Encouraging Positive Attitudes

Vacation was a blast!  It is always so great to see family and visit and catch up.  Unfortunately I either forget to pick up the camera or we are in / on the water and I didn’t want to take the camera along.  We had a great time canoeing the lake close to my brother’s house with his family.  I really wish I had some pictures of the tight spaces my husband led us through.  We also enjoyed a nice fireworks display and a day at the water park with the aunts, uncles, and cousins.


My husband did capture a few cool moments.  The boys were checking out this cool hollow tree during a walk with grandma.  If you look up…. snake skin.


He also nabbed this great shot of a dragonfly about to take flight.


The boys have been at Cub Scout Camp this week.  It’s been pretty quiet around the house without them.  I’m working really hard on a project I hope to share within the next couple of weeks.  I’ve spent most of my time without them decluttering and painting. I did swing by Chick-fil-a for some semi-sweet tea!  In other good news, the Target near me is finally done remodeling and has my favorite frozen berry mix back in stock!  I start every morning with a banana berry smoothie and it hasn’t been the same without my usual berry mix.  Sometimes it really is the small things.


I’m sure it happens at every house, a couple of months ago one of my precious boys was suffering from a difficult attitude.  He didn’t feel like he could do anything right and was constantly walking around with a grumpy attitude.  It made me sad to see him like that because he can be so cheerful and helpful.   He really felt like we didn’t see any of the good stuff he was doing.


So we started a pebble jar for both boys. We decided to follow the LEGO FLL model of coopetition. Each boy has his own jar to fill BUT when one finishes his jar he gets a reward that benefits both of them.  The beauty of this design is they can see how they are doing individually and they are spurred on when they see their brother getting pebbles. On the other hand, the reward being for both of them regardless who finishes keeps them cheering for each other.

The pebble jar has made a huge change…IN ME!  I did notice the good stuff they were doing, but I frequently forgot to say it or they didn’t hear it.   Now, if they clear their plates with out being asked and then go play, I can just put a pebble at their chair and say “Thanks” when they come back.  It also makes it easy for them to ask for affirmation,  “Can I have a pebble for…?”   The boys really see a difference in their attitudes and appreciate the positive encouragement.  I was concerned about creating an artificial reward for something they should be doing anyway; but we’ve all really enjoyed the positive reinforcement and honestly the rewards are things we would do anyway.  The pebbles are surprisingly small and it takes a long time to fill the jar.


Today they are getting new water guns for the post camp water gun fight and a trip for ice cream.    I can’t wait!!


What do you do to make sure you are encouraging positive attitudes?  How do you remind yourself to appreciate others?


Mary_CollageFriday      weeklywrapup125

9 thoughts on “Encouraging Positive Attitudes

  1. What fun! I have a son who I need to encourage some positive attitudes in. I wonder if a pebble jar would work for him.

    • Give it a try! I think my son really needs words of encouragement so this has helped me keep his love tank full. We like being able to see all the pebbles in the jar and think of all the times they have been helpful or had a good attitude.

  2. I love your pebble jar idea…. I love that they get a reward that benefits both of them. I tried something similar last year, but the reward wasn’t as meaningful as yours, so maybe I need to try again. Thank you 🙂

    Thanks also for linking with Collage Friday!

    • Mary – Thanks for hosting Collage Friday. I’ve been visiting for about a year now but just starting blogging a couple of months ago.

  3. I agree, I love the picture of the Dragon fly! And I also love the pebble jar idea. I wonder if I can use these for encouraging my guys in their chores. They always work with a great attitude but sometime forget to do things even though they’ve been doing the same chores for years! A pebble for everything remembers and one taken away if they forget? This definitely has mileage, thanks for sharing!

  4. Pingback: Weekly Wrap-up – Pebbles of Encouragement | Learning with Boys

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