I have been a mom for over twenty-three years now. Here just a few of the things I have learned.
Time spent teaching life skills is rewarding for you and your children. As parents we know we are responsible for teaching the basics like tying shoes and brushing teeth. Yet, I also taught my kids many other things without even realizing I was doing so. For example, I love to bake. All those times I whipped up a batch of brownies or blueberry muffins while my littles played beside me in the kitchen, I was teaching them. Planning meals and taking them to the grocery store to pick out produce for dinner was fun and educational. Making beds, smoothing comforters, placing pillows, and favorite stuffed animals. All these small gestures I did every day for years were moments my children witnessed. And learned from. And now, do for themselves. Some of the very best learning moments happen when we as parents don't even realize we are teaching.
Too much stuff is too much. This one took me a little longer to realize. Every day, our children are bombarded with things advertisers want them to think they need. It starts out simple enough. Stuffed animals, movies, video games. Then clothes, knick nacks, figurines, card games, and shoes. It is very easy to see something and think that your child would simply love it. I was guilty of this until I looked around and realized much of the stuff I thought my kids had was cute and sweet and fun indeed. But not necessary. I mean how many versions of UNO do we need? We have the original UNO, Barbie UNO, Sophia the First UNO, UNO Attack, UNO Jackpot. You get the idea. When we moved I realized that our home was overrun with unnecessary items. We purged and vowed to simplify. Our home has less now. It is less cluttered. And that is good. There is an exception to every rule, however. Mine is books. I will never say no to a book. For any of us.
Two Sets Of Sheets Per Bed Is Fine. This goes along with the above, but I feel it necessary to explain further. We had a linen closet in our old home. It was large and centrally located. When we moved, I was astonished at how many sets of sheets I was able to jam in there! And I realized that every bed could hold one set of sheets at a time. So why did we have so many balled up, threadbare, musty smelling sets in that closet? Again. We purged. And now, each person has two sets of sheets. When they need washing, off they come. Then I let the bed breathe while they are washed, and back on they go. For the kids, the extra set is flannel. For Steve and I plain white cotton. Less clutter. More peace.
Your home should be a place your children want to spend time in. Our home is our haven. It is our safe place from the chaos and noise of the world. I am a homebody. Not all of my children are, but they deeply appreciate this place and enjoy spending time here with us. Even though they are older and can spend time most anywhere else, they honestly prefer to be here. My mom commented to me how wonderful she thinks it is that all my children love their home. It is simply a place to unwind, be cozy, feel comfortable, and have fun. I keep it clean (mostly), and cozy. We have soft. comfy throw blankets, stacks of games, and a fire in the fireplace in the winter. In the summer, we have a basketball hoop and firepit complete with S'more ingredients handy. Their friends are always welcome too. And we are happy.
I always loved celebrating the holidays with my kids. I have shared here often how we celebrated everything from Mardi Gras to Chinese New Year. This is the first time my Madison has had her own home for a holiday. And look what she did! She invited me, Peyton, and Flynn to her house for a Valentine tea party. It was beautiful, delicious, and fun. And did I say delicious?!
Thanks for visiting, my friends!