I'm considering today one giant leap forward.
First off, it was a stressful day from sunrise to well after sunset. A lot needed to get done and the schedule was packed.
Second, I had children coming out of my ears today. Today was a Girl Scout field trip so in addition to my three, I had nine extra children, all of which seem to have ten times the energy I have with have the attention span. At one point with the Girl Scouts I became frustrated but instead of yelling my voice dropped to a whisper. I didn't even have to think about it before hand, it was just a reaction. THAT IS HUGE!!
After Girl Scouts ended I spent several hours babysitting more children while I still had things to accomplish, including grocery shopping. While grocery shopping with five small children I was not only able to get a chaotic and disruptive situation under control quickly, I did it by explaining my expectations in a whisper. The kids responded so well that I bought them cheetos as a reward. Not as a bribe, or as a way to control them, but because not only met but also exceeded the expectations I laid out for them and I wanted to spontaneously reward good behavior.
Third, it was a really late night. We had a church potluck and dance party and stayed there dancing until a full hour past the children's bedtime. By the time we got them in the car, two out of three were crying. Drek and I chose to see the humour, and joined in the cacophony, encouraging our oldest to contribute. We all howled in harmony. The family that cries together . . . um, avoids yelling?