Thursday, August 12, 2010

Castle F-U-N Park

Over the past week, certain aspects of bedtime routine have become a bit challenging for Caleb-- more specifically-- staying in bed has become difficult for him.  While it has not always been easy to get Caleb to stay in bed, lately it has been impossible to convince him to stay put.  This new behavior has been driving Doug and I absolutely crazy over the past few days.  2 nights ago, Doug and I sat down and came up with a plan of action.  It felt like we had been too focused on the discipline aspect-- and hadn't rewarded positive behavior enough.  So, we came up with a reward system-- Caleb loves to do fun activities and events with us, so we drew pictures of some of his favorites and put the slips of paper into his reward jar.  If Caleb does a good job of following our bedtime rules and stays in his bed, the next morning he gets to select one activity to do with Doug and I that evening (obviously this isn't a sustainable practice-- we decided to go big now and slowly bring it down a few levels over time :)  Today he got to choose his first reward activity-- a trip to Castle Fun Park.

This is probably his favorite place in the world-- it is probably one of my least favorite places in the world.  But after dinner tonight, we all hopped in the car and hit the highway with Caleb clutching the slip of paper he had pulled from the reward jar in excitement.  All of a sudden, I hear my sweet, innocent, three year old son repeating over and over again (in the cutest sing-song-y voice):

Caleb:  "F-U"... "F-U"... "F-U". (I turn to look at Doug in disbelief... am I hearing this right?  Where on earth did he learn to say that?  Apparently bedtime routine should be the least of my worries...)
Me:  "Caleb, what are you saying back there?"
Caleb:  "I'm just trying to spell this word Mommy.  (holds up the Castle Fun Park picture he pulled from the reward jar)  What's the last letter?"  (I finally clue in... much relieved)
Me:  "That last letter is an 'N'.  F-U-N spells fun." (Phew)

Doug and I tried our best not to laugh.  (Doug succeeded better than I did).  And eventually we pulled into the parking lot of Castle Fun Park for a fun filled family evening.

Extreme excitement
Ridin' the train
Racing game
A good time was had by all (for the most part-- I tried to have a good attitude :)  And... Caleb went to bed tonight like a dream.  Sweet success.  Doug and I are celebrating tonight-- here's to parents who bribe their three year olds into good behavior :)


EB said...

Hahaha... F...U... hilarious! FUN! I think your little guy is so rad... I also have to say, this system sounds equally rad. I hope it really starts to help him stay in bed so you can rest up and get ready for baby! So exciting!

Bonnie said...

I love it that he wears his hat backwards. ;)
And congrats on the victory! You guys are awesome.

Brad and Karla said...

Bribing is the way to go for our son too. It is all about motivation. We have more problems with him staying in his room in the morning (because he gets up at 6:00 am and is supposed to stay there till 7:00 am) This often results in many temper tantrums. We will have to try this idea.

Elissa said...

It's worth a try-- day two ends again in success... he's been perfect at every nap and bedtime since the plan was implemented :)

{ as we know it } said...

Nice work team Toews!!
What a grand idea ... You are awesome parents! Babe #2 is very lucky

{ as we know it } said...

Nice work team Toews!!
What a grand idea ... You are awesome parents! Babe #2 is very lucky