Four Rules that Save our Family

It’s that time of year.

Life has been stuffed with good stuff. It’s the busiest time for my work and for Ian’s. We’ve had school festivals for the kids, our annual church retreat to Brown County, a twelfth birthday for Cal, an incredible fall break trip (thanks to my generous in-laws) to Disney World, rehearsals for the Wizard of Oz at the Civic Theatre, trick-or-treating, and a baseball team leaf-raking fundraiser (ouch!).

My head spins when I try to figure out how and when to try to capture some of the funny stuff swirling in my head about any of these big events.

But the other night, Ian re-discovered a list we made several years ago, and I decided it probably trumps every other topic I could write about.

It’s the four big family rules we have done our best to stick to, plus one mini-pep talk.

For what it’s worth, here’s our list – and I would love to hear yours as well.

1. Be NICE (and respectful.)

You are GOOD KIDS! But we all have tough days. That’s why if you forget rule #1, you will get second chances. But if you continue to be a knucklehead, you will lose something you like (like TV, computer, dessert or your binkie.)

2. What’s for dinner is for dinner

…and if you finish it – at dinner time – you get dessert. (Mom and Dad are the judges of what counts as “finished.”) Anyone who complains about their meal may be invited to a table for one in a different room. Don’t hurt the cook’s feelings!

3. Sleep is GOOD for us

On school nights we start getting ready for bed at 8:30 (or 8:15 on shower nights). Lights out by 9:00. (You WILL be thirsty. Get your water before 8:50 p.m!) If you have problems with bedtime, it will move earlier.

4. Work hard, play hard

Get your homework done, books read and room cleaned – THEN, have fun! Be a kid. Get dirty. Play with your friends. Relax. Watch TV. Whatever! Just take care of business first. (Homework must be neat, complete, and in your backpack!)

*Life is hard sometimes. Most of the time we don’t get everything we want when we want it. But if you are respectful and kind and treat others well, your life will be happier and more peaceful.

Think: Good karma. One Love.

Be Good Shepherds.

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