Sunday, March 22, 2009

Update on Time-Outs

After sitting in his high chair by himself for 10 or 15 minutes once, Gavin is now quite happy to say "I'm sorry Mama" after his time-outs. Time-outs seem to be quite an effective discipline method at the moment. He absolutely hates them and cries very loudly for the entire minute or minute-and-a-half he has to sit in the corner (I'm pretty sure he hates them more than spankings.) And, a verbalized possibility of a time-out almost always keeps him from disobeying.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Conversation (and a couple other things too)

Chad (as he comes in the door from work): Hello there!
Gavin: Hi! How a' you doin'?
Chad: I'm pretty good. How are you?
Gavin: I'm good.
Chad to Michelle, a little dumbfounded: Um, did we just have a conversation???

Another blurb from tonight:
Gavin: Daddy brilliant!!
Chad: Daddy's... brilliant???
Gavin (nodding head vigorously): Uh-huh!

And from earlier today:
Michelle to Gavin: Can I have a kiss?
Gavin: No!
Gavin starts to run in the other direction, then stops, turns around and grins and runs headlong into Michelle to give her a kiss.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A Season of Rest

Life seems to be in a happy lull at the moment, and although we might not be getting as much sleep as we'd like, we are enjoying a season of rest. Gavin is doing well and we are having fun with him. He is learning like crazy (of course! he's a toddler!), starting to say full or nearly-full sentences ("yes I do!" or "lie down on mama's shoulder" or "watch a movie!!"), excited about reading his words (he's got about 20 down so far) and generally giggly and fun. He loves to "wrestle" (I have no idea who taught him that word) on our bed with us and will play peek-a-boo/hide-and-seek with or without us in any tight space he can find.

Gavin apparently remembers a lot more of what people around him say than we think - out of the blue the other day he said "oh my gosh" clear as day four times in a row, and I'm sure he hadn't heard that phrase for at least a few days. Following that he also started saying "oh my goodness", but we're trying to head both of those off and suggest "oh dear!" or "oh my!" instead. And we're being really careful to pay attention to what comes out of our mouths and asking our relatives to do the same!

We've started using time-outs for discipline instead of just a flick or slap on the hand or a spanking for bigger things. I had been thinking that it was time to change up our discipline go-tos, and my friend Anna explained the time-out process they use, which really makes sense to me. Our general process (at least at the moment - I'm sure it'll change as we figure out what we're doing!) is a verbal warning, including mentioning that if Gavin does the action again he will be put in time out. Then (if he does the action again) we sit in a corner for about 1.5 minutes (right now I sit with him so he doesn't get up and run around - we'll stop this when he figures out this whole time-out business). Next I remind him that he was in time out for disobeying me and tell him he needs to say "I'm sorry." So far (we've only done this twice now) the next step has been that he will not - under any circumstance whatsoever - dare to utter those two words, and I end up sitting with him in a chair for at least 30 minutes, with a spanking thrown in when I ask him to say it and he utters a very determined "no" (and I told him if he didn't he'd get a spanking), before he finally finds it in his will to say "I'm sorry". After this happened two times in a row, I decided I'm going to put him in his high chair and go about my business until he says "I'm sorry" rather than sit with him, mainly so that he can have some space and a little time to figure himself out and also because I certainly can't spend that much time in time-out with him all the time! The goal is, when we get the time-outs figured out, to save spankings for major disobedience (ie, defiance), or as an escalation if a few time-outs don't seem to work.