To share or not to share

Okay I love sharing I promote it regularly. I encourage sharing with my children, I want them to be willing to share their toys. Sharing is great, but the way sharing is taught by many parents is not. Yup pull out that shocked face as I discuss how I don’t like the general way sharing is taught in our society.

Picture this if you will you have your child nicely playing with a toy they are as happy as can be. Another kid comes over and decided that they want that toy. They try to take it from your child, they are unsuccessful so they start to cry. Now you step in and tell your child that they need to share, and give the toy to the other child. o_O oookay please can anyone tell me how this is teaching children to share?!?!?!? In all serious I see this everywhere. You know what this is teaching children. That whining gets them what they want. Don’t give the “oh they are just kids and I don’t want my child to be greedy and selfish” Uh yea you must that is what you are teaching them. Sharing is not just giving up your stuff when someone asks for it. Sharing is not going over and demanding someone give you their stuff because you want it. It doesn’t fly in the adult world why should it be what is expected of kids.
Children need to learn how to share. They really do, we are by nature generally pretty self absorbed. Little psychology lesson here. ( I like that kind of stuff)  When we are born we are primary controlled by our Id. It is our primary system that is pleasure driven and self satisfying. What the Id wants the Id gets. It seeks immediate satisfaction, it doesn’t focus on morality. Once they become a bit older, around 3, our Ego develops. ( not to be confused with what were refer to  as pride and lacking of humility in many people ) This is where reality sneaks in and they become more aware of what life is outside of their own means. It acknowledges outside forces on their world and can use them. Next you have your Super Ego, also can be referred to as consciousness. Here is where our children are aware of the outside factors and actually care about cause and effect. So here is when you child is going acknowledge sharing and how it effects others. This will being to happen around 5.  Please note the word BEGIN! This is developmental it takes time, patience, loving behaviour, and modelling.
Now of course you start younger with your children, in teaching sharing behaviour. There are a few things to think about. 
Look at age. Kids develop in stages expecting kids younger then 2.5 to share readily is a bit unrealistic. They are still in their primal stages and they see their belongings and know it is theirs. Do you give your stuff away to anyone who walks by and thinks its nice? No? Well why the heck not, that’s sharing isn’t it? No? Why expect that of your child? Children will grow and develop in different stages,  sharing will come in time, usually.

Acknowledge the item of issue If your child has special toys or things that are new to them? These are likely toys that will be issue toys. New toys are awesome, everyone wants to play with them. For some kids that can be an issue they maybe don’t want to share their brand new toy with others. They fear things getting lost or broken and that needs to be acknowledged. The same goes for their special toys. They should probably be put away for play times with others or not brought into play groups and such. Yes sometimes they will not separate from that special item, and you will have to be their voice letting others know that it is not a sharing item.

Choices Sometimes kids just don’t want to share, it happens. Most adults don’t want to share either. I want my children to be better than the general populous, so I encourage them to think of others, in regards to sharing. If they don’t want to share an item I ask them to think about how they would feel. I do not force them to share. I ask them to think and then they can either choose to share or offer the other person a choice of another object. There are always choice is the matter, and your child deserves a choice. By giving choice you are allowing you child the ability to think about why they share, how sharing can make them and other feel. 

Now I feel that sharing is important and it needs to be taught. It does not need to be bullied into children though. True sharing with empathy and thought needs to be modelled and explained to our children. That is this Mama’s thoughts. How do you teach sharing in your home?


ABC’s of me

Saw this cute little idea on this wonderful site VoiceBoks. They are a wonderful community of bloggers, that I have been a member of for a few months. I thought it would be a fun way to tell you all a bit more about me.

