I swear it was just doing it…

by Jennifer on May 21, 2008

Have you ever taken your car to the mechanic to try to diagnose that funny little noise coming from under the hood, only when he got in the car with you to drive around and listen for it, the car wouldn’t produce the funny little sound?

Today was like that here at the H household. It was calm and peaceful. No trace of yesterday’s drama (or the day before, or the week before that) or tears. Girl had only sweet words for everyone except for one (only one!) little verbal dust-up with Boy about something not very important to either of them.

The car ran like a dream today. Figures.

Thank you all for the thoughtful, seasoned advice you shared on my last post. I sent out the distress signal, and you all answered with wisdom and solidarity. I appreciate it so, so much. Your response was what I hoped for and needed. I feel like I have a few new tools to try, and that I’m not alone in this.

I love this community.

One of my favorite suggestions (among many wonderful ones) was from Anna at The End of Motherhood. She linked to a post she wrote back in January called It’s About (Special) Time. This seems like a great place to start. Focused attention for 15 minutes a day, with each of my children alone on an activity they each choose. Focused, uninterruped, unshared, fun time. Right now, I sit down with each of them (we snuggle in a comfy chair) after school almost every day (we aim for every day) and ask about their day at school (what was the best part, worst part, funniest part). But this is something more than that. It would be time with me that Girl (and Boy) could count on and look forward to it. It’s worth a shot. It certainly can’t hurt.

Thank you for the book suggestions, also. I will take a look at them at the bookstore soon. Maybe as soon as tomorrow. Not that I’m desperate.

It was great to have such a peaceful day with Girl, but I’d be crazy to think that I can expect the same tomorrow or the next day. But I feel better prepared now, and that’s good for both of us, for all of us.

Still, it couldn’t hurt to keep a bottle of vodka in the freezer.

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{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Kimberly May 21, 2008 at 4:07 am

So glad you had a good day. And yes, the vodka belongs in the freezer. That’s called “mental health insurance”.

Kimberlys last blog post..Because I Know You Care About My Hair

Brenda May 21, 2008 at 5:21 am

Alone time with each is great. They CRAVE it. They will also let you know when you are one second late with it once the routine is established!

Daryl May 21, 2008 at 5:39 am

Sounds like an excellent plan and not only Girl and Boy will benefit .. so will you… and the cold vodka isnt a bad idea either .. ;-D

Daryls last blog post..r is for radishes!

Jenn @ Juggling Life May 21, 2008 at 6:21 am

When my littlest two (who are only 20 months apart) were small, I had them both in preschool on M-W and then on F one would go and one would stay home. It was great to have that one-on-one time.

Jenn @ Juggling Lifes last blog post..The Beach: Toddlers versus Teenagers

Kelley May 21, 2008 at 6:42 am

My least favorite part of visiting the mechanic is knowing that however small the problem I bring them is they will invariable attempt to convince me that the world is ending and that I can best prevent catastrophe, anarchy, and chaos by forking over hundreds of dollars.

Kelleys last blog post..I [heart] New York.

Emily R May 21, 2008 at 6:56 am

Or Ben & Jerry’s

Emily Rs last blog post..Not into yoga?

melissa May 21, 2008 at 8:10 am

Vodka, special time, a streak of muttered cursing–whatever works for you is what I say!

melissas last blog post..Champagne taste on a beer budget

Julie Pippert May 21, 2008 at 8:51 am

Yes, frequently.

Then I get The Attitude, like I am a dumb girl.

I divide it between making my husband do it (because they just don’t disbelieve the man) and letting it roll off my back and milking the Little Lady routine for all its worth.

I am a big believer in the Wine Cabinet. ๐Ÿ™‚

I am also a big believer in one on one time. ๐Ÿ™‚

Suzanne May 21, 2008 at 9:15 am

Very glad to hear that things are so much better today. But keep the vodka handy, you’d be amazed at how often its multidudinous medicinal qualities may be called upon.


Suzannes last blog post..Pot Roast Madness!

Angie @ Keep Believing May 21, 2008 at 9:42 am

My mechanic growing up was my dad. My sister and I used to literaly high 5 and arm pump when the car would actually act up when he was with us. Sad.

I am glad you had a great day and I am even more glad you have such a great community around you even if it is cyber.


Angie @ Keep Believings last blog post..A weekend retreat

Milena May 21, 2008 at 9:57 am

Feel so happy for you. Think positive, you might have a repeat. The special time advice sounds like a great idea. And for the record, I love the Jennifer H community too. A great place to visit and learn.

slouching mom May 21, 2008 at 10:07 am

Anna has great advice. I often look to her.

slouching moms last blog post..…to laugh, divine.

