Finding ways to say yes

My friend Ashlee wrote a Coffee + Crumbs essay last month and she posed this question:

In parenting, which battles are worth fighting?

I loved her question so much that I'm answering it today!

In our house, we try to pick our battles carefully. I want our home to be a place of peace and rest; a space where our kids feel loved, accepted, safe and welcome. Never do I hope to see a day when our children would rather be somewhere else. Their nest should be a sanctuary.

But, let’s also be real: kids need boundaries and rules. Jonathan and I are not afraid to use the word NO. We often say it with an intense look, and a "do not fight me on this" voice. There are certain behaviors that are simply not tolerated, and our kids know so, but they're at an age where they still push almost every boundary. Knowing this, and recognizing my desires for a peaceful and happy home, I choose to pick my battles. There are some simple childhood pleasures that we let our kids indulge in because we think they help balance some of the ways we’re strict, and they allow me to YES as much or more than I say NO. 

For fun, I thought I’d share some of the battles we do (and don’t) fight with our children. I’d love to hear yours!

I don’t let them stay up past 7:30pm, hardly ever…

…but we buy them donuts every single Saturday morning.

I let my kids put Band-Aids on their body whenever they want…

…and temporary tattoos are also a big YES.

Jumping on furniture or standing up while they’re eating is not okay…

…but we’re okay bribing them to eat with a promise of dessert (and it usually works).

We allow them to watch an hour of Netflix almost every day, during the dinner hour or when I take a shower…

…but I’m fairly firm about sticking to educational shows.

Owen is often without pants while we’re at home…

…but I don’t usually let him or his sister wear whatever they want.

I say “YES” whenever a store clerk offers them a lollipop…

…but I also am strict when it comes to brushing teeth and regular dental visits. (I have my dentist grandpa to thank for that.)

I don't tolerate hitting, or mean words...

...but I also don't make them share everything with each other.

What are some battles you’re always willing to fight, and some that you’ve thrown out the window?

Strawberry fields and the secrets of spring

Strawberry fields and the secrets of spring

Spring is still rocky somedays. Still rainy somedays. Still unpredictable some days. But, it hints at another season that is consistently hot and always sunny. There are long blue sky days ahead. Spring is about dreaming and remembering and anticipating.Those days are coming, and you’re going to love running through them barefoot in tiny rompers.