Thursday, November 21, 2013

Keeping it simple

As parents Jeremy and I have been noticing that our kids are motivated by the smallest things. We are realizing that positive motivation works much better than negative...the things they get to do rather than having an object taken away from them. They don't respond well to time outs. But they do respond to not getting "kettle bell swings" from Daddy. They never want to miss out on those - He takes them and swings them up into the air. Oh the bawling that takes place when one of them misses out on this fun after one is mean to the other or stole the other's toy. Or the smallest privilege of a quick trip to the store with Daddy to buy eggs and bananas. These are some of the most powerful motivators for our kids at this age. To miss out on the smallest outing or fun game is a tragedy. My kids are entertained by the smallest things. They are rarely bored. We are learning that we do not have to come up with super creative ways of discipline with our children. We are learning what truly motivates them.

There is one chore my kids are all too excited to take responsibility for...feeding Jasper. Those little feet come runnin' to Jasper's dog food bin in the kitchen at any mention of feeding him. If only they could get as excited about other chores like picking up their toys and messes!

As their momma I am learning that keeping things simple is best. The fancier, more interesting food dishes I come up with, after looking online and on pinterest, the less likely they are to eat it. What do my kids like to eat best? Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, ants on a log, bell peppers, cucumbers, carrots, and apples. Simplicity goes beyond our food dishes. As a family we have decided that we cannot afford, money or time-wise, more than one kid activity or sport at a time. So I am not shuttling my kids constantly from one enrichment activity to the next. Right now Hudson and Annalise are in swimming lessons, and that is it. When these lessons are over, later this winter they may be in a nature class, or crossfit kids, but not all at the same time! Next summer I hope we can focus on riding bikes, once we get bikes for them.  Simplicity is best for our family :).

We are blessed

Hudson strums his small guitar and sings, "Jesus is taking my meanness away..." several times in his sweet, little boy voice. Such an innocent heart. This is the same little boy, who has once owned a pair of red overalls and can have a mop of blond hair when it's not trimmed (sound familiar?), who attempted to cut the electric cord of my computer plugged into the outlet with his preschool scissors. Who climbed over the fence, barely at the age of three, and rang the front doorbell when I was in the kitchen working (I can't keep my eye off him for a moment!). Who climbed on top of our dresser to get coins out of Daddy's bowl for his piggy bank. Who put baby Sayde's nose bulb into his own nose to try it out. Who sprayed the bathroom sink faucet all over, into the hallway in puddles...and is now potty trained! We are so proud of our son and we love his adventurous spirit. He will do great things in his life.

Annalise has also been so helpful with the other two. We often remind her to not be so bossy or to tattle on Hudson, but she is the one who alerted me to the danger before he could cut the computer cord. She is such a smart young lady and she says the neatest, funniest things.

I feel so blessed at this time. My closest friend right now is a 3 month old baby girl named Sayde. I am never lonely, and not only me but the whole family loves and adores her. I have so much to be thankful for. One is that I have a smart, wise husband who loves having babies with me and loves his own kids.

Annalise turns 5 years old!