So you get married; no kid yet, and you have your very first house. You are so enthusiastic and you make plans to do the whole place up. Your dreams expand again when you move into your second place. Yay! its bigger, much more spacious and has a lot more potential. You spend a lot of money buying decorative pieces, painting and putting up wall papers, making your new furniture and the whole nine yards. You have your perfect house.
Then the baby arrives. Baby is cute, baby is fine and then baby gains movement and speed as well. One by one your kid starts to take everything apart. Breaks the vases, inscribes on the wooden furniture, chips off your paint, peels off your wall paper, draws all over the walls and sofas, pastes cute smiley stickers everywhere.
Is this you?
Now you live in the reality of your situation and you’ve kissed decorating or even caring about it good bye. People come around and you’d be furious if they did not understand that you have a kid. Rightly so!
But let’s face it, everyone loves a good looking place. You may claim not to be the type to care but you do love beautiful places don’t you? And you like taking selfies in fine places? Yes you do. In fact you specifically pick restaurants with nice ambiances. And you will take all personal photos there before heading back home. Pose, suck belle and change your style things. I see you.
But you don’t know what to do to get the kind of home you love and your family will keep growing for a while till you’re done having all 3 or 4 or 10 of them.Hehehe..*covers face*
Let me offer you my candid advice…
I say Keep decorating! Because there are so many tips and tricks you can apply to still Decorate and Enjoy it When You Have Little Kids. Decorating is so important. I’m a strong believer that it has mental and physical benefits to you and your family. You’re just used to the good life and people see that and they are more drawn to you. People are attracted to order, organization and beauty.
Here’s what really happens
When you tell guests that your kid is responsible for the damages done to your home, it doesn’t sit well. They question your ability to manage situations. Call them judgmental but then again we’re talking about kids age 0-5. That’s the painful part. You sound like you have a problem when you try to make them reason with you. Especially if they don’t have kids right?
Whining doesn’t help. Throwing your kid under the bus does not help because there’s no vindicating you. Allowing your kid take over the entire house does not help either. It allows the kid hone destructive skills and that’s probably how he or she will treat other people’s things outside the home. Believe it or not designing and decorating the home in this stance has a lot of benefits. The long term benefits to the child are amazing. I will do a separate post about this if you ask me to.
It’s not an alien invasion
The way forward is to find solutions to the problems you face. Don’t whine, cry, scream, shout…well, sometimes it makes you feel better. But have you noticed that they don’t get the message? The more you scream the more you energize them. It then leads to more frustration and then you begin to label your kid. You know we Africans ‘ scatter scatter boy’, ‘destructive girl’…Please don’t! And don’t allow anyone profile your kid either. To be able to vindicate yourself though you have a lot to learn.
Have you noticed that your kid is smart?
If you’re a mum to ages 0-5, you have noticed how smart they are! Sometimes I look at mine and wonder if I’m the mum here. Brains so sharp, never scared, never timid, very expressive even the quiet or publicly reserved ones communicate with you. They don’t want to talk to outsiders and that may bother you but they trust you so they speak to you. And when they do, your eyes widen because they just said something so intelligent. If you have noticed some of these things in your kid, I have good news for you. Your kid is Teachable!
Let’s get to the interesting part
Having a teachable kid is all you need to have your home looking the way you want it to look. See how I had to go through some psychology to get you to this point…I hope you are following indeed. If not you need to go here and then come back again.
Start early to let your kid know what is okay and not okay to touch! Let me let you know that this is a process and not an immediate destination thing. I assure you though that by the time your kid is age 3 at most approaching age 4; again this depends on when you start, you’ll have a grown kid.
Keep stressing on it, your kid will come to understand and be shaped by the environment that you are creating for him or her. He will come to cherish your home as much as you do. She will develop eyes for details such as the ones in your home. This is a major part of grooming them for maturity, helping to form their tastes and user patterns, their style, behaviour and psychology. Teach them and mould them. The benefits are sweet and they give peace.
You think it’s too early right?
It’s not. If you think that your kid is smart then he or she is teachable. Do not breed a destroyer in the name of love and affection. Sensitize your kid with firmness and light punishments; when necessary, with an aim for correction. Your kid is not a monster,he has a heart, she has ears and she understand and loves you. Talk to them like you expect some level of cooperation and explain why it is not good to do whatever you don’t want them to do. Let them also know beforehand what the consequences of not obeying will be and make sure to enforce it when it comes to that. Be sure to praise and reward for good behaviour. Avoid bribery please, I don’t buy that.
My own experience
I’ve tested this and it works. My secret is what I’ve just shared here. I started with my 4 year old when she was a year and a half. She broke our beautiful tinted glass vase that was ‘shaped and carved’ like a tree trunk. Try to imagine how beautiful this was, I will never forget it. it was a wedding gift and I had it for 2 years prior to that time. She broke it when she was 10 months; she started walking at a little over 8 months, she was running all over the place by this time.
I was not mature enough as a parent when I started and so I would scream and she’d be scared but that did not mean that she wouldn’t do something again. Along the line I began to get better at parenting and I started to understand how to be conscious and intentional. How to lead my daughter to the destination I wanted her to get to. By the time she was a little over 3 years of age, it was not an issue anymore.
If you’re not a mum yet but you’re getting there soon this also will do you good. Start dreaming it thinking it and making plans but don’t ever not decorate! Instead decorate purposefully while expecting them. If you’re a mum and a late starter, it doesn’t matter just start already!
If you’d like help and guidance with anything towing this lane or you need to speak to a designer about specific solutions to suit your specific needs, work with me.