Oh Disney On Ice, I really wanted to hate you. You and your over-sized Mickey Mouse costumes, your double axles instead of the quad that everyone is raving about. From the moment I saw your overpriced $14 spinning glow-in-the-dark worthless toys, I was searching for a reason to despise and mock you. But I couldn't do it.
Kids all deal with anger a little differently. Some go off and sulk, while others throw tantrums... kicking and screaming for all they're worth.
Over the past few months, Princess P has been using an online, animated series of lessons to learn to read... or at least start recognizing more words. Since I deal with online learning on an almost daily basis at work, I was curious to see how effective the Headsprout Early Reading program would be for Princess P.
Blogging and being a professional nerd are two things in this life that I enjoy very much. When they complement each other, life is good. Staying on the bleeding edge of technology allows me to connect with more people, through more avenues. While writing gives me a creative outlet for the weird things that roll around in my head.
But when the worlds interfere with each other, at least one world suffers. Unfortunately, over the past weeks, blogging has been the casualty. During my time off, I've learned a few things, some of which I'd like to share.
If people do something that surprises you, it's your fault.
I heard the phrase above a while back, and I just can't seem to get it out of my head. With some very minor changes, the same phrase applies to parenting. If a kid does something that surprises you, it's your own fault. Just to be clear, I'm mainly talking about the unpleasant surprises, like wiping a booger on grandma, streaking in front of company, dating a hoodlum... those types of things.
Long ago, in a distant land, there lived a king. The king ruled his kingdom with a fair and just hand, and life was good. However, after a period of stability throughout the region, an unsettling presence sought to disrupt the peace.
Enter the dragon... this was no friendly, PBS Kids Dragon Tales type of dragon, but a man eating, fire breathing dragon. After laying in slumber for many years, the beast was awakened, and seeking to devour all in its way.
There have been times in the past when I have grown frustrated with my children... particularly the older one. One could say that I have been curt, gruff, and insensitive. Take what I like to call the "bike riding incidents" for example. They started out well enough, but always ended in me saying something like, "I'm not carrying your bike home, if you want it, you can ride it... or else we'll leave it in the park for someone else to enjoy." While reflecting on my parenting tactics, I had a hard time figuring out why my approach didn't work.
In the wake of the recent events in Haiti , one question keeps popping up in my mind. What would I do in a disaster? Does our family have a plan? My answer, unfortunately, is a resounding no.
When your child figures out how to get out of his or her crib, what do you do? Do you move them to a toddler bed and give up the cozy confines of a crib? Or do you leave them in their crib, and hope that the novelty of climbing out wears off?
I say leave them in the crib as long as they still fit. The sooner they go to a real bed, the sooner you have to deal with them smearing feces on the wall, messing with the dresser, and coming out of their room.
But couldn't they get hurt climbing out of their crib?
I focus a lot on my kids at SimpleFather.com, and rightly so since this is after all, a parenting blog. But I'd like to step back, take a few minutes and say be aware.
I know that a new year often signals fresh starts, new beginnings, and wiping the slate clean. However, the fact of the matter is for many, a new year means just another year of heartache, financial troubles, and one year closer to the kids moving out.