Sunday, January 31, 2010

Beans, Beans the Magical Fruit....

Its not what you think. We've been using them for a motivational thing for Nate. His behavior was becoming challenging so we decided it was time for a "new" reward system to help get him interested in being polite, helpful, etc.
So, the way it works is this: for every good behavior there is a set (or sometimes random) bean amount that he gets to put in his jar upon completion of said behavior. For every bad/poor behavior there is a bean amount that gets taken away from his jar. There are rewards posted on the fridge w/ bean $ amounts to be paid to get the reward. Every few days we get to count the beans in the jar and see what he has and decide if he wants to buy something or save for something. At first he was buying piddly things like dollar store toys that get lost or broken quickly. But slowly he is learning to save up for the big ticket item like a date to the movies, etc.
It is not a cure for normal childhood behavior but it has been helpful in minimizing the tantrums and disobedience and maximizing the helpfulness and cooperation. Certainly worth the small amount of time, effort and money to increase the peace in our house!

Here are some links about kids & chores:

Chores for Kids by Age

SuperNanny Reward Charts (we used these when potty training Nate)

Printable Reward Charts

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Something I Like To Do....

I like to give gifts. No matter the occasion. But usually I try to think outside the box a little. I'm all about registries and making sure someone gets what they need but I like to make it fun too. My friend is getting married in a few weeks and when I went shopping for her shower gift I knew I could not just get a couple towels and call it a day. I was tickled to find bubble bath, incense and a back massager for inexpensive that coordinated with the towels that they'd registered. When I got home I paired it all up with a basket that I already had (I think I got some bath & body stuff in it for Christmas) and a ribbon from something else that also color coordinated. I made the tag to match and wa-la! Much more interesting and appealing than a couple towels in a gift bag.

** I am in no way putting down anyone who does not take the same interest in gift appearance that I do. I did gift wrapping in 4-H when I was a kid and my mom and I dabbled in gift baskets for awhile so I guess I'm just inclined to be into that sort of thing and that is me. A gift is a blessing no matter the package it comes in!! ;-)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Reminder of Reality

We seem to go through phases around here. There are times when we are sheltered and are able to only see Joe's progress and put out of our minds how far behind he really is. I think that those times are good for me. Its much easier to just enjoy Joe for who he is and to focus on the good when we're not thinking about the rest.
And then there are times... when the huge gap between what Joe can do and what he "should" be doing is glaring me right in the face. This is one of those times. Since we are nearing Joe's third birthday we have recently begun the process of transitioning Joe from First Steps therapy to the school system therapy. Included in that process is a folder full of paperwork with lots and lots of questions about his development and abilities, etc. I know myself well enough that I asked Isaac to fill out those forms because it would have strongly effected my state of mind. I'd have spent days dwelling on the contents and all the boxes that I would have had to check "unable to do". Part of me felt bad for passing the buck on to Isaac, it effects him too. But I think he is better at keeping himself balanced than I am. I am pregnant for goodness sake!
In addition to the school transition stuff we also had Joe's annual First Steps evaluation. A team of two therapists (not his usual ones) came out and asked questions and observed and challenged Joe to see what he could and could not do. Lovely ladies and very nice but I don't think I'll ever really be comfortable under that kind of scrutiny. Every time we go through one of these evals is a reminder of all the work and challenges that Joe has ahead of him, that we have ahead of us. And since we still do not have a definitive diagnosis we do not really have a clear idea of what to expect in the years to come.
But no matter what, Joe is our beautiful son and I know that. As always your prayers are coveted.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

My Top 10 Predictions for 2010

These are in no particular order and are mostly just for fun. Maybe I'll recap later in the year and see which ones actually come to pass!! I think in the year 2010:

1 - Nate will ask over a million questions and I will get very close to going insane!

2 - Joe will learn how to crawl. Keep praying for this one!!

3 - I'll have a few dozen people tell me I look like I'm about to pop before I finally give birth to baby number three (and maybe a couple after!!).

4 - I will turn the big 3-0 and freak out a little! But who could blame me? ;-)

5 - Isaac will step up and be there for me when I am adjusting to having three kids.

6 - I'll finally get it together and get some more active habits started (really hoping for this one!).

7 - I will continue to try to convince my out of town friends to move to the Indy area - and they will continue to ignore me! ;-)

8 - Three or more of my friends will get married! I love weddings!

9 - Something like half a dozen babies (friends and family) will be born, including mine!

10 - The show Lost will air its final season and disappoint me with the ending!!