Brad and I have some very different ideas when it comes to parenting. We try to look at this in a positive way. For example, this week when Maddux snagged a pink marker from my scrapbooking stuff and colored in his new (formerly) khaki corduroys, Brad and I had different reactions. My initial reaction was to hang him upside down from the ceiling and never, ever buy him new clothing. Ever. Never ever. Brad's reaction was to laugh and explain to Maddux that markers are for paper, not clothing. However, if Breuklyn and Maddux are teasing each other for the millionth time in 5 minutes and both are screaming at the top of their lungs, it is Brad who is about to lose his mind. He will be plotting how we can auction them off on Ebay, so then it is my turn to go into Breuklyn's room and explain to her, calmly, that if they can't play nicely together that we are going to have a yard sale with all of their toys. We do whatever it takes to keep our blood pressure within relatively normal limits. It's a process.
Yesterday Brad came up with an absolutely ingenious parenting strategy that worked wonders with our children. He said that if they didn't stop running around the house like maniacs that he would call Santa Claus and tell him that he shouldn't come to our house. The kids stopped running... for about 10 minutes. When the kids came racing back into the living room, Brad jumped up and grabbed the phone. As the kids froze mid-sprint, my eyes widened in anticipation as to where this was going to go. He dialed about 15 numbers (I guess the North Pole is long distance, right?) and the conversation went like this,
Brad: Hello?? Mrs. Claus? Hi! How are you?
-listens and nods his head-
B: How is Santa? Has he been feeling well? Yes, I am sure that you are very busy this time of year.
-he continues talking to himself-
B: No, that's ok! If he is busy, then I won't bother him. I was just hoping to speak to him for a moment.
-did I mention that my children are whispering, "please daddy!! don't tell him that we were being mean... we'll be good... we promise!!!!" in the background?-
B: Well, if he gets a chance, he can call me back. You have caller ID, right? Yes? Great, then you have my number.
The kids are thrilled that Brad didn't rat them out to Santa and I swear that they behaved themselves for the rest of the evening. Every 15 minutes they would swing through the living room to check and see if Santa had called back, but they were quiet and extremely polite. Brad was very proud of himself. I don't know what we will do when Christmas is over, do you think the Easter Bunny has this much pull?