Tag Archives: parent life

Things Toddlers Say

Happy Tuesday! Sorry so late, but we just hopped up to the mountains yesterday and today, and got home around dinnertime tonight. We are so full of mountain love right now – with no plans for the 4th! What are you doing??

Here are some funnies from our week… we took two days away for our anniversary (Praise Him!) and then internet was spotty in the mountains, and we were unplugged there for a couple of days (thank goodness!) so this is what I’ve got! Enjoy!

EK: D doesn’t weigh that much.
Me: He’s actually pretty heavy, just not as heavy as you and J.
EK: Yeah, cause we been working out a lot.

Me: Did you miss me and daddy while we were gone?
D: Yeah! And I had fun at Meta Kate (our sitter)!

J: Wanna be a fisher girl and I’ll be a fisher man?
EK: I’m thinking of working at Disney.

Hubby trying to put goggles on D…
D: I got a big noggit. (Noggin)

D, at the Asian restaurant: How about we could our dumplings?!

D, exclaiming: Holy mammoth!

EK, remarking on the weather: What is it, like, a hundred twenties out here?!

Friend: Is that sandwich good?
J: You knew it was.

J: A popsicle a day makes the future a gooder one!

J: Can I walk the dog?
Friend: Well… she’s big. How much do you weigh?
*pause*
J: I didn’t eat that much this morning….
Friend: I just meant she’s way heavier than you are!

What is it that your kids say to make you laugh?! Tell us in the comments!

It’s Hard to Say “I’m Sorry”

Nothing makes me apologize like just being a mom.

Oh, I should say it louder for the people in the back?!

It is SO IMPORTANT to practice saying “I’m sorry” and being humble when you’re a mom.

Let’s think. Who is it easier to lose your temper with than your kids? Who is it more likely you’ll fumble your words with than your kids? Who is it that sees the most exhausted, short-tempered, foolish version of yourself? Your kids.

I don’t know about you, but being a mom of three seems like a good reason to apologize for everything. I’m constantly “hurting someone’s feelings” by telling them they need to eat their vegetables. I’m always mortally offending someone by telling them they have to turn the TV off. (Anyone? Beuller?) But what’s even more important is that I actually apologize when I do something stupid in their presence.

Let me explain.

I inherited a short temper and tendency to shout from my parents. I don’t think I came away with any wounds necessarily, but I did learn to get angry and shout about it. Feel me? So when I have big feelings (that’s kind of a lot, because I’m a type 4 on the Enneagram) I sometimes speak before I think (oops), I sometimes shout when I oughtn’t (oops again), and I can’t help but fail my kids again and again and again.

But what better thing for my kids to see than the fact that I’m not perfect? What better way to teach by example that I need Jesus so much that it hurts to admit it? What easier way to include Jesus in everyday interactions with my children than continually apologizing to them, and showing them my need for Jesus to be present with me, Holy Spirit to counsel me, and God to forgive me for the words I’ve spoken out of turn?

Now, hear me out. I’m not condoning shouting at your kids or being angry all the time. But I am advocating for repentance. Visible, true repentance. My daughter – most like me, for better and worse – has had me in tears at bedtime, praying for forgiveness for us both. My first response isn’t always to ask God to help, but I’ve learned it truly does make it easier on me when I’ve started my day with a plea for the patience that doesn’t come naturally, and the turning over of a new leaf when I “literally can’t even”.

Here, right now, in front of all of you (millions of readers, am I right?!), I say this: I am not perfect. But I love hard, I try and try again, and I ask God to fill in my gaps. And that’s how I mom. I do it with love, and grace, and Jesus.

Things Toddlers Say

Happy Tuesday, friends! We had a little trip to the lake last week (where I was mostly unplugged, and it was great!), and the kiddos are in summer camp this week, so we are fully launched into summer! We’ve picked our first squashes and zucchinis, and eaten our first tomato. It’s a good time of year at the Hsu house! Here are some funnies – enjoy!

