I was always the mom apologizing for my child hitting another and taking toys at playgroup. (BTW, it has come full circle. My youngest sweet girl torments the little boys at playgroup.) I tried to force apologies and uncomfortably gave up when he refused. It was stressful to deal with and worry about what the other moms thought about my parenting because I used to care about that, but I seriously needed social interaction to stay sane, so I kept going.
The same kid from the park story came over for a play date right before the two boys were to start kindergarten. Honestly, I don’t know if I would have survived this kid without that family.
The boys played pretty well for a couple of hours before I raced upstairs to break up a fight I could hear brewing. It was too late. My child, at the age of SIX, bit his good friend on the arm. It looked like the child had been attacked by a vicious animal. The skin was broken on the perimeter of the entire bite, and the swelling and purplish hue increased every minute. Luckily, I was able to leave my precious beast with his father while I took his playmate back to his mother. I arrived at their door with him and burst into tears. I sobbed as I relayed the story and my profound apologies. She was intensely sympathetic and in retrospect, if a child had to be bitten by mine, thank goodness it belonged to this most forgiving woman!
This is a series of stories about my oldest child. During his early years, I spent my on-line time reviewing symptom checklists for a variety of behavioral disorders, and I was quite sure we would have to send him to military school one day. I was completely defeated by his behavior on many occasions. I have long struggled to find the right way to share these stories on my blog. I finally decided just to write them as they are, with no great revelation about their impact. (Though a couple do include a follow-up disciplinary technique that worked!) My purpose in sharing these stories is three-fold. I hope to provide a good laugh, to give a thank-goodness-its-not-just-my-kid OR an at-least-my-kid-hasn’t-done-that feeling, and also to instill hope that your ‘that’ kid can turn out to be as amazing as mine someday. He still drives me somewhat crazy, but at 18 he is a great person with a bright future (and was not sent to military school)! Some personality traits that are horrific in a young child are pretty dang awesome in a teen ready to head out into the world.
She reassured me that I provided more consistent discipline than any other mom she knew. She was just as baffled as I was at its lack of success!
These two boys went on to have an all-out brawl in the outfield during a t-ball game when they both wanted to field and throw in the ball, one punched the other’s loose tooth out during swimming lessons, and they got sent to the principal’s office together for fighting exactly once each year until 3rd grade.
This is a series of stories about my oldest child. During his early years, I spent my on-line time reviewing symptom checklists for a variety of behavioral disorders, and I was quite sure we would have to send him to military school one day. I felt completely defeated by his behavior on many occasions. I have long struggled to find the right way to share these stories on my blog. I finally decided just to write them as they are, with no great revelation about their impact. (Though a couple do include a follow-up disciplinary technique that worked!) My purpose in sharing these stories is three-fold. I hope to provide a good laugh, to give a thank-goodness-its-not-just-my-kid OR an at-least-my-kid-hasn’t-done-that feeling, and also to instill hope that your ‘that’ kid can turn out to be as amazing as mine someday. He still drives me somewhat crazy, but at 18 he is a great person with a bright future (and was not sent to military school)! Some personality traits that are horrific in a young child are pretty dang awesome in a teen ready to head out into the world.
Getting my son to leave the park grew more and more complicated over the course of a couple of months when he was in preschool. I was beginning to dread going and then staying way too long to avoid the battle of leaving.
Once, trying to run from me, he jumped the railing into a fountain and ended up completely under water when he tried to wade in and fell. It was not a very warm day for being soaked. I figured that might teach him a lesson, but no luck!
Another day, he just kept refusing to leave and ran away from me, even jumping back out of the car and running again the one time I caught him and put him in the car.
His two little sisters had been waiting in the car for quite a while at this point. Finally, I climbed into the car and sat a moment. He waved. HE WAVED?!?! I pulled away ever so slowly and inched away from the park. He disappeared from where he had been waving, but he was not running towards my vehicle in a panic. (You know, the way I had planned for this to go!) I turned and drove around the block as quickly as I could and pulled back into the parking space where I’d just been. I could see him across the park in a swing. As I approached, he sat happily swinging without a care in the world, and said, “I thought you left,” in a tone which made it apparent he was not thrilled to see I’d returned. I was able to get a hold of the swing and dragged him to the car, pulling him into the driver’s side with me so he couldn’t escape, not letting go until the car was in motion. Luckily, he never tried to open the door and leap out once the car was moving!
From then on, my initial go-to move was to suddenly jump him like a kidnapper and drag him to the car when I was ready to go and have a friend help put the girls in the car while I held him. He started to be less resistant about leaving for the most part after awhile.
Then one day, I somehow ended up at the park alone with him, one of his friends from preschool, and the baby. I’m not sure if I thought having his buddy there would help him behave better or what, but obviously, it turned out to be a bad idea.
It had rained recently, and the wood chips were too thin in a number of places creating mud holes I repeatedly told the two boys to stay out of as they played.
The details are fuzzy on what I did with the baby or the friend, or how the chase began, but I know he ended up aware that I was trying to leave, without having a chance to grab him when he wasn’t expecting it.
