- When there is a holiday, Michael and I let our kids eat all of the candy they want on that day. Then, that night, I sort the candy. The chocolate goes in my closet (for obvious reasons), the rest goes in the trash. They’ve never thrown up. So far, so good.
- If our kids leave Legos in the floor, they get sucked up the vacuum cleaner. Legos hurt. I don’t take chances. This works much like Pavlov’s dogs. Vacuum cleaner turns on = kids start cleaning.
- Toy Story 3 makes it emotionally unbearable to get rid of toys. Don’t watch it. Ever.
- In the summer we occasionally bathe the children with a water hose in our front yard. That’s not so much a tip as a warning – better to call before you drop by.
- It’s never ok to make your children feel shame. It is ok to let them feel guilt. Shame is associated with who they are. Guilt is associated with what they do.
- 5-year olds can unload the dishwasher all by themselves. Let them.
- After you reach age 30 and/or have 3 children, your body doesn’t work properly. Activities that involve spinning in circles, rolling in any fashion, or jumping up and down should be avoided at all costs.
- ‘Sticker chart reward systems’ are a fancy phrase for bribery. And they work.
- If your child has been sitting in time out, and you forget that you put them there and why, it’s best to start the conversation with:
- “Do you know why you’re in time out?
- “Ok, tell me why”
- “I hit my brother”
- “yes, that’s right (your memory returns here), and we don’t hit our brothers do we?” See tip #5.
10. Car DVD players have singlehandedly made family road trips possible to endure without medication.