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Monday, March 21, 2011

Parenting. It's the best of times. It's the worst of times.

I was raised by a Mom and a Dad...and a few older siblings too. I learned a lot of things from my parents that I have continued to do as a mother. I have also chosen to refrain from certain things my parents did.

Some of the things I do differently:

  • I get up with my kids each morning and help them get ready for school.
  • I make breakfast everyday.
  • I do not wash their laundry after they turn 10 years old.
  • Christmas is not as big at the Cheney home.
  • I can't make gravy.
  • I sew on Sunday.
  • I don't eat KFC on Sunday. (very often)
  • Liver and onions, canned peas and Mexican spaghetti are NOT dinner choices.
Some of the things I do that same:
  • My kids have chores everyday. dishes, laundry, vacuuming, scrubbing a toilet, etc
  • I have put my on the streets to sell things -business to business- that I have made, to earn money to pay for Christmas.
  • I made all the blankets in our home, many of the church dresses, and most of the Halloween costumes.
  • Nachos, sticky corn, BBQ pork, and french fry casserole - YUMMO!
  • My kids have to practice the piano everyday, with the exceptions of when I lose patience in trying to get them to practice to I commit to starting over at when Summer starts, school starts, etc. (just like my mom did.)
  • You don't need a reason to throw a party.
  • shoes are optional.
Here are a few other facts for you.
  • I have a bad temper.
  • I have spanked one of my children so many times in a row I had to stop because I had lost control.
  • I have said very hurtful things to my children that they will never forget and I won't either.
  • I have pulled hair, spanked with wooden spoons, kicked in the backside, and slapped both of my big children. (not all in one incident. ever.)
  • I don't physically punish my children anymore. 
  • Matthew has anger issues, is bipolar and has put holes in the walls of our last 5 houses.
  • Nicole has extreme sensory and OCD 'issues.' Strict schedules are the only way she functions.
  • Anna has been in enough unsavory circumstances that it's a miracle she is functioning at all
  • I love Nicole, Matthew and Anna so much that I can't see straight.
  • I have kissed and hugged all three of my children so many times in a row they have told me to stop.
As you can see my parenting style has it's high points and it's low points. I am not perfect and I have already created moments that I will regret forever. I also have memories that I cherish so much.

President Ezra Taft Benson gave 10 suggestions that can help each of us teach our children.

  1. ...Take time to always be at the crossroads when your children are either coming or going...whether your children are six or sixteen.
  2. ...Take time to be a real friend to your children.
  3. ...Take time to read to your children.
  4. ...Take time to pray with your children.
  5. ...Take time to have a meaningful weekly home evening...Make this one of your great family traditions.
  6. ...Take time to be a together at mealtimes as often as possible.
  7. ...Take time daily to read scriptures together as a family.
  8. ...Take time to do things together as a family.
  9. ...Take time to teach your children. Catch the teaching moments....
  10. ...Take time to truly love your children.
'A mother's unqualified love approaches Christlike love'

These are the guidelines for my parenting style.

*Anna does not get to pick her clothes.
*My kids start(ed) to pick their own clothes after they were baptized.
*They were expected to make their own lunches once they were in the 'double digits.' (10+)
*As they get older, they are given more privileges and more responsibilities.
*They assume and expect me to make their meals. It's my job and I do my job. If I want to surprise them, the pancakes will have fancy shapes and their lunch will have homemade cookies instead of one from the store. But I will make their meals. Pick their clothes if they need help. Help them make beds if they need it, and take every opportunity I can to teach them how to be the kind of parent that helps build of the kingdom of God. I've given them enough bad examples. When they move out of my home, they will have their own issues (like we all do) but they will know I cared and that I took care of them. 

2 comments:

Kate said...

honestly, anyone could claim 'victim of circumstance' when it comes to being different or feeling inadequate, but that is seriously just an excuse. (no offense there)
Motherhood/parenthood is exactly what you make of it. I love the counsel that the prophets have given us about how we should be helping our children and how we can and should do certain things.

our job as parents is to make sure kids can grow up and remember being kids. :) along with teaching them responsibility and other important life skills, having fun and actually letting them BE kids is also our job.

The time I have spent here hanging out with you and your family, I see an awesome balance of teaching opportunities, fun, family time and love shown through consistent discipline that makes me respect you as a mother and a friend so much more.

If any of this comment makes any sense at all (i blame being on PA time still...heh heh) it is just this: You are a good mom. You love your children and they love you. You and Ken are great parents and what you both do works perfectly for your family. It may not work for any other family, but it is how YOU guys do things and it is right for you. Don't forget that -

pep talk and longest comment over now. :)

(I heart your kids)

Amy N. said...

Great post!

I hate canned peas. Because of canned peas I hate all peas. Seriously one of the very few foods I hate.

I was going to say more, but Vaughn is trying to take his work laptop from my hands and take it to work. Boo.

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