Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I Think I Am, I Think Am

Good that is. Well at least a half-way decent parent anyway and here are 3 reasons why:

Ms. Sundays with Stretchy Pants tagged me a few days ago to do a meme about 3 things I do well as a mother. Five days later I've finally thought of three things! She was a little too on target when she presumed that I am a bit hard on myself as a mother. If only someone had told me how difficult this parenting thing was BEFORE I had kids. Of course I wouldn't have believed them and would have gone ahead and produced my flock of lovelies anyway. And it isn't as if I don't think I do anything well as a parent, it is just that I wonder if the things I deem important to their development and that I will go to the ends of the earth to ensure will really pay-off in the future. As I have read some of other blogs that were tagged by Ms. Stretchy it seems the focus is on changing the aspects of our own childhood where we feel our own parents let us down. That said, here I go:

1. I have always made my children feel welcome in my bed. I have too many memories of being scared at night and literally standing outside my parent's bedroom wondering if I should wake them up and bother them. I never did, I always went back to my own room, alone. My husband and I are seasoned co-sleepers, beginning with Daughter S and continuing still with Boy O. All of our kids are comfortable waking me up at any time, for any reason, even not so very important ones and I never turn them away (Even when they are very noisy about coming in the room and wake up Boy O in the process).

2. The reason it took so long for me to sit down and do this meme is that I have been in my usual role of bus driver for all of the activities we are involved in. When you live in a community that is limited in extracurricular resources you either find somewhere to provide those activities or leave your kids without those experiences. When Daughter S was a mere 2 1/2 years old we began driving 40 minutes away for art classes and haven't stopped since, she is now almost 9. To that we have added a copious amount of other activities that truly leaves me feeling like I should have a license to drive bus. I don't push the kids to select these activities but I offer them up like cookies on a platter and they choose what they want. They are learning about what like to do and sometimes what they have no interest in even if they thought they did. I have made it a priority in our schedule and our finances to make sure that they experience what each of them is interested in.

3. I don't make them clean their plate! Ugh, I can't tell you how many times I was forced to sit at the table until such and such was gone, even until the point of puking. I don't want my kids to have issues with food or their weight, I want them to enjoy food and see it as an adventure. We have a long way to go with the adventure part but I think my not pushing them to eat, eat, eat, especially foods that make them gag will promote this in the future. At every meal I have something that I know each child will eat and often times something that I know they may turn their nose up at. They are always encouraged to try the "something new" but the option to say "no thank-you". This is our policy even at friends and relatives homes where there is emotional pressure to please the hostess/host by eating something you don't enjoy. Just be polite and head to the dessert table if you wish.

4. Cause everyone else is doing a number 4 too! I bake lots of goodies. Sweet, terrible for you goodies and lots of them, sometimes we even eat them for breakfast.


Erin the Librarian said...

Carol commented that there were horse patties in the road in front of the library this morning. That wasn't Vinnie, was it?

Mechelle said...

Ha! I would never even suggest that we change to horse and buggy because I know the next day we have the rig. He is too focused on his "new" tractor that he is trying to get home to even think about other modes of transportation!