Wednesday, August 20, 2008

polite as a puppy princess

Have you noticed that kids (and their parents) are more rude now a days? Well, Hubs and I have. Hubs is so polite that is edges up to almost being rude (if that makes any sense). My mom had me in etiquette classes as a teenager.

As you can imagine we are constantly pushing the importance of being polite on Little 'Ny. "Please" and "thank you" were cake. Covering her mouth when coughing or sneezing was a challenge, but she is finally pretty good at it (except for the ones that sneak up on her). We made saying "excuse me" after a burp or a fart fun, so she picked that up easily and often corrects Hubs. Sharing and cleaning up will always be a work in progress.

Our newest challenge ... saying "excuse me" when interrupting a conversation. Little 'Ny has gotten the concept of saying "excuse me," but not the concept of when it is okay to say it. For example, when Hubs and I are talking she will say "excuse me" and we will acknowledge that she said it and tell her to hang on so we can finish what we are talking about. But, since everything in her world is urgent she will keep saying "excuse me" over and over and over and over and over until we are forced to end our conversation to respond to her need which is usually nothing important except for the fact the we are not paying 100% attention to her. It has been a work in progress.

This afternoon when we got home from swim lessons our neighbor and his son walked over to say hi. His son had just gotten a new book on sharks and snakes he wanted to show Little 'Ny. I went in the house to drop off our stuff while Hubs stayed out side to chat with the neighbor while Little 'Ny looked at the book. I could hear Hubs and the neighbor talking when the neighbor's son started saying "hey look at this" to Hubs. Little 'Ny quickly said to the boy "you need to say 'excuuuuuse me'"! I felt my heart flutter with pride. I ran outside and gave her a hug and kiss and praised her for being so polite (necessary reinforcement).

That's my polite puppy princess!


  1. I need a tantrum post! Please!! She is just too darn cute.

  2. RLM -- it's fun to watch motherhood unfolding in your blog. Not a mom myself, I'm probably more persnickety about manners than I should have a right to be.

    But I LOVE when kids are themselves and TRYING to learn (and teach). What a gift you have (both in little 'Ny and the way you are with her!)


  3. You're raising your child wonderfully - teaching things that are important, but easily overlooked. We have tried the same with our kids. It's always a work in progress. I still find myself messing up way too often. So, make that a lifelong work in progress for some of us!

  4. Very good - my son says 'excuse me, Mama' but then just keeps on talking. We've yet to iron out the fine points...

  5. I was raised in Texas and it was drilled into my brother and I the importance of manners. I am 34 years old and I still say "yes, sir/ no, sir" to my Dad.

    Now that I live in the Pacific NW I have noticed how different manners (or the lack thereof) are up here. In response to that I am instilling Southern values in my son.

    Drew learned "please" and "thank you" and "excuse me" and how to politely interrupt a conversation. Like 'Ny, he does the constant stream of "excuse me's" until it gets to the point of driving us insane, but at least he is saying it!

    Our current struggle is with Ma'am and Sir. He says it to others when we are around and he says it to us all the time, but his non-Southern grandparents don't enforce it even though we ask them to so it is sort of like trying to nail jello to a tree.

    Hang in there though! You'll be so appreciative of it later!

  6. Manners should be an Olympic event !

  7. I looove those moments!!!!!!!!!!!!