A few years ago my husband and I decided to come up with our list of family values. I got the idea from my friend Jenn H., a masterful mom of 6 boys. We wanted them to become a part of our family culture. In graduate school one of my best classes was emotional and moral development. One of the concepts taught by my wise professor Dr. Scoresby was the important of teaching implicitly and explicitly. We have to define with words and then show with actions if we really want to teach our children. We hope these will become a part of the spoken and unspoken expectations to guide our children's lives in all aspects (spiritual, physical, moral, social, emotional). I wanted something to that would apply to them as they formed relationships, made decisions and commitments and went about the choices of everyday living.
This process actually took us months. We wanted things that would clearly communicate our expectations and hopes for them. Something to guide them in how they should "use up their lives". I also felt this underlying framework that would ward off eventual conflicts that arise between parents and children.
After my arduous selection of "the values" (wanting to encompass as many areas as possible), we then wrote mottoes/statements. We chose to phrase these as "we do" statements not "we try".
We then chose a scripture to accompany each one. The foundation of these values comes from our faith and beliefs about the purpose and meaning of life. We often use these as the basis of our family home evening lessons and hope that by the time our children have grown they will ahve internalized these ideas.
Currently they hang on the wall in our playroom (if you have been over recently you can tell the above photo was taken abotu 2.5 yrs ago when I finished the project- because the shelf of art is now heavy laden, stacked 3 deep with the childrens art work).
So do indulge me over the course of a few posts present all of our family values and more about each one.
1. a long nap for my baby
2. reading books with my kids
3. my husband finishing his talk so I can use the computer again!