Posted in Bedtime, My Name Is Mommy, Parenting

Go To Bed, School’s A Coming

With back to school around the corner, most of my mommy friends are talking about schedules and mainly how to get their kids back on them.

Have you had a scheduled bedtime?

Have your kids been sleeping until whenever they decide to wake?

Then it might be time to start rescheduling that school time clock again.

If you are letting your kids stay up until whenever, start sending them to bed around an hour earlier than usual. Over the course of the next three weeks move it up until they are back on schedule.

Having a routine at night will make the transition easier for all of you.

Family fun time (game, movie, playing outdoors, taking a walk around the neighborhood, snuggling together on the floor, or whatever your family loves to do that isn’t extremely active.

*A snack



*Tooth brushing

*A story or two

*Hugs and kisses, good-night

In the morning, start setting the clock for an hour or two earlier depending on when your little darlings are waking. Use that extra time to do something together as a family. Make them breakfast, take them to the park, a farm, or the library. The weather is nice and cool in the morning and no one else is there. Walk around and enjoy your last few weeks together before every one’s life becomes more routine.

Starting slowly will make the transition easy for everyone involved and make it a whole lot easier than waiting until the week before school.

Enjoy your kids because they grow out of us a whole lot quicker than we grow out of them.


Posted in Family, My Kids, My Name Is Mommy, Parenting

Big Brother’s Got Your Back

Yesterday I took the kids to the Elementary School Park to play for an hour. It was about 5:00 and I figured it would be pretty empty. It was my first time going there and figured we would try it out.
I told the kids if they listened while there and left when I said it was time that I would take them back. They were awesome. There was no problem when I told them it was time and they walked hand in hand to the car. Cute.
When we got there, there were about 8 kids between the ages of 5 and 12 with not a single parent in sight. Not a good sign. I refuse to be responsible for strangers kids and prayed no one would get hurt because I wanted to have fun with mine.
The kids were rude and obnoxious to my kids which was a little surprising considering I was right there. A few times they refused to let my kids get on or off the slide and one of them wanted to scare my kids when they came down the slide “Here come the little kids” was spoken more often than not in the 15 minutes we were all together or not. I just kept telling my two to say “excuse me” and pass down the ladder. I had to tell them to let my kids off the ladder 5 times. Annoying.
What I loved the most of seeing these obnoxious few was how protective my son was with my daughter.
He would walk up the steps, half block the way, let his sister pass in front of him by putting his hand on her shoulder and then take up the rear. He was very aware these kids were rude and he wanted to make sure nothing happened to her. “Watch for Goddess” he would say as she passed by. I loved watching him take on the big brother role. So sweet to see it at such a young age.
Posted in My Name Is Mommy, Parenting

Tips to Teach Your Kids How To Tie Their Shoes

This morning Handsome’s therapist and I worked on shoe tying with him. We spent 10 minutes deciding on a method.

We are going to do Bunny Ears mixed with The Squirrel and the Tree.

How to tie shoes

Though most kids’ shoes now feature Velcro closures, learning to tie ones own shoes is still considered to be milestone that children should master by 5 or 6 years of age.

But, teaching a child to tie his own shoes can be frustrating; kids can lose interest quickly if they feel the task is too difficult, or they may seem to “get it” one day only to completely forget the next.

1. Bunny Ears

Probably the most common method for teaching kids to tie their own shoes is the “Bunny Ears” method.

Tell the child that he needs to make his shoe laces into “bunny ears.”

First, he needs to secure a knot for the bunny’s head.

Take the laces and cross them over to make an “X”. Then, pull one ear through the bottom of the “X” and pull tight.

Say, “Now we need to give bunny some ears.” Loop the laces into “bunny ears”.

Tell the child that now we need to “make the bunny ears tight so they don’t fall off”.

Then make another “X” using the “bunny ears”, slide one “ear” under the “X” and pull tightly.

2. The Squirrel and the Tree

This is a fun method that utilizes a kid friendly story and movements that help kids understand and remember the basic steps to shoe tying.

Tell the child to create “tree roots” by making a starter knot.

Make a tree with a long thin loop; hold the loop in the child’s right hand.

With his left hand, take hold of the lace and tell him that a squirrel runs around the tree and jumps into the hole under the tree and comes out the other side (he’ll need to switch hands at this point which can be difficult for some kids).

Many parents prefer this trick because it teaches the kid to tie shoes with the single loop method.

3. Loop It and Swoop It

This is a less childish, but still memorable way of teaching a child to tie in the traditional single loop method.

