Birthday musings

My beautiful magic double deal (twins) turn eleven today. Eleven!! Yissis! I fall more in love with them every day. I'll admit, I'm not really a baby kind of person. I'm good with babies. They like me, and I can take good care of them. But mostly when a friend with a new baby comes around I take the baby not because I want to goo over it but because I'm thinking 'shame, my poor friend really needs a few minutes without this potato attached to her boob'. I do often get into trouble with hormone-soaked new mums when I call their precious a potato. I can't help myself.

But older kids... Kids who are growing and learning and reaching out into the world, and can talk about it in some kind of intelligent way? Man, I love them. They're funny and interesting and they make you see things differently. They're insanely tiring and they worry you and they tend to talk too much, often about the plot of some really stupid movie or their latest Lego creation, but all of that is worth the amazing gems they come up with, so I keep listening.

In 2011 I did a post for the lovely Gen Motley's blog - Heart Divine. Gen was expecting Olive, and had invited some fellow bloggy creators to contribute their thoughts on motherhood. I enjoyed writing that post, and it got some nice responses. Today I thought I'd share a couple of additional tips with you.

Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway

I'm still scared, all the time, that something dreadful will happen to these glorious creatures. They seem so vulnerable. But they have to get out there in the world. Whether it's the giant jungle gym for toddlers, or letting the 9-year-olds walk to school (as I did) by themselves, it's all preparation for that life they're going to live one day when Mum won't be there to catch them.

Manners manners manners

It's a pain in the butt to teach a toddler to say 'please' and 'thank you' and take their plate to the kitchen and generally be kind and polite to people, but if you don't start it young it doesn't take. And there is nothing more lovely for a mum who has worked hard on a children's party than a young man who says, "I had such a lovely time today. Thank you very much for the great party." (As opposed to: "I'm going now, where's my party pack", which I've also experienced.)

Have fun

Sometimes it's hard. You're trying to get things done and be responsible and all of the grown-up stuff. But just let it go, some of the time, and do stupid things and have fun. It's not only good for the kids...

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