Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Why I Strive To Parent Gently

I never thought any different than how I was raised when raising Emmy... I was spanked. Then she arrived and of course I didn't want to hit her but of course I didn't want a "spoiled brat" either. I started reading. I discovered AP (attached parenting) and gentle parenting. I learned that discipline doesn't have to be painful to be effective. Children need boundaries that can see and understand. They're going to push them because they need to see those boundaries, the boundaries which show them they are surrounded and safe. 

I learned that about 99% of the time the action Emmy is taking is in response to an unmet need. Maybe she's screaming in the store for a toy. Could this be because she is hungry, or tired, or just hates shopping? Is she allowed to have these emotions? Yes. She is. Is she allowed to have the desire for a new toy? Yes. In all of these she has a valid need to be filled to her child mind and this toy can either make her forget it or answer it. 

She is a human like me. She is allowed emotions. Patience is learned with time and you cannot expect a child to just suck it up. Even we get impatient often. Would a spanking fix her issue? Teach her not to scream in the store? No. Just like us when we have an outward problem, try to find an inward issue. 

When I show her that I can meet her needs then we can talk about how to handle next time. Tell her a better way to let me know next time. This doesn't mean she always gets her way. It can simply mean us leaving for now and coming back to shop at a different time.

This is the process I put my mind through daily with Emmy. No, I don't not always keep my cool. No, I can't always keep up this mentality. That's when I apologize to myself and to her and I do better next time. I find showing this to her also shows her that everyone is wrong sometimes, we just must try harder next time. 

It takes a lot of patience to be a parent. It takes a lot more patience for them to be kids who know absolutely nothing of this world. Guide them gently so they know you will always be there with love, even when their 2, 9, 16, 25 year old world is falling apart because they broke their toy or their boyfriend broke up with them. It's all big things to them and they have to learn just like we did.

This is just bits and pieces on how I see gentle parenting. It's not the lack of boundaries or disciple, it's the use of calm words and love which doesn't hurt for little ones who are scared of this world anyway so they can understand. This shows them their safe place.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Apples Are Rubbish!

The Doctor: Can I have an apple? All I can think about. Apples. I love apples. Maybe I'm having a craving. That's new. Never had cravings before. Woah! Look at that. 
The DoctorThat's disgusting. What is that 
Amelia: An apple. 
The Doctor: Apple's rubbish. I hate apples. 
Amelia: You said you liked them.   
The Doctor: No no no. I like yogurt. Yogurt's    my favorite. Gimme yogurt.

So I made apple sauce tonight....

It was simple and I'm going to tell you how to do it too. It's also a very healthy option as it has no added sugar.

Here is most of what you will need, plus cinnamon, a pot, spoon, and a potato masher, blender, or food processor-

I used organic apples so I knew it had no extra nasties in it. They cost like $0.50 more than the non-organic ones.

Then I peeled them all, used my apple/slicer to cut it, then cut it further into small chunks to make it cook faster.

Put it all in a pot with 1/2 cup of water or so to cover the bottom of the pot. Add as much cinnamon as you like. That part is totally up to you. Bring it all to a boil then put on the lid and simmer until it's all soft. Keep it stirred. Took 15-20 minutes.

Next part is also to your preference. Take the pot off the fire. You can either use a potato masher for chunkier apple sauce or do like me and put it through the food processor or blender. I make some popsicles for Em a healthier cool treat and put the rest in the fridge for us to snack on.

See, super duper easy. You can do it too.  :-)

Dear Single Parents...

Dear single mamas and daddies,
You probably didn't wake up to breakfast in bed, maybe your little one isn't even old enough to understand. You've gone about your Sunday as you would any Sunday. There is still work to do and a child to be cared for.
I see you over there.
I see you everyday, doing it all alone. I'm proud of you. You're doing it and doing it well. Needing to cry sometimes doesn't mean you failed. I know it's hard but I also know that sweet baby's smile is worth it.
So in honor of all the hard work you do, thank you.
Love always,
A fellow single mom
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