After an especially trying trip to the grocery store as a family on a Sunday afternoon I was at my wit's end. With all of 'em. Which I get is totally unfair towards G, since he really did nothing wrong, annoying, or embarrassing in any way. He pushed the cart, put all the groceries through the check out, loaded them all in the truck, unloaded them when we got home (....now I am realizing how G should be the one who was all fed up, since he had to deal with our children's crazy I've-never-been-out-in-public-before-therefore-I-can't-possibly-know-how-to-act circus AND a wife that apparently checked out before we actually checked out, if you know what I mean. Anyway, I'm arguing with Monkey for the 15th time that since he couldn't act nicely or say anything nice he wasn't going to go play a video game until he could act better. This is after the 7 times in the store I told him if he wasn't being nice or talking nice then wouldn't get to play when he got home. I had finally convinced Monkey that what would redeem him would be 10 minutes of just not being mean. You don't have to be nice, just stop being mean. Just don't talk. I'll consider that the same as being nice. Just stop talking. Stop talking. Stop. Talking. Monkey was trying, and I mean really struggling with this concept. You can just tell that he is actively trying to keep himself from ranting at me. It's so hard, I know. Trust me. I get it. So when he opens his mouth to complain I interrupt and say "If it's not nice, don't say it. Just don't....no....it better be nice or nothing at all!" He stops short of whatever retort he had about to say. I can see the wheels turning "Just say something nice, Monkey" I say. "Mom" he says slowly, pondering his next words carefully "you are....not....a...boy. You are....a girl.."