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Things We Taught Them

Over the holidays I was so fortunate to have both my young adult kids home from where they live in New York and Colorado. We had the most fun with a family open house on December 23, where friends from all seasons of life joined in. It was such a lovely way to kick off the holidays and it left me feeling very reflective. I was so grateful that despite the continuation of Covid, we can still have big gatherings again, and what a joy it is to be with those you love.

Some of my friends who have known Taylor and Bailey since they were born, or even from school days, commented on some things that meant a lot to me. We are all proud of our kids, and for those of you with big kids who have moved away you know how happy those moments are when they return home and see people as grown ups.

I started thinking about how much they have just learned on their own through life, and as they launch into worlds of their own what was most important to us that we taught them. We didn't always get it right, that is for sure. I think I've been a good mom, but I have also made plenty of mistakes. So, it was interesting to think about some of the things I am most glad our children learned that they are taking into adulthood. These were a few of the things that turned out to be very high on my list.

  • Thank you and please. Some of the most important words you can ever learn.

  • Treating others with dignity. I'm so thankful our kids know and love a wide variety of people, and that they show kindness even when others don't.

  • Talk to adults. From the time our kids were very small, we impressed upon them that it is important to make eye contact and be able to talk confidently to adults. This has served them well very often.

  • Handshake. Your handshake makes a big impression and usually a first impression upon meeting someone or even parting ways.

  • Gift giving. Knowing how to give thoughtful gifts to other people, thinking about giving something they would really like, no matter how large or how small. It truly is the thought that counts. Watching my kids give good gifts to others this holiday truly warmed my heart. One of the best was receiving a hand written note from my son before he went back to his apartment. I promise you, that will be kept in a special place.

There are so many other important things that crossed my mind. And my kids aren't perfect either - I wouldn't insinuate they were. They have plenty of their own problems and challenges, like I do, like you do, like we all do. But I love the people they continue to become. What a HUGE GIFT to watch them fly. What an honor to be their mom. I never take that lightly.

I'd love to hear your list as well. What do you consider the most important things you have taught or are teaching your children or children in your life? Or - what are the best things that YOU have ever learned that have served you well? Feel free to comment below.

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