A Life In Progress

For Example July 8, 2008

Filed under: Parenting — jdalsin @ 3:08 pm

For the month of July, I’ve decided to shift the focus of this blog to parenting. Not written at all like an instruction manual but as a journey.  When I first started this blog there were areas of myself that I wanted to work on.  This is one of them.  I have a few topics I want to cover, but here is the first one:

Abby is weird.  Really weird.  She says weird things. Does weird things. Thinks weird things.  Unfortunately, I can only blame about 0.2% of this on Jordan. She gets it from me.  One day a few weeks back I was wondering how she was learning all these weird things when I realized it was simply from watching me.  I openly admit to teaching her things like “See you on the flip side, Daddy boy!” but wasn’t sure whyt she was calling Josie “Josie Bosie Losie Tosie Boo” or saying “I’m warm as a borm.”  Jordan opened my eyes.  “You say those types of things all the time.” Oh.

So, on a walk one day it dawned on me that that old saying is true “Actions speak louder than words” or “Kids learn by example.”  I realized I definitely had things to work on.

I’m going to stay weird. Nothing wrong with speaking in rhymes or teaching your kids cool lingo, right?

It occured to me that I am mighty good at talking the talk but I need to practice walking the walk. I need to set an example so they can SEE me doing it, not just HEAR me.

Here’s a few things I’ve decided to focus on for this task:

  • I’m always emphasizing the importance of caring for the earth, recycling, etc.  To SHOW them I mean it, we have been walking everywhere we can within 2 km. This includes the grocery store, library, swimming pool, movie store, etc.  Great exercise and Abby now knows that using your car when you can walk isn’t good for the earth.
  • We all tell our kids to be nice to other people, to do kind things. How often do they actually see us doing that?  I’ve decided to do a random act of kindness every week or two, having Abby & Josie heavily involved.  Yesterday we baked delicious cookies, wrapped them in pretty paper, wrote a note and dropped them in our neighbours mailbox.
  • Again, we tell our kids to get moving, eat well, etc.  How often do they see us doing this? Abby has always been a big part of meal preparation but we’ve decided to expand that a bit.  First of all, we’ve been learning about the food groups and how important it is to choose from each group. Second, we are also making special effort to make sure the girls are with us when we run so they can see us taking care of ourselves. 
  • Since Abby seems to need a little lesson on respect, that’s another area I’d like to start emphasizing and being a good example of.

Those are the four areas I’m focusing on right now.  What’s something you think you could be a better example of?

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4 Responses to “For Example”

  1. Michelle Says:

    For me, it is definitely the food part. I make sure she eats lots of veg and some fruit. Healthy protein too. So, I make sure she gets a well rounded lunch and sit beside her with a bag of MIss Vickies. Good greif.

  2. Kaili Says:

    I use to totally think this. BE the perfect example you can be for your children. Then I listened to Ehckert Tolles “A New Earth” And I think differently now. He says that children need to see their parents being HUMAN, rather than striving in ever second to be this perfect example! They need to see truth!

    I love that you share with your children WHY we do the things we do. So awesome!
    Anyways I completely agree with what you are saying, and I admire you for caring, loving and nurturing your children with every action. You are an amazing Mom and HUMAN!!!
    I just thought i’d that Ehckert info. He’s cool!

  3. Jen Says:

    I agree Kaili that our kids need to see us be ‘human’. I admit to them when I made a mistake, they see me cry and they definitely know I’m not perfect. I also think it is important to be an example of the things that are important to us, even letting them see when we skip a run or decide we are too lazy to walk to the library one day. 😉

  4. Linda Says:

    So true, letting your children see you make mistakes is a good thing too.

    One thing I remember from my childhood is being on vacation and seeing a homeless man. My Dad put us all safely in the car and then helped the man up and took him inside a Denny’s restaurant and bought him a warm meal. Its something I will always remember…having our children see compassion by actions and not just giving money to a charity etc. I hope to do more mission work with my children when they are older… I think the little things help too, I hope little Jon is learning to respect the creatures of the earth each time we catch a bug in the house and put him outside to find their Mommies.


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