My grandnephew, Bowen Parmely is a sweet little boy, who is the youngest of his parents three children, and their only son. That means that Bowen spends most of his days living in a largely female world, at least when his daddy, Eric Parmely isn’t home. Nevertheless, that does not mean anything, because Bowen’s mommy, Ashley Parmely, and his sisters, Reagan and Hattie are farm girls. They do all the things that farm girls do, from mucking the stalls, to feeding the animals, to stacking the hay, and any other things that need done on a farm. There is not much possibility of raising a sissy boy when he is being raised around tough women like his mom, and even his sisters, who are barely past toddler age themselves, and yet they are experienced farm girls.
Bowen’s upbringing has been a bit unusual in that while he couldn’t exactly help out on the farm, he could observe, and learn by doing so. As is typical for kids, work can look like fun…and can even seem like play. Kids like to mimic their parents, and younger siblings like to mimic older siblings, so just as his sisters learned the occupation of farming, so will Bowen. He has watched his sisters work with the animals, feeling somewhat cheated because he didn’t get to “play” too. Then, when his sisters were in school or otherwise occupied, his mommy would put Bowen in a backpack carrier, and they would go and do the work together. As I said, Bowen’s mommy is tough, and while everyone thought I was tough with a baby in a front pack and a baby in a backpack when I went shopping, looking at Ashley, I don’t think I was so tough. Carrying around a baby, who is growing as fast as Bowen has, while doing farm work is beyond tough, if you ask me.
As Bowen has grown, and learned to walk, he is becoming more of a help around the farm. Of course, he may not be as much help as his mommy and daddy would like, and certainly not as much help as he will be as he get older, but every good worker had to start with that first little job, then as they grew, so did their responsibilities. Bowen will become an amazing little farm boy as time goes on, because like his parents, he will learn to love that lifestyle. I have no doubt that Bowen will grow up to be as big a help on the farm as his older sisters have. He can’t help but turn out great with his parents training. Today is Bowen’s first birthday. Happy birthday Bowen!! Have a great day!! We love you!!
Every girl can tell you that there are the everyday things and then there are the important things. The important things vary from girl to girl, and are partly their personality and partly the way they mimic their mother. From the moment a girl is old enough to notice the everyday essential things that her mother has or does, she starts to develop her own list of the important things. One of the first things many little girls notice is their mom’s purse. They instinctively know that Mom’s purse is important. It seems like everything she needs in in there. With that discovery, they decide that a purse is a must have for them too. The things little girls keep in their purse are different than their mom’s, because at this time in their life, toys and lollipops are just more important.
Of course, the use of the purse changes as girls get older. With the discovery of makeup, comes not only a time of experimentation, but a time of change in purse contents. A girl just can’t go anywhere without the ability to freshen her makeup, you know. One other thing that usually happens at this point is that Mom’s makeup is no longer safe, and really needs to be put away in a place that is too high for her little angel to reach, because I don’t know a single little girl who hasn’t used her mother’s makeup and not had disastrous results…for the makeup anyway. And, yes, I think for her little face too.
At some point, maybe after the makeup phase, or maybe during the makeup phase, the dress up phase begins. Your little princess starts trading her sensible shoes, for your high heels. She may also borrow some of your clothes too, because she is pretending that she is you. In her make believe world, she heads off to work, just like you do every day, or if you are a stay at home mom, she wants to cook dinner, change the baby, or clean the house. The biggest problem with this phase is that it is all too quickly over, and she goes back to wanting to play and not help out around the house. Have you every noticed just how quickly our kids grow up and begin a life of their own, leaving behind them all of the memories of their little kid days, for us to sort through and feel quite lonely over? We miss the little person they were, and if it were possible we would love to have that person back…especially when their teenaged years begin.
Yes, when the teenaged years start, many of us begin to wonder just who the child is? We thought we knew who they were and who they were going to be. Then suddenly, and without warning, all they want to do is talk on the phone with their friends…or boyfriends, as it were. Once again, the important things have changed, as they spread their wings and try to figure out who they want to be, and the kind of life they want to live. You are no longer the only real influence in their lives. Yours are no longer the only priorities in their lives. There are other hopes, dreams, and goals on their minds now. You have been relegated to being the back up plan. You are the one they come to when they have a problem no one else can fix, and you become the babysitter when they want to spend alone time with their spouse. Those are wonderful things and I don’t know of a parent or grandparent who doesn’t love being there for their adult children, but somehow…in the back of your mind, you can still see the little girl…your little princess, who is trying to figure out just what the important things are, while you are trying to figure out, where the time has gone.
Through the ages, kids have thought that the work done by their parents is fun. They do their very best to mimic everything their parents do. The funny thing is that often, the things they see as being vitally important, are the mundane tasks that we do because we must, but try to get done with as quickly as possible, because they are so boring. I’ve never been able to figure out why those tasks catch the eye of our little ones, or why they place more importance on those tasks than some of the really important things we do every day. I suppose it is just the difference between the thoughts of a child and the thoughts of an adult.
All in all, it’s not a bad thing that kids like to mimic their parents, because before long, they can do the real chores that they were pretending to do before…if they still want to by then. Of course, that is when your real work starts, because when you tell your child to do their chores, most kids take on a look of being instantly half sick. Their shoulders drop, along with their smile. They look like they have run a marathon, and here you are making them slave around the house, when you know that the only marathon they have been running is a marathon session on the play station. Funny, how that can suddenly be exhausting when you ask them to stop and do those chores.
Then, in your mind, you see that little kid, begging you to let them help, and if you were ever going to get anything done, you knew you were going to have to buy them a pint-sized version of whatever cleaning tool you were using. If you were ever going to get your work done, you were going to have to find a way for them to help you without actually using the tools you need, because you really don’t want to discourage them. The days that kids want to help are few and far between, after all, and before you know it, watching your kids doing the chores with a smile, are over.
Kids…their biggest goal is to be just like the adults…practically from the moment they are born. They watch the things the adults around them do and they notice the things that are done over and over. These things, they determine, are the important things that make you a grown up. It can be very entertaining.
Kids have a way of making you laugh that is all their own. One of the funniest things they do is the “hats” they wear. They see others around them wearing a hat, and because they are little, that seems like the coolest thing to them, and they want to mimic their parents, or other adult. It makes them feel all grown up. Even if the hat is too big, they will put it on and do their best to make it stay put.
And it doesn’t have to be a hat at all, in order to make it important head gear, like the ear muffs grandpa wears when he mows the lawn. They are an important item to be on your head, and nobody says they just have to be on over your ears, they can be a great fashion statement for the stylish little girl of the 90’s. And if you could just add a pair of heels, this little girl would be on her way to Hollywood for sure.
Of course, sometimes things don’t go just exactly as planned. Sometimes the cutest hat in the world just won’t cooperate very well, and doesn’t it just figure that at the biggest wardrobe malfunction of the season, there would just naturally be someone right there with a camera to capture the unsuspecting model looking…well, not quite her normal perfect self.
Yes, hats and kids go together like peanut butter and jelly. But sometimes that head gear can be a bit of a challenge to our little people…and a definite source of smiles for their parents.