Is it normal to plan out your (future) children’s lives before they’re even conceived? Of course it is. Good in fact. And necessary. Or at least that’s what I hope. Mark and I have discussed having children and we’re on the same page for a lot of things…
1. Our children need to spend A LOT of time outdoors.
Mark was an ACTIVE kid, with way too many things to get his engineering little kid hands into. (From what I hear!) Not that it was all bad. The times he remembers being really happy were taking apart vacuum cleaners and lawn mowers for the fun of it. (He’s really good at it too – My mom gave him two broken mowers from our house to take to the dump for her — He fixed them both and made $200!!) But, he’s also had issues with attention deficit order since childhood. (I for some reason seemed to have been super focused as a kid and now as an adult can’t keep it together — i.e. I’ve now started to write this blogpost with a pie in the oven, freshly made cookie dough in the fridge, and dishes in the sink. Hmmm… maybe it’s the sugar… ) Anyway, we’ve agreed that time outside helps both of us focus and stay happy and it’ seems there’s a bit of actual scientific research to back that up. If you haven’t read the book “Last Child in the Woods”, it is a true favorite of mine. It is definitely an absolutely fascinating read about what all of this extra technological stimulation is doing to kids.
Here’s the book link! http://richardlouv.com/books/last-child/
I’m not against computers or the internet — I’m on it all the time and it has so many wonderful purposes! BUT, it will be a game changer if the school I am considering wants to give every child in 3rd through 8th grade an iPad or laptop. I WILL NOT do it. We are betting on having some rambunctious kids and we want to be prepared to deal with days spent outside in this beautiful country actually EXPERIENCING it.
2. We want to have a home base for the sake of our children. We just currently have no idea where that’s going to be. We go back and forth between Charleston and someplace out west. Charleston has both of our parents and many wonderful friends, but the west (Bozeman, MT for example) has the lifestyle that we want for our children – AND for us. But we love the south too and saltwater and beaches and boat time… But, we really want our children to grow up knowing how to ski and hike. Back and forth, Back and forth. —– This MAY all be decided after one winter in Montana. I’ll get back to everyone on that one. Mark and I just both grew up moving around a TON (me the military and him divorced parents) and want to stay a little bit more settled and travel to and from one place.
3. We want to raise our children Catholic. This one seems like a no brainer, but no matter how much of an easy decision it is, it’s a commitment that we have to make to ourselves and to our children to follow through with. And, with the craziness that I’m sure comes along in having a child(ren), it’s something that we will have to consciously work at. Both Mark and I went to Catholic school from grade school through high school (where we met) and have both gone through different levels of commitment to our faith. (To be completely honest, we’re definitely working to make our faith more of a priority in our lives. The process of our engagement and our pre-marital counseling was a huge kick in the butt that we both greatly appreciated and were thankful for.) Anyway, back to the raising our kids Catholic thing – we’re looking at the possibility that in Charleston or out west, we may end up homeschooling our kids which seems to me like a HUGE undertaking. So That is something that I will definitely be doing more research in.
4. Lastly, we hope and pray that we are able to raise our children without all of this CRAZY materialistic junk that’s in the media and world today. This is one of my BIGGEST fears. And my main fear comes from: I’m so susceptible to it!! I LOVE shopping. I’m not really into the newest and greatest handbag or pair of shoes, but I like to keep in style. I love new kitchen gagdets and if I had a weakness, that would DEFinitely be it. And I love new camping gear. I can TOTALLY get sucked in!!! Just thinking about it now is daunting.
The sad part about just reading that and hearing that come out of my brain is that I own those things. I may have bought them on sale while working for an outdoor shop, but I spent the majority of my paycheck on them and other cool camping things. And Mark and I received so many WONDERFUL camping gifts as wedding presents that we’ve already started to use! A new table! A new tent that Mark and I can BOTH fit in! A camping pot set! They’re incredible and we’ll use them and love them!
I guess what I’m trying to get at is LONGEVITY! I want my children to know that QUALITY things made waaaay back when they’re great grandparents, grandparents, and parents were alive, were JUST as good if not BETTER than the new things they can have tomorrow. I just need to start living my life in that area so that I can be a better example by the time little… hmmm… Audrey and Hazel? are running around tormenting each other. (Definitely hoping for at least one girl.. but I’ll be thrilled with any!)
Anyway, that was more of a “Let Amelia Talk Cause she needs to talk” Post But isn’t blogging supposed to be cathartic? Now Mark and I just need to figure out how to afford these little people we hope for! That’s another topic for another post… (Budgeting to have a kid! AAAaaaahhhhh! I’m going to need some serious help! We are having trouble budgeting for ourselves — Yet my heart and my ovaries are screaming “Please give me some little lovey, rambunctious, spitting-up, getting into stuff, unconditional loving, joyous ginger-headed kids!”)
And if you’ve made it to the bottom of this post here’s my strawberry rhubarb custard pie: