Thursday, June 10, 2010

Our Family Rules

Wow. It's been quite awhile since I have actually found time to sit and write. When I am saying that our house has been in utter chaos the past few months, I am not exaggerating. It's been pure and utter chaos. It's had me kind of down and out and in need of a major attitude overhaul. Just when I think I get the motivation to pick myself out of my slump I find something else happening that throws me right back into my funk. Recently it's been these crazy Phoenix temps that seem to have gone from "cozy, comfy and relaxing" to "You have got to be kidding me" in a matter of one weekend. I'm sweating just thinking about it and it's making my make-up slide off my face. Yuck.

We have been dealing with the terrible twos in our house. Big time. It's like my little boy goes from sweet, gentle and loving to tiny terror in a matter of seconds. Each day I wake up and pray that God give me the strength and patience to deal with the tantrums and whining. Oh the whining! But, by 8:00am I am frazzled, pissed off and ready to jump in the car and never come back. I am tired of it.

That in conjunction with the 50 million everyday things that I have on my plate that never seem to get completed adds to the daily stress that builds and builds. I am realizing that it's making me a person that I don't want to be. The usually calm, mellow, care-free spirit that I used to be has slowly been replaced with a depressed, angry, quick-to-fly-off-the handle creature. It goes against all that I strive for in my family. It goes against all that I long for in my home.

The other night I just happen to be flipping through channels and caught a episode of Dr. Phil about the "3 biggest mistakes you don't know you are making." One of the mistakes had something to do with parenting and setting the tone for the home with your voice and how you react to your loved ones. It's not that I didn't know that raising my voice is a bad choice in front of the children, but I get to a point where I repeat myself over and over and over again that I suddenly snap causing me to use harsh and angry tones. But watching that segment made something click within me. I am tired of the chaos, I am tired of repeating myself and I am tired of the anger. So, I decided it was time for our family rules to go into effect. Simple rules that pertain to the issues that we are currently facing with not only the kids, but us parents as well. My hope is that if our attitude changes as parents that we can filter that down to our children making this home a haven of peace and respect.

I am an avid reader of Katie's blog and not too long ago remember her post about the Dugger's House Guidelines. Doesn't that family always seem to be so calm and patient even with 19 kids?!?!? Insane! Why does their home seem like a place of serenity and love amongst all that chaos?!?! They must be doing something right. So I stole borrowed a few of their ideas so that we may implement the rules in our house as they pertain to the issues that we face on a daily basis.

Our Family Rules:
*No whining.
Do everything without complaining or arguing. Philippians 2:14
*Listen to Daddy and Mommy and do what they say the first time they ask.
Children you belong to the Lord and do the right thing when you obey your parents. The first commandment with a promise says, "Obey your father and your mother and you will have a long and happy life." Ephesians 6:1-2
*Always use "soft words." No yelling or harsh tones.
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but harsh words stir up anger. Proverbs 15:1
*Treat each other and our belongings with respect.
*Be honest.
The Lord detest lying lips but He delights in men that are truthful. Proverbs 12:22
*Love each other. No name calling, no hitting, no pinching and no kicking.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always hopes, always perseveres. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
*Be kind and generous. Share toys, speak kindly to each other and look out for others well-being.
Instead be kind and merciful, and forgive others., just as God forgave you because of Christ. Ephesians 4:32
*Use manners. Say "please," "thank you," and "excuse me."
Treat others just as you want to be treated. Luke 6:31
*Be grateful. Thank God everyday for what you have.
In everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:18

This list will be ever changing as the kids grow up and our "issues" become different. My hope is that this will keep us all accountable and serve as a reminder that we all need to work on ourselves on a daily basis. The way we treat each other and the way we react to issues needs to be modified. I realize that it starts with us. If hubs and I aren't acting in good character and following these rules then how do we expect our kids to? I am ready for us to get back to a calmer place both in our home and in our hearts.


Mee'ma said...

Well said my dear!
Love you, Mom

chandy said...

I like your house rules...I might have to 'borrow' those as well.

My daughter was acting up this weekend and being a bit of a pill. I tried all sorts of different techniques and she just wouldn't straighten out. Finally, I sat down and talked to her about her heart and her attitude and how her behavior needed to represent Jesus' love and character. She actually shaped right up after that. God's word really works... why didn't I use that first?!?

Carson said...

I have many a friend dealing with the terrible twos, you're not alone. You also hide your stress well - as you were all in charge on your visit here!!! Good for you for taking control though. It's a great reminder for me to take control and work continuously on being calm and kind. The other day I was repeating a mantra to myself "I am beautiful, I am calm, I am kind." I told Jeff I was doing so to try to achieve these, and he said in a sweet tone that I was definitely the first and the last but maybe could work on the second. Honesty is good, esp. when couched in such sweetness :-)

"Intentionally Katie" said...

Oooh - I like the scriptures attached. I wrote down a few to add to our memory verses. You'll be shocked how correcting the kids using the verbiage of your house rules (consistently) will drill the points home.