DAY 2 - - THE WEEK OF KIDS . . .
everything you are about to read naturally creates TEACHABLE MOMENTS . . .
LASTLY . . . let your child ask you for help, don't hop in and do things for your children. You are NOT helping them.
Have you ever seen your child playing with a toy the wrong way? Hovered over your child while they do their homework? Or seen your little one wearing their shoes on the wrong feet? Or watched as your child struggled to finish a sentence? Have you ever waited for (what seems like eternity) for your little kiddo to put on their jacket? If you have you are awesome! You are teaching your child confidence, patience, perseverance, creativity, strength and a whole list of other great traits.
So hear is the dealio mom's, dad's and caregivers. We all have to struggle a little bit to happily get to where we are going to end up. So pull out your power of patience, sit back relax and let your kids grow, shine and thrive by doing things for themselves!
Homework! If your kids don't have it yet, don't worry they will. And homework is a tough one. You know how to do most of your kids homework, how to color in the lines, do a little algebra or even quickly look up interesting facts on the internet. Watching your kids struggle with homework is brutal. They get so frustrated and mad sometimes, and you know you can hop in and do it for them. Don't! Don't! Don't! Remember they make it all day long in school without your help, they can do it at home too. School work is a great place for kids to find out their strengths and weaknesses too. So be patient, pour yourself a glass of wine and let your children do their own homework, let them feel the joy from their success. Let them bask in the sunlight from all their hard efforts. Let them get their own grades. Yes, it's hard, it's very hard not to hop in and do it for them. Teach your kids to find the answers for themselves . . . it will take them a long, long way in life.
If you are letting your child play with a toy the wrong way that's great, don't read this paragraph. Picture a little boy playing with a shovel the wrong way. And his/her parent goes over and continues to correct the child by flipping the shovel around. This is such an exhausting situation! The child is so happy playing and the parent is getting so irritated because their child isn't using the shovel the right way. If the parent just sat back, relaxed and let the child play, the parent would have a few moments to themselves. And you never know maybe that little kiddo is using the other side of the shovel to write his name! So be patient, when it's time for your kiddo to use a shovel to dig up your azaleas, trust me they will use it the right way!
Our youngest child is a late walker. He's twenty-one months and still not walking. Things can be pretty slow around here. But he is learning and wanting to do things for himself like climbing into our suburban (this is no small climb). He's about two feet tall, and getting in the car is like climbing Everest for him. The process takes about 10 minutes from start to finish. Now imagine, if I put him in the car every time and never let him do it himself. He would be three years old before he figured it out! So I sit and wait while he makes his attempt at the stairs down to the car, then the running boards on the car, then into the car, then he climbs to the seat (a major balancing act), then he struggles for a while until he finally asks for help because at that point he is dangling with a death grip from the seatbelt. But, let me tell you when he finally gets to his seat he is so happy and so proud. So when your kiddo can't reach something on the counter, politely remind them where the stool is. If your kiddo left their baby doll downstairs, don't go get it for them . . . tell them you will wait while they go get it. Be patient, sit back relax and let your children fend for themselves. Let them grow and shine and feel great about the things they can accomplish on their own.
Here are other great things you can let your kids do on their own and you can take a second to sit back and relax . . .
- dress themselves
- butter their own toast
- serve themselves food at the table
- play, just play and play their way (not yours or the 'right way')
- brush their teeth (you can finish with a proper scrub at the end)
- carry their own school bag, sports equipment, etc
- help pack their lunch
- put their clothes away, if they can get them out they can put them away
- clean up after themselves
- clean up if they spill their drink
- let them clean their meal plate from the table
We are parents folks, not servants. Our job is to send our kids into this world to be successful, happy folks. The number one way to do this is have them start taking care of themselves. You put a roof over their heads, let them contribute to what's underneath. Love your kids!