Tuesday, June 30, 2009

PostHeaderIcon Cara:Everything they need and SOME of what they want

That’s the phrase I say in my head many times. It’s easy sometimes to fall into the “I want this” and “I want that” trap with your kids.

When other parents are not on the same page as you and don’t have that phrase playing in their head, it makes it hard sometimes. I must admit sometimes I fall into the trap even if maybe the kid didn’t actually ask for the “thing”. But, I feel they need it because someone else has it. No one wants their kid to be THE one without what everyone else has.

But I will try not to beat myself up when I slip. My kids are mostly grateful for everything they get. But I am going to make a conscious effort to remember the “everything they need” part.

They don’t need to go to Toys R Us for no reason just because they want to buy a toy. (I never do that.) But they do need to write thank you cards for all the gift cards and gifts they got for their birthday, even if it’s torture. They don’t need to rush to get to this practice or that lesson. But they do need to (finally!) ride bikes to the library with their mom because they need to read over the summer so they don’t start school with pudding for brains in September.

They don’t need to have to be in every single camp to fill up every single day of the summer. They need some days to sleep late, then wake up and float on a raft in their pool if that’s what they choose. They don’t have to eat dinner at the normal dinnertime after a day of playing hard. They need to eat a bowl of cereal in their pajamas out in the backyard. They don’t have to have planned scheduled play dates with friends. They need to fall out their front door and play kickball on the front lawn in bare feet with whatever kids on the block happen to be around. They don’t have to stand on the corner waiting for the school bus. They need to jump up and down on the corner so the ice cream man sees them and stops. They don't need to go to bed in the summer at regular bedtime. They do need to go to bed early some nights after a nice warm tub to catch up on rest, even if other people are out until 11pm. They want their curfew extended to 1 a.m. (not happening) but they need to be able to have their friends over to hang in their yard and talk by the fire 'til real late, because our house is the house to go to. (they need that)

During these lazy summer days and nights I am going to try to give them everything they need, especially when it’s my time, my ear or just my company. Come to think of it that’s what I need too.

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