This month our SDWM (Special Day with Mom) will be a movie at the dollar show theater. We get movies at the library often when they come out on DVD, and often have said how cool they must have looked on the big screen. But going to the movies regularly is so expensive, and we always seem to miss when they are the dollar show. It’s like one week they are at the regular theater and the next they are out on DVD!! This month we found a dollar show theater that is showing a bunch of movies, which is cool because they all 4 want to see different things. Woot-woot! I am excited.
Trula has written 4 entries about this goal
This month carving out an alone-time day for each kid is going to be hard. I think we will just do the coffee house, just take a sunday morning and go hang out and talk. I love how they look forward to spending time with just me. We do stuff all the time as a family, as a group, and are together all the time but it is rare that I have time alone with each child just to focus on them. I love my babies so.
November is packed with lots of family activities, this month we have 2 birthdays and 2 parties, going to 2 movies, the art museum, a few events for my biz, a trip to Cincinnati, and an art show for a friend of mine, and all the holiday thanksgiving dinners with both sides of the family. I think for our SDWMs (Special Day with Mom) we’ll just do the coffeeshop again. It’s about 3 miles from our house so maybe we’ll bike there or walk, and just sit and talk and drink cocoa (them) and tea (me).
I am always amazed at how much birth order and family dynamics affect how they interact with me and each other. When they are all together, it definitely affects how they relate to me. For one, they compete for my attention. It’s always mom mom mom mom mom from one or another, and someone is always pulling on my arm. Todd, who is 7, definitely plays the baby role, he tends to act more babyish when they are all 3 together than when he is just with me. When we are alone together he is more assertive and talks more. Scott, who is 10, talks less when we are together but he also talks slower. Sometimes when they are all together he talks fast because someone is always interrupting him. Iyende, who is 16, definitely takes on the leadership role and acts the big sister, oldest child, all of that when they are all together. When we are alone she seems younger and talks about stuff she rarely does around her brothers.
Some things I have learned so far:
I need to encourage them to listen to each other
I need to encourage them to respect each other i.e no interrupting when another is speaking
I need to focus on the child who is speaking so that they feel heard. I sometimes turn away from them when they are speaking such as when I am doing housework. I think this is part of why they feel the need to compete for my attention.
I need to praise them more both alone and when they are around each other.
I am going to start doing Special Day with Mom, or SDWM, again this month, starting this Sunday. although the initials are SDWM my kids always transposed it to SWDM and pronounced it as swee-dum, LOL. Generally we would go someplace special, just me an one child, and spend the whole day together. Time became such a huge factor so we stopped doing this, but now I realize that even if I can’t spend an entire day alone with each child once a month I can still spend some time alone with each child, even if I just take them to a coffee shop and we sit and drink cocoa and tea for an hour and talk.
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