Toddler Tips: Cross Your Arms

Here's a little trick I learned from my mom, who most likely learned from her mom, Josephine, mother of nine.

It's the "cross your arms" trick.

When you have a child who needs to be told something important, or reprimanded, especially one under say about 7, you have them cross their arms.  It works especially well for older toddlers because it distracts them for a enough minutes to change their course of action. It also does a couple more things:

-It makes them look at you and concentrate on what you are saying.
-It makes their mood, somehow-I don't know how- change.  Usually they get a little giggly.
-It makes them look really really cute, which makes you really really less angry.

I've been doing this for years and it works wonders.


  1. Love this... Will be implementing today! (probably some time in the next ten minutes!)

  2. This is the kind of post I need in my life.

  3. Thank you for this series - I will definitely be trying this trick! Do you have any tips for stopping potty talk (outside of the bathroom, of course!)

  4. How did I never know this?! Passing it in to daughters for grandbabies!

  5. Either I will print out every blog post of your that has to do with mothering, or you need to write a book. You pick! :) I've been reading your blog since I was pregnant with my first and you never cease to impress me with your wisdom. Thank you, thank you, thank you. And our children thank you too!!!


  6. We did this too! Except we told our little ones to "fold their hands." And then we'd celebrate their self-control (and talk about how it was a fruit of the spirit... on a good mothering day ;) Mostly, I think it gave them something to do with their hands.

  7. Excellent! I have my littles "sit on (their) hands"...crossing arms is better. THANK YOU.