Friday, May 27, 2011

Good Fridays!

I recently read an article in the June 2011 edition of Parents Magazine that talked about building your children's self esteem by teaching them how to serve. The article, titled Raise a Kid who Gives, talked about the differences between building your child through praise versus action. I was shocked when the author stated that parents who pile on praise often create children who are selfish and entitled, and that empathy is only developed through direct contact with others.

After I finished reading the article, I decided to implement Good Fridays in my home. Basically, each Friday my girls and I will do a little service project together, whether its picking up trash or going to help a neighbor sweep their porch. It doesn't have to be a huge undertaking, just a task that is heart-felt.

So today we decided to thank our maintenance crew for all the hard work they do for us, and for being so kind and professional when they do it.

We started by making a little thank you card together. I let Brooklyn have complete artistic control of the project and it turned out to be a great idea!

She drew this awesome brachiosaurus on the front cover all on her own without even being prompted. I didn't even know she could draw anything besides blobs with smiley faces!

Then she drew a picture of Rapunzel on the inside (also a surprise to me) before I put "Thank You" stickers in it and folded it up.

After we finished the card we got to work making some Oatmeal M&M cookies. YUMMO!

12 minutes after putting them in the oven, we moved them to cooling racks, let them cool, plated them up, and then headed over to the maintenance office.

Our first attempt at service didn't make it very far. Just after we hopped off the front porch, Brooklyn dropped the plate and burst into tears!

Luckily, we had a second batch in the oven! We packed it up and walked over to the office. (I tried to get a picture of the actual delivery but it turns out its pretty hard to take pictures with a plate of cookies in one hand, keys in the other, a 3 year old hanging on your pant leg, and a 1 year old on your shoulders! Oh well...) The maintenance dudes loved their cookies and were very appreciative, and hopefully, my girls are a little closer to having great self esteems too!


  1. Great idea. Justin said, "Are those m&m cookies? Duuude I want some m&m cookies!" I think he's as distraught as Brooklyn was about seeing m&m cookies on the ground haha. I read a book about building self-esteem in your kids that I borrowed from my sister- she had to read it for one of her masters classes (she has a ms in brain-based learning) and that was basically what I got out of it, too- that the only way for a person, kids included, to really conclude good things about themselves is to DO something they see praiseworthy. And it's pretty true... someone can tell me all day long that I'm "nice," but if I don't do any nice things for people, I'm not really going to believe it. So anyway, great idea, your kids will remember these lessons for the rest of their lives!

  2. Dude, ditto to what Tara said about DOING things to reinforce self worth. This is such a cute idea. I totally laughed over the spilt cookies. That looks like a page straight from my life. (and yes, Teya would've been wailing!)