Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Turnabout Is Fair Play

There is a mommy technique I use on a regular basis that I learned from my own mother.  It's called distraction.  It's best used  on the younger kids.  Sonya doesn't really fall for it anymore, and I'm beginning to think Lana is outgrowing it too.  It works something like this. 

There are certain daily occurrences that need to be done that kids don't always want to do, when you want them to.  Like getting Georgia dressed.  Sometimes she's ready to be dressed, and I have no problems.  Other times I have to wrestle her to the ground and pin her, just to get a shirt over her head.  Her cooperation depends on what everyone else is doing at the time, and whether they are dressed or not.  When she decides to fight me she starts to go into tantrum mode.  This is the same road the other two went down when they were this age and didn't want to get dressed,  have their diaper changed or get  buckled in the car seat.  You get the idea.  They don't want to do something, you then have to force them to do it, so they start the road to tantrum town.  Instead I try to set up a roadblock to tantrum town by saying something to them at the beginning like,

"OH!  Listen, listen!  I think I hear a doggie outside." Or if we're outside, "Look! A butterfly just flew by!" And occasionally when we're out in public, "Oh you better stop, because here comes the man!"  

Don't ask me who the man is and there is almost never a dog or butterfly around. This just provides me with enough of a distraction to allow me to finish whatever it is they don't want to do.  A lot of the time it stops the tantrum as well, as they look to find a doggie, or butterfly.  Or some man.  Like I said though, this only works with them when they are younger.  Georgia still goes for it, but Sonya is too smart for it now. I thought I could still use it on Lana for a bit longer.  However, I'm having second thoughts about that one.

For some reason the girls like playing in the bathrooms.  By playing I mean, they bring their blankets, dolls, strollers, sometimes pillows (I know-yuck) into the bathroom.  I guess it's like a little hideout in there for them.  It doesn't bother me as much as it bothers Andy.  One day a few weeks ago, he decided to ban the bathroom play after something had gotten out of hand.  I'm sure it was a fight among the three of them resulting in an injury.  It usually is.  They stopped playing in there for a few days.  Then a couple weeks ago,  on a Monday morning, when Andy and Sonya were gone,  I caught Lana and Georgia taking things into the green bathroom.  They saw me watching them and started to close the bathroom door.  I got there just in time to keep it open.  Then Lana started begging me to let her close it.  I asked her what they were doing and reminded her of what Daddy had said.  She insisted they weren't doing anything and kept saying, 

"Pease go away!  We not doing anything!"  Which usually means they are, so I didn't budge.  Then she tried again, this time throwing my own mommy technique back at me.

"Mommy, just goooo away!!  Peeeessee!"  Suddenly she stopped her begging,  looked away from me, pointed and said, 

"Oh Mommy!  LOOK!  A PONY!!"

I immediately fell into a fit of laughter, and she managed to get the door closed.  I knew exactly what she was trying to do, because obviously I know there is no pony in our bathroom.  At least not on that day.    However, it was so comical when she said it  that she did distract me from my original objective.  

Touche, Lana.  Touche.

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