|Kids in community||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: R.N. Johnson (cohorandayahoo.com)|
|Date: Fri, 12 Aug 2011 14:45:10 -0700 (PDT)|
While raising kids in community is not always a bed of roses, I am grateful to have the opportunity to raise my kids in our particular "village." I can leave my one year old at the common dinner table to grab a napkin or a second helping, knowing that she will be so busy flirting with her favorite neighbors that she will barely register my absence. If our babysitting arrangements collapse at the last minute, as they too often do, one of our neighbors usually comes through for us. My 6 year old son, now in a particularly defiant stage of asserting his autonomy from adult expectations, recently told me that he wasn't sure what the other communities( read committees) did, but he was glad he joined the garden community(committee) because everyone needs to work on a community(committee) and he liked gardening the best. At New Brighton kids are encouraged to participate in community work, but are by no means required to participate. He looks forward to community work parties, and likes to help "straw boss" by passing messages and fetching tools. How wonderful that he has the chance to participate in his community, and that he has absorbed the idea of working together in community at this young age. Now if he only felt that way about chores at home... Last week, having exasperated both of his parents with loud refusals to get dressed take his dishes to the sink/ put his toys away and on the verge of being on the receiving end of some unduly loud and uncomplimentary parental remarks, he saw the imminent fireworks and went to a neighbor's house for a break. He finagled an invitation to go to a rummage sale with them. An hour an a half later we were all in a much better mood and able to take care of our respective household responsibilities quickly and cheerfully. Having 20+ neighborly witnesses to your parenting is not for the faint of heart, but I personally would not trade it for the world. Randa Johnson New Brighton Cohousing Aptos, CA
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