We were out running endless errands on a mad search for sneakers because every child has outgrown his and there is no one place that carries all the sizes and styles I need. My rope was starting to fray so I warned the boys, "Look, I need you to be very cooperative and quiet at this next store. I'm running out of patience here, but we need to get this done. Do you understand?"
Alex replies by addressing the whole van, "When we are noisy and touching too many things at the store it makes Mama's battery low. And when Mama's battery is low it makes our batteries low, so let's all just be quiet and recharge for a while."
I couldn't have said it better.