A- Aliy or Alicia ( which is my name )
B- Boys, I have three of them
C- Cloth Diaper Addict- I will have to get around to posting picture of my stash
D- Dodge. I love my new Dodge Caravan. I liked my old one but I LOVE my new one
E- Excitement- I try to find something to keep life exciting each week
F- Friendly- I am usually a rather friendly person
G- Garden- I am working on growing a proper garden this year
H- Husband- I love David and we are married for eternity
I- Interest- I love to write I always have. I just had little motivation
J- Jumpy- When I get really happy I jump a lot. Kinda might be considered a bit hyper
K- Kids- I want to have 4 kids, so that means one more for us.
L-Laughter – when ever I am feeling down I do something to get my boys laughing. I lights up my day and helps the sad go away
M- Music – I use music to filter my moods. If I can’t I tend to go south emotionally
N- Nursing – I have now had some one attached to my breast for sustinance for 60 months now and nearly 17 months has been tandem.
O- Open Minded – I am open to listening to others opinions on things and I love hearing others vaild points of view
P- Patience – I have a fair amounts some days other days we seriously lack on it. I know it really depends on my nutritional intake and my sleep.
Q- Quandary – I love this word. I use it a lot
R- Running – I love going out to run I just don’t do it enough
S- Simple Living – I wish to live much more simply. I want to get a farm where we just can be independent and happy. I want to cleanse our lives of all the excess junk
T- Turquoise – I love turquoise waters. Just looking at them gives me a sense of peace
U- Unique – I like unique things. Not weird just things that are not status quo mainstream things.
V- Vows – We wrote our own vows and share them with each other and our friends and family nearly 7 years ago.
W- Writing – I have always loved to write but I finally got the drive together to actually keep up with a blog

X- Xerox – We joke often that our kids were just put through the Xerox machine because they look so much alike

Y- Yoga Pant – I love them for lounging around the house in. Yes I do out out in them I like comfort
Z- Zurberts – Cael loves giving them to me. He is so funny and the lil mischievous face make me laugh every time he does it

The power of language

Language is so extremely powerful. There are so many aspects in your life where simply stating things out loud can really change how life goes for you. Some call this prayer, or releasing energy out to the universe, whatever you want to call it it works.
Now you may be wondering what this has to do with schooling? It is really quite simple, your children do hear you. They may not always listen but on some level they always hear you. How do you talk about your children? How do you talk about their schooling experience? Are you respectful of your child, even when they are uncooperative?
How many times have you been so frustrated with life and when something is hard you don’t put in full effort and just say “I can’t”. How frustrated do you get with your child when they do the same thing? There is much truth in the Henry Ford quote, ‘ Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t- your right.’
When you are in the midst of frustration, have you ever told your you child that they are stupid, or that any idiot could figure this out or really any other comment on their lack of intelligence? This can be damaging to your child.
If you are regularly being told by the people who love you that you are less than intelligent, don’t you think that would have a lasting effect? I really try to focus on my language with the boys. I try to lift them up and make them feel like they able to do things. Even when it is hard, and they are not understanding. I refrain for telling them that anyone could do it, because clearly anyone can’t as they are unable to. I acknowledge their trouble, and ask them what they need. I encourage them that they can do it, and I will help them to succeed.
Now there are times where I slip and I say things that hurt feelings. Sometimes you just say things out of frustration. What you do need to do is acknowledge your mistake, and rectify it. Just like most people expect their children to do when they make mistakes. The best way to have good behavior is model good behavior.
Remember your child is learning. While it may seem like a simple task to you, it could be a challenge for them. You had to learn once too!

Wanting to add….

We want to grow our family by another baby. Yes that would put us up to four children. I don’t know when this next baby is going to come. I’m hoping spring/summer of next year, but that seems like it might not be in the design of things at the moment.

I suppose I am one of those fortunate women who while breastfeeding I don’t ovulate. It has been nearly 17 months and still nothing. I know our next baby is waiting and will come in time. I know that the timing will be right for our family. It may not be what I want when I want but it will be what is needed.

I get a LOT of people asking me if we are going for the girl? For some reason people seem to think that because I have all boys, that the only reason to have another child is to have the other gender. It’s not we want to add to our family. We love our children each and everyone of them. This is not because they are boys, it is because they are wonderful individuals. I love each of them for who they are. Sure a girl might be fun but so would another boys. I’m not really particular on which I get. I will love my child regard less. Hopefully next year we can welcome a new addition. I will do random posts on our Trying To Conceive ( TTC) adventure.

Too Much Dieting!?!?!?!

Are you a constant dieter? are you always looking to try the next up and coming fad? Or are you on the flip side and you never care for all the fuss? You just eat the right food and everything is fine, right? Well whether you are or not a dieter, hopefully your body is healthy. If it’s not then maybe you need to reexamine your position.

Your diet or intake of nutrition is so important to your life. It fuels your body, helps you to keep going and maintain body functions. Your body is so amazing, it is so intelligent and just wonderful, but it needs fuel to work properly. It also needs rest, exercise and some level of maintenance. ( Chiropractic and massage are some of my favorites ) This post is more the focus of food and liquid intake.

