When Children Act Out in Public

My two boys live life at full speed, full volume, and with their full bodies. Sometimes when we are out in public, I worry about what they might do. When my oldest was 2, I took him to story time at the library. All the little girls sat nicely on their mommy's laps listening to the librarian read. Then there was my son. He ran circles around the group. When he finished making everyone dizzy, he tried to figure out how the blinds worked on the windows. From then on, we did story time at home. Another time, I let my youngest push the grocery cart at the store. While I searched the seemingly endless rows of cereal boxes for the one I needed, he took off running down the aisle-with the cart. And yes, he ran into someone else.

The Catapult Incident

Some incidents with my children stand out in my mind so much that I give them a name. Last year, the four of us attended a banquet at a country club. Crisp white table linens covered the round tables. There were multiple forks and spoons at each seat and glass goblets from which to drink. For my kids, it was different territory from the usual fast food establishments with the indoor playground, chicken nuggets, and free toy.

It was at this meal where the "catapult incident" occurred. My oldest has an engineer's brain. He is always building things and designing something new to create. From the moment we sat down at the table, he fidgeted and squirmed in his seat. As I turned my head to talk with my husband and youngest son, my oldest took the utensils and proceeded to construct a catapult out of them. When the fork flung across the table at another guest, I realized what he had done. Did I mention that he used the utensils of the person seated next to him?

[Read the rest of the article at The Gospel Coalition Blog. Click here.]