Wednesday, January 30, 2008

All On His Own

Teaching our kids self reliance has always been very important to us. Probably because we are both first-borns, doing stuff for ourselves is something that we both put a high value on. With the exception of letting the babies feed themselves in the high chair, I encourage our children to do anything for themselves that they can. (Once I got past 2 kids I just couldn't stand the high chair/floor/wall/kid mess every meal. Especially with Monster Truck(2) as he truly believed for almost a full year that the reason God put hair on his head was so he'd have a nice abrasive surface to clean off his hands with. I could be standing there with a washcloth wiping one hand and he would still be carefully cleaning the other hand on the top of his head.)
The results of our children's independence are sometimes funny, (Mr. Yuke(4) putting his jeans on backwards so he's walking around with a fly on his bum all day long) and sometimes scary. (The Pinkiest(5) recently "learned" to put her own ponytails in her hair and is now refusing help. The knots around her rubber bands make me cringe when I see them but she is so proud of herself she won't even consider letting me adjust them.) Most of the time they do great. Our kids make their own lunches (the three older ones), make their own beds (some of you may not think this is a big deal, but I can't tell you how many moms I know who make their kids' beds every day), and sort their own laundry. They also each help make dinner one night a week. I have to admit that this is the one that I find the most challenging. Anyway, all this self-reliance gives them a lot of confidence. They all feel very capable no matter what the situation. Such was the case the other day.

Monster Truck(2) decided he was hungry and would like a snack. Without mentioning anything about it to me, he went down to the kitchen, pulled a chair over to the pantry, got down the Kix cereal and proceeded to fix himself a bowl. See that white stuff? It's not milk.
Did I mention he REALLY likes sugar?


Kelly said...

Don't you know...sugar is the new milk!
Um...since your children are so self reliant...could you persuade them to come sort through our laundry? ya AMY!

Tiercy said...

ha, letting them be self-reliant is a big thing. I am impressed that you let them help you at dinner. I don't think I could handle the stress of it. I am way too controlling! Thanks for being a good example.

Not quite the Bradys said...

No. It's not a good example. It's just that I'll be danged if any of my kids is going to get to college and NOT know how to cook. I had a roommate and a neighbor in this situation and I decided then and there that was not going to be my kids.