Category Archives: Love and Logic

Riding The Bus – A Love & Logic Lesson

We have had a bit of a problem over the summer with the boys fighting in the van. Anytime we drive anywhere, there is a fight. We have rearranged seats, had consequences, and I have pulled over more times than I care to remember. So when the first two mornings back to school consisted of fighting during the drive, that was it, I was not putting up with it anymore.

I have always driven the kids to school in the morning because it gives us a little more time in the mornings. We don’t have to get up quite so early, things are less rushed. But by golly, I will get up at the crack of dawn if it means I can teach them a lesson. I’m a good Mom that way. 🙂 Now that the boys are older they are pretty much getting ready on their own. They make their own lunches and dress themselves. So I knew they could handle getting ready for the bus without it becoming a problem for me.

So last night I told the boys it was time for bed. “But, Mom, it’s 15 minutes early!” I responded that we were going to have to get up a little earlier than usual so they would need to go to bed a little earlier than  usual too. And then they asked why and my Love and Logic empathy had a chance to do it’s thing…

“Well, it kind of too bad.” When my kids hear this, they know something they won’t like is coming. “When kids fight in the van on the way to school, I get way too drained. So you guys are going to start riding the bus to school in the mornings! I checked with the bus driver and she will be here at 7:20 am. I am going to set my alarm a little earlier than normal. Maybe you should too.” WHAT?! They were stunned and dismayed. I started hearing the “its not my faults” and “well if he didn’t touch me” arguments. I just sighed and said, “Off to bed now, we have an early morning!” And so they did.

Morning came and I knew at least one of them would attempt the “oops I missed the bus” scenario. So when it was looking like Charlie wasn’t going to make it in time I said, “Oh that’s ok. I’ll just take you. I charge $3 for a drive to school. Would you like to pay me now or later?” And he he just rolled his eyes and ran to the bus.

Ahhhh, I love this Love and Logic Parenting stuff. It sure feels good to take care of myself and teach those boys a lesson. It’s even more fun when they learn more than one!

Have you taught your kids any good lessons lately? Do yourself a favor and put your foot down! The best parents are the ones that take care of themselves! My morning was filled with coffee drinking on the front steps instead of refereeing back seat fights. I’ll take it!

What Parenting with Love and Logic Looks Like

Parenting through this crazy housing situation we have been through has been hard. We’ve tried to be consistent as possible but when your kids don’t even have a bedroom to be sent to, it can be tough.

I have had these tidbits from a Love and Logic email saved for a long time. I like to look back at them now and then to remind myself what my parenting should look like. I thought I’d share them with you and give myself another refresher as well!

The “Love and Logic” approach should always look like the following:
  • A loving attitude toward the young person. A key principle of the Love and Logic approach is that we preserve the dignity – of the child AND the adult. Does yelling and threatening preserve kids’ dignity? How about ours?
  • Shared thinking and control. Adults using Love and Logic techniques resist the urge to come up with all the answers and solve all the problems. Instead, they give kids the gift of thinking about and solving problems. They ask lots of questions and give lots of choices so kids stay in on the action.
  • Empathy before consequences and bad news. We are sad for kids and we hurt for them when they struggle. Our sadness (instead of our anger and frustration) helps them own problems and learn from the consequences. None of this works without empathy.
  • Relationships are paramount. If we are not preserving or enhancing relationships, we are not really using Love and Logic techniques.

Aahhhh, I feel more in control already! Sometimes we just need a reminder, right?

For more parenting resources and advice, visit

*Not a sponsored post! 

Parenting Tip: Questions Create Thinking

I haven’t posted any parenting advice lately so I thought I’d pass on this little snippet of great insight from my favorite parenting site, Love and Logic.

At Love and Logic® we believe that kids are best prepared for the real world when we allow them to do as much thinking as possible. It’s good practice for the real world, and it keeps the monkey off of our backs most of the time.
Here’s the problem. Do you know kids who like to keep adults doing all of the thinking? Do you know kids who are good at tricking us into doing so?
How do we avoid falling into this trap? 

