Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Welcome, roommate!

Hi friends and family,

The Casa de Webb is a fortress of protection against the ills of the world.  I won't keep Easton and Layla out of harms way forever, but I am singularly responsible for their well-being, safety, and developing their foundation of what they consider "normal".  Yes, Kendra is the king-pin and home maker, but as the father of the house there aren't many things higher on my priority and responsibility list than protecting Easton and Layla.

Do your kids act like barbarians and hellish terrors?  Don't bring them to our house.  Do you curse and lack control of your words?  Not in our house.  Do you smoke?  Feel free to go outside around the corner of the house away from the Easton and Layla's eyes and nose because I don't want them seeing that as normal or condoned.  Kendra and I are extremely accepting of others no matter what they do or believe or choose even if we disagree.  However, the boundary of displaying those things is our front door.  Perfection is not required to gain entrance, but our standards and expectations are brutally high...  because we care.

As you can tell we are overly cautious when it comes to allowing visitors in our house.  Even more so, the thought of having anyone else LIVE with us never even crossed our minds...  until now.  Morgan is a friend of ours who decided it's time to get out her parents house and prepare for living on her own.  Over the past couple of years she has always been welcomed in our house.  Kendra and I talked it over for a few days and decided it was a great for many reasons.  She moved in over the weekend and we are having fun adjusting to the new dynamic.  She fits right in, as you can see.

I came home from work yesterday and picked up Easton so we could run errands together.  I took advantage of this "teachable opportunity".  I want to instill in him the values of giving and being a gentlemen.  As we walked up to the grocery store I knew he would ask to look at the toys and buy one.  He asked right on cue.  I said, "No, son, today we will sacrifice getting anything for ourselves and instead give flowers to Morgan."  Then, true to Easton's character, he asked, "why?"  "Well, I'm glad you asked!" I said.  "We give because it is how we show we are gentlemen and know how to sacrifice.  We give FLOWERS because all women like flowers.  It makes them feel special."  I let him he pick out the flowers, carry them to the register, and pay for them.  On the way home Easton looked, smelled, and touched them.  He said, "Dad, I bet Morgan will WUV the fwowers."  She did.

One of the coolest things about having Morgan with us for a few months is how closely it parallels my own life.  I moved into this exact same house 15 years ago with a similar arrangement with my Aunt Mary and Uncle Dave.  I'm excited we get to bless Morgan in the same way it was done for me.

Swimming is almost a daily ritual.  They look forward to after dinner swim time so much.  Easton's shark suit and Layla's color-coordinated ensemble makes for the perfect play time in the pool.

Shark chases princess mermaid
Daddy saves princess mermaid
Daddy chases shark.

This role playing is just preparing me for Layla's boyfriends in high school.  Beware of daddy even if you're a shark!  God have mercy on your soul if you chase my princess mermaid...  

Easton and Layla requested dress-up play time as Puss in Boots and Kitty Soft Paws.  See the red feather in Easton's hat, sword, and boots?  That's all Easton needs to bring out his Antonio Banderas character.   

I ran across this parenting method and will talk with Kendra about whether we should add it to our arsenal.  We are running low on effective bullets and this might be just what the doctor ordered for Easton's over-active attention getting behavior.

PLANNED IGNORING: works well with babies/toddlers, and can be used with older kids, as well. If a baby/toddler is hitting you, show NO reaction and simply get up and walk away. They want ur attention, first & foremost, so loss of attention will decrease the misbehavior. Remember to praise, praise, praise for good behaviors with lots of hugs and attention. Same situation with a brother squirting his sister, and annoying her. Show no reaction to his behavior, but instead show attention to the sister and other kids in the pool. Gather the either kids for a fun game, race, etc. the chikd misbehaving will likely stop, because he wants to join in and receive your attention too. Remember to assess why, and do not give attention for negative behaviors, but only for positive behaviors.

Today was the twins' first official day of school.  Last week was just the orientation part, but it's all just technicalities.  Some people take pictures (which I did), but I wanted to go a step further and just capture the moment on camera so I can do this each year from now until they graduate college.  You might be wondering why they are making silly faces.  It's because they want to review the movie afterwards and see their silly face.  They are so entertaining.  

See you soon!

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