What Was I Thinking?!

September 28th, 2012 by Dionna | 5 Comments
Posted in Children, Eclectic Learning, Gentle/Positive Discipline, natural parenting, Preschoolers, Toddlers

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Welcome to the September edition of Authentic Parenting Blog Carnival: Exploring and Learning.
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Authentic Parenting Blog Carnival hosted by The Positive Parenting Connection and Authentic Parenting. This month our participants are writing about this exploring and learning! Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.


I had this whole post planned about how Kieran has begun to engage in illegal arts and crafts activities. In the past couple of weeks, he’s glued tissue paper to my walls, scribbled on several things with crayons (including a door, several plastic containers, the inside of the van, and his car seat – twice), cut a bedspread with his scissors, puddled glue on the carpet and emptied another container of glue on the patio, painted the side of the house . . . the list grows longer each day.

After each incident, the sentence that runs through my head (and sometimes comes out of my mouth) is “what was he thinking?!

Then I was going to share a story or two from when I was a child – moments when my own mother would have been thinking the same thing about me. Like the time when I was seven and tried to walk home from school and ended up wandering alone and lost. Surely my mom wondered what was running through my head when she found me crying.

I was going to share those stories, but then we went shoe shopping.

What, pray tell, does shoe shopping have to do with contraband sparkle glue or lost children? Allow me to explain.

Kieran has this pair of tennis shoes. He loves them. They are Stride Rites, and he insists they make him run faster than anyone.

2011-10-31 05

Kieran fighting crime in his Spiderman costume & Stride Rites.


We bought them about a year (or more) ago. (ahem)

Kieran has these three friends, all almost exactly the same age. The four of them like to switch shoes. Every time they are together, shoes are swapped. And then a couple of months ago, at least one of the three other boys outgrew everyone’s shoes.

I didn’t think anything of it. (cough cough)

In a stroke of luck (I didn’t know it was lucky at the time), Kieran’s second pair of tennis shoes – the ones he wears to get messy – finally kicked the bucket. (heh) It was time, I decided, to go get him new tennis shoes. The Stride Rites could be the old, messy pair.

The Stride Rites that are size 9.5.

We went to the Stride Rite store and tried on a 10.5.

“I can’t get them on!,” said Kieran, struggling with the new pair of sneakers.

Me: “What do you mean you can’t get them on? Here, let’s make sure you have them loosened up.”

Nope . . . I couldn’t shove his feet in either. We looked like Cinderella’s stepsisters with a pair of sneakers. So we grabbed a pair of size 11.

Kieran: “These are too big, my toe doesn’t touch.”

Me: “Honey, your toes aren’t supposed to touch, let me feel. . . . Hmm, those fit right now, there’s not much room to grow. Let’s try on an 11.5.”

Kieran {whining}: “But my toe doesn’t touch!”

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how I found out that Kieran’s feet have been cramped in his tennis shoes for who knows how long. We bought him shoes two sizes bigger.

What was I thinking?!

Sometimes, we just don’t think. Neither do our kids. But at least when Kieran is exploring his boundless creativity with art, he is building new pathways in his brain. He is developing complex thinking skills, engaging in sensory experiences, discovering cause and effect and a myriad of other skills.1

I was just ignoring the fact that my child’s feet had grown.

I had this whole post planned about how my child doesn’t think before he makes a mess. Then I discovered a mess of my own.

I changed the post. I got out some new art supplies. And I bought Kieran two new pairs of shoes.


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5 Responses to:
"What Was I Thinking?!"

  1. OH that’s awesome. I have done that too. But ya know what, even bigger kids do that and don’t say anything about it. My daughter T just bought shoes almost three sizes bigger than what she had been wearing before. She’s 9, btw. The 12yo, same. thing. Seriously. Everytime we go get shoes. I’m starting to wonder if they are making shoes sizes smaller and smaller. Yeah, that’s it. A shoe sizing conspiracy. ;)

  2. Aw, poor guy! In your defense, his shoes had probably stretched out and “grew” a little with him. He probably would have complained if his little feet were being strangled.

    I just did a decoupage project last night in my living room, and I got splatters of glue all over EVERYTHING. I was so focused on what I was doing that I didn’t even notice. There’s some on my dress, on the sofa, on my coffee table, and on the telephone. So, I can certainly understand how kids get creative with reckless abandon. =)

    Thank you for the reminder to check my kids’ shoes!

  3. laura   mamapoekie

    we had a draw on grandmother’s walls and radiator phase. But that was to prove her discomfort at our living situation… I think I did at one point ask her if she was out of her mind…
    I guess she was feeling out of her mind, the poor thing, completely having to restrain herself All The Time…
    Good on you for ‘getting it’ before it got you.
    Thanks for your submission. You are a wonderful person and parent

  4. That shoe thing happens to ALL parents at one time or another. I’ve now been hearing it once a week. In fact sometimes the kids insist on wearing the too small shoes. So don’t feel guilty, feet have very odd growth spurts. Oh, and…crayons are pretty much illegal at my house. Washable markers actually come off/out of things!

  5. teresa   momgrooves

    we did the same thing!!! Well nearly. It wasn’t two whole sizes, but she’d been wearing too small shoes for a while. Oops.

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