I read something today that really made me think. It's a seemingly obvious and simple statement, but I think it's pretty profound... "Remember, your kids only get one childhood." While everyone really knows that, how often do we sit down and think about what that means? When raising kids, it's so easy to get caught up in the mundane things of life that you just start going through the motions. After reading that statement, though, I'm going to really, really start focusing more on giving my girls amazing childhoods that they will look back on fondly one day.
For me, it's easy to be so schedule-oriented and so worried about accomplishing things that I miss opportunities to laugh or be silly. Of course I laugh with my kids and have fun with them, but when I'm trying to meet their needs, I often snap into "work mode." There are obviously times and places to be focused on being productive, but there needs to be a fine balance between that and the times of total and complete goofiness. I need to learn to take life much less seriously and realize that some things are just not that big of deal.
I also need to learn to pick my battles more wisely. Sometimes Brooke wants to wear black shoes with brown pants and in the grand scheme of things, that does NOT matter. If I choose now to be lenient on things of absolutely no eternal importance, then I really that my kids won't feel as though they're incapable of making any decisions for themselves. Besides, why would I want to start a fight over shoes when there are real issues waiting just around the corner??
I also want to focus on being more intentional in things that I do with my kids. I said it a few weeks ago, but Brooke and I have been baking a lot together and I've been including her during my cooking time. Because of something so simple, she and I have spent countless hours laughing and working together. As my children grow, it will be important for me to foster their interests and abilities. Also, I want them to know that I choose to do things that they enjoy because of my great love for them.
The list of how I can give my children wonderful childhoods could go on and on. What it boils down to, however, is that they know how loved and valued they are by their mom and dad. John and I can never, ever show them that too much but we're sure as heck going to try!