He was on the opposite side of a large mud hole from me, with his usual taunting grin that I remember very well. He scooped a handful of mud from the sloppiest part of the puddle and set it atop his head and gave it a good smashing with his hands, then wiped it down his face and neck and finally onto his clothing, staring me dead in the eye the entire time. I tried to catch him, but he took off too quickly. Every chance he got, he would get muddier. He was laughing and hollering about how we could never leave because I wouldn’t want mud all over the car. He occasionally scooped handfuls and flung them in my general direction when I would get close enough. I don’t remember how I ever managed to catch him and get him in the car, but we were both a muddy mess!
Then I had to take his friend home.
That’s right; I had to pull up to my friend’s house to drop off her child and pick up my daughter while spattered in mud, with this boy in my backseat who was covered head to toe in it. By this time the mud was drying hard on his skin, and he was complaining loudly about how much it itched. After laughing hysterically at the scene and the story behind it, my friend offered to let him come in and wash it off. I refused and explained that he would just have to endure the itchiness until we got home as punishment for his behavior.
The next week, I called ALL of his friends’ moms and invited them to play at the park. We sat in the car with him restrained on my lap for twenty minutes watching all his friends play and then we drove home. It is one of the few things I ever felt had a significant impact on his behavior. He left the park more easily from that day forward.
Imagine a child sitting at the kitchen table, head buried in arms crying that he doesn’t know how to do his math homework. Of course, a parent will soon intervene and try to help. But the child’s response? “No. You can’t help me! Last time I did my math your way it was counted wrong, because you didn’t show me to do the problem the way the teacher wants us to do it!”
Unfortunately, this scene is all too common in homes across America since the implementation of common core.
*The following is a sponsored post for which I was compensated, but all opinions expressed are my own.*
The prevailing theory in some publications, such as Mother Jones in an article entitled Achtung! Don't Help Your Kids With Their Math Homework and in The Hechinger Report's Back off parents: It’s not your job to teach Common Core math when helping with homework is that parents have no business helping their kids with homework. It’s not fair after all that some kids’ parents are more willing to help than others.
Well, some of us believe our kids are our job. Period. Sure, teachers provide a vital supporting role, but ultimately it is the parents who decide if they want more or better for their children. And there should be no guilt is trying to attain that.
Since most parents are strapped for time as it is, learning the various new methods of doing math is probably not in the cards for too many. On the flip-side, as tempting as it is to barrel down to the school and insist that a correct answer is a correct answer no matter how it is reached, the parents know the kids are going to have to learn to do problems the way the teacher wants them done to succeed in school.
So, what’s the solution here?
For us, it was transferring our children to a small private Catholic school, but obviously that option is not on the table for most people. It is also true you can Google how to do just about anything, but that is often time-consuming as well. Plus, it is difficult to know what is trustworthy and legitimate advice.
The answer is on-line though! MathWizTutors can help you support your student via theiron-line tutors or even match you up with alocal tutor to come to your home. They do the background check for you and provide ratings and reviews to make sure you get the tutor you are looking for with the knowledge and experience required for your child's needs.
So, you know someone in real life that has a blog. Or maybe you've run across a random little blog by someone you do not know that you have just fallen in love with and want to see it flourish. You probably try to pay attention to posts from them that randomly come through your Facebook feed. Maybe you read it and wonder how that does anything for the blogger. Let me solve the mystery of your blogger friend.
1. Just Knowing People are Visiting is Good
Bloggers can check to see how many people are visiting their site. Sometimes it can become a bit of an obsession to see if more people are visiting, not speaking from experience or anything. Even if you have absolutely no interest in reading, throw us a bone, click the link, and click back to your FB tab while you 'pretend' to read. Ignorance is bliss.
2. Comments are Great
Have you ever thought to yourself, "I really like this one," after reading a post? Let the blogger know! Most of the comments on blogs come from exchanging comments with other bloggers, so getting one for 'free' is always nice and means a lot more. It is easy to start thinking that everything you write is crappy and that everyone is rolling their eyes thinking you need to just get a real job already, so one quick 'atta boy can go a long way. I guess everyone has to be self-conscious about something and since I am over being self-conscious about my parenting, I have moved on to my writing.
3. Facebook Interaction is Better
Facebook uses algorithms to decide what to show you in your news feed. A blogger's page is different from a personal page. They only show posts to more people if the first few who see it seem to think it is worth showing to more people. This is good in a way. They can filter out crap that no one wants to see, which helps anyone who is posting quality content, and it can help the page owner see what people like. But here is the catch, pages with lots of followers are at a major advantage. For one, they can afford to pay Facebook to show you their posts and get you to like their page. Most bloggers cannot. Just 'liking' your friend's FB blog page does not mean you will see all of their posts. However, you can make sure that you do. You can visit the page and set it to 'see first' by clicking the follow button. This way, anytime they have a new post it will pop up in your feed at the top. If the post is stupid, scroll right on past it, but go ahead and click that 'like' button if you really do like it; that tells FB and the blogger that this is good content people want to see.
