28 Nov
2016
Posted in: Giggles
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My Toddler

June16 145

So, this morning as I was trying to wake up and ready myself for the day, I was cruising Facebook.  I do this on a regular basis in the wee hours of the morning; it helps to pull my brain out of the foggy-I-just-crawled-out-of-bed phase, and into the I-must-face-my-day mode.

This morning, as I sat in my cozy chair, next to my fully decorated Christmas tree, I read a most disturbing article.  A fellow SAHM (Stay At Home Mom) recounted her decision for not returning to her childless friend’s home.  Her reasoning?  She has a toddler.

I could literally feel my blood pressure on the rise as I tried to focus my sleepy eyes on the remainder of the article.  Apparently, this poor woman is living with a pint-sized dictator; and because of said ruling regime, she can no longer spend time at other people’s houses.

What?!

I realize that I am somewhat removed from the toddler scene these days…my kiddos are 13, 14, and 15; however, I vividly remember what life was like when they were 2, 3, and 4.  Truth be told, life during that stage was a virtual nightmare.  My husband and I were severely outnumbered, not only by sheer numbers of children, but also by strength of energy presented by those numbers.  Yet, through all of that, we maintained the role of authority in our home.

We were the parents, and we made the rules.

Not the children.

Rest assured, this path was utterly exhausting.

It would have been so much easier to allow the children to completely have their own way within the walls of our house.  I mean, after all, it was their house, too…right?

Wrong.

It is my house.

The things in my house belong to me.  The children have very specific items inside my house that belong to them.  However, things that are specific to me, they must not touch.  Some of the “untouchables” are for their own safety, and some are simply because I said NO.  But, one of the main reasons my husband and I put so many boundaries and restrictions on our children was because we knew that our house was NOT going to be the ONLY house they ever entered.  We wanted to be able to take our kids anywhere, at any time, without fear.

And we could.

When Christmas-time rolled around, I always decorated my ENTIRE tree.  Were the children magically drawn to the beautifully bulb-laden branches?  You better believe it.  Like moths to a flame.  Did they touch them?

They tried.

Each time a little hand made the brave attempt to reach out and grab a branch, they were met with a stern “NO,” a hand swat, and a re-direct.  Sound harsh?  Perhaps.  Try this on for size: My Christmas tree, when fully decorated, weighs close to 300 lbs.  If it were to have fallen on one of my small children, it could have crushed them.  As a result of my corrections and discipline, they were kept safe.  And, as an indirect result, I could take my then-toddlers to ANY home with a fully decorated Christmas tree, and THEY WOULD NOT TOUCH IT.

Why?  The tree was not theirs.

I also never moved picture frames…or my cuckoo clock (even with its incredibly LONG chains)…or even my candles.  The kids learned that these were my things.

As for the food section of this morning’s article; don’t even get me started.  The writer laments the fact her toddler will not eat anything.  I have a question, what are you feeding this child at home?  Is it something OTHER than what you are feeding yourself?  IF that is the case, why in the world are you going to that much trouble?  Why are you making more than ONE meal?

Aren’t you tired?

Here’s a little life-saving tip for anyone with an upcoming toddler or a current toddler: They will eat what you put in front of them.  Your spouse does NOT want chicken nuggets and tator tots three nights a week, with pizza bagel bites on the other four.  Think back to when your toddler was a baby.  You fed that baby veggies, meats, and fruits…it was all pureed…but you hit ALL the major food groups.

Why and when did you stop?

Your kids will eat.  I swear.

If cooking is not exactly your best bag of tricks, don’t worry.  There are TONS of quick helps for you.  Try a cook book.  If you can read, you can cook.  There are boxed meals sent to your door with instructions.  YouTube has TONS of videos to help you in the kitchen.  When all else fails, email me…I’m a great cook.  I have easy recipes to help you.  Your significant other will love them and your kids will eat them.

Okay…my rant is over.  There are a handful of things that get me really riled up…in case you couldn’t tell.  I want to leave you with this: Our goal with this parenting thing is to raise happy, healthy, and PRODUCTIVE members of society.  We will fail miserably at that IF we do not teach our children boundaries and good table manners.  Remember this, Parenting is NOT for sissies!  Good luck out there!

Here’s hoping your day is tantrum free!

-Dallas

So, what do you think?