Have you ever noticed what a powerful influence music has on mood and behavior? Today we were having a really bad day. I wanted to tackle some major housecleaning, but the kids weren’t thrilled to jump on my bandwagon. One child, in particular, would burst into tears every time I gave her any cleaning instruction. At one point Child A decided Child B was wasting Swiffer duster sheets and forcibly took away and dismantled the duster rod itself (names are changed to protect the not-so-innocent). Child B then whacked Child A across the back of the neck with a piece of the dismantled rod. I turned just in time to see the blow and both kids hit the floor wailing. By this time my nerves were shot and I was tempted to just send them all to bed for the afternoon.

For some reason, however, I went to the CD player and popped in a CD I came across recently while reorganizing our collection: Butterfly Kisses & Bedtime Prayers by Bob Carlisle. I haven’t listened to it in years. The music is just so pleasant and light, and the mood started to change almost immediately. I teared up over Butterfly Kisses, a song that could turn a grown man to mush. By the time we hit number five, Edelweiss (what a beautiful song!), I breathed a blissful sigh and observed the transformation that had taken place in such a short time. In the course of a few minutes, we had gone from anger, frustration, and tears, to something out a Norman Rockwell painting. We were in the kitchen making muffins! No more fighting, no more tears, no more cracking the whip.

By the time hubby got home, there was a pot of soup simmering on the stove and muffins cooling on the counter. We never finished cleaning the floor or most of my other grand plans for the day, but we snagged some of that most elusive substance – quality time – and for that I feel blessed.

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