When Your Adult Kids Still Live at Home

When Your Adult Kids Still Live at Home

Tips and thoughts for ways to handle adult kids still living at home

Right now we have 4 adult kids living at home and 1 more graduated that’s just under the wire of official adulthood.

This is a whole new level of parenting.  People say toddlers and teenagers are hard….we didn’t have big struggles with those ages.  But adults, that is a topic that needs some attention!

Our kids have always had responsibility and had to learn hard lessons.  They pay for their own things and work from home (mostly) and earn their own money.  They help around the house and are generally pleasant.  But there are still some things that we are working to figure out.

1. Where does the authority of the parents end and the “child’s” begin? (I am calling them child for the sake of clarity, but I know they’re not children)
2. How much of their needs should they pay for?  Rent?  Food?  Insurance?
3. Should we let them use our car?  Our wifi?  Our phone plan?
4. How do we handle discipline?  Or do we?

This is just the tip of the iceberg of adult children living at home.  If they were someone else just moving in with us we would have set clear boundaries from the beginning, but since we eased into this for the past 18+ years it’s not so cut and dried.

The good news is that we do all believe in the Bible being the Word of God and even though not all of those things are addressed directly, is it clear how to handle disputes and so we manage to keep the peace.  That is a victory all by itself!  If you are still raising your young children keep that in mind.  Teach them now to love the Lord, do hard things and care for other people.  It will benefit them now and forever more.

I am sympathetic to my kids’ situation.  They are adults living a child’s life.  They need to break out and believe me….we want our little birdies to fly from our nest.  I am not anxious to be the head of an adult living center.

Even though I am still in the midst of this season and I do not have a full view from the rearview mirror, I have learned a few things that might help anyone headed this direction.

1. If it belongs to me I have authority.  My house, my car, my food….I can say how it gets used and if I let you paint the room you are living in your favorite color then I am doing you a favor.  And you should be grateful.  But if it’s yours…..your purse, your clothes, your car then I should leave you alone about it, even if I have a great idea that would help you undoubtedly achieve great future successes.  I close my mouth.
2. They should pay for themselves as much as possible.  We haven’t moved to having our kids pay rent, but that is because they are responsible with their money and they voluntarily hold themselves accountable to us about how they use it (accountable, not obedient).  But we do require them to pay for their phone (they are on our plan) and they buy their own special foods (so if they like a certain cereal or drink they buy their own, but they eat meals with us).  I have thought about charging my son for laundry services.  Free if you do it yourself, $2 per load if you convince a sister to do it for you. ;)
3. Easing into adult responsibilities.  Our two oldest kids are each saving to buy a car and when that happens it will be 100% their responsibility.  For now they use our cars, but there are rules.  They have to ask.  Every time.  They have to tell us where they are going and when they will be home and if that changes they have to let us know.  And they have to pay for insurance and whatever gas they use.
4. Discipline is a harder issue.  For example, if we request they get up and be dressed by 7:00 in the morning and they don’t do it….what should happen?  Basically, we give them adult sized consequences for these things.  A week without the use of our car has been a consequence we used in the past.  That wasn’t fun.  We do give them a lot of privileges that we could take away if necessary.  I mean, eating here is a privilege and so is having your own room.  If you want that privilege then you have to show respect for our needs as a family and joyfully do what we ask unless we discuss it and all agree to something else.

We expect our adult children to take care of more than just themselves.  By age 18 you should carry your own weight and help those around you.  That means they have responsibilities for kitchen, cleaning, car maintenance, helping with siblings, working for Mom or Dad in our business, etc.  Their whole day can’t be just about them.  That is not good for them and it certainly isn’t good for the parents.  We can’t carry our adult kids around and we shouldn’t have to.  Each adult in the home must be making a large contribution to the cost (financial, physical, emotional, etc.) of living in the home.  We expect them to contribute a minimum of 4 hours per day on family needs, but this can include working for us in our businesses.  If they have jobs that allow them to contribute financially then that time requirement would change.

But what happens when they just don’t agree?  They shouldn’t have to agree with us all of the time of course!   And all of our kids disagree with us on various topics.  That’s when the relationship becomes so, so important.  James and I work hard to spend time with our older kids and listen to them.  What’s important to them? How can we support their dreams?  How are their friends doing?  What are they struggling with right now?  How can we help without jumping in and rescuing them?

It is a delicate balance for all of us and one that we can all become more like Christ through the process. 

