We’ve been had. Swindled. Conned. Tricked. Duped.

And all by a four year old.

It all started a few weeks ago. Baylor started getting up 2-3 times a night to go to the bathroom. She would come into our room and go into our bathroom. I didn’t think anything of it until the number started growing to 6-7 times a night. And then requiring a tuck in. Or a glass of water. Or to sleep in our bed. It was clustered over about 2 hours each night. Just as soon as I would decide that something had to be done, she would sleep through the night. She’s always been a sleep terrorist, but at this age, it’s unacceptable.

During a particularly ugly argument, B broke down crying and said “Mommy please. I just have to go to the bathroom”. It’s not the crying that gets me, it’s the good manners. I decided to take her to the doctor, convinced that there was something physically wrong.

After an examination, the doctor asked Baylor to describe what she does at night. Bay went into great detail about how she gets out of bed, walks by the kitchen, across the carpet in our room into our bathroom, turns on the light, closes the door….all the while the doctor is looking at me with a face that says “yeah, you’re kid’s fine. She’s just trouble”. His suggestion was to tell her that she was not to use our bathroom but rather she needed to use her own bathroom. And she did just that – six times in one night. And left the light on and the door open causing her brother to wake up at 4:45am confused about what he was supposed to be doing. Awake? Asleep? Hungry? He didn’t know. He just knew he was pissed that he was awake and everyone else would be awake too, except B who slept through it all.

After a subsequent conversation with our doctor family friend, I finally agreed that it was behavioral and not physical. But no amount of threats, attention or conversations was stopping the behavior. And my overall appearance is sketchy at best, let alone with little sleep. I was getting desperate.

While at the mall shopping for a birthday gift, Baylor fell in love with everything at the Disney store. And that’s when I settled on bribery. I told her that if she could go four nights without getting up more than once and without waking anyone up, she could pick out anything in the Disney store. She agreed and was excited. We drew out four Mickey Mouse heads on the chalkboard for her to circle each morning that she did what she was asked.

The first night went horribly. She was up multiple times and a fight broke out at 1am trying to get her back to her own bed. But the next three nights went swimmingly. Which is when it dawned on me – we’ve been had. We just bribed a kid to do what she has been doing for years and is perfectly capable of doing. We’re rewarding her for sleeping like she has always done.

And to her, I say well played Baylor. Well played.

photo 5 (10)


Baylor has been working on pushing her boundaries lately. She’s exercising her right to ignore me and flexing her 2 year old muscles when it comes to doing the exact opposite of what I am asking/telling/screaming at her to do. In all? It’s been a fun two weeks.

I decided it was time to get tough so on Sunday, I instituted “two times and then time out” – meaning I will ask her two times to do something (just in case she didn’t hear or understand me) and if she still doesn’t listen, it’s to the crib for some quiet time.

Her school describes the use of time outs as a chance for the child regain control of themselves. Which I think is a nice way of saying “we make them sit by themselves until they get their sh*t together and can rejoin their pals”. Which I am totally down with.

I lost my temper on Sunday when she just. would. not. sit. and. eat. her. food. It was making me insane and she was doing everything except eat including dancing, crawling across the counter, singing, screaming and feeding her carrots to Bear. I had had it so I scooped her up and deposited her in her crib and said “Call me when you’re ready to be nice”. Maybe 5 minutes later, I can hear her saying Mommy and then something else, but I couldn’t make it out. Then PW started cracking up – she was saying “MOMMY!! I NICE NOW!!”. And she was nice. She came out, finished her dinner with only a little fussing and we had a great rest of the evening.

Then yesterday morning, 6:45, she was right back in the crib for not listening when I asked her to sit down in her seat rather than stand on it. Again I hear ” MOMMY!! I LISTEN YOU NOW!!!” and she did listen and the rest of the day went smooth.

I’m not sure if the time oust are more for her or for me, but I can say that her humor cracks me up.

Grocery Store Fun

I would say that 80% of the time, Baylor is an angel. She is polite, sweet and just an all around good kiddo. But the other 20% of the time she’s a beast. And worse, that 20% behavior is unpredictable. I never know when it’s going to hit and how bad it’s going to be. That said, I’ve learned to take “crazy baby” time in stride and not get too worked up about it. But I can’t say the same for those around us – and that makes me crazy! Like it’s going to help me that you are gasping at her behavior?! Here’s what I mean:

We hit the grocery store late yesterday. It was probably too late in the day to be going since we were up against dinner time, but I needed a few things desperately so we went. All was going well; Bay was happily driving the Car Cart and I had only hit one display with the damn thing. We were chugging through the store and had only one aisle left to hit. Then Bay announced she needed to go to the bathroom and since we’re potty training, we abandoned the cart and dashed to the bathroom despite the fact she was wearing a pull up. Once in the bathroom, she decided she didn’t really have to go. And I realized she was missing a shoe. So now I’m getting frustrated that we’re standing the only slightly clean grocery store bathroom nearly barefoot and for no good reason. I washed her hands and we went back to the cart.

