Bedtime Blues

So, I would bet just about everyone reading this has heard, read or BEEN a parent complaining about children and SLEEP!

BEDTIME BLUES

It’s a MAJOR issue with MOST children. Now, there are probably a GAZILLION theories about WHY they do it and HOW they do it.

All I offer you are 3 techniques with which I have had success.

Now, while each technique is, on it’s own, successful,

The most success can be had when you implement all 3 techniques during each stage of their early lives.

#1- It begins at birth

#2- Be TOUGH on TODDLERS!

#3- Create a habit for life

By using these 3 techniques throughout each stage of their growth, you set them up to have better sleeping habits throughout life.

#1- It Begins at BIRTH!

From the first moments when your child is in your arms, falling asleep, you have a decision.

A) Begin a pattern, that sets your child up for a healthy sleep routine that will encourage their young minds to grow

B) Begin a pattern, that while momentarily and temporarily WONDERFUL, can become DESTRUCTIVE and PAINFUL

Yeah, look me in the pixels and tell me you’d choose B. lol

What I’m talking about is rocking your baby to sleep. Now, I do not mean you cannot ROCK your baby while he/she is DRIFTING off to sleep. But when those final moments come, right before they are truly going to go to sleep, place them in their bed. THEIR BED. Both of those things are EQUALLY important.

By placing a baby in their bed BEFORE they actual fall asleep you are encouraging them to SELF-SOOTHE. What this means, is that they learn to handle their own need for comfort. This is the beginning steps to creating an independent child, as well.

Equally important is placing them in their DESIGNATED SLEEPING PLACE.

Now, though it can be beneficial to have a “Nap Time” Place and a “Bed Time” place, neither place should be YOUR BED. Now, I’m not saying that you cannot EVER sleep with your child. There are special occasions. But it is important to set a PATTERN in their brain for WHERE sleep should exist. Not only will this encourage their bodies to actually prepare FASTER for sleep, it will ALSO encourage independence.

So, though it may be tempting to watch those baby eyes close and that body melt,

Please, do your CHILD  a favor and place them in their bed, instead.

(Try allowing your child to come into bed in the MORNING, when it is near time to wake up.)

(This is a good tip for stay at home moms once your partner has left for work!)

In addition to those two MAJOR techniques, you can include minor ones that will aide in the ease with which your infant drifts off to dreamland. Like taking a bath right before bed and using a “calming” soap, playing calming/classical music while they sleep, etc.

#2- Be TOUGH on TODDLERS!

As your child grows, generally, so will their desire to avoid bedtime.

The ONLY thing you can do is   MAINTAIN A ROUTINE  and   BE CONSISTENT.

As your toddler grows, develop a routine and MAINTAIN it. OF COURSE, life will throw you curve balls, just TRY to do the routine as OFTEN AS POSSIBLE. THAT is all that matters, you try. And when you cannot, you try to maintain as many PIECES of the routine as possible. So, here is a good routine:  Straighten up room, Bath, Brush teeth, Sing a Song, Read a Book, Lights Out.

But. everyone’s routine is different. Just create one. And make sure you tell your child each step in the routine.

(You can even make a poster with numbers, pictures and words depicting each step)

But even more importantly is YOUR CONSISTENCY in LEAVING THEM to sleep.

Because if your toddler is anything like MOST toddlers, they are going to FIGHT. lol And that’s perfectly normal! But the reason why it is so important to remain consistent is because it builds respect for you and outlines the basis for your parental AFFECT on them. If you cave in, they may begin to WALK ALL OVER YOU.  Trust me, it can be VERY hard to hear their pain and not be able to rescue them. But you have to leave them be.

If your child gets up, you do what I call a “Reset”. You pick up or direct the child back to the designated sleeping place, get them back in bed and leave. Period. You simply “Reset” them.

And last, but certainly not least…

#3- Create a habit for life

When your child enters the 4-5yr range, it becomes important that you let them begin doing their routine ON THEIR OWN. There may be certain aspects of it the will need help with at first, but just about every type of GROOMING should be done. at the VERY least TOGETHER.

Example: Brush their teeth really well for them, explaining exactly how. Then let THEM do it and talk them through it. Eventually they will get good at it and you can begin to walk out or drain the tub or get their pajamas, etc. Then, leave them alone all together.

You can even eventually teach them how to do the toothpaste!

And you can do this with anything, like, washing themselves, wiping themselves, tying shoes, dressing, eating, etc.

Just apply that same formula: Do it for them, Let them do it, As they improve- step out and finally let them be.

And your child will give you subtle HINTS as to when each step should be taken.

