So I say to Alyssa and Drew at the dinner table, “OK, you guys need to settle down now. You’re at the dinner table–sit straight and eat right.”

They giggle.

I try again. “I’m serious. If you don’t settle down, I will punish you. I don’t like it, but I won’t hesitate if I have to. I actually feel very sad when I punish you, even though I act angry.”

And, as I look at Drew, I hear Alyssa behind me: “Good acting.”

You know, as a parent you completely lose control of situations like these when you bust out laughing.