Oh, obviously! The moment I sat down I thought I was looking into a mirror.

two strikes I swanny; if my boys weren’t born three years apart, I’d swear they were twins. When one is happy, the other is happy; when one is sad the other is sad.

And when one is bad, well…let’s just say that MLE now has “Two Strikes” on the old biting policy chart.

Yesterday, both of the boys had a little trouble at daycare. MLI’s class gives out stickers for being good, and one little incident can keep a child from getting a sticker. Depending on which story you listen to from MLI (the one he gave CareerMom, or the one he gave me), the infraction went something like this:

We came in from playing outside and we were waiting in line for water, and I hit Carter and then I went and sat down.”

Now, if this doesn’t quite make sense, realize it’s coming from a four year old whose recollection leaves a lot to be desired, and who probably figures he’s about to get in trouble despite what daddy just told him about being honest. We had our own little “sticker contest” going at home where if he got five stickers, he could go see Wall-E with CareerMom. He had already gotten the requisite stickers, but knowing he fudged up yesterday, when CareerMom picked him up and found out he didn’t get a sticker, he psyched himself out of movie excitement with, “It was probably going to be boring anyway.”

Since he’d already gotten five stickers, I told CareerMom that he’d already earned it despite what he’d done that day, so he went to the movie with CareerMom last night anyway, and turns out he was right. They didn’t even finish the movie.

On to MLE! All’s I know is that he and another little boy were fighting over a push-toy, and recognizing that he might be about to lose the fight, MLE decided to fight dirty and reached over and bit the other boy. Which, as it turns out, worked…up until the point where the teachers came and put him in timeout with a “stern” admonishment.

Let me just point out here that a stern admonishment is about as effective with MLE as well, timeout. Which, shockingly, for a 16 month old, MLE is very good at. He’s apparently had lots of practice in timeout. We put him in timeout this weekend for something and he actually sat there until we told him to get up.

To say were were in “shock and awe” would be an understatement. And as CareerMom has said on many occasions, “It’s a good thing he’s so cute, because he’s going to be quite the troublemaker!”

Isn’t that way of it? How many hotties do you see going to jail? Male or female?

I’m just sayin’.

So anyway, we have one more strike before the mandatory parental meeting, and then if he continues to bite, it’s expulsion. CareerMom swears she’ll pull MLI AND MLE if it comes to that; although she’s not figured out what we’ll do with them then.

Hey, don’t look at me! I may work from home a lot, but that’s only because nobody else is there!

Any suggestions as to how we can curb this biting thing? Barring that…anyone know where we can find a really good (cheap) nanny?

Cuz it’s One, Two, Three Strikes You’re Out…

three strikesAs I’ve mentioned, the daycare we have our kids in was recently purchased by a major chain (sounds like, “Bids R Bids”). Turns out, the new owner also owns a facility just up the road; one which, I might add, we had previously looked at and turned down summarily! Since the hostile takeover, the following things have happened:

– They didn’t tell anyone about the purchase until it was a done deal. Even people who had put deposits for Fall enrollment were not told. I know of one lady who dislikes the other facility these owners have so much, that she walked away from her $250 down payment.

– They removed all the wood chips in the playground, effectively shutting the playground down for a week. They have now put in different wood chips that are apparently easier on the lungs of those with breathing problems (so…let’s charge everyone more so that we can make it easier on one or two. Sounds similar to our government)

– They have now instituted a “3 strikes and you’re (at least) suspended” biting policy

It’s this last biting policy that most concerns us and many of the teachers. If you have ever had kids, or had kids around other kids, then you know that biting is common among toddlers. It’s not nice, it’s not fun, but it’s a fact of life. MLE is a bit of a biter and we’ve been working on him at home by not letting him and MLI wrestle (which sucks because, Come ON! they’re boys!), by reprimanding him when he does, and even by swatting his hiney when he does it.

But yesterday was his first offense under the new policy, so CareerMom is freaking out already about what we’ll do IF he gets suspended or kicked out. Neither of us have jobs that lend themselves well to keeping our kids at home and we’ve already scoped out all the daycare facilities around us and aren’t thrilled with our choices, not to mention the fact that with Pre-K registration having just finished, space is at a premium (if available at all).

The teachers of MLE’s class are trying to talk some sense into the owners, explaining to them that you can’t reason with a 15-month old like one of them tried explaining to us, “Well, have you tried sitting him down and explaining to him that biting is bad?”

*snort* I wish it had been me there when they said that rather than CareerMom because I would have retorted with, “I would hope that anyone who owns a daycare would be more aware of the developmental milestones of children.” You can’t reason with a 15-month old, when their attention span is no bigger than a Goldfish cracker. Sure, you can get their attention for the moment, but in an hour, in the heat of playing, their not going to stop what their doing and suddenly recall a lesson about biting! It’s madness I tell ya! Madness!

In his defense, he’s gotten better, but every now and then, usually when he gets excited and when he’s in close proximity to another person, he’ll just latch on, not hard though, but enough to hurt a bit.

But we do understand the concern that biting causes. MLI got bit a LOT when he was little and thankfully, he only bit a couple of times, and only in retaliation; but, as the mother of the child MLE bit yesterday said to CareerMom, “Oh, don’t worry about it! My son has certainly done his share of biting too!”

Anyway, my daily prayers now include, “Dear Lord, please don’t let MLE bite anyone today…oh and please let us have World Peace! Amen!”