Manners= Mileage

My daughter has been learning how far manners can take her. Pleading “Please please” has easily given her access to things otherwise forbidden after 8pm, like candy, chips or chocolate. The other day she bid me an “Excuse me” to clear a path to her shoes. She even greeted me “Good Morning” a couple of times before demanding her morning bottle. We’re still working on “Thank you.” For some reason, she’s pretty cheap with it, as if some things are not worthy of her thanks yet. I suspect she’s not as generous with thank you since she doesn’t receive anything from saying it while the others are her ticket to instant gratification– food, shoes, milk.   I’ve been praising her when she begrudgingly says thank you or worse says it under her breath. Maybe that’s the mistake…Got any ideas on instilling a thank you habit?  Would LOVE to hear your tips!

Anyway, I’ll take what I can get at this point. After being at her beck and call (read: slave) for nearly 2 years, it feels great to get some real respect from my toddler. And if I feel this charmed as a mother, what more a complete stranger. My daughter didn’t realize it at the time but when she walked by a recently concluded party that she was not invited to but asked politely for the balloon decorations, manners can mean something else– FREE STUFF!

free balloons

She was so pleased to receive the balloons that she walked them to the car all on her own..

Manners can get you free balloons!

The balloons were twice her size but she refused to let go. She was determined!

This entry was posted in Skills, The Mommy Psyche and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Manners= Mileage

  1. Janaki says:

    Hi Childsplay :) thanks for your compliments on my garden. it’s a work in progress since I’m just starting.
    With my 3 year old Sophie, it’s no Thank-you-no-favor rule. Before I hand her request, I ask her what to say afterwards and she’d say Thank you. Sort of a mini quiz type. Because she loves Barney so much, I always let her watch this episode ‘Best Manners’, it has a song about Please and Thank you. Although toddlers knowing the effect of Thank you can backfire sometimes. Sometimes she’d say ‘Thank you mommy, thank you so much’ and I’d be clueless what it’s for. When I ask her, she’d say ‘ thank you for the chocolate’ – she already has the chocolate in her hands even before she asked permission to have it. That’s another ball game to tackle.

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