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This is a re-post from almost exactly a year ago that I happened to find this morning, and I can hardly believe we've come a full year and not too much has changed at our house! I'd love to hear your thoughts on this, as instilling the value of work seems to still be a struggle (for at least one of my kiddos. . . . and the jury is still out on the other two. . .) And by the way, since this post, I'm pretty sure we've managed to forget the tooth fairy completely at least three times. 🙂
My son came downstairs in tears this morning. (My eleven-year-old son.) His face was red, his eyes were bloodshot, and he'd been sobbing because the tooth fairy left him $2 . . . for two teeth.
But, the kid is eleven years old! (Did I mention that?) I'm pretty sure he's figured out that we're the tooth fairy (although he refuses to ask, so we've chosen not to tell . . .) Yet my stomach is sick this morning because I left my (*seriously penny-pinching*) hubby to play tooth fairy last night. Had I taken on the job I probably would have given him more . . . maybe $3 for two teeth? (Especially since the tooth fairy forgot the night before?) But my husband figures that since the tooth fairy brought him just $.25 thirty years ago, one WHOLE DOLLAR is big stuff. (Not so much these days!) And my son? Well he's convinced that every single one of his friends in the whole wide world gets at least $2 per tooth. (And, for many of them, he's probably right.)
Here's my struggle: when I asked my son why he was so distraught, he said it was because he needed money. (He doesn't need it, but apparently it does feel cool these days!) Last week I offered him money for babysitting his sisters this summer while I work on the computer, and he made it through about two hours (and did a great job!) However, he then let me know that he'd prefer “a more fun job.” (I guess my job every day isn't all that exciting!)
In some ways I wonder if a strong work ethic and gratitude are inborn traits. My middle child works. She naturally hops to it when asked, serves pretty willingly (ummm… most of the time…), and rarely does she struggle with this whole gratitude thing. (She is a little younger though!) However my (usually very sweet!) boy just doesn't get it. (Well, at least not today.) Maybe it's because he's the oldest? Or the only boy? Or because we're raising a monster? 🙂
(Fast forward 3 years – pretty sure he's not a monster. He has his good days and his bad days, but it does get easier!)
Here's my question for you today: How do you instill in your children the value of work, and what tips do you have for teaching gratitude in your home? I could really use some today! While I'm usually pretty proud of my kids because they do seem to “get” how blessed they are in the grand scheme of things, occasionally they too lose site of their blesssings, just like their momma. And this was definitely one of those days.
And, just for fun (although I'm afraid to ask!) . . . How much does the tooth fairy leave at your house these days?
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