Friday, January 22, 2010

We Are Family

I've been thinking a lot these past 21 days about what I want for my family this year. Things we should accomplish, things we could accomplish and the things that will hold us back from both.

One of my goals as I reevaluate our finances, our time commitments, our relationships, etc. is to make more from less. More memories and love from less obligation and pressure.

I came across Slow Family Living. The meeting of two women with child development and family life background combined with science.

We are offering a way of thinking about, seeing and implementing family life. We provide the science, the practicals and the lens for understanding, believing and appreciating the richness of building and maintaining lifelong family connections. We want people to see that family life can be the well where members can go to fill up and to have fun. We offer tools, support and inspiration that guide people in slowing down, connecting and enjoying life as individuals and within the family. -

It originated in Austin, no surprise. Can't you just see these Texan women with their red leather cowboy boots perched up on the porchrail enjoying a cup of sweet tea and slow-drawling about how easy it was to get their kids to fall asleep last night to the light of the big Texan moon? Eat that up.

Since I live on the West Coast, I'm not able to attend one of their interesting workshops, but they do have materials for purchase as well as some wonderful starters to get you on your way to a simpler, more quality - less quantity way of being a family unit.

From their website:

Why do a Family Mission Statement?

  • A mission will bring you to a clear understanding of how you want family life to unfold.
  • It will serve as a reminder of who you are as a family.
  • It allows you to live your family life with a vision of why you started a family in the first place and where you want it to go.
  • It lets your children know that you are completely committed to them and to family life.
  • It tells each member and the world, “This is how and why we exist as a family. We have a unique purpose for being together.”
  • It helps all the members of the family see the family as an entity and not just as separate individuals sharing a household and each going their own way. As your children grow and start gaining independence it will be even more grounding for them and for the family as a whole if everyone has a clear vision of the family’s mission.
  • It will give everyone the confidence to step out into the world with a strong sense of who they are and where they come from.
  • A family mission statement helps build a sustainable bond between family members that can help foster a lifelong connection.
  • It will serve as a reminder to each member of the family that you are all in the family — when you are together and when you are apart.

You’ll discover such things as…

How did we get here? What’s working? What’s not? Where did we come from? How do we see the future? How do we want family life to feel? Holiday rituals. Sibling relationships – both your own growing up and that of your children. What are the surprises of family life? Ways to celebrate being a family.


I think Mr. and I will start out with writing a "P* Family Mission Statement." Since the bugaboos are so young, they'll have little in the way of input, but my hope is that we can re-evaluate this every January and fine-tune it until it represents the steady path we'd like to take.

What are the values and beliefs that you want to incorporate into YOUR family's mission statement? Do you think your spouse would agree on most of them?

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