Like most siblings, our kids usually had a running competition for just about everything.
“I get shotgun.”
“No, I said it first!”
“Can I push the button in the elevator?”
“No, she did it the last time!”
And so on and so forth.
Our solution was that they would take turns having it be their day – their day for everything.
“Whose day is it?’ became a regular question when any conflict came up. The child whose day it was, got to have first choice about anything and everything. If they wanted to push the button to cross the street, sit in the front seat, have the first smoothie, put the books into the library book-drop or choose the video, it was decided by “Whose day is it?”
Any issue that might have been a potential cause for bickering was pre-empted by those four little words.
It might seem like this would promote grasping selfishness, but it was really just the opposite. Sometimes the child whose day it was would disarmingly step aside and generously choose to let the other push the button to cross the street. Even though it was “their day” it was their choice to either push the button or to let the other have that privilege.
They managed the schedule of alternating days, and never seemed to get confused. They even made it a habit to look months ahead on the calendar and see if it would be “their day” on their next birthday. And they made trades so birthdays always fell on their day.
I don’t really know when or how “Whose Day Is It?” ended. Eventually the practice just faded away and became replaced with a sense of order, fair play, and real other-centeredness.
Welcome! My name is Andrena Paladini and this is a blog about family and love and faith and fun. I call it Paladini Potpie because a potpie is like an adventure in a crust. You never know what might come up, but it’s always going to be good!
Think of the best potpie you’ve ever eaten…hot flaky crust holding a rich savory sauce and all kinds of pieces of meat and vegetables…and who knows what?
As a family, we’ve chosen to live within the parameters of God’s love and protection. This is the crust of our Paladini Potpie. The crust never changes. Within this crust, the savory sauce of family love binds it all together. That is also fairly constant. But beyond the crust and the sauce we can add just about anything!
Good ideas come our way and we’ve adopted and adapted them to add to what John calls our treasure box of memories. These stories and ideas from John’s treasure box of memories are the ingredients I’m putting into our Paladini Potpie.
(Okay, so this ridiculous mixing of metaphors about treasure boxes and potpies is exactly what I’m talking about. Silly and ungrammatically correct. But both illustrations work… so we’ll mix them together and it’ll be just fine!)
John and I have been married for 30 years. Our children have wonderfully doubled in number since David married Amanda, Monica married Dan, and Matthew married Sarah.
And the newest little treats that have been added to our potpie are six adorable grandchildren - Ethan, Angelina, Nathan, Audrey, Maleia and Caleb!
I hope you’ll subscribe to my Paladini Potpie blog, and keep up with all the fun new ingredients I add. Hopefully you’ll enjoy our stories and ideas, and find something you’ll want to put into your own potpie! Bon appétit!
May 5, 2011 at 5:20 pm
I love that! I pretty much didn’t have another child because of the conflicts that I didn’t want to deal with. If I would have had as creative a mind as yours I might have been able to handle it. Thanks for sharing!! (that wasn’t the only reason for having one) 🙂
May 6, 2011 at 5:28 am
It seems like the only real issue my kids fought about was riding shotgun. With Craig being so much bigger and stronger than Carly, she didnt ever stand a chance of gaining control of that and I remembered being in her same shoes when I was a girl. My solution? Similar to yours except to make it more simple, they had an entire month to enjoy the front seat. She got the odd numbered months, he the even to match their birthday months. No trading allowed (that was for my sake!) It solved the problem instantly. It was one of my most wiser choices in all of my motherhood years!