Tagged with "childhood"
6 Mar
2015
Posted in: parenting
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Learning More than Teaching

I’m certain when our last child moves out of the house, years from now, that I will have learned more from them than what they learned from me.

Over the last 12 years, I’ve learned more about myself from mothering than any self-reflection exercises I ever attempted. I have a better handle on my strengths and weaknesses. The parts of my attitudes and habits I don’t necessarily enjoy about myself have been magnified with parenting. I’m quick to anger and slow to patience. I have little room for excuses, even if they’re valid. I need quiet, me time which is woefully difficult to come by with a family of six. On the sunny side, I excel at allowing my kids to be who they want to be including what they read, how they dress and extra-curricular activities they want to try. I enjoy finding activities for us to take part in and traveling as a family. We talk openly, even uncomfortable talks with a tween are fair-game. I’ve learned I’m a good cook which I would never had said pre-motherhood.

boy sitting on bench during a basketball game

Yesterday my 6th grader had his first school basketball game. He plays on the “A” team and was watching the “B” team play when I got the call. Things weren’t going so well for the “B” team, and our son needed a little pep talk before his game began. Ultimately, he realized that what he enjoys about sports is the practicing and seeing himself improve. While winning is nice, his team’s record doesn’t diminish his love for the activity. That kid has been on teams that have suffered through some serious losing streaks. If there’s one thing he is, it’s a good sport.

This morning I was lamenting about a task I HAD to do. I’ve come to enjoy chatting with our oldest. He can hold his own in most adult conversations and tends to ask questions that make me second-guess myself, in a good way. Today he asked why I do things I don’t actually enjoy. He wouldn’t play basketball if he didn’t like doing it. He gives quite a bit of his valuable time to basketball and thought it sounded silly to use his set amount of hours each day on things he doesn’t actually like. There are moments where it’s like having my own Yoda sharing wise advice.

I’ve been thinking off-and-on today about what he said. Why would I continue to give my time to something I don’t enjoy and don’t feel contributes to my or my family’s goals and aspirations? While there are endless things that MUST be done on a daily basis just to maintain our health, home and jobs, there are plenty of items I do that don’t contribute to my overall vision for this one life I have. Once again I find myself reevaluating the use of my time spurred on by one of my children. As much as I miss the cuddly baby versions of my children, it seems the growing up versions have their own appeal as well.


 
Parenting with Dr. Seuss
By     |    Mar 2, 2015
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Parenting with Dr. Seuss

I don’t have any childhood memories revolving around Dr. Seuss books. I don’t recall sitting on any laps being read any of his rhyming verse. Dr. Seuss entered my life in high school when I was helping in an elementary school kindergarten class. That class did two things for me: it showed the importance of being read to and learning to read and gave me a great love for children. The roots were planted for my future self who would... [Read More]

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Free Family Activities in Denver Area
By     |    Feb 18, 2015
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Free Family Activities in Denver Area

It was evident for weeks that my family needed to regroup. Three basketball teams and one cheer team with practices and games had the drivers in this house worn down. I was tired of an hour here or there of time with all six of us. I’m greedy about family time. We knew our school district had a four-day weekend in February, and we decided to leave the to-do list at home for a mini-retreat. We spent a few days... [Read More]

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Take a Trip: Brown v. Board of Education
By     |    Jan 19, 2015
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Take a Trip: Brown v. Board of Education

I knew when we walked in the door and were greeted by two signs: white and colored, this historical site wouldn’t be like any we’d taken our children to before. We were on our way home from vacation in Illinois in July and stopped in Topeka, Kansas at the Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site. We try not to shy away from tough conversations with our kids, but our conversation about segregation while at that place is one... [Read More]

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Enrolling the Baby in Kindergarten
By     |    Jan 12, 2015
Posted in: parenting     |    1 Comment

Enrolling the Baby in Kindergarten

I stared at the words “please click here to enroll a new student,” and the blinking cursor taunted me.  A mental roadblock stopped me from clicking. It’s not happening today. I’ll get around to enrolling our youngest in kindergarten, but for today, I’ll allow myself to forget how fast our baby has grown. I enrolled our oldest son seven years ago in the public school system. I was just as emotional then but in a different way. Our local school... [Read More]

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Bringing Back Christmas Spirit
By     |    Dec 23, 2014
Posted in: uncategorized     |    1 Comment

Bringing Back Christmas Spirit

I count the days until Christmas break. I look forward to the freedom of non-scheduled days and taking part in family traditions. I long for slow mornings with long breakfasts and second cups of coffee. We reacquaint ourselves with board games and craft projects. Bedtime is pushed later. I feel my shoulders relax as the two weeks go by. It’s the best of medicine. I only have to make it through that first day of break. That first day is... [Read More]

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The Christmas Gift of a Good Day
By     |    Dec 17, 2014
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The Christmas Gift of a Good Day

The only things missing from today were rainbows and unicorns. Every nook and cranny of my day was filled to the brim with goodness. I wish I could bottle this feeling for those days when crawling in bed seems the only viable option. I know I shouldn’t feel the need to apologize or justify my good fortune, but I know others whose day fell far short of anything resembling good. I’ve been stuck in lackluster existence lately. There are too... [Read More]

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Counting Down 12 Days to Christmas
By     |    Dec 11, 2014
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Counting Down 12 Days to Christmas

I do best when I have a list to work from. I don’t forget things or continually push things to the next day if I’ve written it down (most of the time). I get great satisfaction from crossing tasks off a list. I may even write things down I’ve already accomplished just to cross them off. I’ve learned over the years to schedule family time along with to-do items. Our family countdown of the 12 days leading up to Christmas... [Read More]

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Avoiding Christmas Failure
By     |    Dec 10, 2014
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Avoiding Christmas Failure

Every year when we pull out Christmas boxes filled with decorations, I think I’m going to cutback this year. We won’t put up quite as many decorations and only do those traditions that we absolutely LOVE. Then I start sifting through the boxes with my helpers and quickly realize that’s not going to happen. Each tradition is special and each of the children can make an argument for why we most definitely cannot live through December without XYZ. We haven’t... [Read More]

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Enjoying a Needed Dose of Nothing
By     |    Nov 17, 2014
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Enjoying a Needed Dose of Nothing

I stood staring at the calendar Friday night. Something was wrong. There was nothing written in the Saturday box. I told myself to think. Think. Think. THINK! Obviously I had forgotten something. There is never a square on the calendar without something written. There is always some place one of us is required to be or some task needing attention on or before a certain date. Saturday was gloriously blank and not because I had forgotten something. It was a... [Read More]

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DIY Halloween Costumes for Kids
By     |    Oct 26, 2014
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DIY Halloween Costumes for Kids

I watch our 12-year-old straddle the line between childhood and being a teenager on a daily basis. He struggles with wanting to spend hours in the basement building LEGOs with his younger brothers and crawling onto the couch with headphones and listening to music. I wasn’t surprised when he said he was too old to don a costume for Halloween. I was disappointed to see that door close, but had a feeling it was coming. I reminded him he could... [Read More]

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Halloween Tradition: Booing Our Friends
By     |    Oct 17, 2014
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Halloween Tradition: Booing Our Friends

We’ve always kept dress-up supplies in all sizes available for the kids to use. I enjoy watching their imaginations explode with the help of a simple piece of fabric. Most days our house is home to archers, spies and princess warriors. Forts are erected, and the kids disappear into a world of make believe. Halloween is one day of the year where a whole lot of people will play make believe together with the bonus addition of candy. Seeing children... [Read More]

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