Mrs. G. May 21, 2008 at 11:11 am

I didn’t comment on your last post, because my kids are so much older and sometimes I feel a little antiquated in my advice, but I do remember the funks and phases of each of mine. And just around the time I would get out the phone book to look up the name of a child psychologist, things would change. Hang tough.

Mrs. G.s last blog post..Oh, You High, High Maintenance Women

andi May 21, 2008 at 11:27 am

I’m catching up on all of your posts. Sounds like you’re having all sorts of fun. I think the one-on-one advice is excellent. I may have to try that one myself as the three-year-old is driving me insane. Failing that, there is always my insurance policy. I think we have the same one – his name is Mr. Vino.

andis last blog post..Dumbassery makes for excellent blog fodder

Kellan May 21, 2008 at 12:11 pm

I have been through more stages with my 4 kids over the years than I can count or care to remember and all I know is that if you survive each one – you learn for the next one and the next. They all pass and when you look back you can neither believe that you survived or that you made such a big deal out of them (usually)!

Have a good evening – see you – Kellan

Kellans last blog post..I Do Love Banana Pancakes!

Katy (aka funny girl) May 21, 2008 at 12:23 pm

We started doing special time (some call it “floor time”) when our daughter was 4. She is now 9 and she still asks for it. I highly recommend this method!


Katy (aka funny girl)s last blog post..Hope

Just Jamie May 21, 2008 at 12:29 pm

Special time sounds like a smart, simple plan. I know my kids get extra whiny when I’m in front of the computer. They just want their Mommy to pay attention to them. Seems fair.

Just Jamies last blog post..Saturday Morning Ubiquity

Lisa May 21, 2008 at 3:40 pm

I love the 15 minute a day plan–we try to do individual dates with each child every month–weekly is just impossible with four ๐Ÿ™
But 15 minutes a day, that’s a total of an hour, I could do that, couldn’t I?

Jan May 21, 2008 at 6:56 pm

Yeah for new days and good mommy suggestions. Special minutes during the day is a life saver for them and me.. Glad that you are doing that and they are too.

Jans last blog post..200th Post Giveaway…

the mama bird diaries May 21, 2008 at 7:57 pm

That sounds like a wonderful idea, for you and your kids.

The vodka just for you.

And, oh yes, i’ve had that car only makes a noise when I’m alone driving it problem. ๐Ÿ™‚

the mama bird diariess last blog post..trying to laugh again

AMomTwoBoys May 21, 2008 at 9:23 pm

You don’t already have a bottle of vodka in the freezer?

Now I’m off to see what you’re talking about from yesterday…AllMediocre & badges are kicking my blog reading a*s.

AMomTwoBoyss last blog post..Who Am I Going To Piss Off? Oh Good! Everyone!

JCK May 21, 2008 at 10:58 pm

That thing about the mysterious sounds emanating from a car. Makes me CRAZY.

JCKs last blog post..Why was it even tempting in the first place?

Carolyn May 21, 2008 at 11:43 pm

I’m so happy to hear the “car” was running smoothly today. Perhaps you were more relaxed because you knew you had a few more tools in your belt and Girl could feel it so she chilled out too. Either that or she secretly reads your blog and felt bad about the last post.

I’m just sayin’.

Oh. And about that car thing. My car had a leak that filled the entire front floorboards with puddles of water when it rained (and in Vancouver that’s a lot). When we took it into the repair shop they sprayed a full hurricaneโ€™s worth of water on our car for two days straight from every conceivable angle short of turning it upside down and guess what? The interior remained dry as a bone. The upside is that it’s only leaked once more since the trip to the repair shop. And they took pity on us and only charged $68 for the whole service. Nice.

Hope you have no more leaks with Girl. And if you do, try turning her upside down and spraying her with water from every conceivable angle. You never know. It might just work.

Carolyns last blog post..i’m almost famous.

flutter May 21, 2008 at 11:43 pm


flutters last blog post..Surprises, unexpected.

Madge May 22, 2008 at 6:11 am

so glad you had a better day. i should try that chair thing…

Madges last blog post..FREE!! Blog Giveaway!!!

we_be_toys May 22, 2008 at 7:57 am

Its amazing what a little quality One-on-One can do to bad attitude!

But still, you might want to have that frozen bottle of vodka around – even if its just to soothe your nerves after being showed up by the car!

we_be_toyss last blog post..Who Needs Cable?

Coco May 22, 2008 at 10:52 am

Oh, Vodka. Mommy’s Little Helper, it is. So yes from me on that part.

I’m glad you guys had a better day. Hugs to you.

Cocos last blog post..Are You All Sick of Me Yet?

HRH May 23, 2008 at 2:34 pm

I love this community too.

HRHs last blog post..For the love of tile…

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