was wearing on that day, but the reason she remembers, from what I was told by someone else, is that she was engaged at her prom.  That also expalined the fancy dress.

Another neat thing is their granddaughter Brittanie drew this picture of them on the dry-erase board, taking it from a portrait they had done a long time ago.

After we were done decorating we went over to his parent’s house where a majority of the family who were coming in for the celebration were hanging out. I grabbed what food was left and was ready to go after I ate it. I was exhausted and my feet ached. I was wishing for a personal masseuse at that point.

Saturday the 21st was the big day and I was nervous and hopeful that everything would go well, especially in regards to Makenna. People came for the open house portion from 1pm-4pm and it went well. We had enough finger-foods to keep people satisfied and ran out of a punch that someone had told me about which was delicious – obviously by how fast it went.

Chris’s father Jim introduced me to this one gentleman who looked vaguely familiar to me and when I was told he was a neighbor to them, which explained the familiarity. As I walked away I knew that wasn’t it. I went back and asked if he happened to be a teacher. He promptly replied, “Please don’t tell me you were one of my students!” I laughed and said I was. He was a math teacher at West Middle (S. Liberto)

I said one of the reasons I remember him was because he had kicked me out of class. He jokingly said, “You look like a kid who’d cause trouble.” I explained that he had walked in on the tail end of a fight where I through a snow-ball at a kid who had been harassing me. As I was the one finishing the fight with a snow-ball, I was the one thrown out. I was surprised that I actually remembered him and that incident.

I left around 2:30pm to get Makenna home for a nap so that she would be good for the dinner portion. It was a good brief break for me too. I think I did get a small cat-nap in there somewhere.

Back to the party around 5:30pm for the dinner portion which was from 6pm-9pm. We had it catered so it was a lot less work for us which was nice. It was just family and a bit more intimate. I think it went well and we had a lot of left over food. I was ready to collapse and wished I had a day to just sleep.

On Sunday I agreed to meet family and friends up at the cottage, even though it was a rainy day. After church Makenna and I went home, got things together and went up. One of our friends brought a 40 year DVD of Sesame Street. That was truly neat to see and I couldn’t stop watching as there were a lot of things on there I had forgotten about.

Makenna has never been huge into Sesame Street so I find it hard to justify buying this DVD but I just might – it was so nostalgic. I think because of running into the old teacher, and old friend from work on Thursday night, and this DVD that it set me up to reminisce quite a bit about a lot of different things. Not that, that’s bad but just interesting to look back and see where life’s choices have lead you. Hopefully in another 43 years I can be having my 50th wedding anniversary and reminiscing about this one.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A change in discipline

On Saturday I took Makenna to the park for a bit and she got to ride her tricycle. She’s definitely getting the hang of it more. Now if she could just figure out the pedaling while steering part, but she’s getting there.

Later, I went to help my mom pick out a new computer. After helping her, I turned to her for help on how to better handle Makenna. She informed me of something I already knew but didn’t fully realize how it truly impacted the behavior we’re now getting from Makenna, and that’s – we give her too many chances.

She says we have to tell her one time what’s appropriate or not appropriate behavior and then follow-up immediately with consequences. Not after the count of three, not after chance after chance, but immediately.

She said one of us should’ve taken her out immediately from Sam’s Club yesterday and let her fight it out in the car seat and then when she calmed down, we could’ve taken her back in and if she acted up again, take her back out to the car and repeat this process until she learned that what she wasn’t doing was going to pass for acceptable behavior.

I went home with this information and told Chris. We put this into practice later at night when we went to the Kirkwood Fair Days. We told her before getting out of the car that in no uncertain terms she was to listen to us, and stay with us. No yelling, talking back, hitting or other bad behaviors. She followed it to a tee. But then again, she was getting to do things that she really wanted – ride on carnival rides.

I went up on the Ferris wheel with her and boy was that nerve wracking! I haven’t been on one of those in a very long time. As we were going up, I had my arm around Makenna and at one point she said, ‘oh mom, you’re hurting me!” I guess I was squeezing a bit too tight. I was laughing with nervous laughter to show her how fun it was – and she was having a blast. She really enjoyed it.

I was nervous because even though there was a line for the ride, the guy was only letting two sets of seats be filled at a time – on opposite ends. Makes you wonder if it was unsafe for more? I was telling myself that it was because he had to count how many times someone went around to be fair and he could only keep track of two sets of people.

She also enjoyed a roller-coaster for little kids. She got right on, in the front and screamed with joy the whole time. Since she was the only one on it and no one else was in line, she got to stay on that for a longer time. Plus the big grin she kept giving the operator of the roller coaster probably helped.

Sunday is when I really got to put the new discipline into action. I told her ahead of time that during the first hour of church that I expected her to talk by whispering and to be well-behaved. The whispering was the hard part. When she broke the first infraction, I reminded her one time and then when she did it again, I took her out to a separate room and made her sit and told her she needs to be quiet. In this room I took her to, she could yell all she wanted – and boy did she – right at me.

“You don’t talk to me that way!” and “I’ll tell your mother and grandmother on you.” Those were just a couple of the things I heard her yell at me. The first one is understandable but the last comment, I have no idea how she came up with that one. I can only recall once threatening to tell her father on her – ever.

She went back in and came back out a total of three times but by the third time she had gotten it and was good for the remaining 5-10 minutes. But the real charm was that I wasn’t so exasperated and frustrated and a point of wanting to throttle her. That was the true trick. I could just calmly pick her up, take her out, have her do the time and go back in and still be calm, cool, and collected. Plus not feeling guilt-ridden was the best bonus.

On the way home from church she was singing/yelling a song as we sometimes do for fun. She yelled it so loud I said, “Me oh my!” She responded with, “who’s Oh My?” I laughed at that.

This past Monday (Aug 15th) I decided to take her to the park again and let her ride her bike around some more. She did well and was able to go longer without stopping; still working on perfecting the steering but still showing signs of improvement. We didn’t run into too many people or get into the paths of other people too many times.

Plus, she had a really good day at pre-school and at home so my spirits and mood was on a definite up.

Then on Tuesday we had another really good day at home and pre-school and after I picked her up, we had to meet “sister Smith” at the church to go over party plans. I told this to Makenna as we were driving there and she said, “Who’s mister Smith?” I corrected her and then when we got to the church parking lot and she saw no one else was there but us she said, “Where’s Joseph Smith?” This had me laughing and she said, “What’s so funny?” Which made me laugh even more.

While waiting for the elusive “Joseph” I mean sister Smith, I let her ride her bike around the parking lot. She actually wanted it up on the sidewalk area and she was able to really get the turning down some more.

After meeting with Sister Smith, we were getting ready to go and she grabbed my cell phone to call daddy. On the phone I overheard her say, as she was pretending to talk to him, “What? You can smell me?” I don’t know why this came out but I again laughed and she immediately asked, “What’s so funny?” I just hugged her and said, “You—you’re too cute and funny some times.” To which she replied, “No I’m not.”

Well, I’m not under the false impression that this disciplining was going to be easy – as I’ve already slipped up a small bit and I’ve had to use it three times yesterday morning in just getting ready for the day but I can see how if I do use it, it’s better for me as I stay calmer and for her as I stay calmer and it doesn’t get out of hand.

It’s hard not to keep giving chances to improve but I have to recognize she’s learning boundaries by pushing them, along with all my buttons!~

Friday, August 13, 2010

Frustration and Tears

That about sums it up - for me.  I guess you could say the same for Makenna.

Yesterday went fairly well.  Again, the correlation between our morning and how her day went at pre-school was evident.  We had a so-so morning and she had a bad day at school.  On a good note, she had a
good night at swim.

I'm pretty sure I wrote some time ago about how she was scared to jump off the swimming blocks at the pool.  Last night, she didn't even think twice about it.  She jumped right in.  Plus, I saw her swimming with her face in the water for a long time period of time. 

