How to play more (cheaply) and stop yelling…

ts fluffy time at mine at the moment, well fluffy with a layer of dust. I have promised my children to play more and clean less, after week one I can report back successfully. In fact I have not raised my voice in anger towards any of my three, yes three children in six days! As Molly pointed out last night; dragon mummy has gone on her holidays and fun mummy has come to stay.

However I am keeping all activites cost free!

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So when Owen deliberately ran off with horse riding Barbie on Monday causing Libby to explode into Niagara Falls style tears I managed to contain my frustration and instead we had a conversation about stealing and used Oliver Twist as a useful frame of reference. (Hidden message being – do it again and you will be sharing a bunk with the artful dodger under Mr Bumbles watch.)

On Tuesday when Libby asked to play with play doh, instead of feigning deafness I swiftly suppressed the blood curdling shriek rising in my throat and together we made all manner of models. If I am honest I am growing to love the patchwork effect on my cream carpet and it keeps the cats amused for hours licking play doh out of their claws.

BB

I’ve ignored Facebook, not had my usual Friday night at the online casino, not picked up a book. Instead we have watched Home Alone for the thirteenth thousanth time, played board game after board game and been on family strolls. Me time has gone out of the window as I focus on simply being a calm, quiet mum.

The bets are against me succeeding with this…..

When all refused to eat my beautiful home made spag bol on ‘why, mummy, wednesday’ I merely forced a grin and scooped it into the bin whilst simultaneously making a round of cheese butties and inventing a new child rearing phenomena ‘school age children-led weaning’. Book to follow shortly but should you wish to attempt before reading stock up heavily on fish fingers, co co pops, and lemonade.

Now as the week has gone on I have become more exceedingly tired, not shouting requires much more energy than a good screech, plus you use your facial muscles a lot more trying to control your voice to a cheery, irritating loving level. I am also training for a Crossfit competition and now whilst the children sleep I have to clean up the debris that three short people and one furry four legged thing leave behind. Yet with all this in mind on Thursday I still faced one of my deepest fears and allowed the children to paint. Supervised they behaved impeccably, only painting themselves and their wooden birdhouses. However Libby-Sue needed a bath and her bed was calling so I had to, I had to leave them alone.

Libby painting

All seemed fine, bb was just finishing up her milk and I was about to pop the lid on and put it back in the fridge when I heard; “mummy I’ve finished; let me show you.”

Now I was upstairs, dragon mummy would have just yelled “no you fool, stay where you are don’t bring the paint covered bird house up to me”. But no, I don’t shout, instead I ‘called out’. “Honey please don’t….”

Too late

“What mummy I can’t hear you”

Oh the irony, followed by trip, crash, bang,

And then tiny thuds as a freshly painted wooden birdhouse tiptoed down my stairs leaving a rainbow behind.

To my credit I did not yell like a banshee, but as I surveyed my carpet I inwardly muttered every swear word I know, yes even that really naughty one, twice.

And that ladies and gentlemen is how not to shout at your kids and how to extend your vocabulary.

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