I know that summer is a popular time to do a “Yes Day” with your kids, and if that’s your jam, go for it and enjoy! It’s not really my thing, and tbh, I’m all about normalizing “No Days” instead.
And not just “No Days”, but “You’re doing chores all day and will ask Mom for literally nothing all day” days.
My kids are living their best lives this summer, and I am happy for them.
We chose to hunker down for a good part of the past couple years, and my kids missed out on things that they knew their peers were still participating in.
It was fine, they were fine, it was our choice, and we came out of it a stronger family unit.
But this summer we were ready to jump back into the world, and we did it. I dare say we leaped full-force.
This summer, we have hockey camp and theater camp and horseback riding camp and baseball and play dates and sleepovers and pool parties and birthday parties and all the fun stuff in between.
My son saw Dude Perfect.
My other son went to the theater with a friend recently.
My daughter’s calendar is jam-packed with carnivals and festivals and beach days with friends.
And more often than not, I’m their ride or I’m hosting and feeding their friends. (Which again, I love doing.)
So some days, like today, we felt the absence of fun.
We have friends coming to visit from out of town and I need the house cleaned and the yard weeded, so guess who I hired to provide those services?
A certain 13, 11, and 9-year-old. For zero pay. (Same wages Mom makes!)
Because they live here and had fun yesterday and the day before and will have fun tomorrow, and the day after that.
So today? Today was a No Day.
As in NO play dates. NO “Can I have…” NO “Can you take me here…” NO “Can you make…”
Today was a “make your own food day.”
Today was an “ask Mom for nothing other than ‘How else can I help, Mom?’ day.”
And a “Once your chores are done, entertain yourself quietly” day.
It’s nearly 6:00. The house looks clean.
The yard looks weeded.
And the kids understand that there are a loooooot of “Yes-es” in this house, but sometimes, there will be a day of “Nos” and those days are important too.
Now they can make themselves sandwiches for dinner because “No Day” ain’t over yet.
This post originally appeared on The 21st Century SAHM Facebook Page