Now I know there are a lot of people who focus so much on the caloric intake when they talk about diet. You should only intake so many calories and yadda yadda yadda. You know if counting calories works for you right on but I can’t figure it out. I make a lot of our foods and I don’t measure very well. So it just doesn’t work for me. I tried what I learned was I wasn’t getting enough, but I also couldn’t figure out how to log everything properly. I was using MyFitnessPal and still do to keep track of my progress and when I’m out trying figure out nutritional value of restraunt foods.

Okay so food. Food is pretty easy, it’s everywhere. So easy to access. Sure there are “healthy” choices everywhere. Eat a salad instead of the burger. Cut the carbs. Eat low fat, or fat free. These are all the lovely token advice that you get from health professionals and TV. So they must all be true, right? We not completely. They are all great but there are a few fundamental ways people really mess them up.

Eat the Salad

Salad is great, it is full of yummy delicious veggies. You can add a protein to round it out. You can easily make a salad into a full meal deal. Most people think if you have a salad then you are being healthy, right? Well what are you putting on that healthy salad? a nice light vinaigrette dressing or a yummy cream dressing? Now cream dressings are not evil it just depends on how much you put on and what kind you put on. You can make a really nice healthy dressing with egg garlic and oil. Of if that is not your style you can get some lovely really food dressings from the grocery store. But stay away from the fat free or low fat ones. they should read chemical crap on the label. Also watch you portions. You need a small amount of dressing. read labels and check how much is suggested, you might be surprised.

Cut the Carbs

Should be cut the wheat. Not all carbs are created equal, and they are not all evil. Wheat based products are not all that great for you, and with the growing rate of Celiac and wheat intolerances there is something to be said. Now many people will say wheat has been around for years, why now is it suddenly an issue? Well wheat is different now. It has been genetically modified, it is not the same. We just now are beginning to learn more about GMO food effect our bodies. Really though be smart educate yourself. Use whole grains stay away from the heavily processed foods. Your body will thank you.

Eat Low Fat or Fat free

This sounds great. Keep the fat low in your diet, because eating fat will make you fat, right? Well kinda, eating bad fats will possibly attribute to you being fat but there are other factors. I am a big fan of healthy real fats. Butter, cream, real food. Meat, yes real meat from real animals who have been on green pastures. You can keep a lower fat diet with eating real food, eat leaner meats, and stay low on the butter. The thing is people live in processed land where everything is pre-made. The issue with those low fat things is what they should really read is chemical shit storm. Have you compared the ingredients of full fat to it low fat equal? Do it I dare you.

Now all of this is my honest opinion due to reading I have done and a life I have lived. Take it or leave it. I am not a doctor or a professional of any kinda. I’m just a mom who wants people to look after themselves. Any health advice you choose to take is on your own choice. Please consult your health care provider before making any drastic choices, to make the best health plan for you.

Mommy Confession ~~~~~ I do Junk ( sometimes )

Yup! I do let my kids have the occasional treat. It’s not on a daily basis, they don’t drink pop and juice everyday But maybe once in awhile they have something. When I make cookies they have them. They have chips and surplees. Though these are special treats for them. We do them for nice things on road trips, or special occasions.

We also go to a certain fast food restaurant a bit more than I would like. You know the one with a giant yellow coloured letter? Yea I thought you did. I bet you go there too! Shhhh don’t tell but I kinda like it too! O.O yup I like the fries. I’m sure they coat them in something highly addictive but I don’t get them often and we don’t spend a ton of money when we go. We beat the system. I don’t do the kids meals I split adult meals for them. NO more toys!!!!!

So yup we do junk but it is in moderation for us. According to some of my friends the kids never get any treats, but hey they do it’s just not a daily thing.

Too Many Toys

 I find it amazing how toys grow. I am pretty sure they toys are ….um….having relations in the playroom Every.Single.Night. Seriously the kids have toys that I have never seen. I don’t know where they came from or when they showed up. Before you start thinking that my kids are taking toys, they aren’t. People just give them stuff all the time. Their babysitter always has something for them whenever she comes over.

So last night I went through the toys there were just getting to be too much. We don’t really do big toys, but it is the little ones that grow.  I couldn’t believe it when I dumped everything out at the mound of stuff there was.

