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Old 07-09-2013, 02:12 PM   #11
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Re: WHAT DO I DO!? so frustrating!

I make my 4 and 5 year old talk it out when they are in battle mode. I figure it's as good a time as any to teach them to deal with people who irritate them and work out problems like that.

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Old 07-09-2013, 02:17 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by leyash

i could see about the early outside time. would need to do it on a morning that it is below 80, and low humidity.

scheduling activities is something i could try again. i tried it in the past, and it seemed like something always got in the way. either the baby wouldn't cooperate, or instead of participating, everyone wanted to throw a fit because it wasn't what they wanted to do, etc. it was always something.

will check into doing a schedule again.
Let them have input on the schedule that way if they say they don't want to you can remind them it was their choice.

I would schedule a "quiet time". Where everyone is in their own area, maybe for the 5+6 year old one can bring 1-2 quiet activities to the dining room table ( i would alternate weeks on who stays in the room)
Then for 15,30 or maybe even 60 minutes everyone stats in their own area doing their own thing. This gives you a break and them a break from each other.
So you have an electronic game systems? Maybe they each get 30mins/day just to play with them alone too
I have a 6+7 year old and I live what you are talking about but not all day as I am at work. I don't even allow my children to brush their teeth in the same bathroom because it was just fighting.

I know this is all easier said than done especially with a 2 month old. The way I look at things is if it work for one day that is one day and maybe you have to find something different for the next day but one day is worth it.
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:35 PM   #13
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We are sort of in the same boat, my baby is a couple months older. I have a 4yr old and 5yo that like to get at each other. I am a yeller, but I'm really trying to be more zen. So, my ideal is that I don't yell at them, I tell them once to stop fighting and if they can't they are not allowed to play together fo 15-20 min. The punishment is that they cannot speak or play together. It puzzled my 5yo at first, he thought it might be ok to not have his brother bother him, but now he hates it. We are also reading "making brothers and sisters best friends", which is a bit old for them, but is helping me.

The other thing we did is pick a topic and study it (unit study). We're doing the human body right now, I used some lesson plans I found online to follow loosely. It's about an hour (or as much as I can take!) of us doing experiments and crafts and the kids eat it up because I'm soooo not a crafty mom usually.

I also have a motivated moms chore list on my phone. My boys know that they will get jobs (doing the silverware, switching laundry loads, dusting, swiffering, taking out the little garbage cans, wiping out sinks, etc) and earn dimes every day. printing out the schedule has helped my guys. For some reason they respond better to seeing it printed out instead of me just telling them.

It's tough, I know! I'm completely tapped by bedtime. But really, the kids mostly just want stability, consistency, and attention. I'll also say that you shouldn't feel like you're begging when it comes to VBS. If they are any kind of real church, they'd love to have you, even if you're just desperate to find something that helps you get out of the house a bit.
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:42 PM   #14
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Re: WHAT DO I DO!? so frustrating!

Scheduling and have them help with chores. My 2 year old helps with chores! They are fully capable at their ages of folding laundyr, sorting socks, making beds, putting dishes in the sink or dishwasher, wiping down the table, cleaning up toys, sweeping/vacuuming. If you have them help with those things you will have time to spend with them. Some of the fun stuff we like to do when work is done is color pictures, paper crafts, buld with blocks or legos, read books together, play board games. I think its important for children to have outside time too, i would try to schedule some in in early morning or late afternoon.
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:45 PM   #15
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Re: WHAT DO I DO!? so frustrating!

Even when it is hot and here is is regularly over 105 my kids like to go outside and play even if it's only for short bursts of time and after then come back in they are tired and the rest and read books for awhile before acting crazy again.
We do not allow the kids in their rooms during the day unless they are in time out. I think asking them to stay in there room all day except for meals is like forcing them to be in a prison cell. I know that sounds dramatic but kids are dramatic and have exaggerated feelings. And you know what the kids sleep better at night now that they spend so much less time in their rooms. And this was hard to organize but there are also no toys allowed in their room, only books.
It there another place to put the baby to sleep so that the older boys can be in the living room? Can you just wear him in a cling or carrier?

