I know the popular catch-phrase is "don't sweat the small stuff." There's a whole book about the concept of not worrying about the little things in favor of focusing on the big picture. But as a mom, while my overall job may be to help my children grow into kind, loving and responsible adults, my day-to-day duties are largely focused on the small things.
The small stuff in my daily routine is what adds up to the big picture for my family. At face value, doing laundry is about making sure my family has clean clothes to wear. In the grand scheme of things, keeping up with the laundry is a way of showing my husband and children that I care, and in turn teaching my kids that even doing simple chores is a way of caring for others.
My big goals might be letting my kids know they are loved and helping them to grow physically, mentally and emotionally, but on any given day there are still breakfasts, lunches and dinners to be made, teeth to be brushed, diapers to be changed, toenails to be clipped, clothes to be washed, groceries to be bought, and bills to be paid.
I couldn't tell you who the seventeenth president was, but I can tell you that Fancy Nancy & the Posh Puppy is the purple book and that if a certain lovie isn't in the bed, it's probably on the couch or under the dining table. I could recite The Lorax, Horton Hears a Who or How the Grinch Stole Christmas if necessary. I remember the name of every doctor my kids have ever seen and the foods they love and hate. I know that the easiest way to get them to take medicine is to pretend to give a dose to their stuffed animals first.
I'll never be a world leader, but I can tell you that both President Obama and Mitt Romney had someone in their lives who taught them to brush their teeth, blow their nose and use the potty. At one point someone was making sure they had clean socks, that they went to school and that they learned to read. Someone knew their favorite story, their allergies and their most ticklish spot.
None of these small things is the most important aspect of my family's life, but my attention to these details gets us from one big moment to the next. By handling the small stuff, it allows our family to enjoy the big stuff. When I've got these things covered, my husband can go to work without worrying that things get done. My kids may not recognize it yet, but somewhere down the line (probably when they are living on their own) they will realize all the things that I did to help their lives run smoothly and to let them focus on what is most important for them. Because I love them. And because my hope is that someday they will do the same for their own families based on what they experienced as children.
You can see the previous days in the series here. Thanks for following along!