Yes, you read that right. I found this great website the other day. It is actually a web book written by a mother of 10 children. There are some really great things about parenting in this book, and it has been an encouraging read. Encouraging, yet convicting, as she reminds us continually that before we can expect cheerful and prompt obedience from our children we must be giving the same to whomever it is that God has placed in our lives for us to obey (husband, church leaders, employer, whatever...). So, ladies, practice what you preach!
But I digress... she also gives this great list of what is reasonable to expect from a toddler. I have yet to find anything concrete that was written from a Christian viewpoint that spoke to what type of obedience was realistic for a toddler. I have to agree with her list. Some of what was on the list we were already requiring, but some were new to me. Look out, Emory! Momma's got a plan.
I also agree with her "opinion" that in order to properly train and discipline your children you must be spending lots of time with them. Not that all this time has to be time spent doing child oriented activities, but including your children in whatever it is that you are doing. And, yes, it is good for them to be able to entertain themselves, but maybe in the same room while you are folding laundry, washing dishes, or whatever. Don't get me wrong here. I am not attempting to bind any consciences and make a statement that this is what God requires. However, Emory's behavior gets away from me if I don't spend a lot of time around her so I can address improper behavior when it occurs. Maybe it's just me.
I guess what I am trying to say is that we are required by God to train up our children in the way they should go. I personally find that near impossible if I am busy, busy, busy all the time and always leaving her in another room to entertain herself. And we were struggling in knowing in what areas to require obedience without going overboard or being permissive. So, if you ever reach a point where you feel confused and dismayed and are rethinking the whole SAHM thing, check out that website. It helped me out a lot!