Thursday, June 27, 2013

I'm not taking advice from some girl from Long Island!!

I don't pretend to know anything about anything.

There's only a few things that, in my mind, I know for sure.  Like the Book of Mormon is the word of God and don't try potty training until your kid is good and ready.  Stuff like that.

Some people do things differently than me and that's ok.  But sometimes when I see or hear of people doing things differently from me, I wonder if maybe they are doing it better than me.  Should I be doing my stuff like they are?  I don't know.

There's an article in this month's Ensign about a family with three young children who gave up sports and dance and other activities for a year so they could spend more time together as a family.  They felt they had great success with this endeavor.

As I read this article, my heart sank to my shoes and tears flowed free.  Why did I feel this way?  Because I don't want to give up my kids' activities in order to have a closer, more successful family.  And as I was reading, I was feeling like the way that this family is building a strong family is the only way to do it.  And I am already struggling with how busy our activities keep our family.  I don't like being as busy as I am.  Even if each kid does one activity, I still have at least 6 activities going on all the time.  And I don't consider music an optional activity so with our 5 sports, we have 4 musics.  And they have scouts and Young Women, which is also not optional.  And there's doctors appointments and haircuts and birthday parties and all the other stuff that kids do.

This summer I want to go to Cedar Point as a family.   I went over the calendar to see when we could go. There was one day.  Just one day when nothing was scheduled when we could all go.

I try to look for things to cut out.  But honest to gosh, there isn't anything unless we stopped the sports they love and I let them stop music and we quit scouts.  And I don't think this would be the best thing for us.

The mom in the article says the inspiration she had to stop activities led to her “proudest moments as a mother.”  I can tell you some of my proudest moments as a mother.  Cheering for Emily at her swim meets.  Watching her play in the PCEP Symphony Orchestra.  Watching her induction into NHS.  Seeing CV snap the football in his first high school game.  Watching Calvin play the trumpet in the jazz band.  Seeing Spencer hit a double at baseball.  Watching Cameron sing in his school play.  There are other moments too.  Emily putting the girls to bed and painting their nails first and being so sweet to them.  Christopher and Calvin watching a game together and being nice to each other.  Spencer and Cameron riding bikes in the yard and having fun being together.  Seeing pictures of Emily and CV pulling handcarts at Trek.  

I'm realizing that our family is super busy and super scheduled but we made the most of our home time also doing the things that the Proclamation on the family suggests.  “Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities."  

We have taught our kids all of these important principles.  It's not always in a teaching setting like FHE.  Usually it's on the fly like Mom can't find the remote so lets say a prayer or Mom says something dumb to dad and he forgives her for being an idiot or someone is having a hard day and we all take compassion on them and help them or the garage needs cleaning out so we work together to get it done.

As I write this post, I am feeling incredibly good about my family and the children I am raising.  We are not perfect.  We are mostly imperfect.  And I mess up a ton.  But we are trying to do a good job and we love each other and my kids are respectful and talented and fun.  

So I don't profess to know much.  Especially about how you should do things.  You should do them how it's best for you.  And I'm going to keep on going the way I'm going.  And we'll be better if we just love each other and smile and wave on our journey knowing that all our paths aren't the same but they are what's best for us.

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