My Six-Year-Old Daughter’s Morning, Afternoon, and Evening Routines

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Lisa from Created for Learning sent me a link to her blog post this week and I just LOVED it:

Transitioning from teacher to mother has been more difficult than I thought . . . I mean, I could patiently handle twenty 1st and 2nd grade students, how hard could it be to parent three kids?  Right?  But I currently feel like I’m in survival mode. I am overwhelmed by all the responsibilities that my brain is telling me I need to juggle. I LOVE my girls but I find myself saying, “I procreated myself out of my sanity,” more times than I care to experience.

Time-management is a weakness of mine. I desperately want to think through and set up household routines that will help maintain order in our home . . . basically I want my home to run as peacefully as my classroom did.

To help with this, I’ve been listening in the car to an audiobook, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode by Crystal Paine. Usually my kids ask for me to change it to music, but sometimes I can slip in some listening time for “mommy’s turn.”

Well, the other day we were getting ready to leave for a fun day-trip (so I was trying not to feel frantic, thinking I would forget something) and my just-turned-six-year-old daughter, online we’ll call her Miss Responsible, came up to me and said her list was all done for this morning just like the lady on my CD said to do. I stopped my swirling preparations to look at her and ask her for more details to see what she had paid attention to when listening.

She amazed me.

She led me into her bedroom where *Holycowwhendidshehavettimetodothis!* she had posted all these lists on her wall. She’d written her list for what she needs to do in a day.  It was on 4-separate pages and labeled accordingly, “Morning, Afternoon, Evening, Bedtime.”  Well, I’m assessing, she may not know the difference between evening and afternoon…”

You can read her whole post here.

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Busted. When your “amazing” parenting gets sucker-punched…

Parenting Sermons

One of our girls was hanging out in our room before bed the other night. We were chatting about a number of different things and the conversation led to this daughter telling me some fairly critical things about someone they didn’t really know.

Immediately, I called this daughter out on it. “How do you know that person is that way? Have you met them?” I asked.

She said that she was very sure these things were true because another acquaintance of hers had told her it was so. I began probing deeper, asking if she had contributed to the conversation and had talked badly about this person. I asked what had been said and what she had said.

Seeing my opportunity for a great teaching lesson, I got all queued up to step onto my soapbox and launch into a long “sermon” on gossip, slander, and why we should always speak respectfully about other people — both to their face and behind their back.

{If you know me well, I’m sure you can picture this because you know I love nothing more than to be a “fixer”. I love to analyze, probe, ask questions, and provide clear-cut solutions and plans of action.

This might seem like a good character trait — and it can be. But my friends will also tell you that I’m great at trying to fix any and every situation, regardless of whether it needs to be fixed right away or at all.

And best of all (or not), I’m really good at trying to fix situations I haven’t been asked to fix. Yeah. Not so good or helpful or appreciated. But I digress.}

I was getting pretty animated and patting myself on the back for the great points I was conveying to my daughter. Not only was I giving her some really concise and clear-cut definitions, I was backing these definitions up with illustrations.

All the while, inwardly I’m thinking: “Man, I’ve GOT this. I mean, I’m really good at these Parenting Lessons. My daughter is so blessed to have such a wise mom.”

Ahem.

About halfway through my “AMAZING” Parenting Lesson, my daughter stops me with a funny look on her face.

“Mom, but I don’t get it. Because I hear you saying critical stuff about other people to Daddy all the time.”

Um, can you say BUSTED? My puffed up, I’ve-got-this, incredible sermon just got completely sucker-punched.

I was left speechless {which my husband would say is a very rare occurrence.}

There was nothing more I could say. Because, you see, my daughter was right.

I have been guilty of saying critical words about other people to my husband.* I didn’t realize my daughter was listening when I’ve said these things, but she was.

Minutes before, I was arrogantly thinking what a wise mom I was. Now, I had to humble myself and ask my daughter to forgive me for setting such a poor example before her. And I resolved, with God’s help, to be much more careful about the words I say, the attitude I have toward others, and the example I’m setting before my kids.

My children are watching, listening, and learning every day in how I live my life. What I try to teach my children with verbal parenting lessons does have weight, but the life I live before them is what matters most.

All the fancy, clear-cut, compelling parenting sermons in the world don’t matter if my life doesn’t match up to them.

Parenting Sermons

*While there is a time and place for me to bring an issue with another person to my husband for his counsel, that time and place is never when my children are around to hear it (unless it clearly involves them and is something that discussing about as a group will be helpful to them, instead of just slander and gossip). Even then, situations when I need to discuss some problem about another person with my husband should be rare, not a regular occurrence.

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We Paid Cash: A New-to-us Minivan

We paid cash!A testimony from Kelly

Our family is expecting our third child this Fall. With that exciting addition, we have also come to need a larger vehicle. I’ve had my previous car since college (almost ten years) and it was time for the minivan.

My husband, Jesse, was able to work a side contract job on top of his full-time job for several months this year. Because of this, we were able to save much of the money he earned “on the side” to put toward our minivan savings goal.

Once we were ready to buy, we scanned Craigslist almost daily, looking for a good deal on a new-to-us  minivan.

We were thrilled when we found one within our budget that had lower mileage, plenty of room, was clean, with only one previous owner! It was very strange walking out of the bank with a whole envelope of cash, but it felt wonderful to pay cash for our new-to-us minivan!

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Kelly is a wife and stay at home mom to two busy children, a four-year old girl and two-year old boy, with another baby boy on the way. Her blog, Fru-Gal.org, is focused on frugal living for the grace of giving. As a missionary/pastor’s wife, she strives to live a frugal lifestyle so that her family is able to pay the bills, but also so that they can live in greater generosity toward people in need.

Have you saved up and paid cash for something — large or small? Submit your story for possible publication here.

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Ask The Readers: Tips to Transition to a Stay-At-Home-Mom

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Today’s questions is from Jessica:

I recently had my second child and left the corporate work force to stay at home with my children. Do your readers have any advice to make this transition go as smoothly as possible? I want to maximize my time with my children (2 years and 3 mo.) since I have been blessed with this opportunity.

Do you have a question you’d like to ask Money Saving Mom® readers? Read the submission guidelines and submit it here.

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Gretchen’s Target Shopping Trip: Spent $6.86 out of pocket

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Target Shopping Trip

6 Dial for Men Bodywash – $2.99 each (Buy 3, Get 1 Dial Hand Soap refill FREE)
Used 3 $2/2 printable

2 Dial Antibacterial Hand Soap Refill – $3.99 each (Free since I bought 6 Dial bodywash)
Used $1/2 printable

Used $5/$15 Target mobile coupon

Total before coupons and sales: $26.84

Total with tax ($0.92) after coupons and sales: $6.86 (I will also get $1 back from Ibotta for buying the Hand Soap.)

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