Industrious children

Beth & I have started on yet another project. With one week to go until we leave for NY are we out shopping, putting together a great wardrobe for our first visit to the big apple? No, we’re renovating her bedroom, but more about that in the next blog. This is about how impressed I am with my children. I love that my 16yo daughter knows how, completely on her own, to prep and paint a room. She can mix drywall mud, fill the holes (now she knows that you’re also supposed to sand those spots to get a smooth finish) lay out tarps, tape things you don’t want to get paint on, remove all the outlet covers and take down the door. She also hunts down all the supplies we need to paint the room. We’re a great team when we redo a room. I do all the edgings with a brush and she comes in behind me to roll it all out. We work pretty well together, we’ve found our groove. I’ve learned to keep my mouth shut and not be critical and she’s learned how to do a great job all on her own. Beth has also helped Dan shingle the shed and she knows her way around the wood-shop. She is often rebuilding and refinishing furniture for her room and building her own creations.

Daniel, although he really hates manual labor unless it involves destroying things, is also pretty handy. I was amazed that he could, again all on his own, dig out the post holes, set and stake the posts so they were level, mix the concrete and fill the holes for our new back deck. He also helped frame the back porch and deck. Plus he helped Dan with the construction of the shed/ green house a couple summers ago.

Thomas is the one I go to whenever something around the house needs to be fixed. At 11 he has his own tool box and is more than happy to fix whatever is broken. He knows how to get the garbage disposal running again when it gets stuck. He tightens door knobs and screws whenever he notices them loosening up. He also recently climbed into the cabinet under the sink to reattach the spring to the dishwasher door. He’s Dan’s assistant for all the plumbing and electrical jobs around the house. He also helped shingle the lean-to we added to the garage last fall. He’s always happy to climb up on a roof, the higher the better, to help out. He is also in charge of the lawn mowing, weed whacking, and using the blower for our yard and 2 of our neighbors.

I’ve often cursed having a 100 year old house because the endless chain of work it creates but I hadn’t, until recently, realized how industrious it has made my children and for that I am very happy.

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3 thoughts on “Industrious children

  1. Wait a minute, how can your kids be so handy when mine are so helpless? Do they help Dan and learn from that? Does that mean Dan isn't a perfectionist who insists on doing everything his own way?

  2. Dan is very patient when the kids help and he's always asking for their help and trying to include them. Sometimes when him and Daniel are working on a BIG/ heavy/ strenuous job I can see him get a little tense if things aren't going well, but it doesn't seem to affect Daniel. He's always extremely patient with Beth, way more than I am. And he's really good with Thomas unless Thomas gets whiny, then we both tend to lose our patience. The kids and I all learn a lot from Dan when we pay attention. πŸ™‚

    What I've learned this summer is to believe him when he tells me something is a BIG job instead of telling him he's wrong and it doesn't seem that big to me. πŸ™‚ He seems to appreciate my new outlook.

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