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Thursday, September 7, 2017

How To: Get your Threenager to hold your hand

When you have a headstrong independent child, it is very hard to get them to hold your hand when they want to do it all on their own because "I'm a big boy now". Yes sweetheart, you are a big boy, but you are and will always be my baby and I don't want you to get hit by a car!
So, over the last year, it has been a struggle to get him to hold my hand. He used to always be in his pushchair, so it wasn't much of an issue. However, when he turned two, he wanted to walk more, and I wanted to reserve the pushchair for days I was ill or had low energy.
After a fair amount of trial and error, we came to an understanding... not that you should allow a three year old to dictate their safety to you, but I was able to figure out what worked best for this little guy, with the least hassle.
Below is a list of all the things I have tried or had suggested to me and the outcome...
  1. Put a harness on him. - Yeah.... no. Good for those that want to do it and it works for them, but I know that the minute we forget the harness at home, our guard will be down. 
  2. Use a wrist strap: I had been considering this, until the day I saw another mum with her very active-resistant threenager run off in the opposite direction where she was going... as terrible as it was, a bungie slingshot effect was the end result. 
  3. Belt loops: I haven't tried this one yet, but it is in the cards. I was suggested to try getting him to hold my belt loop or hang something he would want to hold onto off it. 
  4. Use a consequence: If he doesn't hold your hand, he will be carried. I do this on occasion, but I also will use the pram if he refuses to hold my hand. Usually at this point he is tired, and he really only wants to use the pram, but is too tired to relay that information - or he still wants to be a "big boy" but I have to make that decision for him
  5. Talk it out with them: This is what has seemed to work best for me. When we are in the car, leaving kindy - basically before we go anywhere - I have a chat with him. I tell him what is expected of him and what will happen if he doesn't listen. We have a rule that when we are going to and from kindy he has to walk along the footpath. He has one chance. If he doesn't walk on the footpath next to me, he has to hold my hand or I will carry him. We also have a rule that when we cross the road or are in a carpark he has to hold my hand. NO EXCEPTIONS.
  6. Hug it out: I use this when he's not listening and I am low on evergy - unable to carry him so we will sit down where we are and just hug it out until he is ready to listen and hold my hand or walk nicely beside me. I understand that this usually happens when he is tired, and all he needs is a hug from me, but it has worked very well. Even just the suggestion "Do we need to hug this out?" works!
  7. Praise: Whenever they do what you wish, be it hold your hand or walk nicely beside you - Praise, Praise and Praise again!
  8. Put a wrist support on: I don't know if this would work for everyone, but I have a wrist support that I put on when my wrist is sore. Yesterday, I had to put it on, and was still wearing it at Kindy pick up. Max asked me if my wrist was sore and I told him yes it was. So from the moment the gate closed, he held my hand to the car. I praised him for being such a good boy. My sweet little boy replied with "I hold your hand Mum to make it feel better" - I'm going to use this and see if it works again!!!!

