The Day I Said Yes

The Day I Said “Yes”

Tuesday was not a good day. It felt like all I did was roll my eyes, tut and eventually yell at my kids. I have many reasons as to why, but in the spirit of positivity I won’t dwell on them. I realised that I had said ‘No’, a lot, and that maybe a little more ‘Yes’ would be better for them and me.

I woke up yesterday and decided that I need to make it up to my girls. Yes, the mom guilt was strong!

A Little Less “No”.

I decided that for one day, no matter how hard it was, I was going to try my hardest not to say “No”. Instead I will attempt to respond to all their little requests, demands and orders (deep breaths), with kindness and positivity, even if the answer is in fact “no”.

Challenge No. 1

It started off a little rough.

“Mommy, can I have five Oreos?”

Instead of saying “No”, my reply was, “I think two is enough, don’t you?”

Their response was acceptance. Clearly they were just pushing their luck.

Challenge No. 2

Then there was the usual ‘outfit-of-the-day’ challenge. The plan was to take them to the nursery to play in the kids play area while I do a bit of blogging, have a cappuccino and soak up some fresh air and warm African sunshine.

The youngest wanted to wear a party dress. Instead of saying “No, that’s impractical.” I explained that she wouldn’t be able to climb to the top of the climbing frame, or slide down the slide if she wore a dress because then all the boys would see her knickers. She stared at me, blinked then chose a pair of tights! Whatever works right?

Challenge No. 3

When we got there and we were ordering I asked them if they wouldn’t please share a toasted sandwich instead of a whole one each. They revolted. So I decided to get them one each. Normally I’d have said “No,” because I knew they wouldn’t eat it all. Me saying “No” would only have resulted in some kind of scene or tantrum and I quite frankly was not up for that. As I predicted they didn’t eat any of it so we brought it home as take-away. In my head I consoled the control freak side of me by telling myself that at least I won’t have to cook or prepare lunch and quite possibly even dinner! Win, win! Apart from the empty pocket!

I let them play for a couple of hours. I did some blogging and Instagramming.

Let It Ride

Eventually it was nearing the lunch rush and I decided to stop hogging the large table I’d commandeered and I went to sit on the bench and just watch them play. Eventually they tired and came to sit by me. When I asked if they were ready to go home, they said “Yes.”

It was so strange. I’m so used to arguing and cajoling for almost every request. It was so refreshing to have them just be ready.

We went home after that and the day progressed well. I let them swim when they asked. I let them play in the garden. I let them watch whatever they wanted on TV. I cooked them a dinner I knew they would love: roasted chicken pieces with rice and gravy.

In the evening they watched a little more TV and when it was bedtime they just went to bed, no arguing, although they’ve always been really good at bedtime.

Reflection On The Day

Although I’d love to take all the glory for what was a really good day, I don’t believe it was all down to my answering their requests positively. I think a good portion of it was not rushing them. I read a really great post by a fellow mom blogger Jaki Jellz  – Why Am I Always In Such A Rush. It’s well worth a read if you relate to any of what I am talking about. It really does get you thinking.

It’s the holidays now, so on most days there is no routine, no rush, no “hurry up”, “get in the car”, “get out the car”, “hurry up and eat”. During term time, some days are so busy. We are here, there and everywhere and I feel like I’m either pushing them along, or dragging them along. I’m certainly not a perfect mom. I get stressed and I know that when I am stressed I yell, just another symptom of anxiety. When I yell, they yell, or worse … they balk at every request I make of them.

Whilst I’m not claiming to have reinvented the wheel, I am going to make more of an effort to maintain this sense of relaxed calm, and use this holiday time together before school starts to recharge all our batteries.

If you decide to try have a “Yes” day, I’d love to know how it goes for you. I suppose it’s not so much saying “Yes” as it is not saying “No” all the time.

Twin Mummy and Daddy
Naptime Natter
The Tale of Mummyhood
Mummy Times Two
Rhyming with Wine

My Petit Canard


  1. This sounds great. We start 2 weeks of school holidays tomorrow so I will try to remember to just slow down a bit. #ablogginggoodtime

  2. First up – thanks a million for linking my post – so kind and I’m flattered. And I totally get what you mean. I’ve had a week with a poorly little one and in all honesty, when he’s that down inthe dumps, I get a little soft. I have said ‘yes’ to him so much more. I have been much more relaxed with him and guess what? Hardly any tantrums. I think we stress too much about the little things and maybe forget that they’re just kids at the end of the day. So young with a lot to learn. I think I’ll cut him some slack more often. Thanks again ? #ablogginggoodtime

  3. Great goal for a day!! I thought this post was going to be about an engagement story, so I was surprised, pleasantly. I also visualized your day and mommy interactions — well done.