One strategy involves using plenty of questions!
The more questions we ask,
the better thinkers our kids will become.
People who understand Love and Logic also understand that the human brain seeks closure. When we use plenty of questions, children’s brains are so busy searching for closure that they have less energy left over for power-struggles.
The more questions we ask,
the fewer power-struggles we will have. 

 Kids grow the healthiest and strongest brains when they’re fortunate to spend time around adults who say things like: 

 “I don’t know. What do you think?” 

 “Are you sure that’s the best idea?” 

 “How do you think that’s going to work out for you?” 

 “Would you like to hear what some other kids have tried?” 

 “Do you think that’s going to work out well or ________?” 

 “What do you think you are going to do?” 

 “Which one of these is the best solution to your problem?” 

 “Do you have enough money to pay for any possible damage?” 

 “Is that a wise decision?”

I love this advice. I love putting the questions back onto the kids and not draining myself over their problems.

Try it. You’ll like it. 🙂

Parenting: Saying No Without Saying No

It’s no wonder that so many kids say “No!” as their first word. It’s probably the word we say most often as parents, isn’t it? I’ve learned that there are a lot of ways to say no to a child without using the actual word. (Mostly from Love and Logic, my favorite parenting resource.)
I think it’s important to branch out and try saying no in other ways because the word loses it’s meaning after awhile. It also helps kids to understand that you aren’t just ordering them around with yes and no answers. It allows the child to think and then make a choice. And that is the best thing we can do for our kids! Make ’em think!

So here’s a few ways to say no without letting the actual word leave your lips!

Here are a few tips from the latest Love and Logic Newsletter:
Give a choice and imply consequences: “Gee, I don’t think that is a very good decision and I’m pretty sure it might work out poorly for you.”
Suggest an alternative behavior without ordering it: “I think that if I were in your shoes, I would probably change my tone of voice rather than being asked to leave.”

Ask for illumination (without using a witness stand tone of voice): “I’ve always wondered about what leads kids to be obnoxious. Can you help me understand that?”

Give a direct question: “How do you think this is going to work out for you?”
{For more advice on this and more, check out Love and Logic’s site and sign up for the newsletter.}
The important thing to remember is that it is ok to say no. Sometimes you have to. But when you avoid it, the meaning of the word becomes much more respected!
You can avoid that constant “No! Don’t talk like that to me!” and “No! You stop that right now!” and so on.
If we can say something that gets the kid to think and make a choice about what to do next, we have taught a lesson instead of just demanded a behavior to stop.
You can also use one liners and give enforceable statements. My favorites are “That’s an option!” and “Let me know how that works out for you!”

This is also great advice for toddlers and young children. A cue other than NO can be used like “Uh-Oh!” and remove them from the thing/area/etc that you want to tell them no about.

It works! Try it! Do you have any creative ways to say no without using the actual word?

PS – Not a sponsored post!

WINNER UPDATE! Love and Logic Speed-E Solutions..and a Giveaway!

UPDATE: Winner Announced!
The winner is…Sandy! Sandy, email me and let me know which Speed-E Solution you want!
First of all, this is not a sponsored post. I I just want to share the love! And it will
make me feel better if a bunch of you say you need parenting help too.

If you have read my blog at all, you know what a fan I am of Love and Logic Parenting. I have found so many ideas and strategies from reading the books to listening to the cds. Now I have found a new way to soak up all of their parenting advice.

Love and Logic has started selling Speed-E Solutions online. You can download them in mp3 format and listen to them on your computer, ipod or phone. I just bought When Your Kids Get Defiant the other day and listened to it while at the gym.

Not because I have a defiant child. Nope. My kids are perfect little angels. I did it for blog research.


I love how easy the downloadable lessons make it to get parenting advice. It’s a nice little reminder to turn on when things are getting, um, rough at home.

I wanted to share my excitement by purchasing a Speed-E Solutions for one of you! You pick which one you want and I’ll buy it for you. Just tell me which one you want in the comments and why and you are entered to win!

