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Monday, September 3, 2012

Over generosity

We're back. Monday to Monday we camped with another family. We watched search and rescuers jump from helicopters, most of our children swam, went tubing, rode their bikes, made new friends, went to the BMX track and attended the car races. It was a filled week of endless candy, chips, pop and smores! For two nights we had more friends come for dinner and they enjoyed boating. My father and mother came for one afternoon and we had other family members camping near us. Our weather held out with only a few drops of rain periodically. My friend would agree - we weren't melting from the amount of sugar we inhaled while being spitted on! (Inside joke) Mostly we enjoyed each others company. Our children and theirs all had fun with only some constant nagging, complaining and arguing from only one. (Ha ha) I always seem to keep any frustration I have under control, at least I hope. Believe me, we have our moments. My husband had an accident at the BMX track. Basically from what I heard; head, limbs and full trunk went head over heels over the handle bars. Ironically before they left to the track, we were joking about not bringing back anyone with bloody wounds. When they returned our power of suggestion was indeed powerful because when my husband came into full view, it was not good. Finally after days of dragging his one leg he went to the hospital but returning after discharging himself because it was like a bomb went off with traumatic injuries coming from everywhere at the hospital. (Apparently he's returning tonight) During the evenings our children ran around with glow sticks taped to their eyes. (seen above) They all definitely had a great time. The only issue I really had other then a few argumentative children and a stubborn husband was some other campers giving our children food and money. Our camper was loaded like a store. Everyday they had plenty of food. Almost an endless supply. Although there was not one but several families feeling the need to hand out ice cream, popsicles, glow sticks - you name it, our children were receiving it. There was this really genuinely nice family camping beside us. I just loved them. I did have a conversation with her about why I have an issue with "over generosity" For this one family it started with some of our children helping their daughter pump and fill her pool. The grandmother wanted to pay for our children's "work" That was "ok" Although more of our children wanted to help because they found out money was being handed out. I did explain to the grandmother and our children that helping shouldn't be automatically be done for money but for the sole purpose of helping one another. I was worried that I insulted the grandmother but I also tried to reassure her that it was a nice offer but I don't want anyone including her to be taken for granted. As once money is being handed out, most children assume their help should be paid for. Our children should be helping regardless expecting nothing in return. So I believe that was straightened out. Although I ended up having several conversations with other parents and once again with our children while in hand they carried either money or other food items that weren't from our camper. Generosity of sharing is a beautiful trait to learn but with stating that, other parents need to realize they need to ask permission before giving out money and food. Not just because of allergies but it's about showing children they need to ask permission from their parents. Also it's about controlling entitlement. For our children (which I tried to explain several times) once given they start to expect, they will move into a campsite and easily request more. It's not appropriate. I also find having a larger family with different cultures, some people assume (of course) we are a foster family and permission doesn't need to be granted because we wouldn't technically be their guardians. These poor children.......lets give them another freezie. OR we're a larger family so we must be in poverty. Whatever it is, it's very bizarre to me. It happens a lot at our local community school. I have to remind everyone that these are our children AND they don't need extra baked goods, money or for their scholastic books paid for! Our children are very well looked after and fed. I would not give or pay for another child that isn't mine unless I asked permission from their parents. At least I try to ask every time I'm handing out anything, "Go ask your Mom first" It's not only protection, it's respect and teaches the child that their parents are always in control. (not the generosity per-say) AND of course, children shouldn't be taking anything from anyone anyways without consulting their parents regardless of the situation. One of our sons had his own money, his generosity was out of control too. It's very nice to be generous.....but their is limits and permission should always be granted first. Another conversation we will be having with our children very soon to reconfirm what steps should follow with generosity. For now, the summer season is closing, our last successful camping trip is over and I'm somewhat lost on where to start now that it's September! One day at a time, starting tomorrow - public elementary and middle schools. Starting homeschooling for six and catching up on all the necessities that follows having a family like mine. :)

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