Sunday, August 20, 2017

How To: Ensure your Threenager keeps their seatbelt on

Had the shock of my life this morning during the Kindy run. Little Mr. decided to not only remove the shoulder straps off himself (little Hudini!) he also tried opening his car door while we were driving! (thank god for kiddy locks!) below is the list of what followed...
  1. While driving to Kindy, hear a weird noise come from Threenagers side of the car
  2. Glance over shoulder to find Threenager has removed his shoulder straps of his seatbelt, he also has decided to try opening the car door WHILE WE WERE MOVING!
  3. Shout out a quick "No! Stop!" 
  4. Find a safe place to move over and flick hazard lights on
  5. Turn car off and storm out of the car, and yank open Threenagers car door
  6. Point to the shoulder straps and tell them loudly (hoping that a raised voice will get the message across) "You NEVER take off your seatbelt when we are driving! And you NEVER try to open the car door!" 
  7. Take a deep breath to calm self before helping him put his seatbelt on
  8. Get a shock by a voice beside me saying "Is everything alright here?"
  9. Let breath out and say "Yeah, My Son just took his seatbelt off and I'm trying to teach him it's not ok..." 
  10. Look at the person and trail off in speech when I realise that it is a police officer!
  11. Smile sheepishly and take calming breaths and think back over the last few minutes (I didn't do anything bad did I? Did I cut someone off? Did I really look that mad???? Oh God! I hope he didn't think I was abusing my child! Oh God am I going to get a ticket???? Shit Shit Shit!!!!!)
  12. Mr. Policeman smiles and pats me on the shoulder "It's ok, kids do this sometimes"
  13. Relax and let breath out again, help Threenager back into their straps and try to tighten the seatbelt more
  14. Mr. Policeman notices I'm having a hard time so offers to help
  15. As Mr. Policeman tightens the seatbelt, he talks to Threenager "Hey Mate, you scared your Mum. You always wear your seatbelt ok? Do you understand?"
  16. Threenager looks wide eyed at me then back at Mr. Policeman "Yes, I understand" 
  17. Mr. Policeman smiles and hold up his hand "Good. Now, High Five!" 
  18. Mr. Policeman hops back into his car and drives off
  19. Hop back into own car, and drive to Kindy with Threenager in the back saying to himself "Wear seatbelt, Mr. Polcieman told me to" 
  20. Have a giggle to oneself and feel pleased that he had a very interesting lesson for the first time taking his shoulder straps off in Mum's car. 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

How To: Get more ice cream...

It was Max's first day back at Kindy today after his operation. He was very excited to go today and didn't even notice me leave! When it was time to pick him up, I noticed a little bit of rain, so brought his raincoat and an umbrella with me. I was told by the teachers at pick up that he enjoyed his day, but he might need a few more days before he gets back into the swing of things... below is the list of what followed from when we walked out the door.
  1. Remind Threenager that they need to walk nicely on the path or hold hands
  2.  Threenager drops bag and runs to the tree at the end of the path
  3. Drop umbrella, and run after Threenager, catch them and remind them that because they didn't walk nicely they have to hold hands
  4. Hold Threenager's hand while walking back to pick up bag and umbrella
  5. Carry bag and umbrella in one hand while wrangling Threenager
  6. Get to car and fumble with keys to unlock doors
  7. Threenager sees their chance and runs ALL THE WAY back to Kindy
  8. Drop bag and umbrella again to chase after Threenager (stay hot on his heels while going into a coughing fit - still have this blasted cold/chest infection!) 
  9. Threenager stops at the gate next to Kindy's playground and calls out to his friends on the other side
  10. Halt with hands on knees trying to catch breath
  11. Call out to Threenager to come over and hold hands or they will go to bed early tonight
  12. Threenager ignores me and continues to yell to friends on other side of the gate (much to the amusement of the other parents I am sure)
  13. Call out to Threenager and tell them no toys in the bath tonight
  14. Threenager continues to ignore me
  15. Call out to Threenager and tell them no ice cream for dessert tonight
  16. Threenager comes right over
  17. Walk nicely back to car with Threenager 
  18. Put Threenager in the car and ask them if they know why Mummy is not happy
  19. Threenager says "Yes, Max ran away."
  20. Ask Threenager if they are going to be good now
  21. Threenager says "Yes, Max be good, Max sit in pram and eat ice cream at home"
  22. Smile back at Threenager "Exactly!" 
  23. Go to supermarket, put Threenager in pram - no fuss
  24. Threenager is good the whole time in the supermarket, when we get home until 5pm when I'm just about to start cooking dinner...
  25. Threenager gets ice cream out
  26. Count to 3 as a warning
  27. Get to 3. Tell Threenager that there is no ice cream tonight
  28. Threenager says "Awww Man!" and takes himself off to bed
  29. Make bottle up to fill Threenagers tummy 
  30. Threenager is lights out as soon as the last drop of the bottle is out
  31. Feel like a slightly mean Mummy while thinking about more ice cream for me for dessert tonight... 

