Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right..

The morning begins peacefully enough. Mark wakes us for scripture study. I answer emails and read headlines at the kitchen table while the kids make their lunches. Haley drops something and looks worriedly my way. Not wanting to add to her anxiety, I say nothing as she swipes at the floor with a dish towel. I'll handle it later.

Then Jesse wakes up. (This is often the point when peaceful morning go awry.) He decides to get dressed. Moments later, he's screaming. Only the underpants with the blue stripe on the waistband are available. He prefers the ones with the black stripe.

Once the kids are out the door to school I investigate the kitchen. Apparently Haley dropped an entire jar of jelly. And everyone else walked on it as they made their lunches. Nice.

And the screaming continues. I have decreed that Jesse must wear the available underpants. Finally I put him in his room and kindly tell him I'll be happy to see him when he is wearing underpants.

Serenaded by screams and thumps, I dress, start a load of laundry and work on resumes. Preschool starts in 45 minutes. Now 20 minutes. I really must take Jesse to preschool since I'm scheduled to teach resume writing at Logan's school this morning.

T-minus- 5. After brainstorming session with Nancy on the phone, I stage an intervention. I burst into Jesse's room and loudly exclaim, "Have I told you about Santa Claus?" He sits up and asks, "What?" I launch into unbroken chatter, "He lives in the North Pole. Oh, you say he's a ninja? Well, yes he is, and so are the elves. They make toys and also they're ninjas." This continues--without any mention of clothing or preschool--as I dress him, put him in the car, and unload him at school. As he begins to walk up the sidewalk--just in case he suddenly notices his own compliance--I throw out, "And what about the Easter Bunny? Is HE a ninja?" Jesse chatters to himself as he walks to the door. Phew.

Rush back home to mop kitchen, apply make-up, and finish a resume before my appointment at Logan's school. On time to teach two classes on resume writing.

After preschool and lunch, I nap a bit, Jesse crawls on my head, finally I wake up. We drive out to Roscoe's high school to pick him up for an orthodontist appointment. The school cannot locate Roscoe. For 30 minutes. They say, "We cannot find him." I say, "Well, what are you going to do?" Jesse entertains secretarial staff by standing on his head. Finally Roscoe is paged over the schoolwide intercom and appears promptly. He says he was in his class the whole time. Now we're late for the orthodontist. Rush to pick up Logan, also for said appointment. Arrive 30 minutes late. Entertain Jesse in waiting room while boys get braces tightened.

Home late to greet Haley and Levi. Homework. Screen-time negotiations. Early choretime. Early--and lame--dinner of pasta salad and tortilla chips. Then a divide-and-conquer scheme in which Levi attends soccer game, Logan attends karate, and Roscoe and Mark attend parent-teacher conferences.

This day was particularly crazy, what with the jelly and tantrums and missing high schoolers. But mostly, this was a normal day. I'm dealing with big boys and their appointments and activities, as well as little boy tantrums, plus baby fatigue. Here I am, stuck in the middle.


  1. I can't say from experience, but it seems to me (from my POV anyway) that some big boy problems mixed with little boy problems might be better than 3x the little boy problems.

    But that was a pretty crazy day. I really hate when the crazy starts first thing in the morning. Just give me an hour! After that I can handle the crazy.

  2. Livin' the dream my friend, livin' the dream:)

  3. You should get a ninja black belt in mothering for that distraction technique. Awesome

  4. i love your writing. yes, love so much that i'm ready to marry it.

  5. I'm calling Nancy next time I've got a situation! (Which won't be long, I guarantee.) I will say I was pretty proud of myself the other day when I couldn't get Mark out the door to church because he was mad about unacceptable socks and barricaded himself behind the door in the dining room. "Look, a stinkbug!" I yelled. Not quite factual, but the distraction got him up and moving and socks were forgotten.

  6. Way Awesome; I have a young family and we have FHE and it feels like total chaos hopefully in a few years all of it will come together..