It is summer. Time for summer break! Moms, Facebook summer bucket list is strong this year! At first glance these lists look fun and harmless. But are they? Do they set up an impossible set of expectations for moms? And push is even farther into busyness and away from true connection?
First of all, keeping kids busy and out of the kitchen rummaging for snacks is a legitimate job of parenthood. Also being organized and having a plan is awesome. But the part that gives me pause is setting up another long set of expectations. Another checklist to check off. And for already over-scheduled families another schedule to accomplish.
What about lists Things like 100 places you must visit before your kids turn 18? The question that lingers in my mind is do we need to visit Bora Bora and Disneyland to give our children a great childhood? Is it game over if that just isn’t in the family budget?
Moms like lists. Homeschooling moms really like lists. Lists can take this nebulous idea of learning and break it into easily manageable chunks. And as we go through the lists we get to pat ourselves on the back. We KNOW learning is taking place. The lists prove it. Or do they?
Are there times when we are so experience focused that we forget about the reason we made the list?
Can we take summer fun and quantify it down to a simple list? If we check off all the boxes does that mean we are on our mom A game? Or do our lists need to change?
- Have a kid focused conversation with each of my kids every day
- Make them feel safe and loved
- Ask my child what he/she wants to learn and learn it together
- Plan and adventure together and do it
- Make a pretty tablescape, get out a tablecloth, light some candles, make a snack and read together
- Find a way to do something for someone in our family that will make them feel special
Kids need you. Your time. Your attention. Your love. In fact kids equate quality time with love not experience. Kids want your face. The amount of money you spend on a summer does not equal love. A fifty item summer to do list doesn’t equal automatic connection to your kids. It is intentionality. It can be super simple. It requires us to slow down. To look into our children’s faces. To see them. To listen to their desires.
Checking items off a list does not an education make.
Checking experiences off a list does not a magical childhood make.
Checking things off your summer bucket lists does not a fun summer make.
This summer can be magical. Maybe not every single second but as we slow down. Let go of our own Mom Egos and look at our kids we can provide fun experiences for them. With them. Not for the IG post or the Facebook likes. We can be emotionally supportive engaged parents. That is free. We all have it within us.
Let’s hashtag this on Instagram with #imperfectmagic and share our experiences together! I promise to cruise the hashtag and like and friend. I love to connect with you all!