After swim we went to the church as they were just having a small get-together and kids were allowed to come and enjoy a movie and popcorn.  As soon as Makenna saw the movie on the t.v. she said, "mom, Scooby-Doo!"  I have no idea how the heck she knew that as I've never - ever have watched that show with her (as I can't stand it.)  The same thing happened a long time ago with Sponge Bob Square Pants - she knew who/what that was and I never had it on the t.v. previously.  Weird! 

Anyways, she was more concerned about how her cousin Katie was bugging her or how her other cousin Eli was swiping popcorn off her plate.  I could clearly see how she would be with other brothers or sisters.  I would hear a lot of "Mom, Katie's looking at me."  "Mom, Katie's touching me."  "Mom, Eli took my popcorn..No Eli!  That's naughty...say you're sorry."

On to today...this morning went a bit better than yesterday and I was told she had a good day at school.  Although, it wasn't her normal teacher but I'll take it.  I just wish her good day had continued into the rest of the night.

We stopped over at her grandparents house for a short bit and then once I got her in the car it was like a switch hit and she was a mess.  Talking back, misbehaving, yelling.  I had to stop at a store and implicitly told her that she had to stay with me and not go wandering off.  That did not work - it did to some extent but not great. 

Then we went to Sam's Club and met Chris and before we got there I just sat in the car ready to scream and wanting to cry.  I just got to such a point of feeling like a bad mom and wondering what I did wrong to get such a bratty kid.  I realize she's three but holy cow, some days I feel like I'm raising a hellion.  It makes me think twice about having another.  Feeling like, if I can't handle this one child, how in the world can I handle another?

She was no better for her father and there was a lot of us saying, "don't hit Makenna, don't yell Makenna, don't spit Makenna, be nice Makenna, STOP IT MAKENNA."  I just wanted to walk away and let her realize that some of the reasons why we tell her all these things is because we love her so much that we don't want her to get hurt - to see what it's like to be on her own.  I obviously wouldn't do this but I just needed to take a breath and walk away as I wanted to throttle her.

As we came in separate cars, I made Chris take her home in the car while I finished up some shopping and then got home and found her being put to bed - not surprisingly.  Chris said she cried all the way home.  I went up and tried to calmly tell her that we love her very much and it's important for her to listen to us so that she'll get the things that she wants.  Again...trying to rationalize with a three year old, but it made me feel better that I could come back with a calm demeanor.  Underneath it though I still wanted to just break down and cry in frustration for the evening.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

I didn't

"I didn't hit, I didn't kick, I didn't say "no," I didn't say "stupid," I didn't say "I'll kill you" and "I didn't say "I'll punish you."  Words all mothers love to hear from their three-and-a-half year old.  This was her report to me after pre-school.  All I could say was, "well, that's good." 

Usually I get a brief report from her one teacher, Rachel, but she wasn't there at the end of the day today so Makenna took it upon herself to tell me what she didn't do.  That doesn't mean she was a saint but she was just relaying to me how she did do.  The usual report from her teacher is one of, "we had a bit of a problem with talking back and not listening...we had to talk to her a few times about her behavior."  Again, I would refer you to yesterday's post near the end where I was spouting off about my behavior towards her in the heat of frustration having an adverse affect on her behavior.  This also obviously runs over into her day with others and that's why I need to really start trying to be better about my reactions.

I was in a better mood today as she got up at 7am, without aid from me, and was ready and willing to get dressed.  She said she didn't want breakfast at the time but as were walking out the door changed her mind.  I grabbed a Fiber-One bar and out the door we went.  If nothing else - this girl is fairly regular. 

Then after school, after the update, we went home and had dinner and off to gymnastics.  She was the only one in her class as the rest of the kids (about 4 or 5 of them) were either on vacation or went to the gymnastics camp this week.  I wanted her to go to the camp but I would've really had to re-arrange my schedule and it would've meant no nap every day this week - not something I'm ready to deal with...yet.  I only have a few weeks before this changes so I'm relishing in the time I have left.

