I'm trying to be a better parent. It's definitely a two-steps-forward, one-step-back process. I've learned a lot more about parenting young children now that my first kids are getting older. Most people don't have the luxury of getting do-overs but with a large family that's a bit spread out in age, I kind of do. I used to think that the purpose of discipline was to stop an undesirable behavior. With that end in mind, the disciplinary technique didn't matter all that much. As long as it wasn't extreme, anything was fair game. But as Hero and company get older, I've realized I was very off the mark. I think the whole purpose of discipline is teaching self-control. Bad behaviors come and go. Learning to be centered, calm, and rational is a skill that lasts a lifetime. Of course, the best way to teach this is to model it. So, it's come full circle and I've realized that discipline is a lot more about ME as a parent than the children. You might be wondering what's prompted this introspection. Right now we are surviving rather than thriving, as a family, and I just hate that. I don't mind having a loud and crazy house. But I think that, lately, with a pre-teen in the house and younger kids totally willing to parrot anything that she says, we're heading in a direction that's not good. Pray for me that my new found resolve weathers the storm.