Many of the big websites use content written by small bloggers and pay them only in 'exposure'. The Huffington Post and Scary Mommy are two of them. These are both VERY liberal companies and liberals are nice and want to help people and pay them what they are worth and all that, right? Well, much of what you read on either of these sites is written by someone who was paid exactly 0 dollars to write it. But if you are a liberal, go right on believing that it is those nasty Republicans who are the only ones all about corporate greed. If you think that if awful, take the time to seek out a few small bloggers you like and follow them instead. It is the media consumption equivalent to shopping small, locally-owned businesses instead of the corporate giants like Wal-Mart.
Just in case you think I am awesome and want to see all my posts, click this link to my FB page. I only post two or three times a day, so you will never see ten in a row from me before you get to other stuff.
4. Making Some Money is the Best
You do not start a blog to become rich overnight unless you are delusional. It takes a very long time to gain followers and even then, a very small percentage of bloggers ever make a living from it, especially now that more and more people are flooding the internet with content.
Most people like to buy from their friends who sell through direct-sales companies when they can afford it. With a blogger friend it is possible to help out without spending a dime!
Bloggers earn money from people clicking advertisements, shopping through affiliate links, selling their own products, and writing posts sponsored by brands.
There are some ways to help that cost you absolutely nothing. The advertisements with the little blue triangle in the corner are Google Adsense ads and the blogger earns a few cents by someone simply clicking on it. Also Media.net ads, which advertise other articles, pay for clicks. Before I was a blogger I refused to click ads, even if I was interested in it because I found them annoying, but now if something catches my eye and I am visiting a smallish site, I click. I still avoid clicking ads directly from FB or on big sites as much as possible. Reading posts that your friend wrote for another site, like for my Her View From Home posts, can help them get paid as well. Some sites pay the writer more depending on how much traffic the post brings to it.
With affiliate link ads, you must purchase something for the blogger to receive a payment. However, it doesn't have to be right away, except for with Amazon's 24-hour window. If you see an ad for a site you already shop from occasionally, you can click the ad whenever and a cookie will be stored on your computer for 30-90 days that tells the site you visited from that blogger's page and they will be paid when you do order. Basically, you can help someone earn some money by spending the exact same amount of money you would have spent anyway.
I am just getting into selling my own products from my site so I would love a visit to my store when I get more products in there! Try to keep cool handmade products made by bloggers on your mind when shopping for gifts, even though it can be easier to just jump on Amazon most of the time. You know, like with this ad at the bottom, (wink, wink). I love my Amazon Prime as much as the next guy; holler hypocrite if you like.
I very rarely write sponsored posts because I find them icky. I don't want to cheapen my opinion of stuff I truly do love by flooding my blog with a bunch of forced b.s. about things I got paid to write about. However, if you have a friend who does write them, doing the 'click and pretend read' thing I talked about earlier can help them out because higher traffic helps attract sponsors.
Just in case I am a blogger you love and want to support, below and on the right are a few of my favorite things for you to check out. The right middle one is Adsense, which will show up differently for everyone, and the others are all affiliate links for which I may be compensated at no extra cost to you.
Do you hate coats for toddlers ages 9 to 36 months?
I will spare you the cheesy infomercial video, and quickly describe a few scenes all toddler moms know too well.
Busy Mom's Toddler Coat *More Prints Available
Tired of getting your toddler's coat on and off to put her in the car seat? Here is your solution!
This beautifully soft minky coat/blanket combo with warm fleece lining is simple to use.
This is the ideal coat for ages 9-24 months who are taken in and out of the car frequently. It keeps them warm in the car, does not have to be removed to buckle them into the car seat, and wraps around them quickly and easily when you take them out.
THIS INTRODUCTORY PRICE WILL NOT LAST LONG! BUY NOW!
After dealing with this for seventeen years, I finally created a solution just as my youngest child got almost too big for it! I have made regular ponchos for my last couple girls that helped the problem, but the back of the ponchos were still in the way to put them in the car seats. Also, the back fell down on their heads if you flipped it up, and their hands were trapped underneath. They pushed them off just like they would a coat or blanket.
I decided the back had to go!
The Busy Mom's Toddler coat is completely open in the back so it isn't in the way to put the toddler in the car. When the toddler is taken out of the car, the sides wrap around the back to cover their entire body, head to toe. My favorite part was discovering that since my daughter didn't feel the blast of cold when I opened the door, I could take her inside and she would stay asleep using this!
When it is time to go back in the car, just unwrap the sides, place the child in the seat, and buckle the straps underneath the blanket. Finally, fasten the snaps along each edge around each wrist to free their hands, making the child unable to push it off. If the child is irritated by the hood, it can be taken off towards the back, but keeps the blanket over the rest of the child even more securely.
I am the mother of seven children ranging from teens to a toddler, living out in the middle of nowhere, USA. I aim to hone the craft of giving advice without pretending to have this whole mom thing figured out. I am Christian, but not the really nice kind that is good at it. I am also conservative, but I promise not to be in your face with political agendas very often. I like to infuse humor into my writing, so don't freak out if you are offended or appalled by what you read here. There is a very fine line between serious advice and sarcastic hyperbole.