Isabelle and I sparred with each other a few times before I dropped her off at preschool this morning. I was tired (I was at my computer writing until after 11 last night!) and she wasn’t listening. Neither of us were in the right. I figured things would be better when I picked her up from school.
Instead of completing her entering the house routine quickly (i.e., coat off, shoes off, washing hands), she took over five minutes to remove her coat and one shoe. It was agonizing. I raised my voice. She yelled back at me. This cannot continue, I thought.
“I have some picture books I want to share with you. Would you like to read them in the great room or your playroom?” I asked Isabelle once she finally finished washing her hands.
“The Gweat Woom,” she replied.
“Okay. I’ll get them and meet you in there.”
First we read I Wish You More by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld, which allowed me to remind her how much I love her even though we had been fighting today. Next we read Beach House by Deanna Caswell and Amy June Bates, which allowed us to talk about how much we cannot wait to go to Maine this summer. Afterwards, we read Peace is an Offering by Annette LeBox and Stephanie Graegin, which allowed me to snuggle Isabelle close and plant some kisses on her cheek. Finally, we read Goose by Laura Wall — twice! — which allowed us to imagine what life would be like with a pet goose.
30 minutes after we started reading together, we were at peace with one another. Reading picture books is one of the best ways to fix a problem, isn’t it?