Wow- tonight's Dear Sara is all over the place. But I love it because that makes it fun! So let's get to it..
1. 2012.. end of days or another media hype like Y2K? I'm torn. Obviously, I'd like to it to be a hoax so I can live a lot longer and wreck havoc on the world. But then again... I'd not have to worry about Christmas presents that year. And I will already be 30, finished up with my 30/30 list and yeah. But I'm going to say hoax. Mostly because if National Enquirer stands behind it you know it's bullshit. I mean, you put BatBoy on Oprah and I'll believe you, but until then.. die.
2. Have you always been crafty? Um, no. In fact, the time I had to make a diorama in third grade and had no idea what to do. And, being poor, my supplies were limited to what I could get from the gas station my mom worked at, which meant Elmer's white glue and odds & ends from the food area (straws, plastic spoons, cups, lids, etc). Guess who failed? Me. But, I learned that you can't glue straws together to make a fence. How else would I learn that?
3. Is it Spring yet? Judging by the 10 degrees here today (mother effing HEAT WAVE).. I'd say no.
4. What are your thoughts on spanking? Oooh... controversial! OK. Real talk. Did your parents spank you? Do you think you were abused? Granted, some are going to say yes, they were abused. And that's horrible. I'm willing to bet though that the majority of people in my age group were spanked for things that justified it. Do I believe using spanking as the be all/end all punishment? No. Do I believe that there are times that warrant it? Yes. Do I think it should be used sparingly? Yes. I will tell you that in my life, I can count 3 times where I was spanked and I can tell you EXACTLY what I did to get that. I can give you every single detail of my surroundings. And you can bet I never repeated the behaviors. But I was a relatively good kid. Sure, I was sassy and had attitude. But pretty much every girl does. And as I became a teenager when my parents said no it meant no and that was that. You'll also notice I didn't get knocked up, try drugs, got into any trouble, nothing. Mostly because I knew my parents would have gone BALLISTIC. And I'm sorry, but no amount of popularity was worth the wrath of mom and dad.
I do believe that as a parent it is your job, and your job alone, to discipline your kid. It is your job to teach your child how to behave in public, how to be respectful to everyone, how to be a good citizen, etc. I would say most times when a child misbehaves it's because they don't have the skill set to tell you how they feel otherwise, and it's a learning curve for a parent to know how to redirect that behavior. It's VERY hard and you just learn as you go. Also as a parent you have to make sure your kids respect you, your authority and your rules. The first time you let your kid take advantage of you- you have failed. I'm talking about a kid screaming in a store for a toy and you cave and get them one. Yes, we've all been there but the minute you cave you just taught your kid that "if I cry for ___ minutes.. I get the toy". Sorry, but true. I think the whole "coddle your kids" is a terrible tactic. I think spanking should only be one tool in the toolbox of parenting and it should be used with consideration and sparingly.
I also believe as a parent it's your job to build their self esteem. And that means praising them a lot, be specific with it. Don't just be like "good job". Because.. really? Lame. Say, "good job on that picture you're coloring. I like how many colors you used" or whatever. It sounds hokey but it makes a BIG difference to your child. With my kids before they go to bed we always read a story, but then right after I talk to them about their day. I ask what they liked, what they didn't like, etc. Then I tell them something I'd like to see them do better tomorrow and something I saw them doing that I liked. I always end with praise. And we talk. I think you have to talk to your kids and discipline equally. And do it from day one. Really. Because you can't just assume that starting when they are in school you'll be able to curve the bad behavior. By then forget it. Just hope they don't end up in juvie or worse.
5. Anal. Advice. Please. OK. So last week we talked about sex and that was super. But then I got 12 emails from readers who were bummed I didn't talk about anal. So I'm here to help you out the best I can. I'm sorry it's long- I did this 7 times and this seriously is the fastest I can talk where you can understand me and me get through it all.