She did really well with the one on one time at gymnastics.  She did so well at vault that she almost jumped and flipped by herself.  She definitely is getting better at it.  Then with beam, she enjoys going on the "big beam" which is really just a beam higher off the ground and actually goes across it quite quickly.  Then when she goes down to the beam that's lower to the ground, she's hesitant.  It's weird but oh well.  She was still distracted and running off but for the most part I went around to every station with her to try and keep her on track.

All and all I didn't have a bad day and therefore she didn't have a bad day.  Let's hope this can continue for the both of us...everyday

Picture-full weekend

Here's some pictures that I didn't post with the blog yesterday to go along with our busy weekend.

Enjoying the Merry-Go-Round at CFJ Park

Katie clinging to daddy (Uncle Josh,) while Natalie sits on the horse

Enjoying the Water park area at CFJ

Second Time on the Merry-Go-Round and a much happier Katie

A still less than enthused Natalie

These were only the rides on Sunday - she went on the bouncy house stuff on Saturday

Balloons and more Balloons!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

My hopes

Yes, I’ve fallen a bit behind – but that’s due to a busy weekend.

On Friday, August 6th, after I picked up Makenna from pre-school and we went to CFJ park where they’ve fixed up the merry-go-round. We met her cousins Katie and Natalie and Uncle Josh. Katie was a bit leery about the merry-go-round but her sister Natalie just had a look of boredom on her face. Makenna on the other hand loved it. Even though we only went around once as her next favorite passion – water – called to her.

At CFJ they also have a mini water-park. It’s just a bunch of funny looking sprinklers for kids to run around in. Makenna loved it as to be expected but Katie’s dad forgot her bathing suit so she didn’t want her underwear to get wet – she was just potty trained so it’s amusing that she is conscious about being wet now. Natalie ran around in her diaper.

Once we were able to prey Makenna away, we then went to the park area and they played for a bit and then it was back to the merry-go-round. Katie was a bit better about it this time but she was sitting behind Makenna holding on to her. I hope this friendship stays and blossoms between her and her cousins. Right now it’s usually a lot of fighting and non-sharing, which is to be expected but I hope that changes – soon!

On Saturday, we were invited to a friend’s house to go swimming in the pool. Being that it was such a hot day we took advantage of that offer. We went down after lunch – swam for about an hour and a half then raced home to get Makenna into a nap. We wanted to go to Spiedie Fest so nap was imperative to us having a good time.

Makenna had fun swimming and is getting quite good at keeping her face under the water for longer periods of time. She had lots of fun jumping in and playing with the different pool toys that were available. I also hope that swimming is something that she sticks with in high-school and beyond – I think it’s a great way to exercise and would love to see her make a sport of it.

After her nap we did go to Spiedie Fest and made it just in time to watch her Uncle Josh win the volleyball tournament that day. Oh how I wish I still played. I am really thinking about getting back into it – just no confidence to do it.

While I was watching the volleyball, Chris took Makenna over to the bouncy-house stuff as they had a lot of it and let her go wild. She actually went up high into a couple of them to slide down. I remember last year, trying to get her to climb a large ladder to go down a slide was out of the question, even after we were already at the top. This time she went by herself. They also had another bouncy house where we would lose sight of her, which is nerve wracking, but she made it through – eventually. I actually went around the sides and started looking for her as it was taking her a bit longer than I was comfortable with but just as I went around, she came out – so I was told.

Then it was off to see the balloons and eat some spiedie’s. Makenna decided on a hotdog but that was okay – I thought my spiedie was absolutely delicious! Not enough of it though.

Chris had warned Makenna about what a hot-air balloon is/does and made sure to tell her about the fire that’s used to help get the balloon up in the air. Unfortunately, when it happened, it was so loud that it scared her and sent her into tears. Other people around us were like, “oh, poor thing.” We just walked away from the noise and calmed her down then she was okay with it and rather enjoyed watching the balloons go up. We’ve taken her to this in the past but she doesn’t remember.

