I started a bath, then peeked in the tub - it was gross. I switched on the shower and got in, enjoying the first pleasant part of the morning: hot water! After a nice scrub and soaking shower I was cold, so I wrapped up in hubby's bathrobe and fixed myself a cup of hot tea with honey. Then, I put on a movie, just for me, a chick-flick: Julie and Julia. Of course the 2 year old woke up half-way through and I stopped to fix us breakfast, then returned to the movie. My 9 year old daughter awakened towards the end of the movie and joined us. "Ah, this is going to be a peaceful day." I thought to myself.
Big brother woke up and came in so I sent he and his sister to fix themselves breakfast while I checked e-mail. I got a great article from Empowering Parents on Calm Parenting: How to Get Control When Your Child is Making You Angry , I was reading it, sipping my luke-warm tea, agreeing with all the finer points and thinking "I'm doing pretty well as a parent" when chaos erupted from the kitchen. Yes, the cardinal sin had been committed, an atrocity so great it warranted an all-out battle: One child had taken the measuring spoon the other was reaching for. Yes, I know you're shocked that such a calamity could befall our home, but it did, and now the battle for top-decibel was "on". It wasn't long before the warring factions were at my desk, with the offending spoon, waving it to punctuate their stories.
Having just read:
"Why is it so easy to go from “zero to 60” when our kids make us angry? There are many reasons, but I think it’s mainly because we allow ourselves to go to 60. And in a sense, when we get up to 60—when we react emotionally—we’re allowing the behavior of our kids to determine how we’ll behave rather than the other way around."
You'd think that I would have kept my cool, but I didn't. I think I went to 70 and my head spun around a few times as I glared at them and loudly inquired if they were really at my desk fighting over A SPOON? I probably would have only gotten to 55 or so, except that the EXACT SAME THING HAPPENED YESTERDAY MORNING. Granted, it was a different spoon, just a plain old soup spoon, not an important MEASURING spoon like today.
They offered the standard excuses "I was there first" "they pushed me" "they saw me reaching for it and jumped in front", blah, blah, blah. At this point I was hearing Charlie Brown's teacher's noises "waw waw waw waw". I don't even remember the words of wisdom that I offered them, but I concluded that the behavior was a lack of respect for each other and as such they would serve one another breakfast (silently).
I ate 2 small Butterfinger candies. I stress eat. It's what I do, please don't judge - I'm OK with it.
After breakfast I had them clean their rooms (mostly to try to prevent them from occupying the same space as the other person.) After that, there were some other chores to be done, then lunch. Lunch preperation went pretty well until the argument over "who mom was going to sit next to". I feel so loved when my children argue over this (not really - I feel so annoyed. I try to feel loved, but I can't work it up). I cleverly solved this argument by... wait for it... sitting. between. them. This solution had been previously suggested by my daughter, but Alpha Male Child would not hear of it.
After lunch we played a bit, then put the 2 year old down for a nap. Now it was time for school. We are working our way through Frontier House (click here to see what we've done so far) and I felt very accomplished that we've done "official schoolwork" 2 days in a row (since we've become "unschoolers" or whatever hybrid thereof, I've still not shaken the feeling that we must produce actual work in order to be legitimate.) The toddler awakened immediately after this and the kids went to fix a snack. I insisted that it contain protein, so they settled on waffles with peanut butter (and finagled a sprinkle of cinnamon-sugar on top). I promise you, the very moment I heard waffles pop out, the ruckus started. This time they came to me bearing a knife. Before they even spoke anything directed at me I just yelled "Seriously? A knife? You're fighting over a knife? Go away" Not one of my finer mommy moments. It seems that the alpha male child had harpooned the other's waffle, scarring it forever with a hole, rendering it completely inedible, of course. She was now protesting that it had to be replaced, which male child said was wasteful. I skillfully solved this problem by demanding that restitution be made, and brokered a waffle trade.
I ate the other 2 Butterfinger candies.
At this point, it is time to leave for karate class, so we pack into the car. After answering 20 questions from the toddler about where bubba is and "why" (note to toddler - "you're not 4. Stop asking Why?") I finally get a placated "OK". A few minutes later I hear "here go momma" repeated at least 4 times before I respond by holding my arm behind me, while driving, contorted so that he can hand me whatever it is he wants me to have. I pinch my fingers together and ask "what is it?" The answer? "A booger."
It is at this point I decided that I was taking the night off. Hubby met me and picked up the kids, I had a pedicure. Then retail therapy at Target. I got nothing for myself, only for the kids. Tell me how that happens?
I always like to try to look for the BS in any situation. Sometimes the BS just falls all over you, sometimes you have to dig for it. Oh, and I should also mention that BS is "Bright Side", but it's more interesting to just call it BS. So, for today:
BS: I have clean sheets to sleep in tonight.
Oh - bonus BS: my toenails are cute!