When I was a kid, I thought that bugging my parents would eventually get me what I wanted. As a parent, I realize that the most effective method for getting stuff is to be generally sweet. The last two times DeLaynie and I have gone shopping with my mom, she has been really well behaved. When she is that good, it just makes me want to buy her stuff. I don't generally give in to that desire since she already has so much that we're going to have to get rid of, but the urge is never stronger than when she is is being quiet and adorable.
That's not to say that I never got my way through pure perseverance. I got a dog that way. When I was ten, all I wanted for Christmas was a puppy. I put up posters all over the house, each with a pro-puppy slogan. My parents demanded that it was completely impractical for us to get a dog, but sure enough, Christmas morning found a mutt puppy named Jessie under our tree (not literally; there is no way to get a puppy to stay still under a Christmas tree). The fact of the matter is that I was an unusually persuasive little girl. I'm hoping that such a trait has not been passed down to our next generation.