Saturday, November 7, 2009

Christmas Corner

One thing I've learned from past Christmas experiences is that the more I procrastinate, the more I end up spending. I am really trying to go into the holidays with a solid plan, and be well-organized so that I know exactly what I have, and what I still need. I also want to make sure that I take the time to really think about what to buy, and give thoughtful, mindful things.

There is also the dilemma of balancing the gift-giving with remembering and fostering the true spirit of Christmas in my family and myself. I really hope to be able to spend some more time this Christmas gathering together with my hubby and kids to build traditions and create memories. Without adding additional stress or craziness. I think the key to all of this is planning ahead and organization. I'm looking forward to it!

One thing that I am really hoping to do is to buy a big "family" gift, and skip most of the smaller gifts. Even though I think we have been fairly modest in what we usually give already, I am hoping to cut back even more. We really don't have money in the budget for a big ticket item, but I am really hoping that I can somehow find a way to come up with the funds on my own.

What is it, you ask? Well, I am really hoping to be able to get a Nintendo Wii plus Wii Fit. In addition, we currently do not own any kind of TV or monitor (other than the computer), so we would need to get that as well. Plus, I don't want to buy all of this without having some kind of functional, lockable cabinet to store it all in. Used is fine.

Other than that, the kids will probably get one gift from Santa, and then practical, useful items: Pj's, socks, underthings, toothbrushes, etc. that I hope to shop for deals on.

I will keep you posted on my efforts!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Managers of Their Chores- Update

I received the Managers of their Chores kit in the mail on Friday and spent most of the day yesterday reading the book. I really like the approach that they take with teaching chores to your kids. They often reference a Biblical basis for doing chores, and although I appreciate that perspective, it does get a bit over-the-top for me. What I really like about it is the tone that they promote. There is a chapter for each Mother and Father to read and take to heart the instructions on a meek and mild-mannered approach to instilling responsibilities in the children. In addition to this instruction, there is a step-by-step process and very detailed information on how to establish a long-term habit of routine chores in your home. I am excited to get started.

The first step that I am going to take is to simply sit down with the children and explain to them that there are going to be some changes in the way we do things around here, and that we will ease our way into them slowly. We will review some of the reasons it is good to have chores to do:
1.) Read and discuss the Biblical references
2.) Discuss how even at a young age, responsibilities and chores are preparing them for when they are grown-up.
3.) Discuss how it is my hope that this will help to bring about a more peaceful atmosphere in our home.
4.) Remind them that by working together it will create more time to spend together as a family.

I will briefly show them the system that we will be working on, and then ask them for any input on the chores they would each prefer. This is recommended in the book, not as the deciding factor in who does what, but as information to take into careful consideration when determining each child's chores.

It is my goal to begin implementing a morning chorepak routine this week.