Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Most Tense Half Hour of the Week, Times Two

Tuesday and Thursday mornings in our house are filled with more tension than all the other days of the week combined. Actually, all the tension is packed into about a half hour period on those mornings.These are the days that the Girl goes to preschool. The fact that she goes to preschool does not bring the tension, although every once in a while she will decide that she doesn't want to go to preschool, which multiplies the normal tension significantly.

Even on days that she is happy about going to school, the tension is palpable. It all comes from one thing - trying to get all three kids ready to go at a particular point in time.

Even during breakfast, I start the countdown to the time we need to leave. I will tell them, "Okay, it is now 8:03 AM. We need to start to get ready to leave at exactly 8:48 AM. That means we have exactly 45 minutes." I think if any of them actually knew how to tell time, this announcement would have more impact.

When breakfast is over, and they get down from the table, I do it again. "Okay, it is now 8:27. We need to start to get our coats on in exactly 21 minutes. That means you have 21 minutes to play!" I then proceed to make more announcements every few minutes.

At 8:48 AM, I tell them "It is now time to get ready to leave. I will get the Baby's coat on. You (pointing to the Girl), please get your coat, along with the Boy's, and I will get your hats and mittens when I am done with the Baby."

At this point, the Boy disappears, usually down into the basement, where he will eventually  be found, playing with his Thomas trains, and the Girl heads off into their bedroom to get who-knows-what toy that she insists is vital for her to take with in the van, even though she will only be in the van for 6 minutes as we drive to school.

Meanwhile, the Baby heads off crawling under a nearby table, where she promptly ditches her hat, and then heads off to another corner, where she extricates one of her feet out of both its shoe and sock, both of which will soon end up in her mouth, at least until she grows tired of the taste of feet, in which case she will then deposit them in some random location, most likely underneath the sofa.
Notice the Baby has her hat and mittens on, but no coat. She must have ditched it somewhere in the bowels of our house. She's crafty, that's for sure.
When I finally get the Girl, the Boy, and the Baby fully clothed and into their outerwear, and think that we are finally about to be able to get loaded up into the van, I oftentimes catch a faint smell, which could only be emanating from the Boy's diaper. Not wanting to offend any teachers or parents that we may come into close contact with, I determine that I must try to set a new Guinness World Record for poopy-diaper-changing. I think my best time is about 8 seconds, but who's counting?

I would like to say that once we are all loaded up in the car, headed off to school, the tension ends. And it does, for the few minutes we are in the car. But then we arrive at the school, and it all starts back up again. I unleash the rascals from their respective car seats, and then have to corral the two older ones, while holding the Baby, while hundreds, if not thousands, of large high school students run amok (the Girl's preschool is adjacent to one of the local high schools). It is a wonder they don't get trampled.

Thankfully, this whole fiasco usually lasts just a half hour or so, and then I can head home with the two younger kids to chill out for a couple of days, when it happens all over again. Believe me, it takes all of Wednesday to recuperate.


  1. I can SO relate to your posts! Great writing, Scott.


    1. Thanks, Nicole! That's very nice of you to say!