Greetings Dr. Laura!
Your advice to a strand of callers with college-aged or older children prompted me to write the attached letter to my own children. My two kids are coming home for the summer from college and grad school. I thought you would get a kick out of this. I thank you for your constant reminder that the GOAL in raising our kids is for them to go OUT into the world as strong independent and capable adults.
I can tell you that all 3 of our children value a traditional family. Your input has helped mold them into young adults that see the value of a mom acting like a mom, and a dad acting as a dad - the old fashioned way.
One of the pleasures of seeing you wonderful children grow up is watching how capable you have become. You have grown your skill set to effectively managing and accomplishing most every task that is associated with running a household and your individual lives. Congratulations! With that said, this summer we will put those skills to good use.
The basic ingredients for a happy household are listed below - but the bottom line is one of my favorite phrases "just take care of business!"?
- General House Orderliness: Keep all of your belongs within the 4 walls of your room. Not on the family room floor and not on the kitchen island.
- Common Areas: Try to do things you see that they need to be done - if the dishwasher is full, empty it. If the dog needs food, fill up the bowl. Pretend like I don't exist and keep mindful of the regular things that need to be taken care of.
- Food: YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR MAKING, EATING AND CLEANING UP YOUR OWN BREAKFAST AND LUNCH. Don't ask me to bring you food or make you food. You are capable of finding something, making it and cleaning up after yourselves. You can take turns and work as a team if you choose. I will be making a dinner each night, but we'd love it if you would test your cooking skills for the family too!
- Laundry: Quite simple - do your laundry weekly yourself. Bring it down, wash it, dry it, fold it, and get it out within 2 hours.
- Outside errands: You all have a car with the money you earned! And have the capability to do your errands. If you need to make a doctor's appointment, make it. If you need deodorant, buy it. Just do what you need to do and pretend like I'm not here to do it for you.
- Money: You all have jobs and have your own money. Please be prepared to spend it on things you would like to eat or do. Do not ask us for Chipotle, movie ticket money or gas.
- Chores: I don't really like that word anymore. We all live here and can pitch in.
So are you ready?? Your dad and I have all the confidence in you all and your abilities! We know we can work as a team and have an awesome summer together. Thank you in advance for your cooperation and commitment to the family.
How do you try to keep your family motivated? Share with us, by signing up for the FREE Dr. Laura Family and send an email here.