By allowing them to do their own routine you actually help them to create the habit of going to bed each night as something they do for THEMSELVES. Not because you MAKE THEM. If you wait until LATER in life to PUSH them to do these things, they may rebel. Start young, they feel GOOD being able to have independence.

Therefore, encouraging independence.

Now, I’m not saying some might not disagree with me on any or ALL of my ideas. But, I used them with my girl and typically, we have no trouble with her going to bed.  So, perhaps you could try one or all of them and see if it helps!

Join me MONDAY as we continue with the Mommy BLUES, discussing POTTY TRAINING. Yes, the devil in TRAINING FORM! lol

But come back MONDAY and I’ll have tips on how to get them out of diapers and on the potty!

Until Next Time,

Wild Mommy MC

@wildmommymc

WildMommyMC@yahoo.com

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Mommy Blues: Trouble with Trouble MAKERS!

So, the votes, finally totaled, had “Misbehaving: Acting Out” as number one.

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So let’s begin by talking about the different kinds of “acting out” that our kiddos do:

1- Tantrums- Crying / Screaming

2- Fighting others / Bullying

3- Mischievousness

Each of these 3 types can be handled in a MULTITUDE of ways, but I have suggestions on how to handle them with the LEAST amount of conflict and the MOST amount of character development in your child and deepening of respect for your word, alone.

Now, what I want to address FIRST is what I have come to call the “Counting Technique”.   A LOT of people will tell you “DO NOT COUNT”. BUT, they are WRONG! There really is only ONE policy that, if not in place, makes this technique fail. YOU MUST FOLLOW THROUGH! At the end of the count, 3, 5, whatever! You have to follow through with the severest of punishment. Mine is spanking when younger, time out incorporated when a little older. Then, as they get even older is becomes “You have such and such minutes to do this or…” you’re grounder, lose your phone, car, tv, xbox, ps3, laptop, WHATEVER! But ALWAYS you MUST FOLLOW THROUGH.

Now, we begin with

#1- Tantrums- Crying / Screaming

Now, obviously, there are TWO settings…

  • At home
  • In public / With company

So, I’ll address BOTH.

At home, it’s VERY SIMPLE. If your kid disobeys and they begin a TANTRUM. I mean, kicking screaming, flopping on the floor, the works. You pick them up, place them in their room and say “When you’re done throwing your tantrum, you may come out and apologize”. Then walk out and shut the door. Do NOT allow them out, do not talk to them. If they try to come out, you put them back in whatever spot they were before (It’s called a “RESET”) and walk out again. Keeping doing it, but never speak to them unless it is “No”. Continue until they stop. Believe me IT IS TIRING!!! But it is the EASIEST WAY to make a BEHAVIOR not just a temporary fix!

Now, if you are in public, there are TWO ways you can try, on is my mother’s way.

“Mama Knows Best”- I threw a tantrum once at Kmart, I believe and my just stopped and announced to the ENTIRE PARKING LOT “Attention, ATTENTION! Christy is throwing a tantrum and she’d like everyone to see, could you all please watch?” There weren’t many people in the lot, but I don’t think I ever threw a tantrum again. lol

Second way, is the “walk away”. You announce to them that you’re not going to wait for their tantrum and just continue on. Just make sure to turn a corner and wait…

Now, if the child is SCREAMING or CRYING, you can use the techniques above, but in addition, there is the “WHISPER techinque”, but it can only be used with a STILL child. You lean into their ear and WHISPER. What I mean is a whisper/yell/growl, whatever, something that sounds angry and disciplinarian like. What you say is “If you do not stop screaming/crying, right NOW, I am going to…” whatever your punishment may be. Then, again FOLLOW THROUGH!!!!!!!

So, onto

2- Fighting others / Bullying

Now, I separate the two because there is a level of FIGHTING that happens among kids. And sometimes, it may be best to let them work it out so long as it stays non violent, and under volume control. But, when it becomes loud or just non productive “mine” arguing. Here are my suggestions…

1- Take it away. If they are arguing over a toy or object, take it away and announce that because they cannot share it, they cannot have it. Easy.

2- Time out. Sit them both in time out but make them holds hands. When the time out is over they can try to share the toy again.

If they get physical and there is hitting/kicking/pushing, I recommend letting all parties share their side of the story, then making every who needs to apologize, do so.

For biting, I personally use the “bite back” rule. If a kid bites, I bite them in the same place. Obviously, not as hard, but hard enough to make the point. You may disagree, but I know this works well. Usually within a couple of bites.

