Thursday, March 01, 2007

My little optimist...

Monkey has apparently learned the lesson that criticism is easier to take when accompanied by a positive statement.

For example, Mom made us some cookies and sent them in a care package. They were a little crunchier than normal due to Mom substituting raw sugar for brown sugar, and Monkey didn't like them. (Don't worry Mom, Lee loved the cookies and ate almost all of them!)

So after Monkey tasted one of the cookies she looked at me and told me they were awful. I informed her that she didn't have to eat them but we also didn't have to tell her we didn't like them. She agreed, until she was on the phone with Mom later that night. She came over to me with the phone pressed to her ear and the widest eyes I have ever seen, obviously bothered by the pressure of having to 'lie' to Nama by not telling her the cookies were awful. So I told her to go ahead and tell her.

"Nama? You know the cookies you sent me? They were awful... but they were a really pretty color!"

Mom just laughed. She and I shared the joy of Monkey's first attempt at combining criticism with positive reinforcement.

Since then she has used this method on me as well. This morning she informed me that the cream of wheat I made was awful, but a very pretty color. I just had to chuckle.

She is learning how to manage people, something I think she is picking up from Lee. I think it is pretty cute the way she is trying to manage me.

3 comments:

Woman with a Hatchet said...

Just don't give her the keys to the car. No matter how pretty she says it is!

woman at the well said...

What you say to children always comes back to haunt you ... I remember telling Ellen that "life isn't fair ... life's just like that" if she'd come and complain abuot some little slight. Deal with it. So, one time, I was complaining about something and she came over and looked up at me and said ... "Life's just like that." These pithy sayings are really only meant to go one way - top down :)

Scylla said...

I agree, and it is just as creepy when you kid starts to sound like you, as it is when you start to sound like your parents.

Ah... the cycle of life.

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