You Look Like a Troll

You Look Like a Troll

Tonight as I was cooking dinner, Gracie came into the kitchen holding her hair in her hands. “What’s wrong with you, chicka chicka boom boom?” I teased her. Silence. “Gracie?” I said, giving her my full attention now.  “What’s wrong?  Why are you holding your hair?” “Well, MICHAEL was jumping on his bed and then my mouth was open and it got all in my hair.” “What got in your hair?” “Gum,” she whispered, looking down to her feet. “And where did you get gum?” I asked, knowing full well…

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The Challenge of Four

The Challenge of Four

Bean is four.  Seems like a simple enough statement.  But that is really code for, “Bean is four and so he thinks he knows everything, he questions everything I know, and he is fairly certain that the entire world is one giant conspiracy working to keep him in the dark about everything.” Bean was a super easy baby. He totally rebuked the “terrible two’s” by being relatively easy and logical throughout them. He even glided through three with relatively few hitches. Don’t get me wrong. He has his days, and…

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The Public Time Out

The Public Time Out

Several weeks ago, I blogged asking you all for some help with my tiny spitfire, Gracie.  She was becoming more than Chris and I could handle, and we were out of ideas for how to parent her.  You all came through like you always do, and we tried out a lot of the things you suggested.  Over the next couple weeks, I’ll share some changes we’ve made around our house that have fairly quickly resulted in a much more peaceful home life and a much happier Gracie. One of the…

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Apple. Tree.

Apple.  Tree.

Let’s talk about what happened at my house during dinner a few nights ago.  Because it was the single most fabulous act of stubbornness I have ever laid eyes on. When the kids were finished eating dinner, they had to do what I ask them to do every night.  They had to say thank you for dinner.  Now, I’m not a manners freak (okay, I kind of am…), but I do believe that kids can be taught manners just as easily as they can be taught other things, like how…

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He Did WHAT???

He Did WHAT???

For the first time ever, Bean got in trouble at school today.  Really, the kid has NEVER gotten a bad report at school.  I don’t even know what their discipline procedures are because he’s never come close to having to use them.  Bean is the kind of kid who loves structure, exploration and encouragement – all of which are cornerstones at his school.  He’s never really had a reason to get into trouble.  He likes to follow directions.  He likes to participate.  I used to worry that he was going…

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The Case of The Shrieker

The Case of The Shrieker

Alright, imaginary friends. I need some help raising my children again. Here is the case: ********** THE ACCUSED: Gracie “The Shrieker” Brown AGE: Almost 16 months CRIME: The Shrieker is hereby accused of shrieking relentlessly when she does not get her way. Shrieking may occur over a large issue, such as bedtime, but may just as likely occur (at the same volume and with the same intensity) over a blueberry rolling off her plate. From what evidence has been collected, shrieking generally occurs at the same blood-curdling volume in any…

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When My Kids Annoy Me

When My Kids Annoy Me

Bean is entering a new phase. I think this must be the three-year-old behavior people warned me about. These days, Bean is like a PMS-ing tiny warlord hyped up on steroids. He’s emotional, moody, demanding, bossy, and very rambunctious. My sweet, shy, quiet little two-year-old has become a little turd. I say it with love, but it’s true. The biggest change in him would have to be his roughness. I remember a few months ago we were at a birthday party for a little boy in Bean’s class who was…

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Two Be Do Be Doooo

Two Be Do Be Doooo

Being two years old is rough work. Exhausting, really. It takes all that Bean has to hurl himself emotionally onto the floor in order to let me know that he would rather have water than milk with his dinner. These kinds of statements don’t just happen, people. Two year olds put blood, sweat, and tears into their decision making. Being two ain’t for the fainthearted. Neither is being the mother of a two-year-old. Can I be honest with you? I feel like a total failure about 85% of the time…

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The Parenting Game Plan

The Parenting Game Plan

Last week I shared about the behavior changes we were seeing in Bean since Gracie’s arrival. You all gave great suggestions and ideas for how to deal with it and so did our pediatrician and my mom. So, Chris and I took all that information and started forming our own game plan for Bean Man. Chris and I are big on game plans for parenting. Periodically, when we start to notice the needs of Bean (and, later, Gracie) changing, we’ll decide it’s time to change the game plan. For example,…

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Discipline and the Big Brother

Discipline and the Big Brother

Bean has definitely embraced being a big brother. He loves his “Gaycee.” He brings her toys and shares his food with her (according to Bean, she should be eating more popcorn and cheese). He helps me with every diaper change and he gives her lots and lots of kisses. I’m so thankful for this. I was afraid he would take out any frustration or anxiety about having a baby in the house on the baby, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. Instead, we are seeing Bean’s response to…

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