If you only have young children now or are looking at being in this situation soon, hear me when I tell you….keep the lines of communication open.  Your adult children still need you.  But you have to practice self-control like you never have before.  No more swooping in and saving the day.  No more endless streams of motherly advice.  No more being bossy (come on, it’s not just me).  They need to make mistakes….sometimes big ones…..to learn and be able to fly away.

Be strong mamma……we are growing and learning too even though we’re supposed to be the more mature one.  It sure ain’t easy.

And when all else fails I can remind my adult kids of what it says in Deuteronomy 21:18-21 “If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother, and, though they discipline him, will not listen to them,  then his father and his mother shall take hold of him and bring him out to the elders of his city at the gate of the place where he lives, and they shall say to the elders of his city, ‘This our son is stubborn and rebellious; he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton and a drunkard.’ Then all the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones.”

;)

 Be sure to follow me on Facebook!

 

If You Don’t Mind…..

If You Don’t Mind…..

I may have a problem.  Like I need counseling and possibly shock therapy.  I love books.  I have shelves full of them in every room and when someone offers to send me one to review I simply can’t resist.  #bookaddiction

But I realize I have not told you much about all of the writing that’s happening right under our very roof. #mykids

Besides writing a book myself, my daughter Grace has written 4 books and the first three are available on Amazon.  #true

1. Firmament: Radialloy is about a young woman who lives on a starship.  If your teen or young adult likes sci-fi this is a fun adventure!
2. Firmament: In His Image is the second in this series (with the third coming out very soon!) and follows the same main character.
3. Never is a clean, wholesome, family friendly western with slightly more mature conflicts.

She also has a blog where she reviews books and it’s always nice to find clean books for our kids to read.

Grace

My daughter Patience also has a blog that is for budding photographers.  She’s really good at encouraging you to love your family and follow your passion.  Your photo-driven kids would love this.  #itisprecious

Pep

And, if you don’t mind me telling you, my oldest son is making an album of songs that he has written.  He has a website that tells about his vision and he is also wrapping up a fundraiser to help get it made.  #hemakesmyheartmelt

Jacob

Not to be left out, my daughter Hope is writing a graphic novel (kind of like a faith-based comic book) and my other daughter Faith is starting her own jewelry line.  Those are still works in progress. #iamconstantlyamazed

I really don’t mention all of their accomplishments much because I don’t want to be braggy.  But just this once….I had to say it.

Thanks for letting me.  #proudmom

Be sure to follow me on Facebook!

Do You Ever Wonder What Day It Is?

Do You Ever Wonder What Day It Is?

In the spirit of gratefulness, I am going to stop myself from complaining about the 3 day holiday that always throws me off of knowing what day it is.

Since we homeschool and my husband is self-employed, working from home….it’s pretty much like any other day around here except we eat watermelon.  That is the stamp of a summer holiday for us.  Otherwise it’s business as usual.  So you would think it wouldn’t affect my internal clock, but it does.  I have spent the past week thinking it is a day behind and now it’s Friday and I feel cheated out of a day this week.  Because my brain keeps insisting it’s actually Thursday and that means I have a whole other day to pack for my trip this weekend.

Except not.

Tomorrow begins a three day whirlwind to Seattle and San Francisco to spend some time with my friends at Invisalign.  Did I tell you how excited I am to be starting my son in their fabulous treatment?  No?  Well don’t worry, you will hear a bunch about that as he gets started.  Right now we’re still in the pre-treatment phase.  I will just say that I am thoroughly enjoying working with them and this weekend will be a blast of hanging out with other bloggers talking about how much we love working together.  And the best part is that my oldest daughter Grace gets to go with me.  We are so excited to have some mother/daughter time that doesn’t include pushing a grocery cart or picking up lumber!

We will be in Seattle on Saturday night then off to San Francisco on Sunday night then blast back to Texas on Monday.  No rest for the weary around here.

Of course this makes me realize…..I will undoubtedly be off my days again next week because of it.  So please excuse me if I post some “Happy Tuesday!” pictures next Wednesday morning.

I’m also gearing up for some really amazing posts on the blog next week.  It’s the “Essentially Summer” series using essential oils with 35 recipes coming your way!  PLUS….I am doing my summer home tour with my favorite DIY/home decor peeps and y’all are gonna go crazy over these homes.

I’ll see you on the flip side.

Have a great weekend……whenever that is!

1L, 4Ds and 5K

1L, 4Ds and 5K

It’s been a girl themed week.

Last Thursday my 4 daughters and I went big city shopping.  It was a birthday shopping trip for my oldest daughter Grace since I was going to be gone over the weekend of her birthday.  We spent the whole day hitting everything from anthropologie to thrift stores.  The girls are now set for clothes for the rest of the warm weather season, which is a relief to me since shopping with them is a test in endurance.  Of me and my wallet.

daughters

For myself, I am on the search for t-shirts with sleeves.  Not long sleeves or 3/4 sleeves.  Just plain old short sleeves that are long enough to cover my arm flaps.  It’s a sad day when you nearly slap someone with your extra arm skin and I am trying to avoid that with sleeves and prayer.

Saturday and Sunday I went to Austin.  I ran my first 5K this weekend.  I did it with my sister….she gave it to me for my birthday and it was a double treat to get to spend the time with her.

I have never had any interest in doing any kind of running or, really, moving at all.  But after walking every morning since last July it was pretty easy.  And on a cool spring morning….almost heaven.

My first 5k

To keep the girl theme going I will be going on a photoshoot for my daughter’s 17th birthday this week.  Shopping is not her thing.  She asked for a photoshoot in the city and as an added bonus she wants to be there when the sun rises to get the best lighting.  Leave the house at 6AM….oh sure.  Because giving birth to you wasn’t enough of a sacrifice.

Next week I need to have a boy themed week.  Those are much easier.  Just dump some Legos in the living room and throw food into the middle every few hours.

Have a great April!

Christian Worldview Film Festival

Christian Worldview Film Festival

Did you know that my older kids went through a film making phase?  My son Jacob made 2 animated movies and entered them into a Christian film festival several years ago and was a semi finalist with one of his films.  My oldest daughter also entered 2 films.  It was such a blessing to watch my kids develop skills that they both use today.  My son is still into animation and hopes to develop that into a career.

So imagine my excitement when I heard about a new festival in town!

Don't miss the Christian Worldview Film Festival in San Antonio TX!

The Christian Worldview Film Festival is coming.  Yep.  It’s right up our alley.  And if you like to see good, wholesome films made with purpose you should think about going.  If the 60 films, incredible speakers, wonderful music (our friends the 4 Proches will be playing live!) aren’t enough….then come to spend time with us!

Here’s a great list of reasons to attend this event!

The festival starts Thursday, March 13 at noon and goes through Saturday night.  There’s also a Filmmakers Guild (which we are super excited to go to!) on Tuesday and Wednesday.  You can buy tickets to just the festival or the whole event.  If you have anyone in your family that is interested in making movies or being involved in the media industry you would be wise to go to the whole thing.

AND if you use the code “PENNINGTON” you will get 25% off of your ticket.  How’s that for an added blessing?

Embracing Modesty, No. 49

Embracing Modesty, No. 49

Wow!  Only 3 more modesty posts to go and the year will be over.  I can’t believe how much we have enjoying doing this series.

Which makes me wonder….what do you want to see for next year?  More modesty pictures?  Or something else like our meal plans?  Or maybe homeschool ideas?  I’d love to hear from you!!!

For this week I am going to show a few things my girls have been wearing.  They are such cutie pies that I have to share some of their looks.

This first look was on a day before it got so c-c-cold.  Faith is wearing a skirt she got at Versona and a layer of t-shirts and a vest.  She made the necklace with 3 bullet cases she found in the yard.

I’ve said before that my youngest daughter, Patience, likes a more sporty look and this picture proves it.  This outfit is her personality to a T.  Most of it we got at thrift stores.

This next picture of Hope shows her personality too….she likes a simple outfit with a teeny twist (as in the tights).  She got the sweater and skirt at JCPenney.

Grace is my classic girl.  Scarves and hats are the name of her game.  And oh my this green is her color!  Knowing what colors look good on you is a great way to know how to shop.

And oh the red hat…..how adorable is that?!  I am not a hat person….I mean I want to be then I try one on and realize, nope, not good.  But Grace wears them so well.

It’s such a delight to see what outfits my girls put together each day.  Winter is a fun time to play with layering and leggings. And boots….how could I forget the boots?!

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to check out the Embracing Modesty Gallery with all of the posts from this series!

And don’t forget to let me know if you have a preference for what series we should do for 2014!

Embracing Modesty, No. 42

Embracing Modesty, No. 42

This week the girls are taking over this post because I am at a conference.  I will show y’all what I wore to the conference when I get back, but for now we’ll talk scarves.