Thursday, July 27, 2017

How To: Take a swab test before surgery

Threenager needs to have another op on one of his toes, but before he does, he needs to have a few swab tests. He hasn't had one before, so of course his first one had to be in the  "down below" region. read the list below to see how it all went!
  1. Book surgery and find out swab test is required
  2. Make plan on best approach to take Threenager to the swab test
  3. Pick Threenager up from Kindy 
  4. Talk with Threenager about the swab test: "The Lady will use a cotton bud and tickle your bottom with it. If you are a good boy and stay still Mummy will get you a Toy after ok?" 
  5. Threenager smiles and says "Ok Mummy! Yes, Toy!" 
  6. Drive to the lab and have another chat with Threenager about the swab test, talk him through it again and make sure he understands what is about to happen. 
  7. As an after thought, while walking from the car to the lab, remind Threenager that it is his body and no one is allowed to touch it unless he is ok with it 
  8. Worry that might have said something over the top, but know that it's a subject that needs to be broached 
  9. Get into the lab and talk to the technician 
  10. Find out that it is not ONE swab test, but THREE swabs (Nose, Groin and that place named after a planet in our solar system) 
  11. Take moment to let Threenager know the change of plans, and make sure that they are ok with it
  12. While telling Threenager the new plan, lab technician corrects me and tells me that because I am the parent, I will be taking the swabs, while they assist.
  13. Feel heaps better with this change of plans, and tell Threenager "Wow! Guess what, Mummy will be doing it! Is that ok?" 
  14. Threenager smiles and says "Yes! Sure Mum, ok"
  15. Take Threenager to the room with lab technician and sit them on the orange bed (Threenager's favour colour, so a bonus)
  16. Swab one: Take swab and swipe it around each nostril making Threenager wiggle their nose and sneeze. Threenager says "Achoo Mum, Achoo!" 
  17. Swab two: Take nappy off and swab groin area. Threenager giggles (so far so good...)
  18. Swab three: Prepare swab, walk towards Threenager who is laying there waiting patiently. Move swab closer to planet named region. Threenager closes legs and calls out "No! Doors Closed." 
  19. Stand there frozen for a moment. Look back at the lab technician who is trying to hold back laughter (and failing) Collapse in fits of laughter. Manage to talk to Threenager and ask them if it is ok to do the next swab - Threenager obliges. 
  20. Dress Threenager, wash hands together and leave to go to the warehouse for the promised Toy
  21. Praise Threenager for being brave, and being a very good boy while the swabs were being taken. 
  22. Get into the warehouse, Threenager makes a beeline for the toy aisle
  23. Catch up with Threenager and they have a handful of toys
  24. Smile at Threenager and remind "One toy hun" 
  25. Threenager stops and looks me dead in the eye "No Mum." 
  26. Take a breath and think that this needs to be held with care, as a tantrum could errupt if not handled correctly. "Remember I told you one toy? Perhaps we can tell Santa you want those for Christmas, and then we can get one now. How does that sound?"
  27. Threenager, staring into the depths of my soul calmy replies "Mum. Three cotton buds, Three toys"
  28. *Mouth drops to the floor* (can't really argue with that one) 
  29. Buy little smarty pants three toys, put two toys away for recovery time while Threenager is distracted playing with his new puzzle. 

