Over the past several weeks I’ve realized that I have become a “NO mom.” I say “no” every chance I get. I say “no” when it’s necessary – and when it’s not. I say “no” out of habit – and laziness. But even though I’ve realized this, I haven’t really stopped. Saying “no” is a hard habit to break!
Last week the girls and I took a road trip to my cousin’s house. I enjoyed spending extra time with her (we normally have just a few minutes here and there at family gatherings), and our kids had so much fun together!
As I visited with my cousin and watched her interact with her four kids, I was reminded that saying “yes” can be a good thing.
On a normal day at our house, I have to admit that I spend a lot of time sitting down while trying to read or make a list or edit photos. Sure, I talk with the girls, help them when they need it, and play with them when they insist. But if I can get out of doing anything extra, I will.
Can we play outside? Not now.
Can you get the sidewalk chalk? I can’t reach it. Maybe later.
Hey, let’s make cookies! Eh, I don’t think so.
My cousin, though, said “yes” to her kids while we were visiting. Not every time they asked a question, but a lot more than I do. She served them and she loved them with a glad heart – a “yes” heart. And seeing that in action reminded me that I really want to be more like that. I want to be more of a “YES mom.”
Case in point? Not only had my cousin’s family recently saved up to buy a trampoline for the backyard, but they also put the sprinkler underneath it and turned it on. Have you ever jumped on a trampoline WHILE playing in the sprinkler? No, me either – but the kids had a BLAST doing it!
You know, that sprinkler set-up wasn’t fancy or complicated. It really wasn’t anything special – except, it was. It was special to the kids because it was fun and it was theirs. I thought about that sprinkler and saying “yes” all the way home. I thought about my tendency to say “no,” and I thought about the simple joy that can come from just one “yes.”
And I thought about it two days ago when my girls wanted to play outside while Mark cleaned out our gutters. It was super annoying, honestly. As I reminded Mark when he grumbled about how I didn’t know a hoe from a spade, I like the indoors. I’m not an outdoorsy person! And chasing after a disobedient toddler determined to face-plant at the bottom of our sloped driveway was not exactly fun for me.
But I said yes anyway – and the girls had fun. We tried to blow bubbles, but our bottle of bubble solution was old and didn’t work.
Side note: I didn’t realize bubbles could go “bad,” but I’m telling you it didn’t work. So when I went to the store the next day, I bought a new bottle of bubbles.
Side note #2: Nothing is cuter right now than hearing my 16-month-old say, “Bub-bles!” Nope, nothing.
Anyway. I bought a new bottle of bubbles, and Adrienne wanted us to play with the bubbles right away (she was with me at the store) — but once we got home it was nap time and then it was time to pick up her sister from summer school. So I promised her that we’d play with them as soon as we got home.
And you know what we did? We played bubbles as soon as we got home.
Saying “yes” to my kids more often is something that’s been on my mind for quite a while, but watching another mom do it so well really prompted me to take action. And saying yes by playing outside and blowing bubbles is exactly the sort of thing the Milk Life Challenge is encouraging people to do this summer.
You can learn all about the #MilkLife Challenge on Facebook, where you can see a new challenge for each of the 31 days of #MilkLife. So far, we’ve just completed Milk Life Challenge #12 (making sure the kids have time to play outside), but I’m looking forward to doing more this summer!
It’s fitting that we’d do a milk-related challenge in my family. Not just because we adore all things dairy (WHICH WE DO.), but because I just figured out that Adrienne thinks the word for milk is “more”! She knows what “more” means, but even though she can say “milk” (I’ve heard her!), she doesn’t. When she wants more milk, she just says, “more” – and she does that all the time! She’s one kid who milks life in every way!
By the way, you know milk is an excellent source of protein, right? Eight grams in just one 8-ounce glass – not to mention the nine essential nutrients. Annalyn gets to choose her own breakfast this month because it’s provided at summer school, and I was just reminding her that she has to eat something with protein so she can have a good morning.
I guess I should have told her that the protein she gets from her milk could help her MILK LIFE. She’s all about wordplay these days; she’ll love that – and remember it!
Saying yes and milking life works for me!
How are you MILKING LIFE this summer?
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
It’s time for Works for Me Wednesday. I’m looking forward to your tips, tricks, ideas and inspiration! If this is your first time linking up with WFMW here, PLEASE read the guidelines I shared in this post. Highlights include linking your specific post, not the front page of your blog, and making sure to include a link back to this site in your WFMW. Thank you!!