Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Simplicity Parenting

I am currently reading, and very much enjoying, Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids. This is not a voluntary simplicity book that actually tells you that you need to start pureeing your own baby food from organic produce you grew yourself (nothing wrong with that if you do it - more power to you) - no this is a book that sticks to advising you to build a simple family life for your children.

The author, Kim John Payne, draws from experience as a Waldorf teacher and a family counselor, and lays out a simplicity program with four layers: the environment, rhythms, children's schedules, and filtering out the adult world.

It's not that our home life is that out of whack - the kids are happy and content and we already live intentional lives. But it never hurts to have a family tune-up. :)

So I'm walking us through the steps in the book, examining what areas of our lives are most stressful and simplifying them. We started with the environment, and with reducing the number of toys in the kids' rooms. The girl's room isn't too bad, partly because she really isn't too attached to stuff, but the boy is another story. So we started with his room.


All those empty shelves are because he got rid of toys. We went through and pulled out anything broken. Then we pulled out the stuff he's outgrown - dress up clothing and wooden train sets. He's not ready to donate the trains, so we agreed to put them up in the attic and let him keep them - who knows, he might want to pass them on to his own children or something. I kept a handful of beloved toys like that, and my children now play with them.

We pulled some other stuff out that he doesn't play with that often. Really, all he needs these days are his legos, bakugan, bionicles, boardgames, and a handful of other stuff. He even went through his stuffed animals and chose just the real favorites to keep.

Next step - our family rhythm.

1 comment:

  1. We just went through the same thing with Nick. Katie isn't too attached to stuff.