28 March 2011

March goes out like a lion?!

Vacation to southern MO was gorgeous! We "picked" the best 2 days of that week - mid- to upper-70's and sunshine! We hiked; we slept; we cooked; we read; we hiked; we slept; we cooked; well, you get the idea. Our own UN-scheduled time for 2 days is like a breath of fresh mountain air! It was nearly perfect ...

Hubby finished our 1st 'together book' on vacation; we found that it ("Loving Our Kids on Purpose" by Danny Silk) taught us several parenting keys we believe will work long-term, and have already seen do so.

1. Give them control. Allow them to fail just as much as they succeed. "You can do that if you want, but I wouldn't." Not in a sarcastic, you'll-be-in-trouble kind of way but with great sincerity.

2. Love, love, love them. Encourage them. Discipline them with understanding. Never take away their dignity. Using "I know", "I understand", "I don't know", "Probably so", and "That could be" as standard responses when they're pushing our buttons rather than getting into a power-struggle. Empowering them to make decisions for themselves. A great one when they are fighting/not resolving an issue on their own: "I'd be happy to referee this fight. I charge $10. Go!" (that one's just fun to see their face of shock! - They learn real fast to problem-solve on their own!)

3. "No-fun" situations. Help them think it through. Spend time working through the difficult times. Today, for example: Paul and I had intentions of running at 5p. What time did we go our the door? 530pm. Why? Aubry needed our time as her parents. She needed to realize her choices were making everything "no fun" for all of us. What she needed most? For us to stay and work through it with her. To show her she had the power to make the change to "fun" for all.

I finished our 2nd 'together book' on vacation as well. WOW! Your Time-Starved Marriage by Parrot and Parrot is excellent. I'm going to save the full review for a post of its own. Suffice to say, I understand the main issue Paul and I fight about (time!) in a whole new light. Highly recommended!

On the baking front, I chose my sister's recommended Mint recipe for the month of March: Peppermint Patty Brownies. They're being made tomorrow for Family Game Night - I have a feeling they'll be a big hit. Stay tuned for the next installment of books, board games, and baking :)

I'll leave you with this thought:

“We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” -- Albert Einstein