For the past while I've been thinking a lot about the kind of people I want my children to be when they grow up. I started making a mental wish list of the skills I hope they have, experiences I hope they encounter so they can learn certain life lessons, and their over-all attitude towards life. This may seem like a "duh!" kind of moment for a lot of you, but I realized that most of those things on my wish list are things that I have a huge influence over. For example, I hope my girls know how to sew, so that someday they will at least be able to mend their children's favorite toys. Well, that is something I can teach them. More than that even, by taking the time to teach them this skill (or any other skill for that matter) I am given opportunities to spend time with my children one on one and strengthen my relationship with them. It also creates memories that hopefully my children will be able to carry through their lives and reflect back on.
Another item I have on my wish list is a love of reading and writing. Right now my older daughter loves to read. She takes every opportunity she can find to read. I want to nurture that so she will always have that joy of reading. My younger daughter loves to tell me stories. She can make up the craziest, silliest stories and I can tell by how excited she gets while telling me that she really loves to do it. In hopes of keeping that excitement alive in her both my girls and I will make up stories to tell each other at bed time. They usually are based off one of the many stuffed animals cluttering their beds and we come up with a little adventure for them. Sometimes we'll throw in some random obstacle or introduce another stuffed animal to join in the story. It has become a fun game that my girls really like to do.
I also hope that my children will have the chance to help people so that they can see what a blessing it is to serve others. This is something I have a LOT of influence over. Our church provides so many opportunities to serve, but there are other ways to serve as well. I've set a new goal for myself to seek out ways my whole family can serve others and provide an example of love and charity for my girls.
One of the most important traits I want my children to have as they grow is a positive attitude. I must teach my girls to smile in the face of adversity and seek out the positive in our daily lives. By being positive myself, I will be a living example to them and hopefully embed in them the importance of seeking out the simple joys in life.
I know as parents we all must have dreams and aspirations we want our children to achieve. I hope we can all realize the role we are called to to help them attain not just our dreams and but their own as well.