teaching our kids to work

I want my children to learn how to work; to learn a work ethic and feel pride in finishing a job and to learn to look after themselves.

Mostly I want them to leave the house before they break mommy when they reach adulthood. I’ll be polite about it, but once they reach 20 I will strongly suggest that they leave. We hope to teach them self-sufficiency before that age.

We are lucky enough to have in-laws who love horses and have access to their farm. There are 2 ponies (soon to be 3) and a horse in residence at the moment. The girls are learning to ride, but even more importantly, they are learning to work and care for creatures. Twice a day they are over at the barn putting them in and out (in the winter, anyway) and feeding them. They grumble a bit about cleaning the stalls and grooming the ponies, but they love them and in the end are willing to put in the work. It’s been a great starting point to teaching them that it takes all members of the household to keep it running.

And it gives me no small amount of pleasure to see them shoveling horse manure.

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8 thoughts on “teaching our kids to work

  1. My daughter had a horse for a few years. When she outgrew the horse and the lead trainer left, we went to another barn. At her first barn, every lesson began at the beginning. Like, catching the horse out of the field and grooming it. At the second barn, a team of barn staff had the horse waiting, saddled and groomed. We both lost interest quickly. Horsemanship is more than just keeping the heels down. You’re teaching your kids right, in my opinion.

  2. Lynne Ayers says:

    What a wonderful opportunity for your children – they will learn so much more than just how to ride.

  3. Janet S says:

    I love it. It’s true…a good work ethic is so important to having a happy life. I was a messed up teen, but one thing I didn’t mind was working hard, so I went out and became independent early…and this led to me owning my own business eventually, and I take pride in always doing what needs to be done. I actually have said often that that quality is also what makes having twins less than sheer torture (I love it) for this particular mom. 🙂

    • I hope to avoid messed up teen years by keeping them occupied.

      I also dont want them to become adults that never learned how to do any hard work. Lets keep our fingers crossed that it works.

  4. I absolutely adore your posts. They are always short, sweet, to the point, funny as hell and make me feel I’m not alone. Your life is also fun to read about. It sounds dreamy. (I didn’t say perfect, now. I said dreamy.)
    I don’t always comment, but I do always read and I always, always enjoy. The one about the ice cream maker and the hard shell chocolate—pure perfection. Every since you wrote that post, I’ve been scouting for an ice cream maker at the Good will—in hopes one will turn up!
    Have a great weekend!

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