Meet my cousin Bo. She's the (little bit) older but much wiser cousin. Her kids are 10 years on from mine. She's the reason I got breakfast made for me on my birthday (it was her son's idea but she made it happen), she's the reason I have a new breadmaker which I have been using every single day since I got it (so therefore she's also the reason I'm a little bit fatter! ok ok that is my own discipline issue!). She's the reason my kids got to climb down a rockface that gave me the heebiejeebies and the reason why our family (with a four year old) climbed down the extremely steep 1000 steps of the Giant's Staircase down the Three Sisters in the Blue Mountains. We would never have attempted it otherwise. She's also the reason we don't have toys at the table and my kids are now doing either the washing up or cooking the dinner every night and the reason I am doing a happy dance.
Sometimes you need someone to come along and push you a little bit harder and faster and to assume that your kids of course do what her kids do.
After her visit with her son the good vfm Bensley, I said:
Ok family, New Rule! The person who cooks does not do the washing up afterwards. If Bensley can do it, so can you.
The hubster raised his eyebrows and said nothing but after a week of them cooking or washing up almost every night we can't believe how blessed we are and we are not going back to the old way of doing things (i.e. me slaving away cooking, washing and cleaning up). What makes me laugh is that the kids have just fallen into line. One night of moaning and now they're just accepting that this is the new way of doing things.
So thank you Bo. You might be horribly embarrassed by the accolade but you really are a blessing to our family!
Do you have an older wiser person who lets you in on how to do family better? Who shows you that really your kids are capable of a bit more than they're letting on and that there is another better way? What do you get your kids to do around the house to help out?