Pick your Speed-E Solution here!

Deadline for entries is Tuesday, September 20th at 9pm. Because I’m old and that’s my bedtime.

One comment per family please!

Oh, and if you want to get a copy of my favorite book, order it below! *affiliate link*

Love and Logic Parenting: A Source of Wisdom or Resentment

Yesterday I received my Love and Logic Insider’s email (sign up on their homepage to receive them yourself!) and the text hit me like a ton of bricks. This is such good advice and gives me so much to think about. I will definitely stop and think before I react more often. Trying harder, trying harder, trying harder to get this parenting thing right!
My friend, Dr. Foster Cline, is a very wise man. His presentations offer one brilliant piece of advice after another. One of my favorites is, “Every childhood mistake handled well can become a learning experience. Every childhood mistake handled poorly can become the source of resentment.”
Put yourself into this situation: You are a child who “borrowed” your dad’s power screwdriver. You left it out in the driveway overnight, and now it’s missing.
After finally getting up the nerve to admit this to your father, he replies, “Wow! I bet you feel pretty bad about that. I’m planning to do some repair work next weekend and I’m going to need that screwdriver back or I’m going to need a replacement. Let me know how you’re going to solve that. Give me a hug.”
How are you feeling at this moment? What are your feelings toward your dad? Are you mad at your dad or yourself? What kind of learning could take place?
Now suppose that Dad handles it this way instead and replies, “That was really stupid. What in the world were you thinking? How many times have I told you to leave my things alone? This is the kind of thing that really makes me mad. If you don’t find the screwdriver, you’re going to be grounded for two weeks, and I mean it!”
How are you feeling now? If this happens to be Dad’s typical reaction, how many repetitions of these interactions need to take place before resentment builds? How much learning takes place when you see the other person as the source of your bad feelings?
You can hear many of Dr. Cline’s wise words on the CD Allowing Kids to Choose Success.
I love how it makes you stop and think, “How are you feeling now?” I forget to put myself in my kids shoes sometimes. If someone said the things to me that I said to my kids, I would probably hate them. 
Good parenting food for thought, isn’t it?!

Love and Logic Parenting: Getting Your Kids to Think

 I have been reading and re-reading these super helpful tips from a Love and Logic Insider’s Club email I’ve had in my inbox for weeks now. It’s such good information, I knew you would want to read it!

How can we make sure that our kids are doing their fair share of the thinking? How can we keep ourselves from getting pulled into working harder on their lives than they are? How can we help them become prepared for a world full of decisions and consequences?

Replace statements with questions.
Some of the most powerful moments come when we empower kids by asking them what they plan to do about various situations instead of telling them what they need to do. The implied message we send says, “You are smart. You can come up with the answer.” In my CD, Shaping Self-Concept, I teach that kids who are given this gift are far more likely to succeed in school and in life.
On top of that, the human brain has a hard time ignoring the questions it hears. It wants to search for the answers – it just can’t help itself. What a gift we give kids when we get them to think versus telling them what to do.
A child who is redirected with the question, “Are you sure this is the right place for that behavior?” will respond much better than the child who is told, “Stop that!” One method invites thinking; the other invites resistance and battles for control. Which do you prefer?
In either case, we are enticing young brains to do lots of thinking by simply asking questions rather than stating “how it is.” So, do your kids’ brains a favor and feed them a steady diet of questions. Won’t it be fun to see the smoke start rolling out of their ears?
I last wrote about the power of questions: how questions can actually divert the brain’s focus. A person who is thinking in one direction can suddenly find himself/herself thinking in a totally different direction when hit with a question.
An example of this happened when Jill said to her teacher, “Well, I wasn’t the only one throwing food.” Her teacher responded with empathy and a question, “Oh, this is sad. Where are you going to eat now that you can’t eat in the cafeteria any more?”
“Huh?” Jill’s brain, driven by nature to answer questions, had to switch gears and go off in a totally different direction.
Most things we say can be turned into a question, putting us in charge of the conversation. Here are some examples of changing orders or statements into questions:
Order:  “You aren’t going to talk like that in this house.”
Question:  “Is this the right place for that language? Thank you.”
Order:  “If you don’t do your homework, you’re going to get a bad grade.”
Question:  “What kind of grade do you think you’ll get without doing your homework?”
Order:  “You are not going to drive if you drink.”
Question:  “What do you think will happen to your driving privileges if I start worrying about you drinking?”
Order:  “You guys better quit fighting over that remote control.”
Question:  “Have you guys thought about what might happen to the remote if you keep fighting over it?”
Order:  “Quit that bickering!”
Question:  “Hey, guys, what do you think is going to happen if that doesn’t stop?”
Another example of using a question to change a situation happened when Dr. Charles Fay witnessed three young boys on the school bus becoming rowdy. A teacher told them to settle down. They didn’t. Dr. Fay went over to sit with them and asked, “Hey guys. Which one of those Pokemon figures spits fire?”
As you can guess, the entire scenario changed as these kids started answering and talking. No discipline was needed. A simple question made a huge change.

You can get Love and Logic’s Insider Club emails yourself by signing up on their website.

This is not a sponsored post. I’m just a L&L nerd who loves to share parenting strategies with other tired parents. 


Fixing Kids Mistakes – To Help or Not To Help?

I’ve talked about it before, but I’m back to it.  I’ve been thinking lately about my kids’ mistakes. As a parent you want to protect your kids, to help them along as much as possible. But I am finding that fixing their every mistake is only hurting them in the end.

My job as a parent isn’t to catch my child every time they fall, it’s to make sure when they fall, they know what to do, how to respond and how to get back up again.

This is my latest parenting technique I need to work on.

What will my son learn from more? Me bringing him his boots (that he forgot) so he can play outside at recess or letting him sit inside alone for recess?  Me nagging at him “Don’t forget…don’t forget…don’t forget!” or letting him forget and feel the natural consequences of that irresponsibility?

Through the reading of my favorite parenting book, Parenting With Love and Logic, I am realizing that letting my kids deal with their own mistakes is what is best for them.

The price tag on mistakes right now is low. But one day they will be high. I want to teach them how to handle failures and mistakes now, while the price tag is small and we are here to remind them to put their hands out in front of them so they don’t land face first.

I don’t want to remain a rescuer/helicopter parent. It’s not healthy for me or for them.

What do you think about fixing kids mistakes?

*Note: Amazon affiliate link included*

Fixing Kids Mistakes Part 2 – Sometimes, You Have To Help

I got some great replies to my post from the other day about fixing our kids mistakes. Thanks for that!

Just this morning I had a situation come up where I had to decide…to fix or not to fix.  Today, I chose to fix the mistake. I thought it would be good  to talk about the times when it’s ok to fix a mistake our kids make and how to do it the right way.

I’m pretty good at talking about mistakes. I make lots of them. 🙂

So Chandler (who is 10) called me this morning. He forgot his band instrument. He asked if I could bring it to him. So I was left with the question…do I fix it? 

How do we decide when it’s ok to step in?  Here is how I do it:

First – Am I taking care of myself as a priority?  I don’t want that to sound like a selfish statement. I’m all about being generous towards others and teach my kids to do so as well. But I also think it’s very healthy to teach our kids that sometimes we have to take care of ourselves before jumping in to help others.

 I really don’t want to raise kids who think my sole purpose in life is to run around and fill their every need and desire in life. Rushing in every single time they mess up will teach them this. I will always be willing to drop everything instantly for my kids if they really need me to. But I will also balance that by teaching them (by modeling it!) that they can not and will not always have me at their beck and call.

If I have plans with a friend for lunch, I will not cancel or show up late just to bring my son his instrument because he was irresponsible in remembering it. It wouldn’t be fair to me or my friend. It wouldn’t be fair to my child either in the long run. I would show him that my personal life, my time, it matters and he should respect that as well.

