On a perfect morning, my kids wake up happy, we have a healthy breakfast, and they gladly put on their shoes and socks and we are off. All in a timely manner with smiles. The reality looks more like this:  

Me: Grant, put your shoes on. Time to go! (smiling)
Grant (age 3): I don’t want those shoes.
Me: Grant, put your SHOES on. Time to go! (said a little louder this time because that is soooo effective)
Grant: I DON’T WANT THESE SHOES. THEY ARE TOO SMALL. THEY ARE TOO BIG. (he doesn’t know the difference)
Me: (while shoving shoes on feet) Grant, these are fine. They fit. LET’S GO.

This situation is new at our house. My kids have always had one pair of shoes. Yes, I may have a back up pair but they are not in the regular rotation. Call me a minimalist and frugal or blame it on the lack of cute shoes for wide feet. Take your pick.


Recently, multiple pairs of shoes have accumulated in the bin (we ordered a pair too big, hand me downs, etc.). And now Grant is asserting his 3-year-old-oh-so-rational independence each morning through shoe selection. And it’s making what used to be a calm morning routine not as calm or dare I say...painful?

What to do? The mom side of me is not sure how Grant will react when I take away the poorly fitting shoes in this exact situation. The professional side of me knows that whenever I have reduced other “things” in their lives, everyone benefits. They may be sad or question for a minute but they forget just as quickly or most often, they move on to the next activity.


When we have fewer choices, things are easier. Fewer pictures on less crowded bookshelves means you actually enjoy them more. Fewer clothes you love that fit means you have to do laundry more often which eliminates overwhelming laundry piles and makes packing a breeze. Fewer easy-to-access toys actually encourage your kids to play more and play more creatively.

While you may think just one more pair of shoes will get you closer to your dream reality and make you happier...could it actually be that it's one less? 


Photo credit: Brooke Bryand Photography