Monday, January 24, 2011

Relaxing With Children

I am in a place of great learning about parenting. It's almost as if God has said, "Okay, time to start Parenting 303," or something like that. And it's not even that I'm reading a stack of parenting books (actually my reading right now consists of a lot about Jewish Feasts, but that's a whole different post). I do get wonderful parenting emails daily from ScreamFree Parenting and weekly from Biblical Parenting. (I highly recommend both of these.) No, it's really more about God giving me a lot, A LOT, of parenting life lessons.
This weekend's lesson was a little more pleasant than most--my mom took the kiddos for the weekend. My dad and mom live on 7 acres surrounded by pastures and woods. There are trails and a Power Wheels truck. There is a basement full of toys and Mom always entertains them with great activities. Saturday they collected sticks to make a fire outside and roasted hotdogs for their lunch! So you know the kiddos are very HAPPY!
I guess I don't even have to say that the parents are happy too? The hubby and I did really exciting things this weekend like take the van to get the oil changed and visit that romantic date spot, Walmart! And yes, we also went to a nice restaurant for dinner on Saturday and took a great walk downtown. I even got the attic the rest of the way cleaned out! It was a great weekend!
And where is the parenting lesson in there for me? Well, Friday when I met my mom and transferred the kids, I felt the stress rolling off my shoulders. Normally I would just give a "Woohoo!" turn up the music and drive (a teeny bit) faster. But this time it bothered me. The Holy Spirit was whispering in my ear, "You can have this feeling with your children too!" Why do I stress around my children so much? Why don't I just live around them? Why is everything a strict Mommy and Me moment?
And no, I really don't know what to do about this except that it is part of that New Year's resolution to give myself and others more grace. Perhaps we can watch a few more movies together? (I mean more than the one or two a week I usually allow.) Perhaps I could just let the housework go one morning and get on the floor to play with the 2yo?
All I really know is that now I want this: I want to relax around my children. That doesn't mean that I will discipline less or not teach those lessons or not try to keep my house clean. It just means I want to relax. around. my. children.
Got any suggestions for me? I'd love to hear them! Have a great week, everyone!
Linked with Motivate Me Monday and Makes My Monday,


  1. I'm glad I stopped by your blog...I just subscribed to the ScreamFree Parenting. Thank you!

    I think you have the right idea...let the housework go one morning and just play..then incorporate the play into helping mommy clean up. This sometimes works for me..but you know, if it doesn't, you know your child still got some mommy time and you got to relax a little.

  2. Housework, schmousework! ;) Although I have to admit, it IS hard to relax sometimes...we feel so consummately responsible for our children that we do often feel over-pressured to "be on our game" at all times.

    Wishing you happy, relaxing moments....

    (and to tell the truth, I am a scream-y parent...and I don't really feel too bad about it! ;) )

    Thank you for joining in with Makes My Monday, and for always posting such honest, thoughtful posts!

  3. Now I think *this* is my favorite post. =) I don't have any great ideas to help you relax around them, but I do know that it is mostly in your attitude. Our kids feed off of our attitude. If we are cheerful and relaxed, they sense that and it makes them relaxed. If we are grumpy and stressed, they sense that and it makes them bicker and whine. (At least in my house). In the long run, what we really want is for our kids to love and know God, right? Everything else we try to teach them are tools to point them there. (glorify God and ENJOY him forever...sound familiar?). 3 cheers for the enjoying! Looking forward to hearing more about your relaxing journey!

  4. I love your blog! I just found it for the first time on Tuesday Twister and am having a good time reading around a little. Your joyful outlook on the chaos of having kids is so refreshing!
    So, maybe we have opposite personalities, but I sometimes find it hard to tear myself away from kiddie time to get any work done. :) Maybe you can set aside some time when you're "not allowed" to work or think about anything "grown-up" and just play?
    Anyway, thanks for these honest and uplifting posts.