It seems the new trend is posting blogs and articles about what not to be. Don't be the mom that coordinates their kids clothes, tries hard at school projects, makes goody bags for birthday parties. The underlying tone that I feel this is giving off is "if you try to hard, you are selfish and materialistic". I have seen numerous friends post stuff. I will read it and think, "oh crap, that is me" and then the guilt sets in. Some of these articles are quite funny and humorous, like the mom who posts about the last month of school. I first read this and thought, yeah...that will be me when my kids start school. But it wasn't. My first year as a mother of a public school kid was awesome and I loved every minute of it. In fact, I gave it my all until the last day of school. Yeah...I am sure that will change as all three kids go through school and the years go on and on. I am probably still in the honeymoon phase of elementary.
SCREEEEECHHH. Wait a second. Why am I feeling guilty?
Yeah, why am I feeling guilty?
I am going to admit something. Not everything I do as far as the "cutesy" stuff for my kids is for them. They could care less if their clothes coordinate in the family picture. I care. But not to the point that it makes me self involved, narcissistic, materialistic, and a bunch of other negative words. I care, because it is pleasing to my eyes. MY eyes. I like it. It's cute. It's fun. Just because I like to do that doesn't mean it is the most important thing in the world, or that I spent unreasonable amounts of time and money on it.
My children are groomed, dressed nicely and the girls always have their hair done and are presentable most of the time. This doesn't mean I am raising spoiled, high maintenance children. I spend MORE time teaching them what beauty really is than worrying about what they are wearing. You can ask my three year old daughter what makes you pretty, and she will say "when you are nice to people". Now some days, she will say my princess crowns, but I am working hard to keep the the true meaning of beauty as a priority in my family.
Manners are very important in our family. How you treat and respect one another are the most important thing. My husband and I pick this battle, daily.
I know plenty of people that let their kids dress themselves in mismatched clothes, don't do the matching outfits for family vacations, coordinating outfits for family photos, themed birthday parties, the dreaded goody bags, etc. And this is great!! I don't for a second judge them or look at them and think "oh my, they don't even match". No way!!! In return, I would hope that people don't look at my kids in their matching 4th of July clothes on the beach and think "she is trying too hard, she doesn't know what is important in life".
I would like to think we all have the same thing in common and the same goal....to love our kids unconditionally!