I surf Pinterest often. Ok, multiple times a day. But who doesn’t these days? It is more addicting than Facebook! I browse the Kids category often. I keep coming across something that bothers me a little as a mom. It is nothing too awful but I cannot understand it.

All sorts of blog posts are pinned there for “quiet time activities” or homemade “quiet books.” First I would like to admit that sometimes during the day I do enjoy quiet time. It is usually during nap time, first thing in the morning, or after Jack goes to bed. I never valued MY quiet time until after I had Jackson. I used to always need background noise. It could be music or the television. But I did not really care to be in complete silence. These days I don’t mind it so much.

However, I don’t force him to have quiet time during the day.  I have quiet time on MY time, not his. I don’t see the point. He is a child. I think children should be silly, loud, creative, funny, etc. Sometimes I turn off the music and often I turn off the TV but I never make him be quiet. He can be as loud as he wants when he is playing. I relish in his loudness. It can be music in itself! There is plenty of time in life to have to be quiet. Home is not somewhere I want him to feel like he cannot be himself. Sometimes I feel like parents are trying to control every aspect of their kids’ lives. Sure there is a lot I control or focus on with him, since he is just shy of 14 months old, but I don’t force him to play a certain way. Shy of hitting other children when we are in a group. That I don’t tolerate and I quickly reprimand him and tell him to be gentle. But if he squealed at the top of his lungs out of joy, I may just squeal in response.

I want him to be respectful, loving, and well mannered. No question about that. But silence or quiet time does not equal or create any of those qualities. Quiet time doesn’t mean he is respectful or well mannered. He is well mannered because when he is done eating he now hands me his cup, spoon, and plate/bowl instead of throwing them like he used to. Respectful is working on teaching him to be gentle with his kitties, whom he loves dearly and just wants to cuddle, a little rougher than they would like. Loving is the fact that whenever I ask him for a kiss he turns his head, smiles huge, and plants a big wet kiss on my mouth. But if he wants to bang his toys around all day, squeal in delight as he plays in his playroom (also our living room), then by all means I encourage this. This house will never have allotted “quiet time” or activities for quiet time. If he wants to play quietly on his own, that is fine. But it should be up to him, not me making him or shushing him. or structuring those activities.

I found this blog post yesterday. 10 Amazing Mistakes Children Should Make. It really resonated with me. I have been leading our life in these ways before even reading this! Some he hasn’t reached yet, but some he has. Talk too much is on that list, so is speak out of turn. He should do these things. Use his sounds and voice. We don’t NEED enforced quiet time at home. I don’t understand it. The last one is a favorite of mine. Act Silly. This mom says she has a hard time with that. I do not. I regularly sing to him in stores, I dance, I play games while we shop. We are recognized by the people who work at our grocery store, probably because we are a little fun when we are there. If I run there without him I often get asked, “where is the baby today?” I am happy that people smile when they see us having fun, and yes maybe being a little loud!