When a new, little one comes in to the household, it can cause a bit of an uproar.
This is exactly what is happening around our house right now.
Unfortunately, the kids’ lives have taken quite a few twists and turns in the last few months.
They went from me being home and able to focus her attention them all day long. To me being home for a half that amount of time because she has to be at the hospital. And when she is home, she’s tired and not all there or focused. This soon progressed to only seeing me when I came home for a quick shower or when they came to visit at the hospital. A few weeks later we were finally home and while I was holding a baby all day long, it was a bit easier to focus on the other kiddos. But it wasn’t long before another curve ball came their way, I was again back in the hospital with Sugar Plum, taking them back to the seeing me only for a short moment each day.
We are now back home permanently (hopefully) and we are trying to get back into a regular routine. But for Mister Man there is still something not quite right. I think he’s still vying for my attention. Yes, Sugar Plum needs me quite a bit right now, especially with her reflux, which requires me to hold her upright after each feeding and feed her every few hours. But I have been trying to keep the other kids happy as well. Unfortunately, this does not seem to be enough for Mister Man.
Mister Man is getting more attention lately, but not the good kind. He has been acting defiant, talking back, refusing to listen and do what he is asked, disrespectful and more. It’s been a very trying few weeks and something had to give.
This led me to think hard and come up with a few new ideas.
The first one, a close friend reminded me of. She suggested that I take just 15 min each day and focus it entirely on each kid separately. We’d actually implemented this idea right before Sugar Plum was born and it worked quite well for both Sunshine and Mister Man. It was for a bit longer then, but starting at 15 min right now, is about all I can handle at the moment, maybe one day soon we can up it to a bit more each day.
The other idea was a reward chart. I really wanted to reward their good behavior because I feel like I am constantly getting on him about the bad behaviors. I put together one for Sunshine (a butterfly)
and one for Mister Man (Superman).
Each reward chart has 50 boxes – 5 rows of 10. For each row they fill they get an extra dessert. They have the possibility of getting two stars a day and when they do they get an extra 30 min quiet time at night. For the big prize (50 Stars) they got to choose their reward. They both picked movie and ice-cream.
I went with 50 stars because it makes it possible to get to the reward in less than a month. It also lets them have a few smaller rewards to keep them on track.
I am hopeful that this will help me to reward their good behavior and keep them pointed in the right direction.
You can print the reward charts as well, for free, here!