Friday, March 19, 2010

Building Connections

Waiting for my helpers

It's so important to me to have the girls 'help out' with anything I may be doing around the house. This means slowing down and having more patience at my end. I admit things tend to take longer with helpers, and sometimes you have to go back behind them to fix up, but it is so very worth it. It is especially important to me on those days when they are so engaged in play I feel like I barely see them, even though we are in the same house the whole time.

K sanding

I want us to have a strong bond as a family and our girls to feel a strong connection with their home, knowing that they contributed in making it ours. I think working on things, even boring monotonous things, as a family helps with both of these.

C watching K and sanding

This connection is especially important to me for their bedroom, since that is their special room (although really every room in our house has at least one corner that is all theirs). So I am always trying to think of ways for them to help. I should be done with their bedroom walls this weekend, so I thought this would be the perfect time for them to help out.

C finishing the outlet plate

I bought some unfinished wood outlet and light switch plates to replace the plastic ones that were originally in there, so they needed to be finished. We sat down at their table yesterday and worked on them. First we sanded them until they were soft and smooth and then we finished them with some beeswax. Even C had a great time working on them. They got to do every step start to finish and can't wait to see them in their room.

K working on her outlet plate (Doesn't her smock make her look like a football player?!)

Not only that, working with the girls made the project fun and very worthwhile.
Now to think of what they can help with next in their room...

Wishing you all a sunny and beautiful Spring equinox this weekend. The Root Children will be visiting us Saturday and I hope they make it out to see all of you, as well! Happy weekending!!



boatbaby said...

Yes, so important to invite the little ones to help. That is a fabulous project for the kids, great idea. It struck me how you said when they are engaged in play you feel like you hardly see them. Totally foreign to me, since our place it so physically small we are always "together" even when we're engaged in separate projects. Part of why I love boat living and part of why others can't stand it :)
I can't wait to see the girls room complete with their lovely switch plates!

Anonymous said...

love that you involved them with this - it's so important but something easy for me to forget.

Unknown said...

so sweet! where did you find the outlet covers? i have been wanting to replace the ones in the girls' room as well..

thanks my dear!!!


Pamela said...

wooden switch plates. why didn't i think of that? it's brilliant.

K E Fleck said...

Love this post! You're so right about working together - even the "mundane" becomes elevated to something more with company :-)

and why have I not thought to replace our ugly plastic outlet covers before? Thanks for the inspiration! :-)

Best wishes, Kara

Joy said...

I love seeing them work on the sanding. How sweet! You are so right, of course, about working together. I don't do as much of that as I should, especially not with my youngest.

Nancy said...

what a sweet idea--kids just love to feel like they are contributing to the family. and I love the outlet covers. we saved up and bought porcelain to replace the plastic, but wooden ones are even better.

Ayla said...

"I want us to have a strong bond as a family and our girls to feel a strong connection with their home, knowing that they contributed in making it ours."

I think this so important! Thank you for the inspiration :) Sometimes I just want things done "right" or "fast" and I brush the children aside but I really should be pausing more and allowing their impute. Thinking of it as "our" home :) Thank you! Thank you!

Beth said...

I love the picture of the baby sanding and looking over to her sibling to see if she is doing it, Beth

Heather said...

Love this- where did you get the beeswax for finishing them?

Teena said...

I agree...they learn so much from us. We should take every opportunity we can to teach them.

Susy said...

Very nice! I've been thinking of getting the beeswax polish for Nova Naturals, and seeing your children using it encourages me to go for it! I have a couple of questions for you! :)

1. I was wondering if you could post pics of your updated playroom, or if you could direct me to a link with the pics.

2. Do you have the mini elements set or the larger one? I'm trying to decide between the two. Thank you!


Laura said...

I agree! We had our boys work on demolition of the kitchen floor-on purpose!! And they loved it, we used real tools like crow bars and hammers none of those toys things! We always include them b/c it's fun and important that they learn work is fun.

Nicole Vangen said...

What a wonderful post - such warmth.

I think I read on your blog from a comment about bunk beds - and adding a long silk to the top of the bottom bunk --- I did that and my little one has been so calm and restful since...

So neat how your blog adds pleasure to my life!

Thank you, Nicole

Unknown said...

How sweet! My girls love to help me with everything! What a nice reminder to slow down, connect, and let them help!

FrontierDreams said...

Thank you so much for your replies everyone. They mean so very much to me.

I got the idea ofr the wooden outlet covers after touring one of our local Waldorf schools.

Boatbaby - It does make me sad when they are at the other end of the house, I would love your set up. My husband and I talk a lot about our dream home - a 1 room cabin in the middle of nowhere!!

Cat - Would you believe we found them at Home Depot? :)

Nancy - Oh I like the idea of porcelain ones, too!

Heather - I bought the beeswax a couple years ago in bulk, but I believe Nova Natural sells it. We use it for all of our smaller things. For finishing furniture and other big things we use Tried & True finish. It's beeswax and linseed oil. HTH!

Susana - Hi there. Sure, I can post pics. We don't really have a playroom in this house but a bunch of play spaces all over the house. I'll try to take some very soon.
We have the larger element set. The mini set seemed too small. HTH!

Laura - Oh how fun!! They must love that! K loves to use tools when she can.

Redbeet Mama - Thank you for your sweet words!!! Your bunk bed set up sounds wonderful! I can imagine that must be so peaceful.

frau kreativberg said...

Love your simple but very special way of life - your blog is great inspiration :)

Nicola said...

good for you for including them in the process. we try to do so as well, but we need to do more of it!

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