Tuesday, June 9, 2009

"It's like I'm your maid"

That is what Devin said to me a couple of weeks ago as she reached her pudgy arm into a bucket of soapy water to help me wash my car. We were talking about all the ways she helps out around the house. I said, "you help put the silverware away when I empty the dishwasher, you help move clothes from the washer to the dryer, you put your laundry away, and you help set the table". She proudly agreed with me and said, "Yeah! It's like I'm your maid"! Of course, I felt a rush of parental guilt as I thought back to Jacey's earliest years. When we lived in England, we had a few friends, but we were mostly on our own - and we didn't have 4 kids. Therefore, Jacey was enrolled in gymnastics and music classes. We spent days strolling in the mall, not to buy anything, just to kill time. We people-watched, sang songs, and just played. Fast forward a bunch of years. Devin and I spend lots of time together while her sisters are in school, but we do very different things than I did with Jacey. Keeping a family of 6 running smoothly takes a lot more time and energy than our little family of 3. Our shopping trips are faster, and almost always involve the grocery store. She holds the scanner and lets me know what's on sale. When I'm folding the laundry, Devin sits on the bed and sorts the socks for me. Devin's favorite job is that of chef. No matter how simple the food is, Devin is always eager to help cook. Scooping flour, measuring oil, cracking eggs - she likes to do it all. When we were picking fresh herbs to put into pasta salad last week, I asked her what tool we should use to chop them. She immediately replied, "the mezzaluna!" I sometimes can't fight the urge to help steady her hand, especially when she uses the sharp tools, but she pushes me away and tells me that she can do it herself. When Mommy guilt shows itself, I have to remind myself that though Devin isn't learning back flips and she only knows the first verse of You are My Sunshine, she knows what a mazzaluna is, she can crack an egg into a bowl with (almost) no shells falling in, and she knows that she and Mommy are together. Hopefully those are the things that she'll rememebr when she's older.

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Jill said...

i LOVE it, LOVE it. she will make one man VERY proud. i also LOVE that she ENJOYS it. k LOVES when i let him use 'berry sharp knives to cut things' he to unloads the dishwasher & the dryer. i think its GOOD for kids :))

Tracey said...

agreed. responsibility and work build character...no matter what the age.