At 5 a.m. I awakened to the sound of angels playing a harp. It was lovely melodic music for the first three seconds, but after about 10 minutes I realized it was actually my husband’s annoying morning phone alarm and I was ready to end the symphony with a ball-peen hammer. To silence it, I would have had to put my feet onto the cold, wood floor and walk around the bed or steam-rolled across my husband to turn it off — I chose the age-old, pillow-over-the-ears trick.

Finding solutions to life’s little challenges can prove quite satisfying.

Last Friday night I was watching my five nieces and nephews while my youngest brother, Chris, and wife, Amanda, celebrated their 16th wedding anniversary. After playing hide and seek and trains, we settled down to watch a movie, when the youngest — 2½-year-old Drew — suddenly jumped onto the coffee table and dove headfirst onto the couch, which was about five feet away. When he laughed and stood on the coffee table a second time, I gave him my stern, serious voice, “Drew, don’t stand on the coffee table and jump onto the couch.” (This is what aunts are supposed to say, so that no child is injured and bleeding when their parent’s get home.)

At that moment, as he was already standing on the coffee table, Drew looked at me solemnly for a split-second, then grinned and waved. (This is when aunts burst out laughing, but try and hide it because aunts should never intentionally promote comedic gestures to distract the adult.) Technically he was obedient, because he didn’t jump again. Drew’s ‘grin and little wave’ was his way of finding a solution for this little challenge.

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Admit it, we have used all sorts of gadgets to find solutions to life’s challenges: duct tape, super glue, car seat heaters for 1-degree days. How about socks on a broom handle for those annoyingly out of reach cobwebs? I guess that’s why the show “Shark Tank” is quite popular these days.

But still, nothing is as effective as the always present “little wave and a grin” — I’m going to try it today after I jump headlong off the coffee table onto the couch.