But. If you have a bully… that is different. For one, teach your kids as they are growing to always MAKE FRIENDS with EVERYONE! That can really help develop a good kid. But, if they end up bullying anyways, here are my choices. For non physical bullying I recommend time out. If you can include a CHORE, do so. For PHYSICAL bullying I recommend physical punishment. Meaning, spanking. Of course, many parents disagree, and I can see why. But I know this works, like I have said before, and fairly quickly. If they hit/kick/push/etc. you spank and time out. Bites, of course, in my book deserve return bites and time outs.

And then we have

3- Mischievousness

Now, first I’m going to tell you, the BEST way to stop mischievousness is to WEAR THEM OUT. Make them get physical REGULARLY. Go to the park, dance in the living room, take a walk, WHATEVER! Just get them active and see if they start acting better.

HOWEVER, if they CONTINUE to get into things, start by putting up PERIMETERS or LOCKS. Either lock them out of areas you don’t want them in and lock cabinets, etc. Or, put up fences to keep them in smaller SECTIONS of the house. I don’t always recommend fencing them into ONE room, unless it is a LARGE one. I like to include bathroom for older children, as well. But usually I like to use the bedroom, bathroom and living room so they have options. But if it’s not possible, try putting the fence down the hallway to give them space outside the door, rather than placing the fenced INSIDE the door.

Then, if they get mischievous with something, remove it, or them from it. If they end up in a boring room, tell them it was their fault for using everything the WRONG ways. Give them a time to wait for a second chance and as long as they don’t act out again, allow them 1-3 toys, depending on circumstance, to try with again. Then slowly allow the toys back with good behavior or take them away for bad behavior.

But, you HAVE TO BE CONSISTENT AND HAVE TO FOLLOW THROUGH!

And that is the backbone for all parenting. Following through and being consistent.

Okay, so, join me FRIDAY when we discuss the next topic… BEDTIME BLUES!

We’ll have tips on getting your child to accept bedtime! I swear, they’ll totally be COOL with it. They may even put themselves to bed, after you use this special FORMULA! Join me WEDNESDAY for that special formula !

The Wild Mommy BLUES…

Motherhood, Draining Motherhood

Hey Everyone!

SO, Every Wild Mommy ( and Daddy, etc.) has one area their child meets with difficulty.

What I want to know is what was MOST difficult for YOU!

SO, VOTE, like RIGHT NOW!

Then SHARE this so all of your friends, whether mommies, daddies, cousins, friends, etc., can VOTE, too!

Until Next Time,

(Which is mondayMONDAYmonday)

Wild Mommy MC

@wildmommymc

WildMommyMC@yahoo.com

Wild SICK Mommy

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Well, as you can see I have been a little bogged down lately, so my blog has suffered!

Right after my return from a WONDERFUL beach vacation, my daughter and I caught some bug and were sick for the past few days! So, in honor of our illness I decided to do a “Sick Mommy” Blog, all about how to handle YOU sick, but still be a great Wild Mommy!

The first thing we have to do as moms when we’re sick, is ADMIT IT!  This has got to be my biggest issues when I am sick. I hate having to say “I’m too sick to do…” Whatever!  It’s like taking away my red cape! I am Mommy, I am supposed to stay well so I can keep everyone else well!

Well, that isn’t how it always turns out and unfortunately, being on the front lines between children and cleanliness, Moms are SUPER EXPOSED to all those nasty little germs!! So, now you’re sick. You are sick, and what most people DON’T even THINK about is that you CANNOT CALL IN! There are no real “sick days” as a mom. (Nor holidays, vacations or weekends!) So, sick or not, your little one will still need general to specific care, and you are the care-giver. So, again, like I said, first thing is first, just go ahead and admit you are sick.

Hello, I am Wild Mommy MC, and I am a very sick mommy.

Good, now we can begin!

So, not to sound cliche or anything, but the best thing you can do is start off with rest. As a full-time mom, I find that my personal, alone time tends to come after bedtime! Well, when you’re sick, this personal time should be rest! Don’t stay up late like usual, go ahead a get in bed early. Honestly, sleep is the best thing you can do.

But, once you’ve gotten your sleep and still feel crappy, here’s how we continue.

1- Throw out the rule book

Number one to sick mommy days is throwing out the rule book for the day.  I usually will NEVER condone throwing out the rule book because consistency is really all we have with our kiddos, but on sick days, you just can’t handle the rules. I’m not saying your kiddos gets a free pass, but you will need to cut them some MAJOR slack and allow leniency with the rules. Not only will they be more stressed because you are sick, but you will be more likely to OVER STRESS rules if you are sick and tired. So, to keep the peace, just throw the book out for the day!

One of the rules I find I can throw out almost completely is FOOD!

