7 Rules for a Peaceful Home
No matter what you do, life with small kids guarantees a certain amount of strife and high emotion. After all, you can't expect that your 3-year-old won't bonk her head and have a meltdown in the course of an average day, that your toddler and preschooler won't squabble endlessly over a toy, or that your exhausted 4-month-old won't wail when you try to put her down.
But after five years of being a mom, I now see how predictable many conflicts in family life can be and how easy it is to go overboard when trying to respond in esteem-affirming, intellectually stimulating, developmentally appropriate ways. And while life with small kids will always be noisy and filled with emotional extremes, my husband and I have decided that we don't have to take every disturbance of the peace in our home as a matter of course. We've come up with these rules -- for us, not the kids -- to help our lives run smoothly.
Contributing editor Barbara Rowley's most recent book is Baby Days, an activities guide for parents of young children.