is not something I love - which I'm sure is a normal feeling - with children at the ages of 7, 5 and 2. I usually have a very strategic list and coupons, that I really need to focus on.
But... I always tell myself, "If I don't expose them to situations in which they need to grow, how will they ever grow?" If I never take my children to the store with me, they'll never learn how to act at the store.
So, the other night - I took Sophie with me - the 7 year old. Before we walked in - I said, "Now, you will not ask for everything. I have a list made, and we'll get what's on the list. Understand?" "Yes!" she replied - and she was excited to be with me - alone!
So, off we went!
She did a great job not asking for things (for today), but this is what she did:
"Mom, can I have this for my birthday?"
"Mom, can Halle have this for Christmas?"
"Mom, can we get this next time?"
"Oh, Mom, you would never let us get this!"
She WAS doing what I asked her NOT to do - just in a sneaky way (in my opinion). Or is she just really smart?! :)
I don't really know the answer, but I did look at her and say, "Sophie... thanks for all the ideas, but stop."
I really needed to focus on that grocery list, so I put her to work! I started reading the list to her, asking her to get me things, engaging her in the mission - Get 3 pears, 2 bunches of bananas, 5 apples, and so on as we went on throughout the store.
Parenting with intention is hard. It would have been easier to go alone and not have a little shadow tagging along beside me, but I just kept telling myself, " I am doing my best to train her up to be a wife and Mommy! She is learning patience and stamina - and I am learning to be more patient and intentional."
Now, still... I go to the store ALONE mostly, but on occasion - I'm willing to take few little shadows along. Someone's gotta teach them!
What are some of your intentional strategies in this area?
below are comments I've posted from MMM readers (for my publishing needs):
- When they were younger (and far less patient!) I would make them each their own grocery list with pictures of food I cut out of the ads. Now they are old enough to help count and bag the produce (example: "Darcy, put 4 green apples in a bag." ) and pick items off the shelves. Not only does it keep them involved, but it's teaching them a lot about healthy choices and food. I'm not saying it's always easy, but then again, parenting isn't supposed to be!