We walked around a bit to look at what people were selling and then decided to leave and get some ice cream as it was cheaper at an ice cream store than at the festival. After the yummy ice cream it was back to our friends house for a bit and then it was dark and late so we didn’t stay too long.

On Sunday, we decided to go back to the Spiedie Fest again and on our way down Makenna informed us that she wasn’t scared of the fire and that we, “mom and dad,” shouldn’t be scared either. She did do much better this time but she ended up crying again as she bit her tongue while chewing popcorn. It was bleeding all over too so she really bit it good.

After the balloons went up it was back to the house and on with the rest of our week. We’re still working really hard on our listening skills and my low patience/frustration skills. So far zero to zero. The sticker book thing isn’t working (that was short-lived) and her yelling and talking back is right up there. She’s also been talked to at pre-school a number of times about her talking back and I can’t help but feel guilty because I know that it stems from me acting like a child in response to her.

Today was a good example. I picked her up after pre-school and she was all happy and smiles’, giving her friends hugs and kisses good-byes along with “I love you’s.” How cute I thought. Then we walk out to the car and “BAM” something switched.

She was upset that we weren’t going anywhere but home. She immediately started throwing a three year old fit crying and yelling that she needed to go somewhere. Truth is, I did have plans but they fell through so I just decided to go home. I guess I could’ve taken her to the park but I was hot, tired, and sweaty from my work-out.

Anyways, I get her in the car and she says I hurt her somehow while putting on the seatbelt. So now she’s really mad and I have no idea what I did to hurt her. I’m trying to ask her and she’s yelling at me, “That’s not nice!” “That hurt.” I tried asking her what happened but she was still yelling and crying. Then as I’m trying to finish buckling her, she’s leaning over and undid her seatbelt. This made me upset. I tried to tell her very sternly that this was not acceptable and she is to never unhook the seatbelt unless I tell her.

Then the arguing between parent and child (more like child and child,) ensues. She leans over to try and grab her stuffed lamb and I’m still trying to buckle her. I tell her, firmly, that I will get her lamb after I have her buckled in. She still is reaching. That’s when I now turn more into a child and start firmly holding her down while I buckle her. After I’m done, then I give her, her lamb.

More screaming and crying. At this point I told her that she is going to sit on the step when we get home for screaming (and I had given her a warning prior for screaming at me.) All the way home is her yelling, crying, screaming about things I couldn’t quite understand. I just turned up the radio to drown out her yelling. When she’d quite down then I’d turn it down but she inevitably would start yelling again, so I’d turn it back up. When we got home I finally understood what she was saying – after a few translation errors.

She said she didn’t want to go to Nancy’s class but wants to stay in Rachel’s class. So I’m guessing that they showed her, her new class that she’ll go to in a few weeks and this has her very concerned and mixed with her emotions with not going anywhere just escalated. For the most part I did handle it fairly well but again, my anger was boiling and I just tried to calm down and not talk to her. That’s the best way for me. I start arguing with a small child as if she completely understands what I’m trying to teach her.

In the car she was yelling at me and I wouldn’t answer and then she was screaming, “I can’t hear you mom!” She yelled this a few times and then I finally, calmly stated, “I’m not answering you when you talk to me like that.” That seemed to give her pause. I just have to remember my calm, non-talking in the heat of the situation seems to work better than me getting just as heated and upset.

All I can do is hope that I change so that she’ll change – for the better.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Is It Wrong To Feel This Way

When I went to pick up Makenna from pre-school I heard another mother arguing (talking sternly in frustration) to her child to get in the car seat and to stop screwing around.  I wasn't appalled or concerned for the child.  I, in fact, relished in the fact that there was another mother who gets just as frustrated over simple things as I seem to do.