2-Sick Food Ready

Again, realize this is only ONE DAY And that the stress it will relieve is worth the ONE day of bad nutrition. If you feel you are becoming sick and are not pantry ready for illness, stock up! What you’ll want is EASY meals. Something microwaveable (TV Dinner) or instantly “servable” (Lunchable etc.). Also, if you are sick and not your kiddo, another good tip is to treat them more that day. Allow a little ice cream or some cookies. If you include the dessert incentives, you can actually get good behavior out of them all day long just for ice cream! And you’ll be surprised at how much stress it can relieve just to be able to take meals off of your to-do list.

3- Role Reversal

As parents, when we get sick, we often forget that there is someone to take care of us. We get so wrapped up in taking care of THEM, we forget that they can care for us too! One thing I have found VERY helpful when I am sick is allowing Boo to switch roles with me. Instead of me caring for her, I allow her to care for me. Now, obviously you want to begin by telling your child how sick you are, and what to expect of you for the day. Be honest, tell them you do not feel like playing. I know, it sounds like sacrilege to hear me say that here on WildMommyMC.com, but you DON’T feel like playing today, so the best thing you can do is get that on the table! Once they understand your sickness, give them something to do. Like I said, role reversal is great!

So, over the past few days that I have been sick, Boo has helped me clean the kitchen, clean my bedroom, do the daily chores and helped actually CARE FOR ME.

It may sound like she had a bad day, but she actually enjoyed it. Including her in my chores made the chores not so difficult and kept her engaged instead of bored. Because we all know bored kids = annoyed moms. lol

I started by giving her little tasks, like helping me put up the plastic dishes or picking up trash. But as she’s gotten older she’s learned how to do laundry, wash the dishes and she’s pretty good at just caring for me. As I was sick along the way of raising her, I’ve taught her how to care for sick people, too. Watching me, she’s learned to remind me to stay hydrated, rest and take it easy. And that’s the 2nd side to role reversal, letting your babies take care of you. It does wonders for illness to have little baby hands stroking your hair or rubbing your back.

And that leads us to the last tip,

4- LOVINS’

The single most important thing you can do when you are sick is cuddle and love on your kiddos. Now, DON’T EXPOSE THEM IF YOU ARE STILL CONTAGIOUS! lol of course! But, once you aren’t, let them in! When you’re sick, you tend to disengage. and that is NORMAL! The best thing you can do to combat that is physical affection. It will help your child to stay connected to you even though you can’t be involved and it will make you feel a WHOLE LOT BETTER!

So, being a Wild Mommy isn’t all fun and games. Sometimes, it’s about just trying your hardest. And that’s really all we can do when we’re sick. Try hard. Remember, they’re kiddos, and they don’t really have a memory that will allow them to recall what being sick is like. So, when they DO press that last nerve, instead of complaining or yelling try asking for a hug or kiss instead.

And please, please, get better, because tomorrow is ANOTHER day of Motherhood, sick or not…

ALSO, for 40 ways to entertain your kids while lying down check out:

www.babycenter.com/0_40-ways-to-entertain-your-kids-while-lying-down_10350158.bc

 

 

Until Next Time,

Wild Mommy MC

@Wildmommymc

WildMommyMC@yahoo.com

Vacation

Hey Everyone!

Just wanted you all to know I won’t be blogging like usual this next week (AUG 9-16).

I will be at :

welcomeSign

BUT: Don’t FRET  !! I will do 2 extra long blogs: 1 WILD MOMMY, 1 WILD WIFEY

And possibly some MC: Poetry&Prose and Photography!

But, I will see you all MONDAY, August 19, 2013 to resume our regular schedule!

UNTIL NEXT TIME,

LOTS OF LOVE,

LOVE PEACE UNITY,

Wild Mommy/Wifey MC

@wildmommymc

WildMommyMC@yahoo.com

WildWifeyMC@yahoo.com

Treasure Jar

Hey, Wild Mommy here, with another Way to stay WILD:

Make a Treasure jar.

treasure_chest

What you need:

A jar (fill an old pickle jar with half water half vinegar and let it sit in a warm place for a while then dish-wash!) or any plastic jar dish-washed, or EVEN a soda bottle with the top cut off. (use cardboard and poke holes through half the edges of the cardboard and the bottle, then put string through the holes tying the lid half down!)

ACRYLIC paint for glass jars or any other kind of paint for the others. (If you have no paint glue construction/blank paper to the sides and have them COLOR it!)

Any dime-sized decorative pieces and sparkles!

Hot glue gun OR a very STRONG glue. Not regular glue.

…………………………………………………………………….

