Hubs and I made a pact with her. We're giving her stars for good behaviour. 1 star for finishing her lunch, another for taking her nap and another for finishing her dinner fast. For each page of homework completed, 1 stars and the ad hoc stars for good behaviour etc etc etc.. She's all into stars now, counting her stars and making sure she is not shortchanged. She's very good in her mathematics and there's no way we can cheat a star from her. She's also good in bargaining, this girl. Once I stopped my car and refuse to budge until she swallow her last spoonful of dinner, which was in the mouth for more than 15 mins. Oh.. she loves to talk with her mouthful too. She bargained.. I swallow, you give me another star. At 4 and a half years old, this girl really knows how to bargain !!!
Back to her. I made hubs promise to read his papers in the office and leave office as early as possible. On days that he needs to work out his cardio, he goes running and I excercise at home, on our elliptical trainer. On non-workout days, it's Amber days. We make time for her, take her to the playground, even if it's for a shortwhile and we try to get some homework done too.
Yesterday, a typical evening but somehow when you have a timeline to follow, you tend to get your butt moving faster. I dropped hubs home at 5.45pm, asked him to bring in the laundry and I went to get some groceries. Quickly dashed home, cooked a beef bolognese, boiled pasta and cuts some fruits. By 6.30pm, we picked her up and went to a small playground just a walking distance from the childminders.
We drive pass this playground everyday for almost 2 years and yesterday we decided to stop for a short play. Sometimes the best stuff are found at our own backyard. Like how we used to fuss and hassle about making a trip to the playground that's a long drive away when a small, clean and well maintained playground is sufficient to bring her smiles.
We caught a beautiful view of the sunset yesterday
She chose the big kids swing and wanted us to stand behind and push her. I walked away when I thought she was doing fine and she cried.. loud and pitiful.. she's afraid.. it seems.. but I think it's another one of her dramas to get our attention.
She has a cold sore on her right lips.. Anybody knows the cure for cold sores ? Cold sore on a hot weather.. hmm.. sounds very very strange to me !
We stayed till dark.
We left when the moon was out.
Back home, while I prepared dinner and squeezed some fresh orange juice, hubs did some painting with her.
She also ate a kiwifruit.
Yesterday evening was great. Some outdoor acitivities, some indoor activities, homecooked dinner, fresh juice and fruits for all.
I did an evaluation and reminded hubs that all she needs is undivided attention from us. Selfish as we are, we often overlook her needs and she comes home, creating havoc just to demand our attention.
Another thing I noticed about Amber is to keep the evenings and days peaceful is to foresee a meltdown and avoid it. Hubs gave her a little lecture when this happened:
Hubs : Amber, drink your milk,, hubs holding the milk in his hand
Amber : nonchalant.. doing her own things
Hubs : Amber, come here, faster, drink your milk !
Amber : you come la..why you never put the straw closer to my mouth ???
Hubs : *explosion*
I was in the kitchen and analyzed the whole situation. The father was doing his job and the girl was being rude and wanting things his way.. *wong pa pa* style.
So, to avoid another argument with her, I told hubs.. he should foresee where she's coming at.. little missy is going to shoot some bullets to up our blood pressure again and instead, he should just put the cup of milk on the table and leave.
Many times, meltdown happens when we want her to do things our way, and she wants to do otherwise.
and many many many many times, we parents are to be blamed for not paying enough attention to her, the high needs child. :D