As I look back on my parenting journey, I realize, I have made me some mistakes. And so now I am going to share some of my knowledge (earned the hard way, of course) to spare you some pennies and aggravation…..
- Rain boots, snow boots, rain jackets, and snow jackets should be bought in black, blue, or green. This is especially true if your oldest child is a girl. Yes, pink and green rain boots with frogs carrying umbrellas are absolutely adorable. However, if your second child is a boy…. well, let’s just say the playground can be a mean place. (Important Disclaimer – if your son wants to wear the rain boots with frogs and umbrellas, you should absolutely let him.)
- When writing names in stuff – shirts, towels, lunch boxes, backpacks, think of writing your last name. Then anyone can use it. Ah ha, right? If you have a common last name, just add a star or some other identifying mark behind it.
- Ask any 14 year old what happened at his/her 3rd birthday party and it is extremely unlikely that he/she will remember. Keep it simple and inexpensive and apply the pony/clown/expensive (but really cute) cake dollars to college savings. (And no, it doesn’t count if said 14 year old remembers simply because you have pulled out the scrapbook at every birthday and taken a trip down birthday party lane.)
- It really isn’t ideal to be the last parent picking up at anything.
- If you have a child who tends to be on the shy side, try arriving at school, parties, practices a little early. It is much easier to watch an event unfold and become larger/busier than it is to jump into the middle of chaos.
- Leave parties and functions when your child is still happy. If you wait until they crash, well then, they have crashed. That’s never pretty.
- If you have a gut feeling about something, pay attention. Really.
- If you have good friends who have kids and you aren’t a big fan of their kids, you can spend adult time with them sans children. You can like a person (a whole lot) and not like their parenting (a whole lot). It’s okay.
- There will be things that you worry about that you will be able to laugh about later. Pinky swear.
- Never say never – as in “my child would never”. That never ends well unless you are fond of a diet consisting largely of the feet you will end up putting in your mouth. It is a cosmic law of the parenting universe that the exact moment the word “never” leaves your lips is the exact moment your child will do exactly whatever it is you said he would “never” do – or worse.
I am sure I have more brilliance tucked away but that’s it for now. 😉