But what I do know is that I want to raise my three kids to be independent, free thinking and resourceful. I want them to be able to solve things out in a timely manner and know that they can do it. I want them to prioritize and know how to get around an obstacle.
Earlier this week I asked Lulu is she wanted to tie-dye and she jumped at the chance to gather up any and all white clothes she could find. I explained to her that it was a process and it couldn't be rushed through. I told her we were going to have to do some research since it had been eons since I last tie-dyed.
We sat and watched several how-tos on You Tube to learn layouts and color applications until her questions ran dry and she felt confident. She was determined to pull off some spirals and hearts like a pro.
So we sat at the table in a sea of white, rubber bands and zip ties with our knowledge and I let her take the lead. She knew how she wanted to set each item up and did it herself - until her hands grew weak from twisting or tying, then I helped out under her lead.
Once everything was twisted, banded, folded and zipped we mixed up our colors and proceeded outside to dye up a storm. I was in awe watching her take the lessons she absorbed and apply them to her creations. We only had enough dye for about 3/4s of our white loot so we decided not to mix any more up to see how these ones turned out just in case we wanted to change anything.
After we let the items sit in separate plastic bags for a day or so we rinsed them out. It was so exciting to watch the designs unfold as they were hung on the laundry line. Lulu was beyond over the moon in excitement as she watched the rainbows get hung out to dry. First was a shirt I did followed by a few of her tanks, her t-shirt, TW's t-shirt and a few baby onesies. Oh and a shirt Lulu did all by herself for the Hubs. Everything turned out super awesome! Now she can't wait to dye the rest of the items.
I don't think I'm a mean mom. I don't think I'm a pushy mom. I want them to do things on their own. I want them to learn and be confident. I will not do things for them but I will be there to assist them. I want them to take the lead. I want them to know that there are outlets and resources available to learn how to do things for themselves and others. That it's okay to ask for help but to always harvest the drive to earn it for themselves.
It's hard work - real hard work, especially with three kids - but I am determined and have already seen results of these lessons that make it encouraging to keep at it. And now Lulu can add tie-dying master on her belt next to finger knitting.
*this is the second edition since my first draft crashed - I'm sure I'll be editing this but the overall message wont change.