Driving to Lake Norman, and we see the (Marshall) power plant’s steam drifting up in clouds…
EK: I see Marshall!
D: Yeah! I see da marsha-mellow!

J and D sharing a bed and trundle…
J to D: If you get scared, you can come get in my bed instead of bothering mommy and daddy.

Me: What do you want for dinner?
J: Chicken wings!
Me: Chicken wings?
J: Yeah! Hot, roasted chicken wings!

When D is asking for things, he begins with “I need you to say….” as in, “I need you to say I want some jelly beans!”

J: Hey, D?
D: I don’t want you to talk, ‘tupid!
Me: You may not call your brother stupid!
D: But I don’t want him to talk!
J: *laughing*

J, shouting in the car.
Me: You’re being a little too loud for the car.
J, still shouting: I lost my inside voice!

What funny things do your kids say?!

Things Toddlers Say

Happy Tuesday, folks! Here are a few summer funnies for you – enjoy!img_1147

EK, doing a “medical procedure”: What’s your name?
J: Um, *says my dad’s full name*
Me: *laughs and also wonders why he knows my dad’s full name*

Summertime potty training:
Me: Do you need to use the potty?
D: No, I need to use da treeeeeee!
Me: *face palm*

A redundant argument between J and EK, where they both just shout: STOP COPYUING (no typo, lol) ME!

Me after J had gotten hurt: You’re a trooper, babe.
J: I’m a storm trooper!

J, above, looking through the “scopa-tella” (telescope)

D’s name-calling trump card: Toolet face!

Me: If we do some chores and clean our rooms, maybe then we can head to the pool!
EK: Well let’s get this party started!

Brother stuff:
D: You wanna pee on the tree?!
J: Sure, sure, sure! That sounds amazing!

J’s new song: My God made the bushes, and I love God and I love trees and bushes!

What are your kids saying these days? How are they making you laugh?

Summer Can Be Scary (And I’m Not Sorry)

I’ve spent the last few weeks praying about our summer.

I’m so nervous that my kids will think it’s boring, or lame, or both, or whatever. What do kids even think these days? I don’t mind my kids being bored, really. I think it builds character and creativity for them to just figure something out to entertain themselves. I also LOVE to make them get outside. Go ride a bike, pull some weeds in the garden, blow bubbles, or draw with chalk. I don’t care, but don’t tell me you don’t feel like doing it.

There’s a lot of Pinterest and Instagram pressure to make summer an “epic” experience for your kids. But what I really want to do is lowball it as hard as I can, and make them make their own plans. Sure, they’re 2, 4, and 6, but they can tell me what they want to do! We’ve got chore charts intact, complete with a reward system. I have a ready answer to “I’m bored.”

Otherwise, to tell the truth, I enjoy having fun, too! I WANT to go to the pool, and to the park, and the mountains, which blessedly aren’t that far away. I WANT to see our friends and live music and whatever other events are going on. But we just can’t do everything, and I need to take the pressure off of myself NOW or else I’ll drown in it. The pressure is stifling to those of us who just don’t “do” what everyone else seems to do. I’m spontaneous, which is sometimes a great thing with kids, and sometimes not so much. We never sit around the house for too many hours in a row, but there are times that I get an idea in my head, and it’s just too late to make it work.

The other thing that may save my life is the YMCA. We (re)joined a month ago, and so far, beginning my mornings there with my kids in a safe and fun childcare (with lots of their friends!) has been a big stress reliever. Now, my workout doesn’t depend on the weather or on whether the baby takes a nap at the time he’s supposed to. I can get up, make everyone a nice breakfast, and head to the gym to get the endorphins blasting, and then I feel GREAT about whatever else we get – or don’t get – accomplished.

What is saving you this summer? Letting go of your expectations? Making a weekly plan? Lots of vacation or none at all? Tell me all the things that you do to survive and thrive in summer!

Things Toddlers Say

Happy Tuesday! The pickin’s are a little slim this week, but let’s just say it’s because I’ve been more “in the moment” and not because I’ve been horrible at writing things down. Okay? Okay. Enjoy the ones I’ve got!

