Another day with no yelling! I think I am improving!
I read about the rubber band method of parenting and today I wore several hair bands on my wrist. I looked for Alexis and Ash doing good. Whenever I observed them listening, playing well together, cleaning up a mess, serving others, saying something nice...any act that is good, I praised them. The ideas is positive reinforcement. Whenever I praised them, I moved a hair band to the other wrist. My task was to get all the hair bands to my other wrist.
This is positive reinforcement for the children, which has been shown to be a powerful learning tool. This is also me looking for the good in my kids. When I look for good, I see good! I focus on the good and suddenly my outlook is positive and optimistic instead of stuck in a hole.
I completed my task: it was actually quite easy to find my children doing good. My kids really are great kids. I liked doing this today. I will try again tomorrow!