As a parent, there are days that the kids seem to get under my skin a little more than others. It's difficult, however, to know whether this is because they are just whining and complaining more than usual or if I am just less tolerant. Les spent last weekend with some friends (and Lucas) in Point Roberts and I was with the girls. They are fantastic children and are a lot of fun to have around. I have so few complaints overall that I feel badly picking on this one issue. However, as many parents know, the whining can get to you after a while. Whether it was missing their mom or what, I don't know, but the level of whining definitely got to me the last couple of days.
Actually, it was probably the combination of whining and not listening that is the most frustrating. My favourite exchange, among many, went like this:
Molly "But Dad I want to go to the beach"
Me "We are going to the beach Molly"
Molly "I want to go. Why aren't we going to the beach"
Me (with a little frustration in my voice) "I just told you Molly, we are going. We are driving there right now"
Molly "No we're not. This isn't the right way to go to the beach. But you promised we are going to the beach."
To those people without kids, this may seem like a cute exchange. The 4 year old (who incidentally is getting to know some Vancouver landmarks quite well) giving driving directions/instructions to her father. However, those with small kids will appreciate how annoying it can be to constantly have to repeat things 5 times and then resort to threatening to take away a privilege before actually being heard. Having said this however, it's pretty nice to have children at the stage in life where the thought of losing a bed-time story is enough to coerce compliance just about every time. Too bad they don't listen the first 4 times I say it.