D: I went to da docker (doctor).
Me: Oh really? What did he say?
D: My name. My brown name.
Me: …oh…

EK: I’m really smart. I can do a puzzle in one minute or ten.

J, standing still against the wall: I look just like a picture!

D, having unbuttoned his whole shirt: Mama, my shirt is broken!

Me, post-workout: My butt is so sore!
J: That’s because you’re sitting on my foot!
Me: …….

J, telling me something I absolutely already know and probably told him myself: Mom! Did you know that…. (fill in the rest with a fact everyone knows)?!?!?!

What are your kids saying these days?!

10 Chores That Young Kids Can Do

This piece also appeared on The Grit and Grace Project.

One of the things I’ve tried to establish early in in my parenting is my desire to raise responsible children who contribute to their community (be it their family, classroom, society, etc). In our culture, this can be difficult… they’re busy, they want to watch TV, or they’re used to being told “You’re too young to do that.” But I’ve got 9 things my kids can and should be doing to contribute to the housework load.

1. Help unload the dishwasher. My kids do their plastic dishes, their cups/bottles/all those parts, and all the silverware (not including sharp knives). I just ask whichever of them is around when I need to get it unloaded, and almost always, they’re eager to help.

2. Put away their laundry. This one is a big one. We often watch some TV before bedtime, and I set a timer for 4-5 minutes at a time, and we pause the TV, and everyone puts some clothes away. Sometimes it’s their own clothes into their own dressers. Sometimes it’s towels, or something of mine or Hubby’s that I have them carry to our room for me to put away later. They’re quite good at helping, and they’re learning to keep their drawers organized… or everything won’t fit!

3. Clean up their toys/pick up their rooms. I don’t make them do this all day every day. We frequently have toys left out, even when we go to bed sometimes. But I do ask them to keep things fairly organized (in labeled bins!) and mostly off the floor. If it gets too out of control, we spend a morning or evening cleaning EVERYONE’s room. But I help, not really facilitate. They know what to do.

4. Bring dishes from the table to the sink. I like having them help clear the table. That way, they can’t just get up whenever they feel like it. They tell me they’re full, and I say when they can get up, take their dishes to the sink, get their hands and faces clean, and go play.

5. Gather/Sort/Switch over laundry. I have them bring their dirty laundry to the laundry room, and often to sort it, help me start a load, help me switch it to the dryer (they’re a little short to get in my top-loading washer), and bring it out to be folded.

6. Clean the table/windows/doors. I let them loose with a roll of paper towels and the Method Glass Cleaner. Boom. It’s not as streak-free as when I do it myself, but they learn that their contribution is valuable at any level.

7. Sweep/pick up crumbs. My kids really like to sweep, and I have a handheld broom and dustpan for them to get everything up off the floor. We try to do this once a day (but then again, it depends on the day).

8. Weed, water, and harvest in the garden. They love this one, simply because they love being outside. We’re teaching them to recognize weeds, and the right way to pull them up (getting the WHOLE weed). They’re also learning when our vegetables are ready to pick – or to eat right off the plant, in the case of several tomatoes and cucumbers!

9. Pack lunch. This one I’m going to start soon. Once I’ve given a good idea of what a healthy lunch looks like, I’m going to have things semi-prepared for my kindergartener to grab a few things to put in her lunch box each morning. I’ll choose a bit, and let her choose her snack and a few add-ins. That way, she’s more excited about eating it because she picked it.

10. Help make the bed. I haven’t set a good precedent about this one, but I often find myself having them help, even if it isn’t first thing in the morning. Having lots of decorative pillows can make the job cumbersome, but pulling up sheets and blankets and putting the animals on TOP of the blankets is pretty darn easy. As is helping Mom or Dad strip the bed and change the sheets! My kids like the putting-on of the pillow cases the best!

What are some things your kids to around the house? Are there other chores I should start my kids on early?