The excellent and peaceful progress of our toddler haulted some time after Christmas. We went from pee in the potty in the morning, happy play most of the day, nap without fuss, good eating and great sleeping (in our bed- that happened in early December) to chaos. Absolute-flippin-chaos.
Part of it is that Mommy is pregnant, tired and had been sick so she wasn't being as hard core of a "right is right and wrong is wrong" Mommy as she used to be. Part of it was Daddy picking up Mommy's slack, trying to keep me in one piece and suddenly getting more hours at work. Part of it was every one is sick and Layla cut her toddler molars. Part of it was that Nannie was watching Layla more and more and Nannie is a sucker...and not just any sucker but one of those giant swirly ones you can only get at theme parks. (love you mom...really...)
So in 2 months we've gone from calm and well behaved 95 % of the time to 80% of the time. While that's still less drama then some other kids I know... it's driving me CRAZY. Soon they are going to have to lock me in a padded room and feed me nothing but jell-o...that kind of crazy.
After the 2 hour plus fit over the toddler wanting to be the boss of us earlier this week there was a line in the sand at our house...a BIG line... it might be a fault line. I'm just saying.
Thusly...now there are rules. Some of them are rules we had before that just have to get reinforced. some of them are new rules that Mommy and Daddy decided life would be better with. It boils down to seven life skill type rules I think every kid needs to have.
1. The toddler is not the boss of us. (Alternately titled-respect your elders and for the love of GOD stop whining and screaming)
2. Follow the daily routine (Layla was doing so well when things always went in the same order with the same rules every day)
3. Clean up after yourself. (New rule- new era...with a baby coming I could use a tiny helper)
4. Eat Smart. (Old rule, long since forgotten by every single person in this house who is EXHAUSTED which I think is all of us)
5. Praise happy toddlers! (I used to hear a lot more praise and a lot less *NO STOP* *LAYLA GRACE* *ONE....two...THREE* and this rule was created because I think it's the first step in having a child behave well is to treat them like they are good when they are good)
6. Learning is fun. (Layla thrives at some things and struggles with others so this will be about focusing time on the things that matter most)
7. Mommy and Daddy get the final veto. (this is a lot like rule #1 but involves getting active support from the Grandparents because sometimes the tiny rules that grandparents break haunt us FOREVER or so it appears)
So why am I posting this here? Well mostly to hold myself accountable. I also sent a copy to my mom (so she can work with us) and I am printing a few out to post up around my house to keep Jon, Nannie and I focused on the daily aspect of going back to the land of calm.
The printout is much more detailed and each rule is a paragraph long with explainations but I didn't want to bore the internet with that...
So ask me how we did in a month would you?