The So-Far Series: Children Need to Be Needed

LauraAll Posts, Motherhood

Inspired by a sketched list of parenting lessons and resources that I found in my journal, I’ve decided to use this week as a “So-Far Series” and share our thoughts with YOU!

By the way, be sure to dust off your own opinions for Friday’s “So-Far” Shebang when you can Mr. Linky or comment your best advice… so far.

With a brief 4-years of experience, a pile of fantastic resources, and limitless wisdom from our parents and friends, here is one thing we know So-Far…


* Children need to know that they are needed in our specific family.

From the time Vivienne and Lia were born, I’ve tried to come up with things they can do to help so that they can always know that they are helpful and necessary members in our family. For example, right now, Lia’s tiny finger turns the light-switches on and off. I say, “Thank you so much, Lia! We really need you in our family. You are such a big help!” I’ve seen some good fruit from this in Vivienne’s life as she is almost always happy to roll up her sleeves and help. I believe that this habit will help the girls to love our home because they know that they are indispensable and irreplaceable members of our family.

* Children need to be a part of something meaningful.

When Ryan came home from work one day with “The Booz Family Vision,” I knew that he had laid an important cornerstone in our family’s foundation. Because each of us embraces and answers to our family vision, we will be less likely to escape into isolation or unhealthy independence. Together, we aim to “Glorify God with our words, thoughts, actions, and resources” and we’re each a part of something bigger than ourselves. Along the way, I read a thoughtful article about how teenagers are less likely to “jump ship” if they have a tangible understanding that their family has a vision and a plan for the future.

* Children need real work to do.

If I learned anything by teaching high school students over the years, it’s that  busywork = wasted work. Nothin’ shuts a human being down like an insult to the ole’ intelligence. At the same time, nothing enlivens a human being like real work that counts for something. I’ve noticed that the same principle applies to my children. Both girls are their happiest when they are working busily at something productive that challenges and inspires them.

Here are 2 books that encourage little girls and boys who need to be needed: