This morning I woke up to the sound of ran on my windows and it made me happy because we had NOTHING on our agenda. It is rare that we have no place to be. Drinking my coffee and browsing my fav blogs I can across this post and it made me smile, It made me think about my life, and it inspired me to write this post. Thanks Steph!
After a few sips of coffee I heard my 3 year old’s bedroom door swing open and he came running down the hall “Good morning Mommy! I love you!” More perfect words have never been spoken, what a great way to start my day. We snuggled for a few minutes and talked about what we were going to do today. On his to do list was play cars, drink chocolate milk, eat jelly beans, and get dressed. My list was a bit different… we have an open house Sunday so I wanted floors cleaned, laundry done, and bathrooms scrubbed. To be honest his list sounded like a better option. I put my to do list down and got on the floor to play cars, we played for an hour before his sister woke up and joined us. We all had breakfast and then we picked everything off the floor so I could vacuum. I set them up with stickers and paper so I could vacuum and mop. 20 minutes later they were done with stickers and I had clean floors wallah.
We returned to the living room floor to play a game that involved cars, baby dolls, a crane, and blocks. I am not sure what it was called or exactly how to play but I do know that Gabe was really good at it because he seemed to win every time! After that game lost it’s appeal I sent them to Gabe’s room to read while I switched the laundry and did some folding. There were a few squabbles or who had what book first, she’s touching me, and Mommy I neeedddd your help but that is normal. Then we played some more, had lunch, and now they are resting.
So what does all of that have to do with Steph’s post??? Well here goes… There are some people out there that would say I should have done my chores while my kids were sleeping, because I missed so much in the 40 minutes that they were playing alone. Some people would say that when I told Gabe “He would have to wait until I was done folding for me to help him build a tower.” that I was crushing his spirit. That when I made him wait, he would feel unloved and sad. There are also some folks out there that would scold me for sitting down on the ground and playing with my kids for an hour because children need to be left alone and create without adult intervention. Some folks think that if I sit down and cheer my children on for the small things they do that I am setting them up to fail when they get older. My point here is that you won’t ever please everyone. There is no one size fits all approach to parenting. I feel like there has to be a balance. I love to play with my kids, but after an hour or so I think it’s totally fine to set them up with some toys and let them play alone for a few minutes. Those few minutes are what recharges my battery so I can then sit down and sing the wheels on the bus for the 1 millionth time without losing my marbles. I also think it’s important for my children to see that I have stuff to do and sometimes they need to be patient.
When I need a little reassurance that I am not ruining my children I read Awesomely Awake, Hands Free Mama, It’s Not all Mary Poppins, and Backwoods Mom. These blogs are all different and kind of the same. I love them all and read them often. Check them out and take a little bit from each to add to your own parenting manual.