Saturday, April 18, 2015

Parenting Puzzle

Last post I said that I would explain this picture on the 18th.  But, since I am my mother's daughter, a little back story first.
I feel that parenting is kinda like putting together a puzzle.  I gather pieces and try them.  Some fit right away, others I have to turn and try again.  Some will work for one kid but not another.  And some pieces will work for a while then need to be changed.  A big piece for me was to learn my kid's currency.  Years ago there was a new show out I had waited and waited to see.  I told Leah that if she didn't clean her room she couldn't go, thinking this would entice her.  The show was my currency not hers.  She didn't clean her room on time and as a result I had to stay home with her and miss it.  Because of course follow thro is so important in parenting.  (I learned not to give threats I wasn't willing to actually do).  Leah doesn't not like washing her face everyday. One day it clued in with me that her currency right now was music.  I made her a deal that if she would wash her face morning and night for a week then each Sunday she could get one song from itunes.  It has worked.  Another piece was to learn to be confident in any decision I made.  My kids have tried to change the sleep over rule so many times.  They always have new ideas and reasons about how to change my mind.  If I was not absolutely sure about it and if Dave and I where not on the same page, I might waiver.  And as soon as you waiver, they will always think any rule can be changed. (Kids crave rules and structure even if they give you attitude about it.)  I have been researching about introverts.  I was starting to suspect that Leah was an introvert, but wasn't sure how she could be when she is so outgoing.  But she is.  Interestingly enough so are Dave and I.  Blake is an extrovert and Cora is an ambivert, which I had never heard off.  When Blake wanted to know what we where taking about I explained it like this.  Pretend that everywhere we go we carried a glass.  Each of us needs to have a full glass to be happy.  For Blake his glass would get filled by being with people, although he is borderline ambivert, plays well by himself also.  For Dave, Leah and I it would be like giving a little spoonful of water to each person around us and we would go home empty.  We then would have to come home and be by ourselves and at peace until it was filled and we felt we could  go out again.  This was actually a big piece for me with Leah. I always knew she needed alone time, but now I understand why. Very few people don't drain her glass.  So of course another is figuring what motivates them.  When I was out with my parents for Easter, every morning I would go walking with my mom and her good friend.  One morning they where talking about a color coding class she was teaching to the priest/laurels today.  (That's why I had to wait to blog it)  It all made such good sense to me.  For example if I could figure out Leah's motivational core then I could figure out how to get her to clean her room.  She kindly agreed to come over and do all the tests and explain it all that night.  This was not just a piece of the puzzle, it was directions on how to fit some of the piece I had found, in.  We all took the test and brought one home for Dave.  I am a really strong red, Cora is red, Dave is blue, and Leah and Blake are yellow.  Cora is secondary blue and yellow.  Leah and Blake are secondary red.  So super briefly Red: Driven by being right, being a leader, hides insecurities, is prideful, pleases themselves.  Blue: Good listener, needs to be appreciated, wants to please others, wants security, self-judgemental.  White: driven by peace, moves at their own pace, needs acceptance, stubborn, indecisive.  Yellow:  Driven by fun, wants to be liked, and noticed,  Pleases themselves, wants freedom and adventure, can be rebellious and irresponsible, a chatterbox.  When she was talking it really all went click, click, click for me.  She did a great job explaining it and had a few stories to demonstrate the different motivational colors.  I was absolutely fascinated.  I came straight home and checked out some books from the library.  It is so helpful.  The other day I needed the kids to set the table.  Cora gets up and does it while Leah doesn't.  Both normal reactions.  I told Leah I needed her red for 10 mins then she could be yellow again.  She totally knew what I meant.  Sighed and got up to set the table.  I have always known that I need Blake and Leah to do chores first before playtime, and now I know why.  Cora will always get her work done. This used to irritate Blake and Leah since they thought I favored Cora.  They would always complain, 'just because Cora finished her chores', 'oh of course Cora is done'.  Like some how it was my fault they hadn't been obedient.  Now they understand.  This is seriously so cool.

This is the longest it has ever taken me to write a post.  I would start and come back, delete a bunch, reword some.  It was getting so long, but I had so much to say, it's so neat.  If anyone wants any more info on color coding or introvert/extrovert and finding out what your kids are, I would happily share the little I have learned.  It's so helpful.


  1. I remember learning about colour coding at a course I took when I was working, and how it relates to the work place. It is very interesting. I don't remember what colour I was - I should see if I still have the info.

  2. This is really interesting to me too Char, I'd love to hear more about it. Maybe we can get together for a walk or two this week!!

  3. Wow I don't think I realized how long it has been since I have been on the computer let alone read a blog. I haven't sat down and read every word It will take me some time to catch up but what I have got so far has been very informative, and interesting. I am so grateful your are so good at keeping up. I apologize I am not as good as you.