Reading Elaine Mazlish and Adele Faber's book and trying out some of their thoughts. So this morning when Raghu's friend Roshni came over to play I had an opportunity. It was almost time for Roshni to go home and Raghu started saying he was going to visit her home for a quick snack. So first i had to inform raghu that Suman was busy and hence could not have visitors today. Having gotten over this hump... he started insisting that Roshni give back the thermacole sculpture that she had made with some straws. He was quite adamant that she could not have it even for a day (roshni wanted to take it home for a day adn would return teh sculpture). I was telling Roshni that raghu needed the sculpture as the thermacole was being used to house his new remote control car. Here i was managing a complex argument between teh 2 children (one who wanted to take her new creation home and the other who wanted to visit the friend's home but was not beign allowed and hence sudenly could not part with the thermacole.. which early one the friend had started working with adn labeling as hers) and i was beginnign to feel the strain and wodnering if i'd have to state a solution. the book says... don't give solutions.... empathize, describe waht you hear and see, clarify points that you dont' understnad and listen hard. So i listened some more asked some more questions and finally Roshni said something that helped me understnad her adamancy.... she was taking it home to make a bed for her dolls! Yahoo... i can churn out dolls beds with cardboard, scissors and some old stuffing in no time... so when i offered her a bed for her dolls... she smiled, asked raghu to take the thermacole (sculpture of thermacole with straws stuck in it) and then helped me make the bedding. Raghu on his part smiled and gave her the straws from the sculpture and asked her if she'd like to take then to decorate the new bed. !!!!!!! thats all i can say.... it was such a wonderful feeling to understand her need and see if she'd like a different solution to meet that need. Raghu got over teh crabbiness and was a smiling boy for the rest of the playdate. Man.... i have much to learn.
Zoya is really getting to be a handful and is sometimes hard to manage... she wants all fo the things that raghu has/uses.
Raghu loves water... this evening when i found that the lack of a nap had made raghu start to wind down very early... i decided to put him in hte bath tub (without Zoya). He played for an hour or more... with all his plastic animals, some of the marble-run-tubing and loads of soap bubbles. He was more rested after this bath and i'm glad i persuaded him to give the play-downstairs-with-friends routine. it would have been an uphill battle to keep his behaviour socially acceptable and pleasant towards all. his evening crabbiness is best tolerated at home. Ever since he has given up his nap... he has found it hard to control the evening crabbiness. he wakes up at 7ish and then starts to wind down by 5ish... so that he finally sleeps by 8ish. its the 3 hours from about 5-8 that need patience, careful planning and some distraction.