My morning routine is usually pretty easy. I try to get up before my toddler and preschooler, fail to do so about 95 percent of the time and, instead, wake up to whining and crying, get them washed and dressed, get myself washed and dressed before they destroy my room and/or OD on Dora the Explorer, feed them while chugging coffee and packing up their two lunches and their bag-o’-stuff-for-school, and load them into the car for drop off at preschool and daycare before heading into the office.
OK, that doesn’t sound very easy, but really, it is. Comparatively speaking.
Summers are trickier. Five kids instead of two. Extra curricular activities to coordinate. New parents to meet before agreeing to sleepovers with new friends. Camp, karate, and horseback riding drop offs and pick ups in addition to preschool and daycare. More errands. More housework. Way more laundry. And less time in which to do it all, because I’m more than willing to stay up late watching “Camp Rock” with my big kids when I should be doing my freelance work instead. (Hey, they’re only young once. And life is short. Got to have priorities, right?)
So last night, after I finished coaxing my 12-year-old’s tight curls into a zillion sleek, two-strand twists, after The Jonas Brothers struck their last chord and I cajoled the big kids into bed, after the toddler woke up for no good reason and was soothed back to sleep, I started trying to get ahead of my morning juggle.
Fives sets of clothes laid out and ready to wear. (I didn’t get around to doing mine yet). Six lunches packed. (Five for the kids, one for me. My husband is on his own with the lunches, since he keeps forgetting to bring them to work.) Seven loads of laundry washed, sorted, folded and put away. Bag-o-stuff-to-take-to-school packed and by the door.
All organized and neat and ready to go, and yet… I am dreading the morning.
I’m cranky first thing in the morning, but that’s nothing compared to five kids who don’t want to look at sunlight at 7 a.m., let alone venture out into it. I just remembered that I didn’t remind the big kids to pack their bathing suits and towels and whatnot into their camp bags — another thing to while pressed for time. And I’m sure that’s not the only thing I’ve forgotten.
Working moms, how do you handle morning mayhem? Share your experiences at The 36-Hour Day, and take a moment to see what helpful advice (and support) other working moms have to offer at Work It, Mom!
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