Naps...or lack thereof

Days like this often cause me to question my innate parenting skills. It's Christmas break at the day care, so Angel and I are at home with the kids all week. Actually, we've been home with them for 130 hours and 36 minutes (but who's counting).

Where was I? Oh - the day. We were planning to see an 11:40 showing of Alvin and the Chipmunks at the theater up the street. Instead, one of my husband's oldest and dearest friends made a surprise visit...with his 6 kids. Now, don't get me wrong - they are amazingly well behaved, really more like miniature adults, but they are kids. And there are 6 of them. So, it gets a little noisy. My boys like noise...a lot. So much so, that they preferred to stay up and revel in the noise rather than go down for their naps. Even after our company had left for the day, both boys were so riled up that they refused to take a nap. Luckily, Victor is still small enough that at the end of the day, he surrenders to the sleepiness. Angel, however, has become an expert at fighting that sleepy feeling. He's battled until well after 10pm every night since Christmas eve.
And I don't know about your kids, but when mine don't nap they get CRAZY. Absolutely "I've-lost-my-mind-running-in-circles-throwing-shit-on-the-floor-screaming-at-the-top-of-my-lungs-crazy." Needless to say, it gets exhausting.

On days like this, I question my parenting skills. I wonder, does everyone else have a hard time getting their kids to nap, or go to sleep at the end of the day without creating a scene reminiscent of the final battle in Independence Day? I wonder why I start every day with the best of intentions NOT to raise my voice at my almost 3 year old, only to degenerate into random screaming by 7pm. I wonder why I cannot get him to stop repeating the same phrase over and over at the top of his lungs after I've told him for the 5 billionth time that his brother is trying to sleep. I lapse into emotional eating. I get angry. I start crying. I get depressed. I feel like the worst mother in the entire universe. Again...

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