Paint/Color, Glue on decorations and sparkles. Write “____________’s Treasure Jar” on it and voila!

Then tell them to put special things inside and hide it!

You can ALSO use this with the “Pirate” craft as a Treasure Chest!!

 

2 heads are better than 1

So, I want to start off by saying:

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To my wonderful boyfriend, Wild Daddy.

He’s the one who gave me the name Wild Mommy.

And he’s the one who has helped me become Wild Mommy and Wild Wifey!

He is a wonderful man who makes me laugh and smile  through it all.

Thank you Wild Daddy, for being you and loving me. Oh, and loving Wild Boo too!

So, onto the blog…

In honor of Wild Daddy’s birthday, we’re going to talk about SHARING PARENTING.

One of the biggest things I feel are to blame for the breakdown of society is the break down of FAMILY.

Every Wild Mommy needs another Wild partner to share parenting with.

This person does NOT need to be your ACTUAL partner.

It could be a Wild Daddy, Wild Mommy, Wild Uncle, Wild Cousin… whatever!

The only things that matters are:

1-You agree on parenting styles (or they at least bend to your design)

2-They are of the opposite sex* and

3-They love you and your child.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I was a single-mom for a while, and I have the UTMOST respect for any single parent. No, you DO NOT need a husband or wife to raise a child. BUT, you should have a counterpart present in you child’s life.

Too many kids out there are growing up with only ONE parent to look up to for guidance. The biggest issue with this problem is that children need both FEMALE AND MALE examples of good people. Again, I am not arguing that only “couples” should have kids or that the only way to raise a kid right is by being a couple, all I am saying is make sure that whatever influence YOU make in their life, you have an equal but opposite influence as well. Not only will this allow your child the best possible experience, but it will also allow you breaks which create a better relationship between parents and children.

I think we can all agree that men and women are different. From our physical appearance to the way our brains work, we are so very different. And that’s where being a single-parent, you can run into issues. Perhaps it’s easier for same-sex parent-children, but I have seen many a mom struggle with a rowdy boy and seen many a dad struggle with a sensitive girl. The differences between males and females not only create diversity but these two types of DIFFERING roles are NEEDED in society. No matter how equal our gender rights are, we must all be aware that there are differences between us that are important! and it is DOUBLY important that we teach our kids these gender roles, but include the idea of breaking societal norms!

So, how do you do this? By setting a good example yourself. If you’re a Wild Mommy, teach your kids about being a GOOD WOMAN. Then, introduce them to a GOOD MAN so he can set that example. Again, this doesn’t have to mean a “DAD” in the normal sense. It can be grandpa or uncle or even a friend of the family. The ONLY point is to make sure they have good examples of BOTH genders. Because when you only have ONE, your child can become majorly off balance.

Example: There was a time period, between my divorce and meeting my boyfriend, where my daughter, Boo, had no male influence in her life.  It was me and Mammaw raising a 2 year old. (That was also WAAAAAY too smart for her own good, and still is!) At the time, I remember thinking “This single-parent thing isn’t so bad”. But, I saw very quickly how hard it could get. Boo began misbehaving all the time. She had an attitude 5 miles long and her favorite word was “No”. Now, though most people chalked it up to “terrible twos”, even me, once I met my boyfriend he revealed the real situation. Boo hadn’t had a DAD in a pretty long while. and she hadn’t really had ANY male influence. Though I had been disciplining and handling her attitude, it never WENT AWAY. However, 3 months into dating my boyfriend, Boo had almost COMPLETELY gone away. Now, I will say, my boyfriend REALLY stepped up to the plate on this one. He took it upon himself to be a good MALE role model for Boo. Not only did he do the positive things like playing with her and loving on her, but he disciplined her too! And like I said, 3 months, and she had CHANGED! She stopped misbehaving all the time, she QUIT talking back to me (which was my boyfriend’s BIGGEST pet peeve, her disrespecting me) and she seemed HAPPIER. She NEEDED a MALE in her life. She needed that security and consistency. Not only that, but she needed to see how a MALE is supposed to treat a FEMALE, via role model.

I wish I had relied on my brother more during the times when I had no partner. I think Boo would have benefited quite a bit!

All I am saying is, find someone of the opposite sex to set an example for your child.  It may not be detrimental to their health, but it is definitely BENEFICIAL to their growth into good adults!

Join me Friday as we continue to learn more about being a WILD MOMMY and raising a WILD CHILD! Also check out “Ways to stay WILD” tomorrow for tips on being an extra AWESOME Wild Mommy.

Wild Mommy MC

@wildmommymc

WildMommyMC@yahoo.com