My big boys are smart. They’ve noticed that they’re growing up, but that their little brother is still (barely) hovering in that sweet spot between toddler and kid. And they noticed that when he says “tummy”, it sounds super cute and we all smile.

Today we had a long, two-hour car ride home from a day of adventures. It was just me and the three boys, and we were all exhausted. It was only a matter of minutes before someone accidently brushed their arm against against a brother who wasn’t wanting to be touched. Or someone’s tone of voice, exhausted, was misinterpreted by another as mean. Honestly, I don’t remember what precipitated the downward spiral that ensued. What I remember is that it wasn’t me who lead everyone back up!

The mood was yucky. The words were ugly. Tensions were rising. And then my oldest turned to my youngest and said, “Say ‘tummy’.” We all turned our heads in excited expectation, and he came through.

“Tummy!” he said. And we all smiled. Poof! Like magic. The clouds lifted, and we were once again connected.

Have your boys wriggled themselves out of tight spot? I’d love to hear! Please share below.