I found myself starting to shout four times today, and was able to stop myself three times. (Something to be proud of eh.) The fourth happened right before the DH and I put the kids to bed. My nearly two-year old daughter had face and hands full of yogurt and was about to pounce on an uphosltered chair. My cries of 'NOOOOOOOOOO' caught her attention...after she cleaned herself on the cushion. Double bugger.
So, how did the kids react to a calmer Mom? Not sure if there was a difference on their part. I guess it's too early to tell. For my part, I had to keep reminding myself not to shout when:
1. My three-year old son started doing forward rolls in the sofa;
2. His little sister followed suit;
3. They smeared ice cream in the carpet;
4. Both took great pleasure in pulling every single book out of the bookcase and started kicking them around. Right after I cleaned up their bedrooms.
5. My daughter, normally the good eater, hosted a one-woman stand-off at dinnertime, absolutely refusing to eat her food if she couldn't watch Dora.
Once I got the hang of that, I wasn't as flustered as I normally am. But I feel I was too lenient on the kids since reasoning with toddlers as to why they should stop doing something takes 10x as long as just shouting 'STOP', 'NO' or "BECAUSE I SAID SO'. But, we'll see how it goes.