But… more than anything,
This girl is WORLD’S different from her brother at 3. At that age, Tucker usually only had to be told once, maybe twice not to do something. You could put the fear of God in him fairly easily. He wanted nothing more than to please us (and is still this way). Whatever infraction he may have committed was typically not repeated. Easy enough.
Oh, Ella. She is NOT so easy. Every ounce of independence, stubborn, bull-headed tendencies, and rebellion that Grady and I could possibly possess have been bottled up in her tiny little being. Most days all this personality makes me laugh and feel grateful that I don’t feel worried about her future. She’ll be able to stand on her own in this great, big, scary world. Then there are days that I just want to pull my hair out.
I’m going to be 100% honest and say that the occasional “naughty” words slip out of my mouth. Most of us are guilty of this…. you break a glass “*%@#!!!!”, or you burn your hand on the stove “@%*!!!!!”. Sometimes that colorful language just comes out. Sadly, Ella’s daddy sometimes uses the whole RAINBOW of words. (Big sigh.)
When Tuck was little he repeated a word once, maaaaybe twice. The dab of soap was administered on his tongue and he magically became the naughty word police. He called us out on EVERY misspeak we made.
And then came Monkey. It took her a really long time to catch on to what words were considered the forbidden words, but when she did…. Heaven help us.
I don’t immediately administer the soap punishment. I’d rather try to correct the problem with verbal warnings or a time-out if needed. I remember, myself, the soap in the mouth treatment and don’t wish it on anyone. I suppose that’s why it’s so effective. You never forget that taste.
So, here we are at this point in her life that she’s discovered these naughty words. We’ve verbally reprimanded and we’ve done time-out. She’s a sneaky little devil because she’ll come running to us and say, with a coy grin on her face, “Mommy, I not say dat naughty woord,” and shake her head back and forth, slowly. Of course, I have no idea WHAT word she thinks she’s said so I can’t really punish her for not hearing it.
The other day she slipped and DID say the naughty word in the presence of her daddy and me. Enough was enough and I couldn’t resort to the minor punishments. The big guns had to come out. So, the dab of soap was put on her tongue. She cried and wailed and flailed and carried on for quite some time. Her pride and heart were both broken. After a couple of minutes of the soapy torture we told her she could take a drink of the milk she had been carrying around in her hands the entire time. (I had to laugh that she didn’t think to take a drink the minute it tasted bad…) Much better.
Not an hour later the stinker was running into our room.
“Mommy, I not say dat naughty woord…”
I may need to buy stock in soap. We may be using a lot of it.
Peace, love and blowing bubbles!!!!