Friday, September 4, 2009

Close Quarters Parenting

We just arrived in Boston, where we will be finishing the summer with a long weekend. The weather should be great, and we have some fun outings planned, including swimming in Walden Pond (Simplify, simplify) and playing in Weezie's Garden for Children.

However, the process of getting here was, as always, anything but simple and carefree. The kids spent the first hour of the trip screaming in the back seat, practically making my ears bleed and distracting John in heavy traffic. Then Bess kept taking off her seat belt and went into Repetitive Mode, where she just asked the same question 100 times without ever actually listening to the answer as far as I could tell. Harry screamed for awhile, then slept for a bit, and then screamed for the last 40 minutes of the ride after Bess woke him up for no apparent reason whatsoever.

Needless to say, these past several hours do not represent my finest parenting. I get a bit claustrophobic in the car, and a little car sick too, and I'm easily overstimulated by the noise. I still cannot figure out a way to get the kids to behave safely and have fun on long car trips. I try all manner of tactics, some qualifying as "positive parenting" and others decidedly not, but in the end I always expend a lot more energy than I'd like and don't really get very good results.

I am going to devote some time over the next few days to strategizing for the ride home. Perhaps while I'm soaking up some rays on the shores of the Pond, watching the kids splashing happily, some inspiration will hit. And, of course, I'm always open to suggestions....

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