There is nothing I love more than those moments after all of my kids have left for school. My youngest three boys all get on the school bus at the same time and my oldest leaves about a half hour later. I truly feel like I spend the first two and half hours of my day nagging and nagging and nagging. I get tired of listening to myself.
The morning all begins with getting dressed. I have to keep on them, or they'll be throwing underwear (clean or dirty) at each other and laughing hysterically instead of putting clothes on their bodies. I also have to make sure said clothes are on them properly. Which despite my best efforts, one of them always ends up sporting a backwards sweater. My favorite is when I'm having an off day where I'm really not paying much attention and my five year old goes to school wearing a red t-shirt underneath a short sleeved green polo shirt with a blue, black and white flannel over it and Snuggie socks. I'm beginning to think all boys are color blind.
My next nagging session transpires when I've found out that none of my children have informed me that we are out of Cheerios and I must now let them eat my own special stash of cereal. That's right, I save all the sugary goodness filled cereals for myself. I've got needs you know. Besides, no one ever stopped me from eating sugary cereals when I was a kid. Now I'm a sugar hound with bad teeth. I definitely wouldn't want to let my own children indulge in such cereals just to endure the pain and suffering I've gone through. It may be too late for me, but I can still save the children of the future.
This is followed by twenty minutes of following my youngest three around to make sure they have brushed their teeth. It goes something like this, "Have you brushed your teeth?". "Yes, Mom.". "Have you really? If you lie to me, I'm going to be angry. Now, did you really brush your teeth?". "No.". Multiply that conversation by three. Why can't they just tell me they didn't brush their teeth in the first place? Is brushing really that painful? Really? It's not like they brush like normal humans anyway. They put toothpaste on their toothbrushes, spend two minutes sucking it all off, wash it down with water by drinking directly out of the faucet, wipe their faces on their clean shirts and then exit the bathroom. Viola... piece of cake.
By this time they've got a few minutes to spare. I insist that they sit down with a book and read quietly. This strategy only works if I'm in the room. Should I decide to take a quick shower before walking them to the bus stop, they decide my plan sucks. Out come the He-Man swords. Lego people are being dismembered. Races are being conducted up and down the hallways. Anything but sitting down quietly and reading. At least until I've been spotted back in the room, then they scatter like roaches.
I have an iPhone. For those that are familiar with iPhones, you know that you can set an alarm and choose whatever sound listed that you like to go off when the alarm goes off. I have mine set to the quacking duck. My boys have grown accustomed to the duck alarm. They know when it goes off, they need to exchange their books (or He-man swords and lego people) for their coats, backpacks and shoes. Since it is winter time, we throw in snow pants and boots. My four year old is not very good at getting all of those things on himself. I have to spend at least five minutes shoving each limb into small holes. Have you seen those foot holes in snow pants? Once I find the dang thing, I have to work hard to get him to aim his foot properly to get it through. Lather, rinse, repeat for the other leg. Then we have the boots. Oh man, I hate boots. This morning in particular, I spent at least two minutes trying to shove his foot into a boot when it was already all the way in. When I finally told him, "You know, I can't do this all myself, you have to help me a little.", he replied with, "Mom, it's already in! He he". Seriously?
Finally, I get the three Musketeers out the door. We stand out in the cold for probably ten to fifteen minutes waiting for the bus and I send them on their merry way. To which I then come back to the house to my pre-teen. He obviously doesn't cause the same mishaps as his younger brothers, but he does have chores to do in the morning. I near always find that he has been distracted from doing them properly or he is just pretending to do them. So, I spend the rest of the time that he is here talking to him about how important it is to help out around the house and be a team player. Another conversation that makes me tired of listening to myself. He's definitely a pre-teen though, selfish and lazy. Smart as hell when it suits his needs. Just lazy.
Why did I walk you through my lengthy and tedious morning routine? For a few of reasons. First, because I can. You know you all love reading about the crazy antics that go on in my house. Second, because I am so not a morning person and I just need to vent sometimes. Lastly, because I want you to know the full pleasure I get when for about three hours each morning I get complete silence. It's me to myself and my own thoughts. No shouting, no nagging, my eyes stay in their sockets. (All until April rolls around and I have a newborn in the house again.)
Yep, for a few short hours I can sit down and enjoy simplicity. I can sit down and write blogs like this. I can sit at my kitchen table and look out my back window while drinking a glass of orange juice, taking in the elegant way the snow sits atop my husband's grill on the back patio. I can pee with the bathroom door open. Most importantly, I can enjoy my breakfast in peace. *"Eggies" just for me.
*In case anyone is curious why I call them "eggies", it's just a stolen word from my four year old. That's what he calls them, so that's what I call them. I also call burgers "beegers" and cookies "bookies".