It was my first official work day working for myself. I automated some of our social media posts and decided to take a break to start cleaning my extremely neglected house. Working like a crazy person, getting dinner on the table, running to the soccer fields, and making sure everyone gets to school on time has made the house drop to about the last thing on my priority list. I figured making sure everyone had clean underwear would be a little more important.
Luckily, I am blessed to have a husband who helps. We work as a team to make sure everything that we can possibly get done, is done. I would leave at 7 AM each morning and usually not walk in the door until around 6 PM each night, and many nights even later. He always fills in the gaps and many times plays the role of primary care giver while I have been working full time. We are a TEAM. Please don’t think we are perfect, we are VERY far from it. We didn’t start out this way either. It took years to get on the same page. Years of having crucial conversations, years of working together, years of praying… not to kill each other. I’m sure if you have a significant other, you can relate.
Anyways, I was cleaning and I walked up to my oldest son’s room. During our years of being parents while working long hours, we developed what some people would consider bad habits to simply survive. One of those is that we co-sleep. As I was cleaning up my son’s room I walked over to the side my husband sleeps on. There, on the floor, I find literally around 15 to 20 books and magazines scattered everywhere.
This is typical of my book worm husband who carries a book everywhere he goes. This is a habit he has had since he was very young. I’ll never forget the lady at the doctors office who once said “Oh! Your husband is the young guy who always carries a book with him.” Yep, that’s me! I considered him a “dork” in middle school because he had read the most books. When my mom pointed him out on the side of the road in front of the middle school building, all I could say was “Eww, mom! He has the most reading points in our grade! No way!”
It’s a habit I have come to love about him even though I usually have books strewn all over my house and frequently wonder how in the world someone could read so many books. I took the books, marked his places on the ones he had laid down open, stacked them on his bedside table, and began cleaning up the rest of the room.
I decided to make the bed and when I reached my son’s side of the bed, I found this:
It made me smile. This is something that I might have missed when I was working and rushing around the house to pick up whatever I could. I might have been a little aggravated even because the books weren’t on the book shelves. Today, I was able to stop and look. Something that I don’t think I have been able to do in a long time. What I realize is that he is watching. He is learning. He is so lucky to have a Dad to demonstrate and for him to watch. His pile of books looks just like his dad’s pile on the other side of the bed before I picked them up.
There are a few things I took away from simply cleaning my house today.
- They are watching. No, none of us are perfect. Lord knows, I’m far from it but there is something I need to remember, they are watching.
- It jogged my memory from my teaching days at the good ole University of South Carolina. The number one success factor in children is that their parents read to them! We need to be reading to our babies EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. I recently heard Meg Meeker say “Studies show that if a dad spends more time with a child from 0 to 3, then their IQ is shown to be higher.”
- Dads are so very important. My dad has been one of the most influential people in my life, as well as my grandfather. They helped teach me work ethic and how to run small businesses. I can remember being with my dad and grandfather selling plants at the Farmers Market and Flea Market as a child. This experience, as well as spending time with my parents at their shop, are some of my most fondest memories of being a child. I have told my sons stories about this so many times that my oldest once told his teachers “My daddy works at the bank. My mommy works at the Flea Market.” Insert face palm.
All children, girls and boys, need positive male role models in their life. Maybe you are a guy but aren’t a dad. You can help too! There are many little ones out there that need positive male role models. Our country, during this specific time, NEEDS male role models. It is our job to make sure our children not only have them but to also tell our guys, “Hey! You matter too! We NEED you!”.
Need some book suggestions to read with your littles?
Here are some we read together every night.
For the little one:
Steam Train Dream TrainOur absolute favorite!
The Boxcar Children
Bob Books- Great for learningto read!
The Hardy Boys
The Magic Tree House
Pete the Cat -Another one of our
Egermeier’s Bible Story Book
Our Children’s absolute favorite!
And the ones for the Dad to read after the littles are in bed!: