So, this morning I find myself struggling with demons. My children (not demons) are asking me about "fun" things that they would like. I.E. an ATV for them to use. The husband and I have talked about a 4-wheeler in the past, but it was never a real conversation. This morning, we are having the real conversation and I am not sure we are getting very far. See, here my problem: I want my kids to appreciate what they have, to work for it, to earn it... Me spending a boatload of cash on a 4-wheeler is not them earning it-and even if I have them work their tails off to earn $800+ for the machine, it requires gas, oil, repairs-all of which are NOT cheap. Not to mention, I do not believe in allowance. My kids LIVE here-I am not going to PAY THEM for the one time they decide to wipe their own pee off the seat, or put away THEIR clothes. They live in this house, they should help-free of charge (I work for free...) I want them to know they are valued as a family member, and if they choose to go above and beyond picking up after themselves, and help with other things-I do say thank you and such. I do not feel overdoing the praise is beneficial for them however. I know my kids appreciate me, they tell me they love me when I cook them a delicious dinner, they tell me how good it tastes too. They fail to realize that their clothes end up washed, on their bed-because I took the time to do the laundry-they only see a pile of clothes that needs put away.
In typing this, I am quite certain I have come to the decision my kids do NOT need some fancy mechanical toy. They need more outdoor freedom, so maybe, I will add on to their swing-set instead. Maybe, I can have Nathan start on the fencing so the chickens can free-range and we can get the girls a goat. (This goat will be a pet-that comes with the responsibility of feeding and hopefully milking). These are the kinds of things I know they will treasure in the long run. Kids grow up so fast as it is, and I do not want them to grow up to expect things. I want them to be better than me-what parent doesn't want that for their child?