Second – How important is the request? Today the request was of semi-importance.  They are preparing for a concert. He has worked hard all week practicing the songs and was eager to show his teacher his progress today and try to get a solo. Which made me wonder why the heck he forgot it since he’s been gearing up for it all week! Anyway, if it was something small, I probably would have said no. But today, I had nothing going on and this was important to him, so I did it.

Third – How often does this mistake happen? If this were happening every week…concert coming up or not…I would have said no. Chandler is a very responsible boy and it is rare that he forgets things. He has only forgotten his instrument one time before this whole school year (and for the record, I did not bring it to him that time!) and because I knew this was a big day for him, I was very surprised that he forgot it. This morning was a bit rushed and because of baseball going late last night, we did not do our usual prep for school the next day. I knew this was a simple oversight, not a regularly occurring case of irresponsibility.

Lastly – Nothing come without a cost! The bottom line to fixing mistakes is that it can’t be for free! I would be teaching him nothing if I just brought him the instrument and never said another word. Take the time to use every mistake as a learning opportunity!

I gave Chandler the choice, yes, I will bring you the instrument, but gas is very high right now and I have to come all the way back to the school, so I’ll need you to pay for the gas. Do you still want me to bring it?  He thought about it and I knew he was weighing how worth it this was to him. He decided, yes, he would pay for the gas, he really didn’t want to miss band practice today. (I was SO glad he said yes! Great lesson learned today!)

Get creative with your consequences and remember to make sure that they realistically and practically relate directly to the mistake. Grounding Chandler from tv for the day would teach him nothing about responsibility.  That would be a punishment. I am not into punishing my kids. (Well, sometimes I want to but that doesn’t mean I should 🙂 )

Other options could be, I took a half hour from my day to do this for you so now I need you to make up that half hour by doing something for me…extra chores work but I’ve also been known to request a foot rub.

Another option would be since I missed my half hour workout at the gym today I will be going for a walk and I’ll need you to stay here and do the dishes. 

See how they are all related to the fact that I took time out of my day (teaching importance of respecting other people’s time) to help him?

So there you have it. The other side of the coin. Yes, sometimes we do step in and fix our kids mistakes. It can be an equally wonderful teaching moment! Just remember the word…SOMETIMES! 🙂

Love and Logic Parenting: DO IT NOW!

This week’s Love and Logic Insider’s Newsletter was really helpful for me so I wanted to pass it on!
I get asked often about the fact that when we do Love and Logic Parenting that it doesn’t leave room for what to do when you need something done NOW and the child won’t listen.  For me, Step 5 in the process shown below really seems to do the trick!
While the Love and Logic® approach doesn’t teach parents to be bossy or demanding, we do recognize that there are times when we simply need our kids to help us right away. Listed below are some steps for making this happen.
Step One: Make sure that you are doing a good job of helping your kids when they ask you.
Step Two: Ensure that they have something they really value. At a later date, losing this item or privilege can be used as a consequence.
Step Three: Hope and pray that they will either refuse or “forget” to do something you ask them to do for you “right away.”
(Tasha’s Insight: He says this because the only real way to teach your kid a lesson, is to let them fail!) 
Step Four: In a sweet and respectful tone of voice, ask them to do something for you “right now.”
Step Five: When they refuse or “forget,” let them think that everything is just fine. Don’t say a word. Later in the day, or possibly later in the week, say something like, “I love you so much. I’ve noticed that you don’t think it’s important to help me when I ask you to do things for me right away. The sad thing is that this shows me that you aren’t really mature enough to have_______________________.” (Insert mp3 player, cell phone, driving privileges, etc.)
Another strategy involves saying, “This is so sad. I love you so much. I _________________ (Insert iron clothes, drive places, buy nice snacks, etc.) for kids who help me quickly when I ask them to.”
Of course, displaying empathy, resisting the urge to lecture, and holding firm will make the difference between success and failure.
 If you want to receive helpful parenting advice like this in your email, go sign up!  
And if you want to whole book, trust me you want the whole book, you can buy it on Amazon using the links* below.

Note: This is not a sponsored post!
*Amazon Affiliate Links