As far as Cheap outings, we have very little money so I have to be creative.
~Maybe you could take the kids on a walk around the block with lists of things to search for like a scavenger hunt. Go out early in the day just after breakfast before it gets too hot. Even just a simple walk would help expel some energy.
~Mcdonalds once a month or so I take the kids to Mcdonalds in the mid morning and let them play for an hour or two and then I buy a 20 piece nugget for $4.99 and split it between them with 2 side salads and complimentary waters all around. After they eat we stay another hour or two. I bring my phone or something to read and they pretty much ignore me and play the whole time.
~Story Time at the library, every week at the library they have family story time and all ages are welcome and there is usually a craft and sometimes a snack after.
~Zoo This spring we splurged and bought a membership at the Zoo it was $60 and is good for a year.
~Mall there is a nice play area at the mall that my kids love and if we want to stay out for a long time I pack a lunch that we eat at the food court.
~Dollar store. I usually give the kids the opportunity to each earn $1 doing chores each week and then we go to the Dollar store and they get to pick out whatever they want.

I found a local blog that lists all kinds of great free or very cheap events. I really love the ones with free food.

Sometimes it's hard because we don't even have the gas to go out. I try to get the kids out of the house 2-3 times a week and they love it. And it really breaks up the week and makes it go by fast.

I just got part of my monthly Amazon subscribe and save order, paper towels, and it arrived in a giant box. Since they couldn't hurt them I let the kids open the box and then they got to put away all of the paper towels(I will have to go find them later.) Now they are making the box into a spaceship race car. All three kids are happily coloring together. They are 6,4,2.

I think tomorrow I will give them a bed sheet and tell them to build me a tent or cave and then I will read them a book and let them eat a snack in it.
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Old 07-09-2013, 03:10 PM   #16
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Re: WHAT DO I DO!? so frustrating!

My kids played with a sheet for over an hour the other day. It was bliss! Another mama had an amazing suggestion, grab an old one from the thrift store and let them colour/paint it.
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Old 07-09-2013, 03:26 PM   #17
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Re: WHAT DO I DO!? so frustrating!

I am a lot like Belle in my approach - my boys are 7,5 and just about 4. There are good days and bad days but bottom line is if you can't play nicely - you don't get to play. Period. They are separated and given a chance to calm down. Then i call them in, let each of them tell their side of the "story" (eg validate how they felt about the situation) and then we talk about what a better response would be..... then they are allowed to return to their play. Rinse and repeat.

It keeps things pretty smooth around here - but like everyone else, there ARE bad days and then they just spend a lot of time alone reading/looking at books
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Old 07-09-2013, 03:35 PM   #18
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Re: WHAT DO I DO!? so frustrating!

my first thought was the "we will get along" shirt, the XXXL shirt that they have to wear together like a two-headed monster until they could be nice to each other. Or make them sit holding hands until they could say something nice about each other.

DH had a talk with our kids last week about control, and how when you get all upset about something, you are giving the other person control over how you feel. They are choosing to bother the other person, and choosing to let the other person bother them. Now we remind our kids "who's in control?" and "what are you choosing?" and it works pretty well, because they don't want to admit that their brother is being their boss
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Old 07-09-2013, 03:38 PM   #19
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Re: WHAT DO I DO!? so frustrating!

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Originally Posted by l_Kimmie_l View Post
Don't feel bad. You just described my day with my 4 and 5 year olds. They do this all day long in between the 4 yr old constantly begging for food. I want to knock their heads together. Spanking does not work, talking to them does not work, and time outs are a joke.

We can get some Mommy Juice and commiserate together.
mommy juice.... goodness. thank god i am nursing, or i would probably go overboard today. good grief.
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Old 07-09-2013, 03:40 PM   #20
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Re: WHAT DO I DO!? so frustrating!

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Originally Posted by Tris View Post
I make my 4 and 5 year old talk it out when they are in battle mode. I figure it's as good a time as any to teach them to deal with people who irritate them and work out problems like that.
but the thing is, i don't see what they would have to talk about. i've tried talking to the oldest, and he just says that isaac is mean to him, and picks on him. no, he doesn't. i will watch them, closely, and nate will just... do something to pick on him, when isaac is doing NOTHING. it's to the point where isaac doesn't want to play with nate because he's constantly picked on, and i can't blame him, and i don't force him. then nate wants to cry because he doesn't want to play by himself. well... when you treat people like that, they don't WANT to play with you. and i've tried telling him that!
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