Father's Day Gift of Service
Father's Day Gift:
This year for Father's Day, we took a different approach, one that I feel was a total success on many levels! Typically I choose something and my boys wrap it up and feel happy giving it to their daddy. This year, I actually gave him the gift of having lawn service mow our yard for the summer since he spends all of his spare time coaching T-Ball and Cub Scouts. We've all been loving that gift. This way, if he has more spare time, he gets to spend it playing catch with J in the backyard or playing a board game with both of them or teaching C to ride his bike. He has a little extra time to help me repaint rooms in our house too! It has been such a gift.
Even though he has loved the gift, I knew our boys would love to feel the ownership of a gift of service for him. So, I suggested they could wash his car, inside and out, all by themselves.
I remember Fred Rogers talking about how chores are not chores to young children but opportunities for new kinds of play. Imagine how much fun freedom with a garden hose, a sponge and bubbly water seems to a young child! This was the other part of my idea. The boys would be giving a gift of service, but I suspected they would have so much fun as well. C loved climbing on the hood to scrub the windshield. J loved using that hose to see how much of his nearby world he could soak as quickly as possible.
It wasn't lost on me that the car that is used to take the boys to and from their practices and events so much was being taken care of by the kids. I think as they cleaned out the trash they had left inside from a snack on the way to a game and vacuumed up sand from the baseball field from the floor mat, they might be more careful as they are in the car in the future. The whole task promotes awareness of their environment and general responsibility.
So Nice That They Washed it Twice!
I knew the kids might squabble about who got to rinse the car with the hose. So, I suggested they do two quick washes and take turns with who gets to rinse the car off after each quick wash. This worked really well, and probably helped the car actually get clean! So, on round one, J rinsed the car. On round two, C rinsed the car. They loved this!
Extra explorations were taking place during the car wash. Check out these swirls of soap on the driveway!
The boys were SO proud to show their final work to their daddy. I think it may not be the last time that we do a gift like this. I didn't really interfere other than being around if they needed me and to make sure they were safe. I showed them how to wipe down the inside and use the vacuum attachment but they got to be independent and give a real gift from just them.
I highly recommend doing a gift like this. My boys are ages 6 and 10 for reference if this might work with your family!
Grace and Peace, Friends!
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