Top New Year's resolutions parents wish their kids would make

Published: Thursday, Jan. 3 2013 5:00 a.m. MST

"I won't shove half of a banana into the bottom of my backpack after lunch and forget about it until Mom smells something funny."

"I promise not to ask the same question over and over and over and over and over again when I already know the answer."

"I will never ever spit out my gum in the backseat of Mom's car and stick it in the cupholder."

Laura Lewis Brown at PBS.org suggests making resolutions part of a family tradition: "Each family member gets a turn sharing something they are proud of and something they want to improve. It may help for parents to go first, to give children a model. If your child is old enough to write, he or she should write down their accomplishments and goals, and you can help your younger child by writing theirs down. Resolutions for the entire family might include taking a monthly hike, playing board games twice a month or committing to more volunteering activities. Try to limit the number so they are more doable and more meaningful."

The Harvard Homemaker blogger does something like what Brown at PBS.org suggested: "On New Year's Day each year, our girls now write out their own resolutions. Oftentimes they are more like "goals" — such as learning to read. We then hang their lists up in our kitchen, and they stay there all year long."

One 2010 goal for her 2-year-old girl was "No pooping in diaper."

"For the record," the Harvard Homemaker wrote, "she did attain that goal, and I wasn't changing any more diapers by the time 2011 rolled around! Woohoo!"

The other goals for that 2-year-old that year were "No being bossy" and "No tantrums."

That 2-year-old is now 4, and her 2012 goals still had "No tantrums" and "Try not to be bossy" as resolutions.

"I remember when it was time to write out her resolutions last year, we were going down the previous year's list of resolutions," Harvard Homemaker wrote. "As we read through them, it was like, 'Nope. Nope. Nope!' and onto the 2012 list most of those things went!! She made good progress this year, though, as a five-year-old!"

EMAIL: mdegroote@desnews.com

Twitter: @degroote

Facebook: facebook.com/madegroote

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