Josh was home this morning to help me get the boys ready. He was surprised that I woke them up with a mere fifteen minutes to get ready. I have learned that this makes my mornings much easier. I get ready, then wake up B and G. I get G dressed; he and I make my coffee and breakfast, and B joins us about then to put his shoes on & help me carry out my coffee. It's a whirlwind, but it's only fifteen minutes of crazy. Then we settle in the car, and G listens to music while B practices twenty addition and subtraction facts from his stack of flashcards in the backseat.
This morning, however, G was in a mood. No matter what he chose, he changed his mind. I have named this attitude of his "The Yes-No's". Before kids, I swore that I'd be totally consistent. I'd state my expectation to my children, then calmy discipline them swiftly if they didn't oblige. After B, I was able to maintain this policy. I could promise B a spanking for his defiance, and he'd avoid the spanking.
Then I had the Redhead.
Ninety percent of the time, G is an awesome kid. However, when he isn't an angel, he epitomizes stubborness. G can take a spanking, keep fussing, get over the orignial fuss, and begin fussing over the spanking. He has cost me thirty minutes in leaving the sitter's house (mostly when I'm picking the boys up, once while dropping them off) as he and I battled out over what he would or would not do. He heeds Sitter's warnings at these times, but makes me look like a jerk.
This morning's finale at our home was G screaming, stomping, begging me to hold him, then refusing to sit in his carseat. I was totally calm, and buckled him in anyways. I refuse to honor "Yes-No's". I reminded B to gather his addition and subtraction facts, and B projected his voice over his brother: I don't want this! Hold me, Mama, hold me!
So, I did what any compassionate mother who wanted to help her angry child would do. I offered the boy some Metallica, which he decided he didn't--then did--want. I turned on the Black Album, and he'd calmed down before B had finished all twenty facts.
Now that's good parenting.