Saturday, May 4, 2013

Life With Older Kids

This week has been an interesting one. We have been taking care of our friends' two kids, making our collection of kiddos double in number. We have a 7 month old, 2 year old, 4 year old, and 6 year old.

I've learned a few things about older kids that I have forgotten....

1.) They can talk. Alot. And they choose to do so.

All. The. Time.

For me, a moderate introvert, the constant chatter and questions are pretty exhausting. Most of all when we are in the car. Usually I load my girls into the car, Sophia falls right asleep, and Grace looks out the window and has her pacifier. I have my music on and I sing and pray during my drive time, rather uninterrupted.

Now, I load them in the car and it's like 20 questions!
"What's this song about?"
"Why is that car green?"
"Where are we going/"
"Are we there yet?"

I try my best to control my sarcasm.

I forgot how much they talk, ha!

2.) Nap time/quiet time is sacred.

It has reenforced my thought on the importance of nap time, for the parents' sanity.

I've had some great examples in my life of families that keep a quiet time in their kids life and an early bed time all the way through elementary school. They don't have to nap but they have to play quietly in their room with the door closed. And an early bed time! Keep your kids going to bed early as long as possible. We put the babies down at 7 and then the big kids get tv/movie time until their bed time at 8, when they can read for 20-30 minutes.

3.) It's nice to have big kids around because they can help!

Even if it is just straightening up, watering a plant, or sorting their laundry. Older kids can help alot more than they are given credit for. And if it saves me a few minutes, that means I can sit and snuggle with them instead of working around the house.

4.) Older kids appreciate when you do special things for them.

Grace likes when we do fun things, but she doesn't get excited before or really remember them afterwards. These kids have been so fun to build up anticipation, enjoy fun things (splash park, the beach, indoor playground, cooking, hide and go seek, egg hunts,) and talk about them afterwards. It makes me want to plan more and more things for them!

At the end of the week, I am exhausted, but it helps me look forward to the months and years ahead. Each stage has such unique benefits and fun parts to it!


Liz McQueen said...

Love all the pics!!! Such true statements about Big Kids... And yes they never stop talking!!! You and Ian blessed us so much & we appreciate you guys. Hoping you've both recovered now!!! Love you all! P.S. we OWE you!!!

The Barker's said...

Such an interesting perspective on the different ages!! Such a funny post about them talking all the time! So very true!

Natalie said...

We are planning to continue a quiet time after they are done with naps too. I think thats really important!