This little guy of mine had a rough couple of weeks the end of November. Tantrums every day, “I don’t want to get dressed…buy me that toy… I want my skinny jeans…I don’t want to go to church, but I don’t want to be here alone, but I don’t want to get dressed…I wanna go home…” He even went to tithing settlement in his jammies. It took everything in me not to let the “human” side take over and spank that little boy’s bum. It’s a good thing he is so dang cute.
Since telling him, “the elves are watching and they will tell Santa that you are being naughty,” didn’t work, I told him that I was going to give him naughty marks on a paper to show Santa.
This worked a little, but I felt that it only focused on the negative. So I decided to print this Santa on card stock and then have papers for chain links. I hung it on the door and told him if the chains go to the floor then I will tell Santa he can’t come to our house. But when he obeys or does good things without asking, I will let him take a chain link off. He loved the idea and it has worked like a charm.
This morning he told me that he wanted chips for breakfast, I told him that he could have chips with his lunch later, but that he needed to have something like cereal, yogurt, oatmeal, scrambled egg, toast etc. He began to cry and go on about how bad he wanted chips. I said, “OH! I sure hope we don’t have to put a chain on the santa.” He immediately stopped and compromised with some yummy zuccini bread and milk for breakfast. YES!!
Then later we needed to go shopping to 2 stores. He insisted on going to the “creating store” first (Micheals) then we could go grocery shopping. That worked for me but when we got done at Micheals he did NOT want to shop any more. He asked me to take him home before I stopped for groceries and began to cry about it. I explained that driving him home is out of my way and it was going to be longer for me and I would really rather not. He insisted with a little bit of a bratty voice. I said, “ok but if I take you all the way home before I get the groceries, then I am putting a chain on Santa.” He decided it would be ok if we got groceries before I took him home, and he was completely fine the whole time!!
If you are struggling with naughty children, maybe give this a try. Just keep in mind that all children are different so what works for one may not work for another, so you may need to tweek it a bit to work for you.
Have you tried something that works? I would love to hear it. Share below in the comment section.
Meg you are amazing!! I know there are a lot of Mom’s out there that are going through the same thing with their children. I have often reflected how I must have been when I was child; I don’t know how my mom did it. I think she must be related to Mother Theresa and I know that she has the “patience of Job”…. believe me I’ve tested that one and lived to tell about it…barely. What puts me in “Awh” is that there are wonderful women and mothers like you trying to ban together to help strengthen our families and make our homes a place we want to be. Instead of throwing in the towel and giving up, you are throwing in a towel to help clean up a mess. Instead of giving up and not taking your children anywhere, you bravely take them in the car, to the store, to the library, to the school, to the church, and on your errands. I say bravely, because there are many of my guy friends that are chicken to do that, but not you. Instead of complaing that you “must not be good enough” or “why can’t you be more like….”, you are banning together in a forum like this to help each other and to share great ideas, ideas that can be tweaked for each of your circumstances, ideas that build kids. Instead of complaining, you dig down deep, fill your hearts with a Mother’s Love and make things happen! Someone once said, “Nobody knows the the worth of a boy, we’ll have to wait and see, but every man in a noble place a boy once used to be.” You are truly wonderful teachers, instructors, mentors, counselors, psychologists, social workers, doctors, accountants, arbitrators, judges, philanthrophist, project managers, friends, homework consultants, proof readers, organizers, chauffers, comedians, story tellers, book readers, heroes (especially at night from the monsters), huggers, listeners, healers ….. yep, you are mommy’s! Great ones!!!
DG, thank you for your kind words. It is always nice to be acknowledged as a mother. I think we don’t often see the good that we do. We are just doing what needs to be done to get through the day and keep everyone alive and well. As I read your comment though, things I do for my family and friends flashed through my mind and I see that I do much and accomplish much. Maybe not in the eyes of the world but in the eyes of a Father in heaven. THANKS!
Great idea to use for Christmas. My question is what or how could this be utilized after Christmas? How could it be changed around to stay new?
Beki, great question!! I have thought about this as well. Maybe if there is a fun activity that your child is looking forward to such as a family vacation, trip to a theme park, a birthday party etc. You can print off a picture that reminds them of that and do the chain the same way. You could even print off a picture of something they want, maybe a toy, lunch at a favorite restaurant, a movie at a theatre. Have them work towards something like that. Do the chain the opposite way so they are trying to make the chain touch the ground, then they get their prize. Take off a chain link for good behavior, rather than putting one on for bad. Hope this helps.