It was one of those mornings where I turned the coffee maker on and then stood there in my pink bathrobe and stared at it the entire time it brewed. Slippers on my feet, hair in my face, empty mug in my hand…just staring, waiting for some hot liquid help.
Like every other morning, the kids woke up with the energy of Christmas elves on crack. Running around, chasing dogs, shooting my back with Nerf darts and doing everything but eating their God damned breakfast.
I always start the school year out with blueberry pancakes, French toast, waffles or some other hot breakfast to get them ready for the day.
December? They get fruit and grain cereal bars or cereal.
Our mornings have a routine, an order…a system. It should take 30 minutes tops and it goes as follows….
- Eat Breakfast
- Brush Teeth
- Get Dressed
- Boots, gloves, coat
- Wait for Bus
So why does it take us a full two hours to get ready for school?
Because this is how my kids interpret the routine…
- Eat Breakfast = Don’t eat breakfast. Fight with my sibling. Complain that his cup is bigger, her bowl has more cereal in it. Spill my bowl of cereal. Dump my cup of milk on my library book. Play tug of war with the spoons. Go under the table, bump my head…cry. Bring toys to the table and play with them instead of eating my breakfast. Open my mouth and show my sister my half chewed food to gross her out. Sing Christmas songs. Put the puppy on my lap. Get up and leave the table completely to play with Legos in my room. Complain my cereal is too soggy.
- Brush Teeth = Use entire tube of toothpaste, get as little as you can on the brush. Travel around the house brushing my teeth. Get yelled at for running with a toothbrush in my mouth. Brush my teeth as close to my brother as possible, spit in the sink at the same exact time. Fight with my sister because there isn’t enough room. Yell for my mom because my sister just spit her toothpaste all over my hand. Push and shove each other until someone falls and gets hurt. Do not get any spit in the sink, cover as much surface area as possible – aim for mirror.
- Get Dressed = Put on clothes as if I’ve never put on clothes before. Put my head through my shirt sleeve. Try to put pants on two legs at a time. Lay on the floor and scream because I’ve hogtied myself in my clothing. Don’t put on clothes mommy laid out for me, the princess costume is better. Storm trooper costume is cooler. Stand in my room naked and pouting when I realize mommy put out jeans instead of comfy pants. Stomp feet and cry “Why do I have to wear this?” Watch cartoons instead.
- Hair = When mommy gets out the hairbrush, run. Scream when my hair is being brushed, even if its not tangled, just scream. Cry if I can. Walk around the house while mommy is trying to put my hair in a pony tail. Do not…I repeat…DO NOT sit still. Complain my pony tail is too tight. Take hair out of pony tail…run. Repeat until mommy has to tackle me to the ground.
- Boots, Coat & Gloves = Pretend we don’t know what any of these things are. Watch mommy look for matching gloves and boots, and remember to stuff them in random places when I get home from school so we can watch her search the next day too. Try not to let mommy notice that I didn’t put my underwear on until my boots are on. Lay down while mommy tries to put my coat on me. Ask questions about heaven but pay no attention to the reply, just ask again later. Complain that I’m too hot in my coat. Run away with one boot on. Remind mommy it’s my snack day while she zips my coat. Ask why “shit” is a swear word but “poop” isnt. Try to figure out how one watches ones mouth. Once all my snow gear is on, begin to remove different articles at random.
Pretend mommy is speaking a foreign language when she says things like “C’mon!! The bus is going to be here any second!!”, “Stand up”, “Sit down”, “Stop moving”, “Get back here”, “Oh my God, I’m going to lose it”, “Put your socks back on!!”, “Ew! Don’t wipe that on your sister!!”, “What’s in your pocket?”, “No…no! no!!!”
- Wait for bus = When we hear the bus coming down the road – announce I have to pee really, really bad. Throw snowballs at my sister, aim for her face. Step in dog poop. Tackle my brother to the ground. Make a snow angel. Trip on the way to the bus. Cry. Watch as mommy runs down the snowy driveway in her bathrobe and slippers to pick me up off the ground because I’ve forgotten how to use my legs. Let her console me while the line of traffic builds up behind the bus. Try to talk her into driving us to school. Ask her if I can bring a toy to school. Tell her she shouldn’t wear slippers in the snow.
Give her big hugs before I get on the bus. As the bus drives away and mommy waves goodbye – remove hat, coat and gloves so my teachers think I was sent to school in just a t-shirt. When the bus is almost out of site, make a mental note to teach mommy how to wave with five fingers instead of one.
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