    1. Haha, sorry. I didn’t even consider that when I came up with the title. Thank you.

  4. Hi, what a great way to start the day. It must have been a tad though but you stuck to your guns and as a result you all had a great day #thatfridaylinky

  5. It’s a great moment when you find something which clicks for you as a Parent. I feel like I am forever saying now too #thatfridaylinkup

    1. I know I won’t get the luxury of this when school starts. Yesterday it took my 3 yr old 25 minutes to ‘wash up’ 3 plastic bowls. Her choice. I was out of my mind by the time she was done but she had fun. lol

  6. High five for this mom win!! 😀
    Us moms do say no a lot, don’t we? I love reminders like this to just breathe and take a second to respond a little differently (like you did with the Oreos – it was still no to five of them, but without being big bad NO mommy). #BlogCrush

    1. Thanks. I don’t think I can keep it up during the school run, but we’re enjoying lazy days so far.

        1. Yes. Might be my holiday challenge. Every holiday they get 2 ‘yes’ days. Lol

  7. This sounds like a great day. Some days I feel like all I do is shout at my kids, but when I have days like this where I can just say yes to them, it does make me feel good and them happy! Thanks for linking up to #ThatFridayLinky

  8. Sounds like a successful day! You’re completely right that our own attitude rubs up on our kids. So the fact you were feeling calmer about it all will have certainly contributed to the wonder of the day. Of course it doesn’t always result in happy and calm children but from trying it myself I’m confident it stops things turning into a complete tantrum-fest on the bad days! Hope you can repeat your success xx #BlogCrush

  9. Wow, this sounds like a great day and that trying to say yes more makes for a much happier mummy and kids! I will try to say yes more tomorrow as I do feel like I say no too much sometimes but some if my 3 year olds requests are just ridiculous. Thanks for linking to #BlogCrush xx

    1. The next day it took her 25 mins to wash up 3 plastic bowls! Her choice, but twenty.five.minutes!

  10. At first I was bit unsure reading this, thinking you were maybe planning on saying yes to everything they asked, but obviously that’s not the case! I try also, like you, to say no without actually saying no, and also I ask questions like “will 2 spoons of breakfast keep you full until lunch?” and usually letting them come to their own decision makes for less tantrums, and they have no one to blame or yell at if their decision winds up being the wrong one! I agree that this is much easier when you’re not in a rush, and I’m also just as guilty of resorting to raising my voice. Great post, and I’m glad you had such a good day. #Blogstravaganza

  11. A really lovely post – a gentle reminder for all us mums to sometimes just let it be…
    The day just goes so much better when we are more responsive rather than reactive, as you put it, and when there is less yelling and tantrums. Great mom win there!

  12. Sounds like you have sorted the kids out I think I need to apply your secret fab post Thanks for linking to the #THAT FRIDAY LINKY come back next week please

  13. I love this, it’s so true! I always find we have a better day when I take the time to explain a situation rather than just saying ‘no’. Sometimes it’s easier said than done though! Thanks so much for sharing with #Blogstravaganza, hope to see you again next week xx

  14. Ah its always great when things go smoothly, made me realise how often I say no and maybe I need to put it a more positive way!
    I’m glad it went well for you!!

    1. You need to do it on days when you have the luxury of time. School run is maybe not the best time to try it out.

  15. That is very interesting, I remember seeing a programme a while back which said humans respond more to a positive comment rather than a negative one. So if you can spin something into the positive you can end up getting the result you want and a child that feels happy and like they contributed to the decision. I am a big believer in positive thought, I think in the future the way we think will become the biggest discovery yet (i bore all my friends with my theories). I might try and have a YES day and see what happens xx Nicky #Blogstravaganza

    1. I certainly don’t think I can live a “Yes” life, but it doesn’t hurt to remember some of it when you’re having a tough time.
      Thanks for reading. Love your comments.

  16. I think sometimes we forget why we are saying no… if we take time to consider the request and our answer… maybe that’s the difference? It sounds like a lovely day #dreamteam

    1. Agreed. Sometimes it’s a reflex answer which is sometimes unfair.

  17. #postsfromtheheart #dreamteam love this, i think sometimes us parents need to check whats important and in the grand scheme of things is 5 Oreo’s the end of the world (probably if you’re a dentist) perspective plays a huge part and I’m glad you were able to rebalance yours for a much improved day for all 🙂

    1. Thanks. Swings and roundabout I guess cos yesterday was a shocker! ?

  18. I know that rushed feeling so well – I read Jaki’s post too and it really struck a chord with me. It’s really interesting to hear the difference that it made for you – I feel like I’m always nagging my son, so I’m going to try a day of taking a more laid back approach and see how we do! #FamilyFun

    1. It’s not a realistic approach every single day, sometimes you actually have to get somewhere by a certain time, like school, so there’s no way you can let them operate at their own speed, but it’s good for rebooting the system.

