Monday, September 15, 2008

My Big Helper

I've been wanting to post for a while, now, about my daughter and her development into....well, early adulthood, I guess is what it is, though that sounds shocking! 

I suppose I could be prejudiced in her favor, but I trust my readers will call me out if they suspect that of me!

I find myself amazed at Violet's ability, not to mention her potential. Let me explain: I am a Suzuki teacher. I believe in the UNLIMITED POTENTIAL residing in every child. I believe any child, proven to have the physical strength necessary, can learn ANY task through repetition and encouragement, no matter what age. I have taken those philosophies, along with some basic points from Michael Pearl's book, To Train Up A Child (mostly those having to do with Consistent, Joyful Training), and have applied them to Little Violet. 

At age 21 months, her skills include:

Carrying a wrapped baby

Emptying the dishwasher and putting away the dishes (within reach)

Making pies (rolling dough, mixing berries), and bread,

Pushing stroller with baby, taking baby in and out, changing its diaper, "hushing" it, and nursing it,

*Doing laundry (including finding matches to socks)

*Helping chop vegetables, and whatever else "Hepyoo cook" includes

*Getting fruit from the grocery store bins and filling the bags

*Getting a pedicure with Mommy,

*"Ceemeem up" messes of many sizes and textures

*Washing  the van

*Clipping grass outside (kitchen scissors, not the mower)

*Deadheading flowers


Tidying any room of mess (that she can physically carry)

Granted, people, she's not Independent of me yet. All of these things, excluding the dishwasher, she does with my close monitoring. The dishwasher is one of her MOST favorite things. Since she's been playing in the cabinets since she was 6 months old, she knows where everything goes, so she gets a kick out of putting it all away from dishwasher to cabinet. Oh, did I mention she can put soap in, close the door, lock it, and start it herself, too?

I have to give some props to my own parents, here, too. My mom was a huge supporter of "Real Life" skills rather than so many toys. Violet, herself, helped me make that choice, being that she has always had more of an interest in whatever I was doing rather than toys. That being the case, we rarely visit toy stores, and her entire mass of toys is about 1/5 of what I've seen in her friends' living rooms. Plus, sometimes days will go by where she doesn't even go the the toy basket to pick something out.  She's basically a tiny little Woman, and has already at the age of 21 months, become my Little Right Hand. It is now just a second nature to me to fit her into whatever I'm doing at the moment: combing my hair, doing dishes (which is one of her favorites, and can consume her attention better than a movie---for an hour and a 1/2 at a time!), shopping, scrubbing floors, or folding laundry. What a blessing she is!!

Ok, so I'm bragging. I see that as I re-read what I wrote. :P Give me a break, though, guys....she's my first! 


Denise said...

Ah Susi, this is really sweet.... Yes, you're a first-time mom an understandably proud. I think Violet's a wonderful example of a young girl already in training! You know this! I love seeing all she can do. Karen does MUCH the same with Katrina and I totally agree with it.

Although tell us what she "chops" vegetables with!

Herb of Grace said...

Yay, Violet :) Am I allowed to be proud, too? Or is that not an auntie privilege?

Jenny said...

I'm with you! Evie's learning many of the same skills - though the whole dishwasher thing is somewhat impossible as she can't reach the dishes in the dw and she can't reach any of the cabinets to put them away;)
But, you should see her drag a hose around the yard!:) And she loves to clean, too -- at least someone around here does;) She's much more interested in books than the majority of her toys. Though her favorite thing is the "mommy" stuff-- dolls, stroller, any left over accoutrements from when she was a baby! When you left that car seat here, it sat in our living room for a couple of weeks (hey, nobody ever said I'm not on the ball;)). Evie loved playing with it with her dolls -- had several of them buckled in at once. I finally had to put it away -- I was afraid she'd hurt herself trying to carry it around once I showed her the handle flipped up -- base and all! A little too heavy for my little girl:)
It's so great to watch them grow up!! Gotta love it.

Further Up & Further In said...

Jenny! You should start a blog!! Bring on the Evie pics!!!!

Jenny said...

I think I'm just too busy READING all of y'all's stuff!!!
I've been contemplating it though;) Since I can't remember anything without writing it down and I never remember to write it down, it might be a good way for me to keep some memories as they come!
It's on my list of "TO DO" -- along with Ebay listing, learning to use my new serger, hemming pants for my hubby, cleaning, cooking, getting ready for 2 more Christmas shows at church, etc. etc. and the list goes on and on! UGH! We'll see;)

Further Up & Further In said...

oh yeah, and she actually *chops* veggies with a sharp knife. I discovered that when I give her a dull one, she becomes too forceful with it in attempts to make it work. The sharp knife, however, is a serrated knife, and I'm always right beside her watching when she's using it. She did cut herself once----a weeny little cut. :(

Sandra said...

Aren't little people so much fun? They are just an experience waiting to happen and it is such a joy to see the satisfaction in their cute little faces when they know that they are helping. They talk to you the whole time and you may understand some of it, but they know exactly what they said.