Teach your child to tie his shoes using the standard tying method, but as you go through the motions say, “loop it, swoop it, pull.” Do this over and over while repeating the same three, simple instructions until your child is able to tie his shoes on his own.

Encourage him to say “loop it, swoop it, pull” each time he attempts tying his shoes until it becomes second nature.


Posted in Parenting, Precocious Son/Handsome

Kindergarten Orientation & A School Bus Ride

Today I dropped Goddess off at my kids other “mommy” (not sure why they call her this but it is cute), house. For me, she is my ultimate pick to watch them. I have only left them 5 times in their whole little lives but this is the place that puts my mind at ease. To top up the fact that I don’t ever worry when my daughter is there is that when I walk in to pick her up there is usually a new pot of coffee brewing and breakfast or lunch is being made. Nice. If I wasn’t married, I would totally marry her.
Handsome, his Special Instructor and I headed over to the school of a morning of Kindergarten orientation, a tour, followed by the first school bus ride this chick has taken in over 30 + years. Scary!!

It was interesting to see how (if I decide to send him this year), my son’s morning will start. The three kindergarten classes meet in a community room where they will do the pledge, God Bless America, and my country tis of thee. Not only will the sing it but they will also sign it. Pretty cool. Along with that they will discuss the lunch menu for the day, talk about the date and weather for that day. Have a book written to them by “the author of the week” whose picture will be on the front board with their name, celebrate birthday’s of the day and go over the letter of the week.

All before 9:15 a.m.

Geez. Long day without my baby boy. They are in school from 8:50 – 3:20. Aarrggghhhok. I am sure eventually, over time I will be ok with this and it will become the norm (if I decide).

We took a bus ride which he was excited about for the first 5 minutes but it took so long for the bus to actually start moving, about 15 minutes that he lost his mojo and was quiet and bored the whole ride. Not that he will ever be taking a bus because I will be driving him, I just thought he would like the experience.

I know I need to cut some apron strings eventually but he is only 5 and I am in no rush to have him be independent. There have got to be moms out there like me who are in no hurry to put their babies into the school system. Today, I met none.

Posted in My Name Is Mommy, Parenting

Parenting Tips – 1, 2, 3, Magic

One of the counselors at my son’s school handed a book and video to my son’s SEIT for me to check out.

I started reading the book, and while I have never heard of the 1, 2, 3, Magic Method I do a lot of the things they suggest already.

Mostly the stop talking, no emotion one.

Kids feel inferior because they are to big old us. When we engage in debates with them and they see how they upset us, we are giving them power. If we stop talking we take the power away from.

A lot of parents have the “little adult assumption.” They think children are little adults. I know quite a few of these parents (most of them are family).

Childhood is a period of transitory psychosis. Children are born unreasonable and selfish. Consequently, it is the parents job to help them be the opposite.

The Two Biggest Discipline Mistakes are Too Much Talking and Too Much Emotion.

Silence speaks louder than words.

The 1, 2, 3, Method in a Nutshell:

  • You hold up your fingers and say, “that’s one”
    Wait 5 seconds (the child will probably not stop at this number)



  • You hold up two
    fingers and say, “that’s two”
    Wait 5 seconds



Some things do not warrant 3 chances to change their behavior, hitting for instance, will get them time out.

“Simply state 3, take 5 and add 15 for the seriousness of the offense”.

To Summarize:

If you talk to much you take your child’s focus off the need for good behavior. Instead you switch the focus onto the possibility of an energetic, possible enjoyable debate.

If the child is still doing the unwanted behavior
You hold up the fingers and say, “that’s 3, take 5 – This means that they were giving 2 chances to change the behavior and now they will go
to time out or a rest period.

After time out there is no talking, apologies, lectures or discussions.


Posted in Parenting, Preschool, Speech

What Teachers Wish Parents Would Do

When asked what parents could do to better prepare their children, teachers most frequently mentioned the areas of receptive language, cognitive-attention/problem-solving, and small muscle coordination.”

Parents, tend to emphasize helping children with pre-reading, math, and social skills.

