Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Words matter damn it

I believe words matter.  
As a parent I strive to use good, reinforcing words.  Encouraging words.  Sweet words.  Of course I strive to do that, but sometimes get off track. My five-year-old didn't really talk until he was 3 and has had almost three years of speech therapy.  But wouldn't you know he could clearly say "damn it" before he could say most other words.

My kids love it when I say bad words.  We are pretty strict at my house and the bad word list includes words like stupid, hate, of course the obvious ultra bad swear words and even words that I just don't like, such as, butt.  When I slip up and say a bad word like "hate" they giggle with glee and the little ones will repeat it at least 25 times in a row for fun.

Feeling all the pressure, I went for back up with the words.     We headed on a bike ride to the library yesterday to get some books with lots of good words.

The kids made their selections which included a wide variety of interests.

I love that Peyton got out a book about The Who.  Too funny.

But because it seems lately they only listen when I do say a bad word, I have more back up.  I started what I call my Wall of Words which includes words I love.  And it is in the bathroom where all the kids will read it and the words will make an imprint on their little brains.
This is just a part of the wall.

Some of the quotes I typed, other quotes I just held onto from places like a church service in Pittsburgh or a ditto from college.  That's right because copies were called dittos way back when I was in college.  Not only do these words make me happy, but I truly hope they are expressing my thoughts on life without me having to sit my kids down and tell them. 

Included in the quotes are words of wisdom from "The Color Purple," Walt Disney, Ozzy Osbourne and the Bible.
One of my favorites was hanging on the wall of my grandmother's house it says:
"Happiness is not having everything you want, it is wanting everything you have."
It stuck with me.

This was printed on our program at our wedding:

I am hopeful this effort will make an impact on my kids and make up for when I, for lack of better words, f#*k up.


  1. I LOVE your idea!! I have a sign that I bought that just says "Spread Joy"...simple, but it conveys a lot. :)

  2. p.s. Carey and I f*&k up a lot, so can Alex visit your bathroom periodically to read up on some better word choices?

  3. Angela... just getting caught up on your blog. You got the gift, girl. Keep writing! My mom always used to say that swearing (or any bad choice of words, for that matter) was the sign of an un-creative mind. :-)