Sunday, November 29, 2009

proud mama

i have said here before that i tend to be very hard on myself and my parenting abilities and such. i am constantly critiquing myself and am my own worst critic.

so right now i feel like posting some things that i am very happy and even proud of.

something i was thinking about earlier today is how i'm very proud that we've finally managed to get both kids on a good bedtime routine.

for years tyren's routine was to fall asleep in the living room to a kids show on dvd. he just wasn't sleepy before about 11pm or even later and it was a battle nightly to try to get him to sleep so i just stopped battling and just let him be and darned if he didn't go to sleep when he was ready. but still i wasn't happy with this routine. i wanted him to be tucked into bed, like his sister. not in the living room on the couch. (i did take him to bed when i went to bed, though, so its not like he stayed out there all night).

well at some point a few months ago...not even really sure when this happened, it was so gradual. he started asking to go to bed in "the family bed" (he still sleeps with us, which is perfectly fine with us, that's not an issue right now). pretty soon we had your typical bedtime routine for him: shower (usually he showers w/maeven at night...his choice), pjs, teeth brushed, go pee, in bed with mommy or daddy for a story, then lights out.

it all happened on its own, and i'm SO RELIEVED! we seriously didn't make any conscious effort to make it happen, it just happened! but we did follow the momentum once it started.

usually i'm the one that reads to him and lies with him to go to sleep and generally its 5-10min after lights out that he's OUT. he's that fast now!

i am so very proud of this, even though i didn't really do anything...but i will take credit for being patient and setting up the environment to have it happen when he was ready. ;)

another thing i'm proud of lately is that i'm starting to get a handle on the electronic obsession over here.

computer games are verging on obsession lately with the kids and so adam and i have been discussing it and how we need to get a handle on things. tyren has been known to throw knock-down-drag-out tantrums when asked to get off the computer or when you want to stop playing a game he's enjoying watching you play. its gotten out of hand, so adam and i have been trying some things that seem to be helping.

first of all there's the timer on the computer, which has worked miracles. we've had it for months now but i can't say enough about how well it works to end the battle of keeping computer time to a certain time frame. not only that but i've finally realized i can limit the play time even more with this timer...and have a block of 4 hours in the middle of the day when neither kid can log on, the computer time is OFF during that time.

on top of that, i've gone from giving them 2 hours of computer time free (with at least an hour break in-between each hour of playtime), to only giving them 1 free hour. if they want a second hour they have to earn it by doing their chores. right now its just half of their chores because we're working up to full chores still. each child has 1 chore per year that they have been alive. so tyr has 4 and maeven has 8 (which i need to now add one more chore to her list since she's now had a birthday).

i have tried so many different ways of doing things and i have failed miserably. still can't get some things to work for us, like an ingrained daily routine (still working on that), so when i feel successful at something, i need to crow about it, dammit. :)

so anyway, just proud, that's all. its nice when things finally go well, for a change. :) i'm really proud of myself for noticing this problem and communicating with my husband about it (he noticed it too, of course) and figuring out some things that work. also working on getting the yard more popular, cleaning it up and researching inexpensive things to add to the yard to make playing outside seem more appealing to the kiddos. might even institute mandatory outdoor play time (weather permitting). not a bad idea, actually. :)

all this to get a grip on this computer obsession and get my kids to play physically and creatively more. going to work on filling up their schedules with more playdates and outtings too...get them out of the house and away from the computer. really excited by all this and just wanted to share! :)

2 comments:

  1. Crow away - it's nice when things start working, isn't it?!

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  2. aw thanks! feels good!

    just figured out today that my 4 hour block of time (which i had set to 10am-2pm) wasn't working well because sometimes they get up and don't play computer right away. then it feels like a punishment to them if i have to say "sorry, we're into the blocked computer time." which kinda goes against what i'm trying to do here, because i want to ENCOURAGE them to play off the computer, not discourage them and, in a sense, punish them for not jumping onto it first thing in the morning. (which, by the way, adam very happily notified me this morning that they did not jump on the computer when they got up, but were instead playing lego together!)

    SO! what to do??? well, i finally realized i could use that feature on the timer where i can set how much time in between their times! so now i have it set that they get an hour, then they have to wait 4 hours before they can play again! wahoo! problem solved. i love it when things come together! (a little a-team reference there, hehe).

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