I just had lovely evening with M. We went swimming at the Y, had dinner at Panera, and took a quick tour through the Salvation Army, where I found her Christmas present. Of course, she now knows about it because she was with me, but this will be the one from her parents and I'm going to make it fancy so it's all good.
Her swimming is coming along really well. The only thing holding me back from encouraging it is the damage it inflicts on her hair/scalp. I don't have the energy/time to redo her hair everytime we swim. I know that's a pathetic reason, but if she really ends up choosing swimming as her activity I will totally support her. Obviously.
Anyway, back to the pool. I followed her lead--played her games, let her decide what tricks to show me, swam/sit where she told me. When she finally said, "I'm ready to go." I didn't question her to make sure, I just swam out of the pool.
One of the main messages I'm getting from my reading of Pema Chodron is to minimize and not reinforce the negative behaviors/thoughts/ways of being while reinforcing the positive ones I am striving for. Being with my kids in mindful, meaningful ways is a behavior I want to nurture.