What are other techniques/habits you have to stay mellow?
Lowering my expectations. Of myself, of them, of the people around me. Life is manageable when I acknowledge that I don't have to bake bread, or do laundry, or get a building project finished or read aloud for 4 straight hours if I am not feeling up to those challenges. And my kids don't absolutely have to clean their room right this minute, or agree on a book or movie the first time, or have lunch before 3 in the afternoon if that's not working for them today. I'm pretty sure we'll survive if dh forgets to bring milk home, or the neighborhood cyclists ride right through my lawn, or the trash man skips my house. These things are all fixable or temporary. But I forget sometimes, and that's when I start to feel frantic. If I try to reduce or eliminate the pressures that make me crave breaks in the first place, it makes it easier to take care of an occasional need for solitude or rest.