Monday, September 19, 2011

in {her} shoes...laura

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good morning birds! today's guest post for the "in {her} shoes" series.  Laura from Art for Little Hands is going to share her momminess with us.  if you haven't been to her site, she is amazing!  there are so many ideas that she uses with her kiddos! 
she's also nominated for Parents Magazine's Best Blog Awards. 

Hello!  My name is Laura.  I am a blogger over at Art For Little Hands.  I have given much thought to posting about life in my shoes  -- or feet since I rarely wear shoes. And even though I hate my feet and was embarrassed to show them here, I had to honestly show them as who I am.  I am a mommy of three kids in various stages of life.  I have an elementary age child, a preschooler, and a toddler.  Being a stay at home mommy is more challenging than I ever thought it would be.



My life goal was to be a mommy.  I remember as a child carrying around baby dolls and being the mom always when we played house.  I remember becoming a teenager and taking care of all the kids in the neighborhood, at family functions, or at church.  In college I went into elementary education knowing that degree would be very helpful to me in my life as a mother.  I aspired to be a stay at home mom.  Maybe that is rare this day and age, but it was my goal.

Fast forward to today.  I love being a mom, but it is tiring.  I feel sometimes I do the same thing day in and day out.  I have a husband who works over 80 hours a week and I find the lack of adult conversations very hard on me.  I find I am yearning to do something more.  Be something more.  Find out who I am outside of being a mommy.

In this quest for finding myself I started an art blog at Art For Little Hands.  I find the blog community to be a great outlet for me.  I love writing and making blog posts.  I also love that it incorporates being a better mother to my children.  Some days it is challenging to do art daily and to blog about it.  I find my house is messier, my life is a bit more chaotic, but that I feel a purpose for my life.
The most challenging thing about being an artistically driven mom is that my children have learned from me the art of expressing themselves, being unique, as well as being free spirits. Sometimes I find my kids are naughty in these respects too.  My mom is always telling me I need to be better at setting limits for my children, but I feel the need to let them be free.  I find through this parenting style that they are quick to throw tantrums when they are determined to get their way.  We have on more than one occasion had drawings on walls, papers glued to walls while the children were making decorations for whatever they were pretending, as well as toys altered to my children's artistic liking.




The most rewarding part of being a mom of free spirit children to me is seeing my kids with each other having fun.  I couldn't ask for my kids to be better friends.  I rarely have to stop fights or get them to play together. They are all best friends and play super well together.  I often find that my job can be easy if my daughter is home from school because she entertains the other two so well.  They are three of the most imaginative kids I know.  They make fun out of things I never would have thought of.  They love to create play through nature and other objects they find.  I love to hear them laughing and playing as I blog or do something for myself.  I also love that they aren't scared.  They are free to get dirty and explore nature and the world.  I am not sure I was free to do those things as a kid.  Sometimes this is a challenge for me in the laundry department, but I enjoy seeing them express themselves without fear of repercussions from me if they get dirty.  
My children are not afraid of bugs, creatures, dirt, or getting dirty
This is what my kids call a hanger party.  They have them often.

I like to let my kids art be child driven not adult directed

In our home the value I try to instill most in my children is The Golden Rule.  We teach them this through example and weekly lessons we try to teach on Sunday evenings.  We use a variety of teaching resources for this, but mostly information from people my husband and I inspire to be more like.  People like The Buddha, Mother Theresa, Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Desmond Tutu.  My children learn a quote that helps them learn more about being a good person every week and we try to teach them through example as well.  My husband is fortunate in his work to get to help others in less fortunate circumstances.  He has gone on one medical mission and we foresee dozens in our future.  We can't wait for our children and me to join him in Africa one day to help the people there with surgery as well as care packages.  I think my children will learn more though doing good, than I could ever teach them about doing good.



I love being a creative mom to three of the most creative fun kids I know!

**update: no links available to her blog anymore**

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