Hold the Door: Lessons for My Kids

I write a lot of notes to myself: story ideas, grocery lists, wines to try, blog post ideas…

But the most important things I haven’t been writing down, are the things I want my kids to learn from me by example. 

The problem is this: Not only am I not always the most stellar example-maker around, I also have a terrible memory (thus all the lists). I want the best for my kids, but sometimes I just can’t remember to teach the lesson when it arises at times they aren’t by my side.

So I decided to write a list for my son and daughter. I found a scrap of paper in my handbag & started jotting lessons down on it.

It was filled up within a day, so I added more to a piece of notebook paper, then some on my phone, and so on.

I figured what better place to share my list – so far – than right here. A place where people are more than willing to tell me what I forgot to put on it.

Without further ado, here are some lessons I want my kids to learn. Please feel free to add more in the comments – I’ll take any help at this parenting gig that I can get.

Lessons for My Kids by @LetMeStart Kim Bongiorno

What would you add to this list?

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  1. Megan says

    Treat people the way you want to be treated. Even if its difficult. Your kindness will stick with them, making them feel awful will stick with you.

    • says

      Common Sense & Common Courtesy aren’t as rampant these days as they were when I was little. I love for them to become trendy, but until then, I’m going to make sure I instill them in my kids while they’re young.

  2. Brenda says

    Mine are middle schoolers – I’m trying to about gratitude. With that in mind:

    Looking to the future is great, but don’t forget to appreciate what you have, and where you are RIGHT NOW!

    Learn what it is to have “enough”. (Enough food, enough possessions, strength, time, money…)

    • LibbyP says

      My father is of German descent. In the German language, there isn’t really a word for love between a parent and a child – the love is assumed. So my father isn’t orally demonstrative. And that’s totally fine, I’ve never doubted his love for me. I married into a family that is very orally demonstrative and I love it! So I’ve decided to tell my dad that I love him every time I speak to him (we’re long distance) and to not be concerned that he doesn’t say it back. We’re both doing the best we can, and we love each other. And that’s more than enough for me.

  3. says

    I love this list! One thing I thought of to add,
    No matter how much you’re looking forward to something or wanting something to be over; don’t wish away time. Once it’s gone you never get it back.

  4. Jessica says

    This is just wonderful!! All of the ideas of how to get them into my home are now swimming in my head. Got to get this printed out and FAST!! ;)

  5. Sharon says

    Chase your dreams; face your fears.

    I love this list. Thanks so much! If you do an update, be sure to post it! In the meantime, I’m going to print and hang this one :)

  6. says

    Good list! One I would add is “Speak when spoken to.” This is one I’m working on with my 4 year old, as she tends to ignore people when they say “Hello” or “Good Morning!”

    • LibbyP says

      This is a good one, too. I’ve taught mine to respond with a question and then listen to the response. Funny that we have to teach these things, but they are important!!

  7. Megan says

    Great list!!
    I would add…Private parts are called that for a reason…don’t touch them in public.
    Also, when you shake someone’s hand, be sure to look them in the eye as well.

  8. says

    This is so freaking cool! This may be random, but my favorite is “Learn to make people laugh without making anyone cry.”

    I want to take this list and, because kids and teens can only focus in on so much, “feature” one item for a week on my fridge. Over Christmas break, I took all my magnetic writing boards off my fridge, and now just write directly on my fridge. The kids find it cool and hey, it gives me more room to “preach it” :)

    Hmmmm, what to add??? “don’t ever stop your flow of tears. if your heart is releasing them, then let them out.”

  9. Heather says

    I would add:

    Say what you mean and mean what you say

    When you see a person who has special needs, always say ‘hi’ and if you ever hear someone being mean to them stand up to them.

    If there is a kid who is overweight, be nice – that child does not get to choose yet what to eat. Their parents are responsible, so be kind and teach others

    Never ever say ‘no’ to your mama no matter how old you are. I still yes to mine.

  10. Natalie says

    There will always be someone smarter, prettier and wealthier than you. Appreciate what you do have and celebrate it!

  11. Amanda says

    Loved it. One thing I want my children to follow growing up, “If you’re thinking something nice about someone.. Just tell them.”

  12. Amanda says

    I absolutely love this..I worry that I’ll somehow forget to teach these lessons to my little one, but this makes for a wonderful reminder. :)

    ‘Admire the stars. Feel small while doing it.’

    Thanks much!

  13. says

    I love your list. So many great character lessons that we all need to share. The one and only thing that I would add and that would be Don’t Litter, and it doesn’t hurt to pick up someone else’ litter. I taught this to my children and am now teaching the grand kids. If we could all do this our beautiful country will remand beautiful.

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