I have to say that I’m learning a lot about parenting, living with a family with young children. Some of the funniest moments of being here are because of the kids; it makes me want to re-watch ‘Kids Say the Darndest Things’ just to see that all kids are like this.
Yesterday, I watched all three from the moment they woke up until after lunch. Whew.
Actually, it went about as well as it could have, which means that I was able to feed everyone without discipline, clean up quite a bit before friends arrived, and settle disputes before any injuries were sustained.
The cleaning part was what made me laugh the most.
Without getting input from other kids about American culture, our kids just accept whatever we do as the norm. Which means that any time I start to clean, I will soon have two little shadows following me, asking to help. They think cleaning is so much fun.* The difficult part of letting them help, is knowing that a) another mess could be created in the process, b) an argument is likely to break out over who gets to do what, and c) the baby will likely try to put any trash or dirt in her mouth as soon as you’re not looking.
Other than that, it’s a great opportunity to teach them responsibility, and how to care for their own areas.
The funny part is: a) Moli cleaning the table with the floor brush** and b) Ann shaking the hamster cage to try and make him eat.†
Yes, we’re pet-sitting while some friends are travelling. Our neighbors are taking care of the two kittens. Though I love cats††, I’m glad to not have them here. I think a dog really is best for small kids. They can take the abuse and remain gentle.
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*Well so do I, now, but I didn’t think that when I was a kid.
**Yuck. But thanks for the effort! And here’s a soapy rag, will you please wipe the table, now?
†Which causes the woodshavings to fall all over the place, and probably gives the hamster a heart attack.
††I have to admit to going over to the neighbors’ to have some cat time, in addition to good conversation.