Motherhood is amazing but it’s hard! If you’re not new around here you might remember a post I posted a few months ago about feeling like I was underqualified as a mom and my response from so many of you is that you feel the same way! The thing I have come to realize is that I (and my hubby) want to be the biggest influence in our kids’ lives. I am not leaving it up to their teachers, grandparents, aunts, uncles, close friends to parent and raise my kids that is my (when I say my I mean my husband and myself) job to do. We’regoing to do the best job we can but it’s a lot of trial and error. I have started to be way more aware of “teaching opportunities” with my babies now that my two older kids are at that age where they ask a lot of really good questions. What I mean by really good questions is, they don’t do the “but why mommy” kind of questions and they have conversations with me that give me opportunities to teach them about life and the things around them. This summer my hubby and I decided we wanted to make it all about trying new things with our kids and making new memories. So, back in May I started making a jar of activities we could do together where we would make something for someone as a random act of kindness to let them know they are loved and valued because, let’s be honest, this world needs a lot more love in it. My jars consisted of things like, baked muffins for local police departments or making dinner for a family who just had a baby. I thought I had come up with some really good ideas until… a couple weeks ago as we were sitting at a stop light I saw a homeless man standing there with a sign asking for money. I am sure you have seen someone like that before and you, probably like me, felt sadness for that human being. I never have cash on handso if you ever want to rob me you won’t get much.This particular day; however, I had a couple toonies (equivalent to $2 in Canada) in my cup holder that hubby had left in there and I thought “wow” this is awesome. So, I rolled down my window and handed the gentleman the toonies. He thanked me and I started to drive away when all of a sudden, my two older kids piped up from the backs seat. “Mom do you know that man?” “Mom why did you give that man your money?” So here it was, another one of those “teachable moments” and I didn’t know where to start so I tried to just be honest at their age appropriate level. “No guys I don’t know that man and I gave him some money because he doesn’t have any money. He doesn’t have a home or any food and no one to take care of him so I just wanted to be able to give him some money to buy some food” The conversation that took place after left me in tears as I watched my 3 and 5-year-old very become concerned for this man and very moved by the sad realization that not everyone has what they have.. As the day went on I knew we had to do more, but what? I thought to myself, why don’t we just grab some of the essential things that someone might need, put them together and then we can keep them in the car for the next time we encounter someone in need! So, we made a list of some of the essentials like: toothpaste, toothbrush, mouth wash, shampoo, body wash, soap, lotion, Kleenex, gum, granola bars, bottled water, deodorant.
We then headed off to the store to pick up our items and the kids loved the fact that I let them pick the items themselves. (OK, so maybe I made my daughter put the troll toothbrush back and choose a different one but other than that I let them choose their own). After we picked up all our items, we checked out and headed home. Then we sorted our items into boys items and girls items. From there I gave the kids some large Ziplock bags and they got to fill the bags with the appropriate items. Once the bags were packed the kids made little cards with drawings and a note that said “you are loved you are valued” and we sealed the bags. The kids loved doing this and are so excited to hand the bags out. They are sitting in my truck all ready to go for the next time we meet someone who’s in need! I am so grateful to be a #PlaytexMom this year and the opportunity to use this platform to encourage and (hopefully) to inspire more moms! #forbetterbeginings starts in your heart mamas – keep on loving your babies and doing your best because you’re doing a great job!
*Thank you to Playtex for sponsoring this post*