Taking out my phone and documenting it all also helps me. It helps me to get a different perspective on the situation at hand. It isn't exactly like war photography or anything, but it does separate me from the action enough to change the way I'm feeling about it. Taking pictures and videos of the craziness of my kids helps change me from being angry at them to understanding that they are really just upset and need to work it out of their systems. They are tiny humans with big feelings after all.
When we were in the rain-forest section of the zoo recently, a bird pooped directly on Annika's arm. It is a little hard to see in this picture, but I just had to take a picture. I know it is good luck in many cultures for a bird to poop on you, but it is also really gross. I whipped out my phone to document the disgusting-ness, and then quickly realized that I wasn't carrying any wipes with me that day (an oversight that will surely never happen again). Luckily, there was another mom close who was more than happy to help a girl out in trouble.
This is my technique for dealing with kids just being kids. It keeps it all in perspective. We always look at the pictures and videos later and laugh together. I'm not sure if this helps them at all, but I always love it. Sometimes when they are really frustrating me in the moment, I employ the technique of another mother from some message board way back. I say to them, "Oh my goodness you are being so insert age of child!" This also helps remind me that they are just acting their age. I don't enjoy these times by any means, but I don't want to forget them either.
These sour parts of parenting are what make the sweet so much sweeter.
When we remember our children as small beings learning the ways of being human, will we only remember the sweet parts? Am I the only parent that takes these kinds of pictures? Are my children going to kill me one day for putting these pictures on the internet?