Saturday, May 18, 2013

Talking and Listening

Brotherly chit chat:)
My dad isn't a huge talker but he happens to be a great listener.  Sometimes people take offense to his quietness and think something is wrong, when really he just realizes that there are plenty of 'cooks in the kitchen' to fill the silence, so there's no need for him to chime in.  I know for sure I talk too much and need to work on my listening skills.  Now that I'm a parent this is even more important for me to improve.  When I was in college we read a book called How to Teach So Kids Will Learn, but these days I'm more interested in getting my hands on a copy of How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and How to Listen So Kids Will Talk.  I know, I know the boys are only 3, but I want them to be able to talk to me about things like I'm able to talk to my parents about things.  My friend Bethany recently posted this on her Facebook page and it's worth remembering as my kids get grow...
Shared by Discover Church: The Parent Investment Chart used in Sunday's message.
From the book Think Orange, by Reggie Joiner

After all, my aunt once said that she and her sons had some of the best talks just by taking walks in their neighborhood.  However big, little, important, mundane, exciting, hard, happy, or sad our conversations might be I want them to happen.  And I want my listening ears to be ready.

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So on a few lighter notes, Gavin and I started off one of our recent mornings in just this way....talking.  I got up at 5:30 to hopefully get some things done before everyone else woke up.  At 5:50 Garrett woke up needing to use the potty.  By 5:53 Gavin was awake and asking to go downstairs, but our rule is that we don't start our day until 6:30am.  Garrett went off to snuggle with Joe, and Gavin and I laid on the couch in the dark in their room, chatting and recounting the previous day's events, plans for the day, the difference between dusk and dawn, and why he got so upset by the man that sat next to him on the park bench the day before.  Despite my desire to cross things off my to-do list in a quiet house, this was a much better way to start my day:)  And thanks to my understanding husband for eventually taking over until he left for work so I could indeed get everything done anyway!  Win win:)

Our mealtime conversations these days range from superheroes to which playground we'll visit next to why it's rude to put their feet on the table.  A few mornings ago the boys informed me that coming out of their milk cups was "bat milk!" and then it changed into "an oil explosion!" and that created a "volcano shadow!" on the ceiling, which had to be banished by the "monster claw!" and then a "rocket ship was coming!"  They're 90 mph nonstop.   

Recently we've discussed what Baby Girl will look like when she's born.  First their answer was a dinosaur.  Then for a while they thought a teddy bear.  Most recently they informed me that she might have brown hair and red eyes.  Or maybe orange eyes "because orange is kind of like red."  Or maybe she'll have pink eyes because their babysitter named "Ali likes pink!" 

Yesterday in the dressing room while trying on some bathing suits to dress this baby belly for two more months, the boys happily played with blocks.  And also kept saying, "Naked mama!"  "Mama's hiny!"  Sorry to the husband who was just outside the door waiting for his wife to model a few pairs of maternity pants.  Awesome.

While zooming an ambulance and a fire truck on their "town rug" the other day Garrett proclaimed "there was an accident at the beach" so he had to get there fast!  And Gavin was off to "get the ogre in the castle so he could take him to the ice cream shop!"
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No joke, this is how fast and imaginative their brains work these days:)  Never a dull moment. I'd love to crawl inside their heads....certainly it would be like a loop-de-loop roller coaster ride.  But if I can't crawl inside to see things for myself, I'll keep my listening ears ready to absorb whatever they have to say.

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