Don't wish your child's life away by trying to get them to do things too early. Independence comes all too quickly and before you know it......they are grown and gone.
Don't cuss in front of your children. That always comes back to bite you...usually in church at a family gathering or in front of your husbands boss.
Don't try to make your child fearless. Fear at times can be a good thing and sometimes help them to make better choices.
Don't say anything to your young child that you don't want your priest, the Avon lady or the greeter at Walmart to know.
Don't try to reason with a four year old. You will never win!
Don't ever call your child's teacher a negative name in earshot of your child.....unless of course you want a call from said teacher about said name!
Don't ever make light of your child's problems. While they may seem trivial to you....to them they can seem insurmountable.
Don't ever wash any of your child's clothing without first checking the pockets. Rocks will ruin a washer.
Don't ever say the words, "My child would never......." because that is the time you will find out that not only did your child do it, but they also got all their friends to do it too.
Don't feel bad when after you get them out the door on the first day of school after summer vacation......that you do the happy dance. Three months is a long time to be with your kids 24/7.
Don't worry when your kids no longer want to kiss you, hug you good bye or even be seen with you in public. It is just a phase and someday they will regret every missed opportunity they had.
And finally....Don't worry when you open your mouth and your parents words fall out. It simply means that you have come full circle and you are doing something right.
Do keep in mind that children are much better at following what they see than doing what they are told. Lead by example.
Do get used to your child thinking that ketchup is a vegetable.
Do keep an extra set of clothes in your car at all times.
Do love your child enough to discipline them. If you don't....at some point in time, someone else will.
Do praise your child often and let them know when they do a good job.
Do dance with your child, sing with your child and laugh with your child....for you will be building memories they will never forget.
Do allow your children to learn to make their own decisions. If they don't do it under your supervision, then how will they ever be able to do it on their own?
Do treat others they way you want to see your children treat others.
Do set boundaries, but don't fence them in.
Do keep yourself open to all music options because you will find yourself humming the theme to Sesame Street on your way to work.
Do get used to Spongebob, Barney and Elmo....they will become like family to you.
And the final do.....Do kiss your children whenever possible, hug your children often and never let a day go by that they don't know just how much they are loved.
So there you have it. The Do's and Don'ts of motherhood....as I see it. Motherhood is the toughest job you can ever have. You have to be both tough and soft, loving and threatening, fun and feared. You have to laugh with them, cry with them and often times.....ground them into the next millenium. You love them and worry about them and often all the thanks you get is an eye roll or a door slam. And still we do it and never give up on them and never quit loving them. Guess that is what sets us mothers apart from the rest!
Here is hoping that this is the start of a wonderful weekend for all of you and what is left of a fantastic Friday!