Thursday, April 4, 2013

Safe Place, Safe Person

As I've chronicled before, my 4-year old daughter and I can have days when we are like oil and water. Today is one of those days. It began when my husband left for Afghanistan and I could have sworn she would stop when he got home. But, here we are, six months later and the outbursts and insults continue.

Yesterday she had a very public meltdown in the middle of our street, literally. We went out to ride bikes and one of her friends was outside at the same time. After her friend went inside, the downward spiral began. "Mom, can I see if xxx wants to play?" Lucky me got to be the bearer of bad news -- they're doing homework, they're not home, they're playing somewhere else, etc. Then, she spotted some kids down the road and ran over to see what they were doing. She proceeded to run back to me, begging to go play. "Were you invited to play?" I asked (we have this conversation A LOT about not inviting yourself) and I got the usual "No... But they're my friends." It's hard to get a 4-year old to understand that sometimes kids don't want to include everyone. I'm not sure if it was her not being invited or me saying no but I was quickly on the receiving end of a lot of yelling and crying. After several attempts of being very calm and trying to get her to settle down, I told her I was going inside. Her meltdown continued for the neighbors to see, bike helmet still on her head. *sigh*

Today, I was on the receiving end of several comments including "you're so mean," "I wish dad stayed home instead of you," and "I want dad to take me bed every night not you." Psychologists and child 'experts' will tell you that kids are abusive (so to speak) to the person they know isn't going anywhere. Their "safe place."

As nice as it is to know that I'm her rock, I hate the abuse. I already feel like an "okay" mom and the negative comments don't help me feel like I'm winning Mother of the Year anytime soon. All they do is get me upset and angry to the point of silently cursing her in my head or making a strangling motion when her back is turned to me.

Please tell me I'm not the only one!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

A Little Taste of Hawaii

I've been trying (and unsuccessfully) to replicate the chicken teriyaki plate lunches/dinners we got in Hawaii. But tonight, I managed to get it right!

Teriyaki Chicken
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 teriyaki marinade
1 tablespoon corn starch
1 lb chicken tenderloins

  1. Cut the tenderloins into small chunks. 
  2. Place the chunks into a non-stick pan and begin to cook on medium for 5 minutes
  3. Mix the remixing ingredients, making sure the corn starch is dissolved. 
  4. Add half of the marinade and simmer 2 minutes. 
  5. Add remaining marinade and increase heat to medium-high so marinade begins to boil and thicken.  Stir occasionally, 3-5 minutes. 
  6. Serve over rice.