Cognitive Skills

• Solve problems – trading toys with a child so they each have a turn
• Observe objects with curiosity and notice differences, such as how some rocks are smooth and others are bumpy
•Explore cause and effect — shaking a jar of water, for instance, and noticing how it creates bubbles
• Use something she already knows to attack a new problem. For instance, after learning to use a computer mouse to navigate around a site, she may test that skill by trying to play a computer game.• Think logically. She’ll be able to classify objects by size or likeness, for instance, and to recognize patterns.
• Be aware of her own body in space. You may hear her say things like “I’m up high on the slide.”
• Understand the concept of sequence. For example, she may sort objects from smallest to largest.
• Use numbers and count.
• Understand basic concepts of time, such as “now,” “soon,” and “late.”
• Identify six to eight colors and three or more shapes
• Take on pretend roles. For example, she may hold a doll and say, “I’m the mommy” or look in a doll’s ear and say, “I’m the doctor.” You may also notice that she has a vivid imagination and perhaps even imaginary playmates.
• Understand that pictures and objects can symbolize something else. For example, she may tell you that something she’s scribbled is a picture of a dog, or she may show you the “house” she built out of blocks.• Complete a six- to eight-piece puzzle
• Notice the features of people and animals that make them different. For instance, she may see that rabbits have big, furry ears while people have rounded, hairless ones.
• Understand the difference between herself and younger children
• Identify familiar signs and labels, for instance stop signs and her own name

By age 4, your preschooler may also be able to:
• Ask questions about birth and death
• Understand and remember her own accomplishment.
• Understand the order of daily routines, such as the fact that she always brushes her teeth before going to bed
• Follow two unrelated directions — for instance, “Take your shoes off, and comb your hair”

Small Muscle Coordination

Seven aspects of a child’s small muscle coordination: scissors grasp, radial-digital grasp, inferior and fine pincer grasp, turning of wrist, assembly skills, pre-writing skills, and coordination of general skills.

Posted in My Name Is Mommy, Parenting, Precocious Son/Handsome

Tantrums and The Digital Camcorder

Tuesday, Handsome (4 years old) had a major meltdown over not getting to play after his SEIT left. He, like most kids, is a creature of habit and this is the normal reward after sitting with his therapist.

This particular morning I had a few errands to run and told him he would get to play later but we had to go now.

After hearing this because I am speaking to someone else I guess, he tried to plug the game in and I said, “I told you that we have to leave and you will play later.” He tried again because he needs to test everything. I stopped him and said, if you do that again, I will take the plug away. He stopped and we left on our errands.

We came back and I asked if he wanted to play before or after his speech therapist. He said before. I told him that if he played now I would put the timer on and he had to stop when the timer went off. He said, “Ok.” I told him again to make sure he understood and he said “ok”.

When the timer went off (15 minutes before the therapist) I told him “ok, time to shut off the game.” He said, “No, I’m just playing.” (Like I am an idiot).

I told him “yes, I know you are but we agreed that when the timer went off you were to shut it off.”

He said, “no” and rushed at me with his two hands thrust out and pushed against my stomach. I will never understand why he thinks this is ok to do. I am not a hitter and I sometimes wonder if I need to knock him on his ass a few times.

I told him that I was unplugging the game because he didn’t listen and Speech was coming in a few minutes.

I walked over to pull the plug out and he rushed at me, hitting me with his open hands and crying. I took the plug and walked to the kitchen. He grabbed it and we fought over it for about 2 minutes. I grabbed for my video camera and started recording this fantastic display of preschool aggression.

While we had a tug of war over the plug, my 2  soon to be 3 year old asked questions like “mom, can I have some water? and “I want to watch something on TV.” Is she kidding me. I am holding the camera, street fighting my 4 year old and answering questions calmly.

We fought for about 15 minutes. I won (insert invisible cheering crowd) or have I?

Letting the therapist in, I told her what she had just heard through the closed door. I told her that I taped the tantrum and wanted to show it to him.

I taped the tantrum for a few reasons.

1- He works very well with visuals so I figured I could show him and explain to him what he should have done instead.

2- I could see if possibly I am not handling the situation well and this sets off the tantrum.

3- The therapists would be able to see what I am talking about and possibly offer some suggestions.

4- I could show this to him when his kid is turning 4 and let him know what to expect.

5- If I don’t like his fiance’ I could sit her down and let her know this behavior is hereditary.

Many, more reasons I am sure.

We watched the video together. He didn’t laugh or smile like he usually does when he watches himself on video. This time he was silent until his therapist asked what had happened. He didn’t look away from the video but he said, “I was upset.”

Then he said,

“you’ve got to calm down, you’ve got to calm down”

which is mostly what I was saying while this was going down.

Interestingly enough when I am dealing with a tantrum I go into total zen mode. I am more calm while dealing with him for as long as it takes, than I am in normal life. Thankfully, or I would be Andrea Yates drowning my kid in the tub.

I digress….

We have watched the video 5 times (he asks to see it) and I think recording it was the best thing I ever did. When we watch it together he holds my hands, kisses my arms and hands, hugs me throughout the 5 minute video while telling me “I’m sorry for hitting you mommy. I love you with all my heart.”

So, lesson here is always, always, always have the video camera charged and ready.