Friday, August 6, 2010

You do your best.....

For all the wanna be "perfect parents" out there, take my advice- stop wanting to be.
I have to tell myself this often. I joke about having a rare "Martha Stewart moment" here and there and my friend Liane usually shakes her head at me and responds with, "Yeah...not me. Don't feel the need to have that moment." In fact, most people don't.
And there's lots about Martha Stewart I don't necessarily want to emulate!!!!!

However, what I've learned thus far --understanding that I am always learning and changing --- is with kids there a few non negotiable things and most everything else is fluid, negotiable, and ever changing.

So my basic rules?

~ Modeling, modeling, modeling.....if
you want kids to eat healthy,you have to eat healthy. If you want kids to speak nicely and have manners, you have to model that. It goes for everything. When you are interacting out in the world, your kids are learning how to do the same from you.

~ Sit down family dinner as often as possible-- sounds very 1950-Esq, but it is proven to have positive effects on kids and their relationships with their parents through the tumultuous teen years.

~ Get veggies in them when they are starving-- during 5 o'clock happy hour my kids consume lots of carrots, green beans, cucumbers etc with ranch and hummus. Start this young. It'll be harder if they are used to Cheetos before dinner, but with effort this can change. Muster up the energy, and make the effort.

~ Get kids involved--
bake with them, let them watch and help you make dinner, grow something-
anything! One pot, one strawberry plant in'll be surprised how
exciting this is.

~ Limit TV, computer and video games!

Do not ignore all the studies and literature that has proven this UNHEALTHY.
We all use TV for a break sometimes, and special movie time is great.
But blank stares and glazed over eyes for hours, is NOT healthy.
And you know that.

I never would have thought when I started a little container garden a couple years ago, I would see my daughter in her nightgown at 8:30am on a Saturday morning sharing green beans for breakfast with my dog, Lucy.
These are the moments I breath deep and have confidence I'm doing something right.