They usually involve - or follow - a late night, a quantity of sugar food, a houseful of guests, a public outing or a combination there of.
Before I had children, I was the one who would look with disdain at people growling at their children in public. I would confidently internalise my own response, vowing never to treat MY children in the same manner. I would never wish for school holidays to be over, or bedtimes to be 7 pm. I would cheerfully host a house load of other children and know that mine would happily share toys and space with nary a grizzle.
I'd never raise my voice, threaten to withdraw privileges, ban the TV or computer (as if! MY children wouldn't even be aware of such things!). I'd make play dough, encourage painting on the deck, be thrilled with recycled box-art, enjoy the huts in the lounge made from all the clean and neatly folded sheets. I'd make marvellous home cooked meals every night, all of which would be consumed with gusto and thanks.
My children would gladly collect their pocket money each week (after Sunday school of course), their reward for completing their jobs uncomplainingly and efficiently.
Seriously, what was I thinking!?! Yesterday, at end of tether, I sat my 9 year old ON HER BOTTOM, ON THE FLOOR in a madly busy shopping mall for time out, having been nagged one too many times for sweets/smiggle/lemonade/money. I don't know who was more mortified.