Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Mom Book

As a mom, I am constantly reading articles in magazines, articles online, and now "mommy blogs" on how to enhance our lives. Some ideas I look at and I think, "that won't work for my family." Some I try for a little while but then it doesn't stick. Some I think, "If I had only read this 5 years ago when the kids were younger, I would of tried this." And then some I think, "This is a great idea," I and try it and it works!!!

That is how I feel about "The Mom Book." I read an article in the magazine REAL SIMPLE last spring right before Mother's Day. It was about this mom that got herself one of those nice sketchbooks you find in the art section of Michael's or AC Moore. Instead of her kids making her cards for Mother's Day, her birthday, Valentine's Day, and Christmas, she asked them to make their card, draw a picture, write their letter in "The Mom Book." I try to be an organized mom. Sometimes I am successful and sometimes I am not. I have four boxes with each of the kids' names on them with all of their homemade cards that they have made for me and Chris as well as each other throughout the years. But I loved the idea of having them all in one book. I loved the idea of years from now flipping through the pages and seeing their artwork throughout the years. And so I headed out to buy my "Mom Book". Will it be one of those ideas that we try for a little while and then petters out or will it stick? 

Mother's Day was coming and I introduced "The Mom Book" to the kids at dinnertime. I asked them each to write a letter, a note or draw a picture in the book instead of making a card this year. I explained that this is what I wanted for Mother's Day and if it works out, we would keep the book for all the holidays and my birthday. Well, I got three out of four to write something in the book.

You're like a queen in a palace. You're very nice and very fair.

 My oldest, who is 13, did not write in the book. When I introduced the book that night at the dinner table, I got "the look" from her. I didn't push it. You got to pick and choose your battles. But then in the middle of the summer I found this. 

July 17th, Just Cuz

Then September came, my birthday month. Again, I told them this is what I wanted for my birthday. This time all four of them wrote in the book and even Chris wrote me a note as well. 

Maybe this "mom idea" will stick. It's hard to tell because it wasn't an idea that you use everyday. But then in November, Molly was sitting in the family room sitting at the coffee table. I asked her what  she was doing. She said she was drawing a picture in "the Mom Book" because she wanted to. Another "just cuz" picture. She then explained that it was a mixed-up color world where the sky was red and the mountains were blue and the river was green. I LOVED it!

Christmas has just passed and I told them that I would like an entry before they went back to school. With one day left of break, Timmy had not done an entry. I gave him the book and I got that "look" again. I then laid the mother guilt trip. "Think of all the things I do for you, all the driving back and forth to basketball, homework, dinner, laundry..." You get the idea. I didn't want a two minute drawing. I wanted something that looked like he put some thought into it. I thought I deserved that. When I think of all the hours they spend playing xbox and basketball in the driveway, is it too much to ask for them to spend more than two minutes on the one thing I wanted from them for Christmas?

30 minutes later, this is what I got! A basketball, which is everything to Timmy, filled with positive words. I was overjoyed! I felt like he must be listening. He may not always show it, but here was a little bit of proof. The dinner table conversations, the talks one-on-one in the car, those few words spoken to each other before you kiss them good night, they were all on that basketball.

For Christmas they each got a leather bound sketchbook. I just think that a kid should have a place to write things down or draw a picture. Shannon loves to draw. She will spend hours in her room with her sketchbook, sometimes just doodling and sometimes she does elaborate pictures. 

More proof that I think they are listening, even though they hate to admit it. Just pictures cut out and glued into a book.

Ryan's birthday was yesterday and so I thought, why don't we all write him a note in his sketchbook? Everyone did it and Ryan loved it!

Sometimes when you try something new, you just don't know where it will lead you. "The Mom Book," an enhancement that I think is going to stick!

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