I won't go into all the details of the emotional ride Maddie's been taking me on lately...I'll just say that she's lucky she's so darn cute and sweet when she's not being a brat! :) I don't know what happened to her being interested in helping to clean up her playroom at night. Three nights in a row now she has refused to clean up her toys. Tonight I even put her in timeout a couple of times for not cleaning up but then I was frustrated because the timeout didn't get her to clean...it only made her feel like the clean up time was a negative experience, which is EXACTLY what I didn't want. She's not interested in getting her stamps anymore for cleaning up so I just told her if she doesn't clean up her toys (and I had already cleaned up 3/4 of them for her already) then she won't get her whole line of stamps and she won't get her special surprise at the end of the week. She just said "ok Mama" and that was the end of it. I'm out of "fun" ways to get her to clean up...we've been through 2 different clean up songs, we've run as fast as we could to see how fast she is to clean up, I've "tricked" her by saying things like "I don't think you're big enough to clean this up", Snuggly has "helped" her clean up her toys (she hold snuggly in her hand while picking up each toy...this is REALLY time consuming but it worked for a while). I've told her to look around and see what needs to be cleaned up then tell Mommy what she wants to clean up first. I've even told her to tell Mommy what to clean up and what Maddie should clean up. I've offered her stickers for cleaning up, I've offered her candy (I didn't like doing that one, especially since she cleans up just before bed). I'm out of ideas...please send your ideas my way :) I'm trying to stay away from anything negative because I always HATED cleaning my room when I was a kid. I don't want it to be a bad experience for her, I just want it to be like second nature...it's just what we do when we're done playing.
Ok, enough about the "bad" stuff now...I took Maddie swimming two days in a row now and she is absolutely AMAZING me!!! She was so trusting with me holding her in the water yesterday. She was letting me barely hold on to her while she was kicking her feet and putting her head back to try to stay above water by herself. She put her face in the water, she put her ears in the water, she put the back and sides of her head in the water. She's fearless! She has a little float thing we put her in so we don't have to hold her in the water and I showed her how to lean her body forward, hold onto the front of it, and kick her feet to make herself go forward. She didn't move fast, but she was moving! Then today I was holding her and I asked her if she wanted Mommy to let go of her and she said "yes". She turned away from me and was seriously going to try swimming by herself! I kept my arms under her and told her to "reach and pull and kick and splash" all the way to the part where she could touch. Then, out of nowhere she wanted to jump into the pool. Now, keep in mind she has only successfully landed on jump (with both feet off the floor) once...she doesn't get much air so I knew she wasn't going to actually jump into the pool. But I came to the edge and told her to jump to Mommy. When she said "jump", I reached up and lifted her into the pool and brought her down with enough force that she was getting splashed in the face! She LOVED it! So for the next 20 minutes I got a good upper body workout in :) I let her jump in then helped her swim back to the side. It was so much fun watching her get more comfortable in the water. I might need to set aside time every day to take her just to keep up with it!
Well, that's about it for now. I'm going to get to bed early and get some rest. We're going to feed the ducks tomorrow so I need my energy for keeping up with Maddie and keeping her out of the lake! Goodnight :)