One thing that we really work on with my middle kid is acknowledgement that someone has spoken to you. Oh, heck, we work on that with all 3 of them. And occasionally DH. But telling someone that they have been heard is a powerful thing, regardless of the subject. A household chore, a life crisis, a sad event, a happy event, we all want to hear that we have something to say and that it *has been heard*.
On a less grand level, it drives me crazy to say something to the above mentioned child and get no response. We're starting to institute the 15 pushups rule. Don't acknowledge me? 15 pushups.
Worked for them remembering to turn off lights!!! And for occasional lapses in manners.
If I could do it with the dogs, I surely would. They ran off yesterday (tripped, dropped leashes, dogs went AWOL) and 15 minutes later I finally caught up with them again. Ok, so it wasn't 15, but it was a good 10 and many trips into the creek later. I sometimes wish we had bought land like we originally intended to, so they could just run to their heart's content. Oh well.
On a totally unrelated note, I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of the wedding present I bought. I am SO excited about it - handmade pottery that is dishwasher safe. Plus I'll get them something else, like a gift card. And I'm sticking in some homemade knitted dishcloths. It's the first kid of my friends to get married. I remember when he was born. Shoot, I remember when his older brother was born!!!!