Friday, May 30, 2008

Thanks, Carla

For reminding me (see comments on a Complaint) of activities. We have had a much better, if messier, last few days. I just find that because I came from one of those "You're three and a half now. You can get up and get your own breakfast, can't you? Why should we wake up with you?"houses, Í can forget to be age-appropriate in my expectations. I fail to remember that you can't leave a 17 month old and a three year old alone for 10 min. and expect them both to be happy and safe when you return. I forget that they're still at the age where they need some help entertaining themselves, and that it is actually my job to keep them busy. Especially Aaron.

I did get him busy on Thursday, and in one hour he threw playdoh all over the kitchen, "washed"his plastic dishes (and discovered that he could get at anything on the counter with the help of my cooking spatula -- hello big sharp knives), went "shopping"in his cupboard of recyclables and raced cars. But he failed to damage himself or pester his brother, which is what counts.

So thanks, Carla, for the reminder. I bow to your years of child-rearing wisdom.

1 comment:

Carla said...

With a toddler, failing to damage himself or pestering his brother is a super successful day!

The mess is annoying to me sometimes but it is still better than constantly feeling like I'm putting out fires. Some messes I can't bring myself to repeat (it was more than annoying when Peter made it "rain" rice on Ben's head and all over the floor--Ben liked it, though. Weird.) but some I keep doing anyways (dump trucks and diggers in a box of dried lentils went over surprisingly well).

I don't think keeping our expectations realistic is something most parents do naturally. I know I have to constantly remind myself. Rianna was reading WELL at 5, so she would constantly throw me by asking me to help her with perfectly reasonable things. I would think,"You just read the word sanctification over my shoulder. What do you mean you can't tie your shoes?"