Monday, July 10, 2017

How To: Organise your wardrobe

  1. Wake up - it's Kindy day today! 
  2. Get Threenager ready for Kindy
  3. Drop Threenager off at Kindy with no fuss 
  4. Come home and sit down for a coffee with Trusty Grandpa
  5. Organise a shopping list and meal plan for the week
  6. Clean appliances, bench tops and cupboard doors
  7. Call Dr's for an appointment (this cough is not going away!)
  8. Go into bedroom and clear pile of clothes and other things blocking the wardrobe (Hubby just got a whole lot of very nice clothes given to him, so of course that's where you store it)
  9. Put clothes on the bed for sorting later
  10. Wardrobe doors are now clear
  11. Hear the door bell ring
  12. Find a package containing the carousel wardrobe organiser that was ordered for Threenager's room
  13. Ditch own wardrobe and focus on Threenager's (swap hanging shelves in their wardrobe to the carousel one)
  14. Finish Threenager's wardrobe and head back to own wardrobe
  15. Fish out all the clothes that haven't worn in past year (I use the hanger method - once a year/season, face hangers opposite direction to you, then as you wear them, you flick the hanger around. This way you can see which clothes you have worn)
  16. Throw the unus  e     d clothes onto the bed for later sorting
  17. Pull out all the s pare coat hangers (find 30)
  18. Organise clothes in wardrobe to style and season (the clothes I will most likely need in the next few month at the front so it's easier to find)
  19. Hang up hanging shelves and put shoes and collection of hats in (clearing the floor in the wardrobe) 
  20. Vacuum floor
  21. Break for lunch and get a phone call from Kindy - Threenager is running a high temp and needs to be picked up
  22. Pick up Threenager from Kindy and take home
  23. Retake temp and give Pamol to Threenager
  24. Call Dr and make new appointment for self tomorrow, Threenager can have the one booked for today
  25. Go to Dr, get told Threenager needs to stay off Kindy for a few days
  26. Go home, leave room to itself until Threenager is in bed
  27. An hour before own bedtime, finish cleaning up and organising the wardrobe, clear the bed
  28. End up with four bags - two for the hospice shop and two to load on trademe
  29. Pat self on the back and get ready for bed
  30. Check on Threenager and find they have broken a fever
  31. Change Threenagers pjs and put in own bed while Hubby comforts him
  32. Change the sheets on Threenager's bed 
  33. Heat up rice-bag for Threenager for them to cuddle
  34. Walk back into own room to transfer Threenager into their bed
  35. Find both Hubby and Threenager fast asleep, snoring away
  36. Decide to sleep in Threenager's bed instead
  37. Have the best nights sleep in ages!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

How To: Decide to have a mental health day after a Maximum morning

Didn't sleep well last night. I dub thee a mental health day.
  1. Get minimal amount of sleep due to head cold/chest infection (must go back to the Dr. tomorrow for antibiotics)
  2. Wake up at 3am and don't get back to sleep until Hubby leaves for work at 5am
  3. Threenager comes in and decides that it is time the "Lets see how much mess I can make before Mum fully wakes up and realises I am here" game
  4. Hear drawers opening and a little bit of giggling and Threenager talking to themselves (probably deciding on which room to wreak havoc on next)
  5. Sit up in bed to have a better look of the room and discover: Dressing Table items are scattered on the floor, all the drawers are open and Threenager is in the middle of emptying the drawers out
  6. Decide it's not worth getting too wound up as Kindy day today and should be able to take time to clean it all up
  7. Say Hello to Threenager and call them over for morning cuddles
  8. Have a cuddle for 5 minutes and fall asleep
  9. Wake up to Threenager playing Train with Monkey, all the lights are now on (How on earth did he reach the main light??? he's way too short and there is nothing for him to climb on)
  10. Realise that they used the superhero wrapping paper roll to switch the main light on (this is now unrolled over the floor - looks like his cousin will be receiving avon garde style gift wrap)
  11. Turn to Threenager to point out the mess they have made - receive a "BLAAAAAAAAH!!!!!" in the face from inner cardboard tube of said gift wrap. 
  12. Look at Threenager and debate on creative ways to use the inner tube... receive a brilliant smile and a "Hello Mum! Wake up, Kindy Day" 
  13. Throw self back down onto the pillow with a groan and say "Yes, I know - But wait until the birds start singing"
  14. Alarm clock with singing birds tone goes off
  15. Scowl at singing birds 
  16. Turn back to Threenager and receive a knee to the eye as they are climbing over my face to get to the phone
  17. Threenager gives me phone, to which I just look at it stupidly - and far too long for their liking
  18. Get a book thrown in my face off my bedside table Oh, Good Morning Emily Writes, Rants in the Dark you say? Game on - I'll have a coffee date with you after Kindy drop off
  19. Just as I have registered the book, in my hands I then have my dressing gown thrown in my face and the covers pulled off me "Up Mum!" 
  20. Start to drag myself out of the bed, have THREE roll on deodorants plopped on my tummy (OMFG they are COLD!) 
  21. Discover Threenager has also been in the bathroom (How on earth have a managed to sleep through all of this????)
  22. Mentally bang head against brick wall and tell self off - you're on Mum duty, no sleeping in when you're sick - this IS your work... Aww, stuff it. 
  23. Hobble into the kitchen, make breakfast and coffee, blow nasty green gunk out of nose, throw tissue away (yup, def need to go back to the dr for those antibiotics) 
  24. Turn telly on to find Fresh beat band of spies on (Scooby Doo rip off anyone?) 
  25. Allow Threenager to watch that while changing him and getting him dressed for the day
  26. Feed and water Threenager and self 
  27. Trusty Grandpa is finally up, ask them to put Threenagers shoes on while I get dressed
  28. Start to walk out the door, Threenager has lost Monkey
  29. Ask Trusty Grandpa to put Threenager in the car
  30. Retrieve Monkey from behind the bed with extender arm (was given this by ACC - BEST. THING. EVER.)
  31. Finally get into the car, drive to Kindy
  32. Car starts shuddering, lights start flashing (Prey that we get to Kindy so that I can drop Threenager off and focus on the car
  33. Park car and drop Threenager off at Kindy
  34. Get back to car and pop the bonnet up
  35. Establish that the oil level is fine, water level is perfect, and the car battery is connected correctly... looks to be the spark plugs 
  36. Man in people mover drives past and backs up asking me if I want some help
  37. Tell him what I believe it is, and know how much it's going to cost (dude must be a mechanic as he was defending the prices that the mechanics have to charge etc)
  38. Manage to get the car started and home safely 
  39. Call Hubby and make game plan on repairs and Kindy pick up (looks like I will be walking if Car is not fixed by then) 
  40. Walk inside take one look at mess, sit down with coffee, computer and Rants in the Dark, Today is going to be a mental health day.

