Monday, July 8, 2013

Car Conversation #1: Modesty, Firearms and Necessities

Today our 20 minute drive home from Art Camp was more far reaching than almost any conversation I can think of having with my currently 5 11/12ths year old (her favorite way to express her almost-6 year old status).

First we started by discussing hair covering as an expression of modesty. Hats versus scarves, wigs, covering your hair all the time or just at religious occasions  Other religions and their modesty standards, full-body coverage, skirts to the ankle versus the knee, how much we cover "up top". Why some women at the pool wear bikinis and why "in our family" (my favorite way of expressing our values to my little kids) we wear swim shirts, both to protect ourselves from sun, and because we don't need others to see our tummies:)

Then, because we had the unfortunate timing to pass a car on fire, we talked about law enforcement, fire departments and guns. Why guns? Well apparently the car on fire wasn't an accident, and a suspect had fled the scene, so we were treated to police officers running with their guns drawn in hot pursuit. Not my ideal time to explain that guns aren't just what Uncle Jason uses for hunting. Let me say now, that I was loving the hunting reason. I mean, if it's in Little House on the Prairie, it just makes it easier to explain. Uncle Jason uses guns to shoot deer and turkeys (in accordance to local hunting laws) and Pa used his gun to shoot dear and wild pigs and to protect his family from bears. Easy.

So now we spoke about why kids are never ever ever allowed to touch a gun or play with it. That if she ever sees one, she needs to go to another room and call a parent right away. Also about how police departments have very strict moral rules about how and when to shoot, and how grateful we are to live in a country with police and firefighters to keep us safe.

Except now she wanted to go back to the part about hair covering, and I thought she said hair coloring, so I started in on a discussion of luxury. Of necessity versus "extra". We listed our necessities: air, water, food, clothes, a place to live, trees. Trees were her top one since she was pretty clear that without them we wouldn't have air. Smart cookie that one:)

And I jumped right into extras with "tv". She came up with: shows, ipods, ipads, kindles, toys, books, fancy shoes, purses, watches, cars (you can take a bus or walk), and restaurants. This was by far her favorite part of the conversation. I tried to add in "luxury" as in a manicure, where you pay someone to paint your nails for you, totally unnecessary but lovely if you can afford it and you make the decision to.

Which led to a reminder conversation entitled, "where money comes from". We've already had this talk, so it was just a reminder that how much money you have is usually tied to what you do for a job and (occasionally) how hard you work at that job. Today I focused on once you pay for your necessities, each family makes decisions about their extras or luxuries on their own. So someone might need a car for work, or someone else might decide to have a tv, or fewer toys, or a flip phone instead of an iphone.

Here she is collecting money for her school, we are rocking the talks about money and charity as an expression of our values.

We are really trying to get al those values talks in when they present themselves, because I have a hard time just turning to my kids and saying, "you have no idea what a handgun is, but you should never touch one".

35 minutes later, 20 to talk and drive, 15 to write this up, and I think I need a nap:)

What are you talking about in cars with your kids?

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Simply LKJ said... guys got a lot in in 20 minutes! I loved driving carpool when my girls were younger...always gave me a chance to get the scoop on EVERYTHING that was going on at school, with their friends/teammates.

Heidi @ Decor & More said...

Good job, Mom! Now just brace yourself for the teenage years... :)
xo Heidi

Daniela @Frugal Aint Cheap said...

Children are really smart and it's great that you can talk to them about a variety of things. They grow up so fast

Kelly said...

I love car conversations like this! You're doing a great job with them!

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