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2010-07-30 - 6:27 a.m.

I really do have the most awesome kids!

Yes, all six of them , each in their own unique way.

My nice neighbor, the one who I have been reluctant to date (I mean, really now, who actually thinks it would be WISE to date a neighbor that lives on my street! COME ON... I don't see ANY HANDS going up....)

Anyway, the kind wonderful neighbor came to the Fair with his daughter and her best friend.

And we all had a lovely time, that is until one of the darlings heard "NO" in response to a request to ride a ride, after the tickets for rides were all used up.

I have made it VERY CLEAR what the parameters were- that each child could pick TWO rides to go on, so that the expectations of each would not be misaligned with reality.

She understood.
She knew each had 10 tickets (and rides were between 3 to 5) She KNEW that if she WANTED to take THREE three ticket rides that was fine, but the moment she choose a 5 ticket ride that meant only two rides.

She KNEW some of the tickets were bought by her friend who was generous in sharing, but who would be the one to use the extra tickets as she saw fit.

She was kept busy while the last ride was taken by that friend and a couple of the girls.

She was kept otherwise occupied ( I think she was off in the bathroom line with big sister); so it wasn't even awareness of the friend being on a ride when she was not.

It was just the inability to accept "NO" for something SHE Wanted that set off the oppositional, defiant fighting behavior in a strong willed attempt to get her own way.

The full blown tantrum at 9pm as we were about to leave -


and it was BED TIME

and she is a kid with issues that not all kids have to handle.

So I did what I ALWAYS DO

The was that I ALWAYS DO IT

and the most wonderous thing is that it was much like the Hershey Park experience- I am SO USED to this that I don't EVER get upset (how could I ever get upset with a child, or even an adult with a disability who need that extra help?);
but the wonderous thing was that this time there was a difference in EVERYONE ELSE'S RESPONSE TOO!!

My neighbor is AWESOME.

I don't think ONE OF THEM was very stressed by the whole thing.

We are all SO USED TO THESE MOMENTS which come and then pass.

And FOUR Strangers came up to me with praise.

Three were Special Ed Teachers offering to help if needed, and the fourth was a random MOM who took the time to come over and tell me:

" I was watching you handle that before, and I just want to tell you YOU ARE AMAZING!"

I was so appreachiative of that kindness of strangers who take take time to express positive support and apprechiation.

It is wonderful to have TRAINED people recognize a job well done (as the Special Ed Teachers did) ;
and it is wonderful to have compassion and empathy and support from a community; and
it is wonderful to have PRAISE from random strangers.

Considering the current events, that one moment really meant alot to me last night.

The words were spoken after I had corralled the group to a SAFE place where the little fiery fiesty one could calm and have some space to relax and take a little time ALONE to calm.

She wasn't going to calm until she had that opportunity. The thing is, in the middle of a crowd , one can't give that opportunity so a tight hold and escort to a safe place is needed to get to the place where SHE CAN calm in the way that works for her.

And she did.

After having the safe space to do so, she basically took her own time out (as I like to think of it) and calms and stopped the agressive and dangerous behaviors that require intervention.

And then we were ready to go home, one the rest of us gave her that space and waited it out.

It was so much like our Hershey Park Moment.

Not AT ALL surprising.

And what is GREAT is that , just like our Hershey Park Experience- what the kids are going to recall is NOT going to be the rough patches- but the beauitful day that we spent together as a family having FUN!

Their first thought of Hershey is NOT the tantrum in that park- but all the WONDERFUL MOMENTS OF THAT DAY!

And their first thought of the Fair will NOT be the one tantrum at the Fair by a sibling, but the rides and the cotton candy (yes I gave them each a small amount! ONe bag shared by six!), and the Rodeo and most definately the little cowgirls who were riding the SHEEP.

One of mine is insisant "I WANT TO DO THAT!!!"

I told her she needs to join 4H Sheep club and work with the sheep for a couple of years and then if she is small enough and still interested she can learn to ride them. So in a few years if she does that, and puts in the time and work to learn all about it- I will THEN Be HAPPY to do what we need to get her to ride a sheep at the fair!
She really DOES pay attention to details when interested in something. I think she heard the announcer say there was a weight class of the sheep riders. She was upset to tell me she ALREADY WEIGHS TOO MUCH!

IT was the cutest thing- her interest and her determination. She was let down when realizing the sheep riding cow girls are growing up on farms taking care of sheep from the moment they can walk and talk, and that they learn this young and once over a certain weight can't ride the sheep anymore.

They were the littlest contenders! It was somthing to see a three year old ride (of course with Daddy's hand on hold of her back jeans in a firm grip for safety the whole time!)

The 5 and 6 year olds were riding on their own however!

Interesting Evening... to say the least!

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