My girls love to wear scarves.  Grace wears one every day and the other girls at least once a week.  Here are just a few of their scarf styles….

Faith’s favorite way to wear them is just to loop it in the front and let the sides hang down in the front.

Here she is again.  Same way of wearing it.  Different outfit.

Grace does crazy cute things with her scarves.  She even has a YouTube video with some of her ideas.

Be sure to check out the Embracing Modesty Gallery to see the rest of this series!

Embracing Modesty, No 40

Embracing Modesty, No 40

So many of you have let us know that your girls are reading this and being encouraged to look for fun, youthful ways to dress modestly.  So I thought we’d show you some more of what my girls have been wearing lately.  With the changing seasons, they are enjoying some longer sleeves and boots.

What’s better than a pretty pair of boots on a cool day?  Nothing I can think of.

In this first picture Hope (age 19) is still feeling summery in her silver sandals and pink top.  But the little bit of layers helped her feel warm enough on the cooler mornings.

The combination of hot pink and white really brings out her complexion.  It’s good to know what color combinations look good on you.

Next we will warm it up a bit with Grace’s (age 23) denim jacket.  We all love a denim jacket for the fall.  It’s just right for the Texas weather.  And her black boots are so darling!

Faith (age 17), my little trend setter, looks so pretty in this lavender plaid top with rolled up sleeves.  The skirt was a bit too short, so she cut a strip off of an old skirt and sliced it into fringe then sewed it onto the bottom.  It made the skirt long enough and frilly-fun.

Her necklace is one she made with a clothespin.  She drilled a hole in it, write a Bible verse on it and strung a dog tag chain through it.

In this last picture Grace is wearing the same lightweight brown skirt as above.  But this time she put it together with some stripes.  I’m a big fan of stripes.  They are so playful.  And who doesn’t love a pair of metallic flats?

Thanks for joining us for our modesty series.  Be sure to check out our gallery of posts to catch up on everything!

Follow me on Facebook!

Embracing Modesty, No.32

Embracing Modesty, No.32

We’ve been in our paint clothes most of the week, so not much fashion is happening here.  Our paint clothes aren’t worth showing here except to say that we are still modest when we paint.  Dirty and messy, but modest.  You really don’t want pictures of us though; it’s not pretty.

I did get dressed one day to run some errands.  I put on my new Forever 21 tank over a black t-shirt (Cato) and pencil skirt (Target) and picked up more supplies for the bathroom.  I didn’t fix my hair but oh well…..you can’t be perfect looking all the time.

Since my daughter Grace is helping in other areas of the house while her sisters and I fix up the bathroom, she is looking pretty every day.  So we’ll show you a bit of what’s she’s been wearing this week.  At 23, she has a very sophisticated style.

And this other picture of her is my favorite of the week.  I mean let’s be real, if you have on a pair of red polka dot shoes then you look cute no matter what else you have on!

Perfection.

Thanks for joining us for our modesty series!  Be sure to check out the Embracing Modesty Gallery to see what else we’ve been wearing!

Follow me on Facebook!

Embracing Modesty, No. 17

Embracing Modesty, No. 17

I had planned to share some hot weather ideas with you today, but it’s been c-c-cold here this week and we couldn’t bear to wear our summer things.  So it will wait until the weather gets warm, which I am not in any hurry for.

Instead I’ll share few of the things Grace and I wore this past week.  The other girls wore mostly outfits you’ve already seen.

Grace has really embraced the scarf.  In fact, she is making a YouTube video of ways she likes to tie them.  I’ll share that with you when it’s ready.  Otherwise this outfit is a comfy skirt and top.  Easy-easy!

And I can’t leave this picture without mentioning her shoes.  Aren’t they darling?!  You can snap off the flowers and change them to others.  Cuteness!

It’s really all about the shoes, am I right?

I don’t remember what we were doing on this next day, but her little shirt vest is so cute I just had to show you.  She always looks so pretty.

This next pic is what I wore one day when I was running into town.  Just an easy day.

It’s finally getting warm enough for me to pull out my favorite Born sandals.  They are 10 years old, but I still love ‘em!

Even though you have seen many of these individual pieces already, mixing them up in new ways is what we love to do.

I hope you’re having a great time finding new ways to wear your things.  We will get to those warm weather ideas asap!

Check out the rest of this series in our Embracing Modesty Gallery!

Follow me on Facebook!