October 17, 2016, by Andrea Nine

Hi sweet Friends. It's Andrea from Living On Cloud Nine and I'm a mom of boys. Yes, I've mentioned before that I longed for pink and someday may have a Granddaughter who'll be all girly and spoiled rotten. Yet, to be a mom of boys is an honor, so much fun and while the house is filled with testosterone, the drama is low and the side splitting laughs are plentiful. I've written before on Why We Love Raising Teen Boys but I've never talked about mistakes I've made as a mother or the things I could do to be an even better mom. 
While mine are all teens now, with two in college, there are so many things that I know helped me to be a better mom to boys and things I wished I'd been better at.

1. Spend More time on the floor. Yeah, you heard me right. The house can wait, social media can wait, you don't "need" to do your hair. What you need to do is get down on that floor and be engaged. Build Legos, make tractor sounds, make them feel empowered, inspired and unconditionally loved in even playtime moments. Watch his face, explore his world and engage fully instead of worrying about your next task. I tried to do all these things but I admit now, I wish I'd spent more time on the floor..

2. Don't make a big deal if things get dirty or ruined. Resolve to be cool about ruined clothes. It may be "your" favorite Nike Sweatshirt of his, but as a young kid he's too busy creating, destroying, spilling and learning to care. Don't waste your time and energy being upset. I used to go a little nuts-oh when cute, good clothes would get ruined. For some reason that changed as they got older. I remember the day that tide changed. With an apprehensive look on his face, a 13yr old at the time, boy of mine came home and said "mom, I kinda ruined my Abercrombie shirt with paint." I looked at him and said "No Big Deal!" He looked at me like a deer in headlights and I've been cool about destroyed garments ever since. 

3. Embrace the Goofiness and free flowing poop comments. Boy humor seems to be extra goofy and poop talk starts early. All of a sudden fart jokes are all they talk about. As a girl, who knew flatulance was soooo amusing. I STILL hear stories of poos and farts and guess what? I'm cool with it, it's who they are as boys. As long as it's not discussed at the dinner table, or for all the public to hear, it's fine. Sometimes I even giggle. Oh and if dear ole' mom passes wind around said young men, the peanut gallery goes crazy! 

4. It's ok to give your opinion on the girls they bring home. Trust me, they want to know what you think. I've been spot on about every, While, it is ultimately their decision, they want to know if you think she's pretty, sweet, talks too much or is full of herself. Whether you think so or not, your opinion means the most. And be their prime example of a woman with brains, integrity and determination so your son knows exactly what a strong woman looks like. 

5. Remember, they are Big Questions even when they seem small. It was always so important to me to be there right when they got home from school, because it seemed to be the time they wanted to talk the most and I can get the most out of them without seeming like I was prying. I used to ask those questions that you would just get an "OK" or "it was all right" or "not so great" or the dreaded "no." But I got smarter as the years went on and started asking open ended questions. However what was more important were the questions they wanted to ask me. While some of the things they asked may have seemed small and I may have hurried them along at times because of other tasks to complete, I realize now that in the eyes of a child, no question seems small. For parents answering their questions, we're doing one of the most important things we can, because we're teaching them about the world and life. No question is too small.

While, many of these hold true for girls too, this is just what I know.  None of us are perfect but as a person who always strives to be better, I know there are always things I can do to be better mom.

AMEN!!! xoxo Hug all your babies a little tighter today!!




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