Yesterday was a fairly typical afternoon. The TV was blaring in the family room even though I'm not sure anyone was even watching it. The phone was ringing with a reminder that my kids' lunch account balances were low at school. My 14 year old had rap songs (if you can really call them songs?) blasting from his ipod in the kitchen. My 12 year old daughter was practicing piano. My 16 year old daughter was asking me if we could go antique shopping on Saturday. The dog was barking to be let outside. The three and four year old boys came running full tilt through the room screaming about something or other. I couldn't quite make it out. But it seems that my 6 year old son was involved somehow, because he was in hot pursuit also at top volume. And my 9 year old son was yelling from upstairs "MOM...can you sign my field trip form and help me make a costume for colonial day at school?" My desk is in the kitchen so this is the usual environment that I write in. With activity swirling around me and lots and lots of noise!!! I chose this location on purpose. For the most part I prefer to be in the middle of the fray so I can interact with my kids even while working. I don't ever want them to feel that I am not there for them when they need me to solve their issues large or small ("Mom...don't forget I need crickets for my lizard" - "Mom...can you take me to a friend's house in ten minutes?" - "Mom...just wait until you see the mess the little boys made with cereal in the basement.") Being a Mom is my most important job so smack in the midst of the chaos is where I love to be. Usually! But I must confess that yesterday I found myself fantasizing about how great it would be if someone invented a remote control that worked on children. Think about it! When the cacophony reaches epic proportions, as it has been known to do at our house, how awesome would it be to be able to push a MUTE button and have peace restored immediately? So I could take a few breaths and calm myself internally before turning the sound back on. That would be bliss! On those crazy mornings where my kids are poking around getting ready for school, or when they are dragging their feet at chore or homework time...how convenient would a FAST-FORWARD function be instead of nagging endlessly? On the days when I am feeling lonesome for my grown sons who live on their own now, I sure would adore a REWIND button. To go back and relive one of my favorite days from when they were little. INPUT mode would come in handy when trying to get my points across to a stubborn teen or instill values and important life lessons that I want them to understand. And I am certain I would use the PAUSE button often...when asked a difficult question that I'd prefer to ponder before answering...or at those precious moments when life feels simply perfect. Like when my 4 year old throws his arms around me and says, "I love you Mom. You're so cute". Yes, I'd like to savor that one and have it on TIVO to replay to him at age 13 when he doesn't think I'm quite so smart anymore. But alas this magical remote control is only in my mind. So I guess it's best to just press PLAY. And enjoy the show!