So what did I do, I purged. I do it about once a year and cut things down. I always ask the boys first before I do it. I let them know that it is time to give some of our toys to other children who need toys. They have been good so far and I always keep the stuff for a bit. I also let them see the purge bin. It’s also not just their stuff going I give our stuff away to and they know about donating to those in need. They also know Mom is more willing for stuff to come in when lots goes out!

I have this pretty fantasy in my head where they are few toys and my children play with wooden toys and silk scarves, very Waldorfy. Unfortunately it just isn’t a reality, my kids like plastic. sure they like the wooden toys and silk scarves but they like the branding too!. I can’t win them all so I just keep it limited.

How I became and AP mom?

You know it is funny? When I looked towards my parenting life while I was pregnant with Damian Attachment Parenting(AP) wasn’t even on my radar. I hadn’t even heard of it honestly. I did not come from an AP background, so it wasn’t a style I was even familiar with. I knew a few things that I wanted. I wanted to breastfeed my child and I had no desire for surgery or a giant needle in my back. Now it seems to be everywhere, papers, magazine and the talk of the mommy world. If you have never heard of AP, you can read about it on Attachment Parenting International. They have 8 basic principles.-Prepare for pregnancy, birth and parenting
-Feed with love and respect
-Respond with sensitivity
-Use nurturing touch
-Ensure safe sleep, emotionally and physically
-Provide consistent and loving care
-Practice positive discipline
-Strive for balance in personal and family life.

Now coming to this mind set came pretty easily to me. Damian’s birth was pretty good and it ended up going okay.Ainsley’s was amazing for me. Cael’s was a difficult birth but I prepared for it as best I could.  I knew I wanted to breastfeed my son. I wasn’t going to let anything stop me, including his awful latch. I had the milk we just needed to figure it out. It came in time and we had a great nursing relationship till  he chose to wean. I continue to have a nursing relationahip with Bobo and lil Squish, and it will continue till they are done or it is no longer mutually desireable.
Safe sleep for us is a combination of co-sleeping and bed sharing. We have an open bed policy for our older children as they are in their own beds now. Damian and Ainsley share a bedroom  with each other and up until recently would share a bed. They expressed interest in having their own little beds. They do share a bed when we travel and do well with it. I find it keeps them happier when they are kept together, they seem to have less stress in new situations which is a big thing for Ainsley.
When dealing with our children we try very hard to always be loving and sensitive. they are bundles of emotions and feelings, they need guidance on how to deal with everything going on. Now it is definitely not always easy to be loving and sensitive when dealing with issues, but it is doable. When we falter and are harsh , we will apologize to our children. Apologizing to your child allows them to see that you too make mistakes, and that is okay. It is not a sign of weakness it is a sign of strength.
When it comes to positive discipline this is an on going work for us. I know I don’t want to be the kind of parent that my child feared. I wanted love and understanding in my home. Now getting here is coming along. We reall try to refrain from using physical punishment with the boys. We are not always perfect and we do think that there are times when a swat on the rear has happened. I hate  this maybe it’s the way we were raised, I just don’t know what to do sometimes. This is my major failing point.
I look for balance in my life. I seek methods to give balance just sometimes it is so hard to do. Mostly it is my personal life that suffers. I keep putting into my family that I do nothing for me and I breakdown. This is not a good thing. I still need to find balance. but I am working on it.

So honestly I kinda fell into the AP thing I had these ideas and then I found out that there were others like me. I still am different from some AP moms, but I really think different is good. My kids don’t suffer from me learning different ways to care for them. I always am looking to improve my parenting skills. I want my kids to be the most functional people they can be. I want them to think I want them to ask questions. I don’t don’t want them to live in fear. I want them to know they are loved.

Mommy Confession ~~~~~ Sunscreen

For the last two summers I haven’t been using it, that much. When I know they will be in large bodies of water or outside in extreme heat all day, we forgo cancer in a bottle. I love the spray on stuff for the ease of use, but the chemicals. Yuck! I  know there are lots of others out there but they all involve rubbing stuff in a wiggly kid. No thank you! They start building their base tans once it is warm around here. We spend a fair amount of time outside when the sunshines. Heck I’m tanning right now while writing this on my phone. Love the Blogger app for that.

So yea my boys are tanned. We eat antioxidant fruits that hell with skin regeneration and boost skin tolerance to sun. The boys wear hats and rash gaurds at times. They rarely have ever burnt. Live is good get outside and live life.