Archive for February 2012

How to Stop Your Kids From Interrupting

“Mom…Mom…Mom…Mom…” Do you ever hear this coming from your kids while you are in the middle of a conversation with someone else?  Have you ever responded by turning and yelling, “WHAT!” and then felt just a little embarrassed (or maybe not) for yourself or for your kids’ rude behavior? Would you like a simple technique that will make you look the kind of parent who has it all put together?  The technique is called squeeze my fingers and it can

Let’s Play Hide and Seek the Stuff I Clean Up

Many parents complain about how their children leave stuff all over the house.  Parents either feel like unpaid servants or like broken records constantly nagging their kids to clean up after themselves.  Some parents say that it takes less energy to clean up after their children then to get their children to clean up after themselves.  Other parents complain that their children don’t move to clean up until they start yelling – and they hate the fact that they yell.

My 4-year-Old’s Addiction: When TV Becomes a Problem for Young Kids.

It’s 6:30am Friday morning.  My 4-year-old son comes wandering into my room and asks, “Dad, what day is it?”  I respond by saying, “It’s Friday.” “It’s Friday!” he exclaims with a burst of energy.  Then he asks, “Can I watch a woovie (movie)?” Because of the research indicating the negative effects that TV watching can have on the developing brain of young children, my wife and I have tried to limit the time spent viewing movies and television in our

How parents can destroy the effectiveness of consequences?

Why is it that two set of parents can apply the same consequence but yet get very different results?  Is it because the child that learns from the consequence is good-natured while the other child who becomes resentful is just a bad egg?  Does it all depend on the temperament of the child or does the way the parents apply the consequences have any influence over their effectiveness? I am reminded of mother whose first reaction when her child did

Teachable moments

A common hope as parents is that our kids will do well in high school, go to college, and get an education so that they can compete in the world in which they live. Although this hope is logical, sometimes we are not as logical when it comes to passing this hope on to our kids. Love and logic teaches that one of the most powerful teaching techniques for parents to use is modeling. We model the behaviors that we

When Kids Make “Bad” Friends

One of the major worries parents have as their kids get older is whether or not their kids will make good friends.  From their own experience, parents recognize that friends can have such a powerful influence over their kids – for good or for bad.  Because of that influence, some parents enter into the trap of trying to control who their kids can have as friends.  Once parents enter into a control battle over who they will allow their kids

Why is there chocolate on this doughnut?

Do your kids ever ask questions that puzzle you?  Not because you don’t know the answer, but because you are not sure of the answer to give them. I know of a father whose girl asked such a question.  They went out one Saturday morning for doughnuts and his little girl chose the one with chocolate frosting and colored sprinkles.  As she ate the doughnut she asked, “Daddy, why does this doughnut have chocolate on it?” This father was unsure

The Title “Mother” is not Followed by the Subtitle “Servant”

Mothers, do you sometimes feel like you have the Burger King logo around your neck because your kids expect you to make it their way; right away?  Do you ever feel more like a cab driver and a short order cook then the queen of the castle?  Is that the way it should be? So many kids nowadays grow up with the idea that they deserve the best their parents can afford (or not afford). This entitled attitude ends up

Overcoming Entitlement in Children

Picture your precious child in your arms for the first time.  So sweet… So little… So innocent.  “This child,” you think, “was meant to bring happiness into my life.” Now fast forward ten years.  You have just spent an hour in the kitchen on a new recipe trying to include more nutritious foods into your family’s diet when the same child you gave birth to sits down at the dinner table, looks at the new food and says, “Gross, what

Using Scare Tactics to Discipline Kids: a lesson learned from the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland

As a six year old boy, I remember being so scared of the haunted mansion at Disneyland.  The ride began as a group of people walked into a large room and listened to a narrator tell us what we were in for.  As I remember, the narrator had a deep, spooky voice and he stated we were welcome to come in, but we would never get out.  Then suddenly the lights would go out.  Everyone would hear a scream and