  19. This was a really interesting read as I always feel I am bargaining/arguing and pleasing with mine to do as I ask. It’s exhausting and frustrating. I will try and take a leaf out of your book, positivity and slowing down. I read Jakis post too and totally feel the same. Goood luck with your approach and thanks for joining us at #familyfun x

    1. Thanks. It’s certainly not something I can keep up all the time, but for one day here and there where there are no other restrictions it’s great for ‘rebooting’ the system.

  20. I’m glad you had a good day. I’ve also recently read that post and found it so true. It’s important to sometimes take a step back and approach things differently, as you did. #PostsFromTheHeart

  21. It sounds like you had a brilliant day and I think you hit the nail on the head – it’s the rushing and the pressure that we put ourselves under to get things done and get to places by a certain time. The small people just have no sense of urgency and if we can allow them to take the reins sometimes it can actually make for quite a smooth ride. I loved Jaki’s post too. Thanks for sharing with #DreamTeam x

  22. I’m going to give this a go as I too am getting bogged down with the mum guilt.
    A lot of the time I think we just quickly snap ‘no’ instead of taking the time to listen which then causes frustration, on both sides x

    1. We all do, that’s the joy of a ‘yes’ days, provided you have the time.

  23. I really love this idea. I too and very guilty of rushing mine, especially my eldest. This week I am going to follow your example and have a ‘yes’ day. In fact I’m already looking forward to do so. Thank you so much for sharing such a lovely idea with us at #PostsFromTheHeart

    1. It was such a good day. Such a simple way of ‘recharging batteries’

  24. Popping back again! So flattered by everyone else’s nice comments about my post too! ☺️ Thanks so much for linking up to #TriumphantTales – hope to see you again on Tuesday!

  25. Sometimes giving in and just letting them get their own way can actually make life so much easier! especially when it is a day where the last thing that you can handle is a screaming kid! Im think im quite strict with Ben, but even I let him get away with things when Im just not feeling it!
    Thank you for linking up again with #TriumphantTales, I hope to see you on Tuesday.

    1. I actually love those days. They usually happen when I’m feeling useless and demotivated and the only way to protect them from that ME is to let them get away with almost everything!

  26. I’m going to give this a try and see if it makes a difference. My 3 year old is so whiney at the moment and it sometimes feels like everything is a battle. I know I should give him more time to do things too, but it’s hard, we have to be places!!! I think my husband would find this really hard though. I’m really interested to see the results #postsfromtheheart

  27. I love this and I think we should all have a day like this once in a while. I’m not sure it would work long term in our house, with four children I need to say no quite often, but just staying calm and going with the flow is so important in this busy world we live. #postsfromtheheart

    1. I don’t think it’s realistic even 355
      Days a year, but a useful way of recharging batteries when necessary!

  28. I love this. I try to limit how often I say no although I say no without saying no quite a lot. My little girl is usually fine if she understands why she can’t do something but hates a no with no reasin and will let you know about it! #PostsFromTheHeart

    1. I often forget to explain why it’s a no, and I forget that it’s really necessary. Imagine if we were told no all the time without any context – cue frustration!

  29. It’s so refreshing to have a nice day isnt it. Cant say I get one of those often! I must bear this in mind for when my Little One starts talking. Already says no and mine to everything she shouldnt do or have. ‘”Patience is a virtue” and all that, easier said than done. Well done though for staying calm, not sure I could resist saying no umpteen times in the day.

    1. It wasn’t easy, and certainly not something I can do every day. But once in a while I think it’s good for the soul.

  30. Great article! Researchers have found that toddlers hear the word “no” up to 400 times a day. 😀 One of the things I do instead of saying “no” is to tell them what they can do. No, you can’t throw the ball in the house but you can throw the ball outside. Or you can throw this balloon as hard as possible!

    1. It was definitely a good day. Even on normal days after the success of this particular day, it’s always in the back of my mind when I hear myself saying ‘no’ that I must at least explain why and try avoid it again later on.

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  33. What a fun way to try to take no out of our mothering vocabulary! I love the way you changed your wording and asked questions to get to a result that seemed more reasonable without saying no! I’m going to have to try this!

  34. I love this! I find that I feel a lot better the less I say the word no, too. Thanks, and good luck on your next yes day!

  35. I love this! What a difference perspective can make. Just reframing our answers and having a positive attitude can make a world of difference. As a kid, it’s like all you hear all day long is no. It’s so nice when someone stops to acknowledge you. That’s exactly what you did by not just stating no but offering an explanation and a choice. Love this! Gonna take this as inspo and give it a try!

  36. Yes! Such a creative experiment, and your results seem to confirm what I have instinctively felt (but not always practiced) for a long time. A positive approach is so much more effective when it comes to kids – or anyone!!

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