Monday, July 3, 2017

How To: Dust Your Head Board

It's been a fair bit busy and hectic here in our house hold... Practically June was a write off due to colds, chest infections, random hospital visits and impromptu sleep overs for the Max. So much has happened in the past month or so since I wrote my last post, I honestly don't think I can catch up with it all!

My Scrapbooking calendar (that I have to update monthly) is stuck on May and I am seriously considering, just crossing "May" out  and writing "July" with the correct dates just to I can attempt to keep track of my life again. I have thank you cards that I have been wanting to write, Max's baby book I want/need to update and not to mention so much housework I need to catch up on. I finally started getting over my chest infection only to wake up with a raw throat as the beginning of another cold. *sigh*

ANYWAY, enough mumblings about being sick and being behind in housework. Quick catch up about Max - He is now there big 3, going to Kindy three days a week (which in theory will allow me to have a better schedule for housekeeping, write some more, scrapbooking and have some time for myself - so far only been able to do the first) Due to  the awesome little changes that have been going on here now that he is in Kindy for longer - he's growing so fast! - I now promote him from "Toddler" to "Threenager" (to help stop confusion on future posts) So, what has this Threenager been up to today? See below for todays list.

How To: Dust your Head Board

  1. Threenager comes in for early morning cuddles
  2. Cuddle for a little bit until the birds outside start singing (we have a rule about not getting up for the day until the birds are singing - I have an alarm on my phone that sounds like birds singing, but I'm happy to get up when the natural birds sing, as at least it's not too early)
  3. Threenager turns on the bedside light and picks Monkey up
  4. Threenager then calls out "Monkey Train Mum!"
  5. Move pillow down so that my hair and head is not stepped on (learnt this the hard way)
  6. Toddler then spends next half hour or so sweeping Monkey back and forth across the top of the headboard calling out "Choo Choo Monkey, Choo Choo!" (just enough time for me to wake up for the day and do my morning stretches) 
  7. Headboard is now dusted... just need to shake out Monkey and vacuum...