The moral of this lesson: When Mr. (or Miss) 2 year old is throwing a tantrum, walk away.
Tonight we had a fantastic dinner of spinach & feta hummus with veggies for dipping. (Great recipe, I'll have to post it sometime). It was a nice evening, and we enjoy sharing our meals as a family outside on nice nights.
Monkey and Crackers were both running (or crawling) around in their underpants with no pants on. I gave Monkey - remember he's ALMOST 3 - his pants and told him he needed to put them on before going outside. Wow. Who would have thought that this would become a power struggle. Monkey wanted help to put them on. We know he is fully capable of doing it himself, but he's been very needy the last few weeks and refusing to do things for himself. Mama insisted that he dress himself and the fit began.
Daddy stepped in and tried to reason with Monkey (reasoning with toddlers rarely works). Monkey continued to have a tantrum, screaming, crying, insisting that he have help to put on his pants. We both kindly arranged the pants in front of him on the floor at different times so they would be easy to slide on. I chose elastic waisted pants so they would be easy for him. He refused to do it himself. We both tried to help him hold the pants in his hands and pull them on to no avail. He wanted us to put his pants on for him.
Finally, wise mama, said to daddy - we need to just go outside and leave him inside until he puts on his pants. And we did. We went outside with the food and with Crackers and began our meal. Monkey ran through the house crying, then he got quiet... and then cried some more. After about 10 minutes he came to the door with his pants on and asked to come outside.
Yep, it worked. We walked away, refused (finally) to argue about the pants, and he eventually chose to do it on his own so he could have some yummy food.