It's hard to be a mother when you seem to judge yourself as compared to others and the obedience of their children.  When I see little bits of myself coming out in other mother's then I feel a bit vindicated in my over-reactions.  Not that they are correct but that I'm not alone.  Sometimes I feel like I'm expecting too much or get easily frustrated over silly stupid things and that I need to let go of.

I feel much better about myself and my reactions to her when I do let the little stuff go and not let them get to me.  I did well with this for the past couple of days but then I again I wonder if it was because I had a more compliant, listening child more than my being able to keep my cool.

Then, as if she knew I was battling this dilemma, out she comes to the car and won't get into her car seat without some stern prompting.  Figures - Stupid Murphy's Law. 

We got through that and all was well until it was time to leave gymnastics.  All of a sudden she was not up to listening and I was up for leaving.  Then a switch flipped in me and BAM - instant frustration and comparing myself yet again to the other children calmly getting their shoes on and going to the car and getting in their seats.

I calmed down on the way home as I realized that I was letting the little things get to me - yet again.

(On a "cute" note - Chris went to get Makenna up this morning and she came down to me in the bathroom as I was getting ready and said, "Mom..Dad woke me up when I wanted to sleep." - said in a complaining voice).

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Some things are just too hard to explain

The hardest thing to do is explain to Makenna why someone she knows is so far away.  A lot of times she wants to go and visit this or that person and I have to explain that they live very far away and that we can't see them.  Then of course the questions fly, "Why do they live there?"  "Why do they work?," etc.

The latest is trying to explain to her why her uncle Brant is unable to see her.  My brother Brant got himself into some trouble and is not around (for lack of a better word).  I tried to explain to her that Uncle Brant was "naughty" and is now on a naughty step for a very long time.  That seemed to be the easiest way to explain it to her.  Now she keeps asking if he's standing up from the step yet.  I find this insightful and interesting.  She concerned that he's still on the step and thinks that all he has to do to return is be allowed to stand up.

I had her make a card for him and her other Uncle Jake who currently lives in NM.  She really enjoys making cards as it allows her to use glue and sticky stuff (stickers,) and draw with markers and paints.  Now to send them off - that's my job and I need to do that...soon.

Another thing that she's been saying to me from time to time is, "when you're older."  We'll be doing something or eating something and she'll say to me, "mom, mom, you can have that when you're older."  I just laugh and say, "okay."  She's the only one who thinks I need to be older to do things so I'll go along with that.

Just a quick note about our new "notebook" technique to get ready in the morning.  It worked...not as well as I would've liked, but it did work.  She still got one too many chances to get ready but for a majority of it, she stayed focused and we got the job done.  I have to keep in mind that she's three (even when her comments make her 16) and that some getting of task is normal.  Hopefully it will go well tomorrow. 

Monday, August 2, 2010

Leave Me Alone!

The teenage angst from my 3.5 year old is amazing to me.  This morning when I went to wake her up to get our day going, her reply to me..."Stop it Mom!  Just leave me alone and let me sleep!"  Then she pulled the blanket over her head and rolled over.  I just laughed and walked away.  I would yell to her from downstairs to wake up and get moving.  She told me she was waiting for daddy to come get her.

That doesn't help me as he tends to wait until the last minute to get himself ready so to have him help me get her moving just doesn't happen...on my time schedule...which is always, "RIGHT NOW!"  He does help, but it puts me behind.  I've realized that I just have to keep moving and get things done that I need to get done that doesn't involve Makenna.

After I picked her up, we tried again to go to that store that we had the issue in last Thursday.  I explained that we were going to try again and go to the store but that she had to stay with me.  She listened very well this time.  I was going to buy school supplies for her school as they had put out a request for help with supplies. They almost got extra supplies if Makenna had her way.  I would hand her a few things to put in the cart for me and then she would choose a few things of her own.  This was the first time she'd ever done this.  She usually asks for things and I explain why she doesn't need it or why I'm not going to buy it but this time she took it upon herself to just put random things in the cart.

I had to go through the cart and pick out things I was pretty sure I hadn't put in or had asked her to put in.  I guess she got sick of me telling her why we weren't going to buy this or that.  I did give in on a couple of things (like those stupid silly bands).

