Wednesday, February 08, 2017

A Year of No Yelling Day 39 Featuring Edible Mancala Stones

Working out in the morning is really working for us. I get out of the house and interact with adults and get the benefit of a workout, while the girls get outside time, friends, and some gross motor movement. Tabs is sleeping better. 

Today I was able to show love by doing something special with/for each daughter. Right when I was congratulating myself for being such a great mother, Alexa announced she had swallowed a mancala piece and needed to poop in a bag. 

"Ummm... Mancala pieces are nice and smooth. I think we'll risk it. Stop putting things in your mouth. Srsly." 

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

A Year of No Yelling Day 38 Featuring a Well-Traveled Penny

It was raining today so we skipped our walk outside. It's a good thing we did: After Drek got off to work and Ash got off to school Alexa announced dhe had to go poo-poo,

I wonder if you told teenagers that being a parent means holding open a ziplock back while your three-year-old poops into it, and then going through the poop to look for coins, if that would help drop the rates of teenage pregnancy.

The good news is there was a coin! A penny! Phew!

Despite a crappy start to the day (ha, HA!) the rest of the day went well. I read some books to Alexa, and I ended up taking her on a small date just to show her I love her.

Another successful parenting day!

Monday, February 06, 2017

A Year of No Yelling Day 37 Featuring Conquering by Love and Children's True Identity

Today I listened to to a talk by Elder Lynn G Robbins called The Righteous Judge. He talks a lot about parenting and gives some absolute gems of advice.  He says:

To discipline in the Lord’s way is to lovingly and patiently teach. 

 To effectively teach a child is the very essence of good parenting, and to lovingly discipline is the very essence of being a righteous judge. 

President Joseph F. Smith taught, “If children are defiant and difficult to control, be patient with them until you can conquer by love, … and you can then [mold] their characters as you please.” 

The Doctrine and Covenants gives us this well-known advice on discipline: “No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned; “By kindness, and pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and without guile— “Reproving betimes with sharpness, when moved upon by the Holy Ghost; and then showing forth afterwards an increase of love” (D&C 121:41–43). This scripture teaches us to reprove “when moved upon by the Holy Ghost,” not when moved upon by anger. The Holy Ghost and anger are incompatible because “he that hath the spirit of contention is not of me, but is of the devil, who is the father of contention, and he stirreth up the hearts of men to contend with anger” (3 Nephi 11:29). 

The Spirit of the Lord is a spirit of kindness; it is a spirit of patience; it is a spirit of charity and love and forbearance and long suffering. … 

Love? Forbearance? Long suffering? Sounds like the job description of a parent.

But my favorite part was the last bit:

 Our Children’s True Identity 

 When the Savior visited the Nephites, He did something extraordinary with the children: 

 “And it came to pass that he did teach and minister unto the children of the multitude … , and he did loose their tongues, and they did speak unto their fathers great and marvelous things. … “… And they both saw and heard these children; yea, even babes did open their mouths and utter marvelous things” (3 Nephi 26:14, 16). 

 Perhaps more than opening the mouths of babes, the Lord was opening the eyes and ears of their astonished parents. Those parents had been granted the extraordinary gift of a glimpse into eternity and of beholding the true identity and premortal stature of their children. Would that not forever change the way the parents saw and treated their children? I like this variation of a quote attributed to Goethe: “The way you see [a child] is the way you treat them, and the way you treat them is [who] they [will] become.” 

To remember a child’s true identity is a gift of foresight that divinely inspires the vision of a righteous judge.

As I listened to this talk it really resonated with me. What I am doing every day, hour after hour, is the most important thing I could do. I can and will do many, many other important things, but this is the MOST important.

Today was a good day! I made it through showing love, and having teaching moments instead of yelling moments.

Sunday, February 05, 2017

A Year of No Yelling Day 36 Featuring an Overabundance of Coins

I was irritable today. I tried to keep my temper in check, but there were a few times today when I said snapped back when I should have been kind and understanding.

As we were getting the kids ready for bed I picked Tabs up and laid her on her back to change her diaper. She opened her mouth and inside I saw a coin go to the back of her throat. I quickly turned her over and told her to spit it out. I did a quick finger sweep and out came a dime. Phew!

I finished changing her diaper and got her into pajamas. I went to find Alexa to get her into pajamas, She walked out of her room with a panicked look on her face and said "Mama! I swallowed a quarter!"

Where are all these coins coming from?! Did we harvest our money tree?

I called poison control for the second time in my life (same kid. Huh.) and they said not to panic but to have her poop into a ziplock bag so we could look for the coin. I told this to Drek, who nodded thoughtfully and then said "Yes, Also, I've got a lot of work to do tomorrow. I don't think I'll be home, whenever Alexa goes to bed. A lot of work. Very busy."

Being a parent is so glamorous.

Saturday, February 04, 2017

A Year of No Yelling Day 35 Featuring Safety Clauses

Today Alexa ran in front of me and into the parking lot. I yelled her name to get her to stop. I think that falls under the "Yelling in life threatening situations" clause. Her life wasn't in danger, but safety is not to be taken lightly.

In the evening I yelled Tab's name out of exasperation. Which did not fall under any clause. She just knows how to push my buttons.

Friday, February 03, 2017

A Year of No Yelling Day 34 Featuring Regret, Reactions, and Realizations.

Yesterday was a really busy day. I didn't have time to make dinner yesterday so we ate pizza for dinner.

Today I realized that although I don't have the mental clarity and energy I had in November, not eating sugar really has helped my mood.

Today I was irritable. I had no patience. I kept snapping. I didn't lose my temper, but I didn't really keep it, either. I raised my voice out of frustration, something I haven't done in several days. For the past several days when a problem arises, I'm able to stay calm and try different methods to avoid yelling turn the situation into a teaching experience, where my children learn something positive. Today I simply reacted. There was no problem solving, no effort to teach, just the desire to control.

It was just pizza! It wasn't even a case of Thin Mints! It wasn't a dessert, it was just white flour and added sugar. Sigh.

Thursday, February 02, 2017

A Year of No Yelling Day 33 Featuring Exercise, Sunshine, and Social Interaction.

In an attempt to gain more energy and mental clarity, I'm going to move on from nutrition and add exercise. After Ash was born I trained for a half marathon and discovered a love of running. I love to be outside, running through space, left alone with my own thoughts. I'm able to process emotions, come up with solutions, and find peace that I keep with me throughout my day. 

The reason I have not been running, or even exercising, is one: children, and two: I don't have energy to exercise, I don't sleep through the night!  It's a catch 22. 

So yesterday and today after dropping Ash off at school, I took Alexa and Tabs out running on our double jogging stroller. It's nothing like when I was training for a half Marathon. First of all, I am not alone. I have two kids with me. Also I'm walking with several other women who also have children. It's not the solace I want, but it's something. It's progress. It's me being outside and getting some sunlight. 

I'm hoping it will help with my mood. As of late, I've been in a depression I can't seem to shake. I feel like I'm just going through the motions. Hopefully this will help.