That’s when it all seemed to fall apart. B suddenly decided she didn’t want to ride in the car cart. I refused to stop and told her to please sit down because we were almost done. Instead of being deterred by the moving cart, she tucked and rolled out the side. It was quite graceful actually. But I was not in the mood. She insisted on pushing the cart and when I said no, she got LOUD. I tried to regroup; I got down on her level. I asked her, calmly, to please not shout and to please sit down so we could get home. She answered me by saying “SHOUT!!” as loud as she could. Again, trying to stay calm I said screw it to the discipline and let her push the cart – we just needed some milk and then we would be home free! If only…

We got to the check out line and as I was putting the groceries on the belt, the cashier from the other lane stepped back to say hello to Bay. Bay then proceeded to bury her head in my leg in an act of shyness and then BIT ME. HARD. ON THE THIGH/BUTT. Not only did it hurt, but it surprised me so I yelped and then said “DO NOT BITE ME!!!”. That’s when the cashier gasped, loudly, and then exchanged a look with the lady in line in front of me.

So now not only am I in a bit of pain (I have the bruise to prove it), I am annoyed that my kid has just quite literally become a pain in my ass and now I’m embarrassed because the checker has just judged me for my somewhat out of control two year old. I got on Baylor’s level, said “Get back in the cart and sit still” in the low, mom “I mean business” voice that is similar to a dog’s growl and then tried to calm down while I finished unloading groceries. It was then that I got mad – who was this lady to cop a holier than thou attitude about how my kid is behaving? I can’t control everything she does and while she was not being good, she wasn’t tearing up the store or screaming or biting other people so really, I’m doing ok as a parent!!

As I swiped my card, the cashier joked (badly) “Does she bite often??”. I responded “Only when the cashier takes too long”.

While that’s not the best line I’ve ever had, it did wipe the smarmy smile off her face. So I’ve got that going for me. Which is nice.

Oooh You Nasty Boys

Baylie and I hit the park to play and feed the ducks at least twice a week. B climbs up to the BIG slide and swirls her way down to the sand. Then back up and back down at least 10 times. It wears her out and builds up her coordination. Educational AND exhausting – my favorite combination.

The ducks and geese at the park are very people friendly. If you walk towards them, they walk towards you in anticipation of snacks. I would even venture to say too friendly as the geese hiss at you if you’re not fast enough with the stale graham crackers. But it doesn’t phase Bay, she throws a few broken crackers, eats a few and enjoys making duck sounds.

Yesterday marked the second time I regulated on some kid at the park. It’s never very busy, but there is inevitably some kid, usually a boy, that is there with a baby sitter or a parent on a cell phone.  And thus, the kid is running wild and not in a good way. They run past the toddlers on the playground nearly knocking them over. They scream “NO BABIES!!” in my munchkins’ face. Or they chase and kick at the ducks as we are feeding them. Sadly for them, I’m not that mom that ignores this kind of behavior, especially if it’s going to hurt my kid or an animal.

The part that really ticks me off is that the guardian of the two kids I’ve yelled at never say a word. They just ignore the fact that a stranger has disciplined (or attempted to) their kid. Maybe they are embarrassed, or maybe they really don’t care – but I really want to know, why do mom’s allow their sons to be so abusive? I know the saying “boys will be boys” which, I get, to an extent. I’ve babysat for three brothers 5 days a week for at least 2 summers so I get boys being rougher on each other and their need to wrestle (this post isn’t about them, btw, they were a blast – mostly because I won most of the wrestling matches). But are parents really teaching  their  kid to be a decent human being by letting them strike at a defenseless animal or worse, child? I’m not saying it’s easy to do. It’s not fun having to tell your child no or wait out a temper tantrum (I actually have no problem with this because I have no shame) in public, but it’s necessary. I think the thing that is easy to forget is that we’re not raising kids, we’re raising small adults. And if we’re not the one’s to tell them to behave, is that because we think it will be better if they hear it from their teacher, or worse, their boss some day?