Saturday Edition: On boosters, bad words, and giving screens the boot

imageOh great. I’m still in a booster at age 8.

So apparently, my son had the misconception that once he turned 8, it was bye-bye booster. Poor kid. I guess I forgot to tell him that it’s really his height that matters. I think he might be a little embarrassed considering many of his 8 year old friends have already said good-bye to theirs.

But here’s the thing, in order for seat belts to work properly and do the potentially life-saving function they were meant to; they have to fit right. And unless your child is 4 feet and 9 inches, chances are without a booster, the seat belt will not fit properly.

Regardless of age, height, or weight though; if your child cannot pass this 5 step test…then he still needs a booster. I showed my son how the seat belt fit without a booster. I pointed out that the strap at his neck would do more harm than good if we were ever in a car accident. Ever since then, he seems just fine with his booster.

You said what?!?!

Parents often ask me how they should respond when their child says a bad word. Your reaction really depends on your child’s age, intent, and context. For instance, a toddler may repeat an accidental rogue bad word. Whereas your school age child may be trying it on for size; well aware that it’s a bad word.

Which reminds me…I’d like to thank the 2nd grade playground for introducing my son to wide array of bad words this year. Actually, I’m not too terribly bothered by it. It was bound to happen. But when he blurted out the F word on the way home from school one day, completely matter-of-fact mind you and with his 5 year old sister sitting right next to him; I was caught a bit off guard.

He clearly did not know what it meant or why it was a bad word so I had to stifle a giggle and urgently ask him to NOT repeat it. I heard it the first time buddy. I don’t need your 5 year old sister teaching it to all her friends on the playground. I have no interest in being the mother of that child.

I thanked him for telling me and told him that it’s probably the worst bad word one could say. You are not allowed to say it. You could get in big trouble for saying that word. At home or at school.


And yes there have been a few more added to his repertoire since then. But the key is, and it’s what I tell most parents…don’t freak out about it. They are curious and need to hear from you why someone would use those words and why it’s not okay for them to use.Honesty is definitely the best policy.

Emphasize that there are plenty of other more respectable ways to get their point across. And if they continue to use them after that? Well then consequences will ensue.

Screen junkies, it’s time for our detox

Good-bye Minecraft, Facebook, Twitter, and TV…for a week anyway. We’re going Screen-Free next week and I’m actually very excited about it. Our family did it last year and it was wonderful. My kids had a hard time adjusting at first (admittedly, I did too) but then we settled in. It was a nice break from the screen distractions we find ourselves so often in.

Afterward, it really opened my eyes to areas where we could pare down and eliminate unnecessary screen time. See here.

If you haven’t tried it yet and you think your family could use an all screen break (no TV, no iPad, no video games, no social media, etc)…I encourage you to do it. You won’t be sorry.

So, until May 6, when I’m back on the grid; enjoy your weekend and week ahead. Don’t rush your 8 year old out of her booster if she’s not ready and try not to freak out when your kid learns a new bad word on the playground.

You can handle it.

Pin It

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.