In my defense in buying them, I thought it would go along well with my new "bright idea" of trying to find a new method to get her moving in the morning.  I got a small Tinkerbell notebook and in it I wrote, "Eat breakfast," "Get dressed," "Brush Hair," Brush teeth."  I then told her if she did all of the things on this checklist with little or no hassle, then we would put a sticker on that day and she could get a silly band.

This will also go along with the "penny" method that we've been using but it seems to not be as much as a motivator unless it's a threat to lose one.  We tell her that if she does the things on this checklist that she will get a penny for each one and every time she gets off track or gives us grief then it goes down by a penny.  Then she screams "penny!" and we either give her another chance or finally say, "nope, you lost it."  This last statement usually means more grief.  Are we the only ones who have such a hard time with this morning routine?  Has anyone found a foolproof way to motivate a toddler?

I may have mentioned before that she is starting to want privacy while she goes the bathroom and tonight was no exception.  She was in bed for a half hour or so and came out to go the bathroom.  As I type this she's still on the toilet.  When we asked her if she was done, she said she had to go more and could I please just watch my show.  I guess it's better than "Leave me alone!" which is what I usually hear when I disturb her bathroom time.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Don't Kiss Me, That's Gross!

In my defense, I didn't get on the computer at all yesterday (yes, I know - "shocker") so even though I missed yesterday in my blogging, I did pretty well over-all for the week.

Yesterday was the annual cottage lake association meeting and then a BBQ later at night.  The meeting mostly consisted of talking about the hot topic around here which is gas drilling.  I won't bore you with the details, but I have to say, my eyes were really opened about what these companies are doing.  I have to say right here and now, I'm not for it.  It's not worth my health for a few thousand dollars more a month.

Anyways, after the meeting, Chris and Makenna made it up to the cottage and right away, "I want to swim" was coming out of her mouth.  I was able to dissuade her and continued to for the rest of the day as it seemed a bit chillier than what I was hoping.  I wasn't willing to go in and freeze to death (I assumed).  I didn't even touch the water so for all I know, it could've been a bit cold but in my mind it seemed like it was a step above zero Fahrenheit.

The one nice thing I was able to do was hold Makenna as she took a nap.  I realized that this is probably one of the last times I will have this opportunity.  She's getting bigger so it's getting physically impossible, and there will soon come a time where she won't want to be in my arms.  So I really took it in and just looked at her, and held her for as long as I could.

The BBQ was okay, nothing too spectacular.  The funniest thing was my nephew Elijah (who is 2.5 yrs old).  He decided to run into the lake with his socks, shoes, and clothes all on.  What's funny about this is that normally, if he's in his swimsuit, he doesn't want anything to do with the water.  You may get him in for a few minutes but he's not really into swimming for himself.  Except, all of a sudden today, he decided this was the time for him to take the plunge - literally.  I was laughing, (secretly grateful it wasn't Makenna who tried this feat,) and I asked him, "Eli..What happened?"  He said, in his quiet voice, "I swimming."  I said, "I thought you didn't like swimming?"  He said, "I like swimming."  His father, my brother Jared said, "Yes, he decided right this minute here and now, that he likes swimming."  I just chuckled.

Tonight was special as we went to dinner with my dad.  I don't get enough time to see my dad as much as I would like, as we both lead very busy lives and I've been trying to get together with him back since Father's Day in June.  What was nice to see was Makenna's love and affection towards him. There was a time where she was scared of him, but now she's excited to see him, wanted to sit with him and on him, and gave him frequent hugs.  It was also nice to see the big smile on his face with all her affection.  It was a good way to end the weekend. 

When I tried to show her affection during dinner, I leaned over and gave her a kiss and she was like, "Mom, don't kiss me, that's gross!"  Yup, glad I had a chance to hold her yesterday as today she doesn't want to admit I"m her mom.  I expected this at some point, not just this soon!