If there is indeed a permissive-to-authoritarian parenting spectrum, I fall, by conscious choice, closer to the P than the A. But, the phrases “child-centred” and “child-led” raise my hackles. I’ve always liked “family-centred” or “whole-family focused” for those moments when absolutely pressed to slap a label on us. But those terms are pretty hard for me to define (although, in the past, I’ve tried to do so here, Finding Your Family’s Harmony, and here, 10 Habits From the House of Permissiveness).
Except on New Year’s Eve 2012. The way we sent off 2012 and brought in 2013 was, to me, the perfect illustration of a family-centred life… and a rockin’ party. The party was so good no one took the time to take pictures. But here are a few pictures of the aftermath.
First view of the kitchen in the morning:
The Perplexus in the remnants of the cheeseplate:
Ender posing in front of the “Kids’ Art Wall” in the kitchen:
This was the little kids’ art wall: the toddlers went to town on it with tempera paint, and then the older kids came and added their handprints… they got a little over-enthusiastic and started to mark up our map, at which point I redirected…
The older kids and adults put their marks here:
This wall is the view that greets you when you walk up our entry way stairs into our main living area. It’s the wall that gets diritiest and most marked up in life. We were planning to repaint it at some point this year… in the interm, it’s our wall of awesomeness. Here are some close ups:
And in the morning, we cleaned up the debris mostly together:
And that, from the kids-and-adults party through to everyone working together to clean up the mess–and everyone working together to create the art (and mess)–is family-centred living to me.
What is it to you? And how did you bring in 2013?
(By the way, if you didn’t visit Cloudy With a Chance of Wine’s Best of 2012 Blog Hop on New Year’s Eve–pop over there sometimes this week when you have a chance. People linked their best posts of the year, and there are some absolute gems to be discovered. I’m still working my way through the posts, because there are so many excellent ones to read one doesn’t want to just skim.)