Saturday, September 8, 2012

Dear Morning Madness


Dear Morning Madness,

Now that I have experienced you for two weeks, I most certainly declare that you are not my favorite part of the day.  By any means. 

For the first time this school year, I must get two bodies out the door in time to catch the school bus.  Double the pleasure, double the fun, right?  I play the roles of a crazy alarm-gone-mad, a circus master cracking my whip, and an assembly line worker in the kitchen.  I am Mother, hear me roar!  Here are my Top Ten Morning Madness Hurdles each and every school day morning:

10.  Good Morning, Social Media!  After I wake up and wash up, and before I get the kiddos up, I get on my laptop.  I check Facebook and Twitter my email and glance at my calendar to see the agenda for the day.  But one thing always leads to another, and before I know it, it's past the time to wake up the kiddos.  If I linger any longer on that computer, I will only be making my own next 45 minutes end in a train wreck.  #SocialMediaIsEvil

9.  Rise and Shine!  This part I rather like--waking up the kiddos.  First of all, I get to wake up Dear Daughter by doing things to her she would never allow if she were awake.  For example, I get to rub her cheeks.  (No, not those cheeks.)  Secondly, I wake up Dear Son in my most obnoxious best Nemo impersonation: Time for school, time for school!  Wake up, wake up, it's time for school!   If I'm lucky, he'll crack a smile before he opens his eyes.  #BestAlarmEver

8.  Dressing and Grooming.  DD dresses and grooms herself, after she checks in with me about the weather forecast.  DS still requires help with brushing his teeth, and he'll let me pick out his clothes if I help him get dressed.  I do both, since we're always short on time in the mornings.  #CrackingMyWhip

7.  Breakfast.  In the shortest amount of time possible, I put breakfast on the table after consulting with the kiddos about their choice of food.  Cereal, toast, oatmeal, or waffles.  Water or milk.  Even an occasional doughnut or homebaked goods.  After the short order cooking is done, the kiddos feed themselves with my constant reminders: Eat!  For goodness sakes, put food in your mouths!  #IHaveEyesBehindMyHead

6.  Check Homework/ Assemble Backpacks.  I am the worst best procrastinator.  While I should check homework in the evenings, I wait until the morning.  This is usually my mood breaker.  If I find careless mistakes on DD's homework, then we waste a lot of precious time.  She corrects them while I stew in frustration.  #NotAHappyCamper

5.  Prepare Two Snacks.  Our school has a wonderful snack policy: Healthy Snacks.  The children must bring fresh fruits or vegetables and/or cheese.  So my assembly line includes cutting board, knife, fruits, containers, plastic wrap, ice packs, and insulated bags.  DS has long adopted the 'apple a day' philosophy, so he's easy.  DD will rotate her fruits, which is nice, too.  #HealthySnacksRock

4.  Prepare One Lunch.  DD prefers home lunches as opposed to school lunches, and who can blame her?  Occasionally, she will opt for school lunch, which gives me an extra five minutes in the morning, but more likely than not, I make her a sandwich or a thermos-filled hot lunch of last night's leftovers.  #MyBestGirlEatsLeftovers

3.  Prepare Two Water Bottles.  Wash and fill two insulated water bottles that keep water cold.  #JustTheWayTheyLikeIt

2.  Brush Hair/ Apply Sunscreen with Lotion (if necessary).  DD takes care of herself while I serve the Prince.  Shoes on, backpacks ready, and we're nearly there.  #AlmostSeeTheLight

1.  School Bus.  With minutes to spare, we go outside to the curb and wait for the bus.  Last minute reminders, hair/clothes adjustments, and Mama's hugs and kisses happen right here.  DD always lets DS go on the bus first, like the wonderful big sister that she is, and off they go.  #Hallelujah

(One day Dear Husband worked from home and witness this Morning Madness.  He was compelled to ask me what was the matter, since I looked really peeved.  To which I assured him that I happen to be peeved like this every morning.  To which he snickered, "As long as it's everyday and not because something out of the ordinary happened today."  Um, no.

I go home to a messy kitchen and plates/bowls to put away.  I make my morning coffee and eat my breakfast.  And like so, my day really begins. 

So, Dear Morning Madness, even though I've managed you with passing grades so far, I know that by cutting my timing so close will one day backfire.  I also know that you will continue to evolve throughout the school year--specially when the weather gets cold and fifty layers of clothing, snow pants and snow boots are involved.  But I guess I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.  For now, I gladly do my Victory Dance as I watch the bus drive away into the morning sun and give me three hours of blissful alone time.

To clean the house. 

Sincerely,
Me

23 comments:

  1. Part of me feels badly for you that your mornings are so hectic. Mostly though, I'm just glad I don't have your morning! ;)

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    1. Sean, I suppose your feeling badly for me makes me feel a little better. :) I'm glad you don't have my morning, too! Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. I often picture what a typical "get the kids off to school" morning would be like for me, but I can't see that far ahead. I assume it will be something like this, only probably a little more freaking out on my part, because lately I just feel so unorganized.
    It sounds like even though you cut it close in the morning, you have your stuff together and your kiddos seem very cooperative, which I'm sure helps :)

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    1. Cassie, my kids are *pretty* cooperative, mostly, usually. But there are some mornings where everyone wakes up on the wrong side of bed. I guess it's inevitable. But I really need to not cut to so close, for my own sake. Enjoy your years of no morning madness, cuz once it's here, it's here to stay for a long time! Thank you!

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  3. Ha! Sounds like chaos, albeit an organized one, indeed. :-) Look at the bright side - you are getting better and better at being organized. By the way, I am #10 too.
    And I am going to plug - watch Grimm. Start with Season 1. Did I just make your life more difficult? :-)

    and please oh please, just tweet to me your reply because my computer is silly and does not get the feedbacks from your blog even after I subscribed to the comments.

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  4. There were many times I got so frustrated that I yelled to the kids almost all the way to school. See I have to drive, no school bus for us. My kids are older, they have been in school for 9 years one and 7 years the other so you would think they know the routine pretty well. Most mornings there is always a last minute thing to do and it drives me insane. DS is the worse, and he is the older.

    Now I work, so DH gets the kids ready, I have to say that I don't mind it at all ;o)

    My son got in the jr. soccer varsity team so he needs to get his stuff ready for practice, that seems to help this year. He finally gets the idea that he has to make sure he has clean clothes the night before. Well...he does it most of the time.

    You are not the only one....

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    1. Laura, I bet you feel relieved about not having to deal with morning madness anymore. There is just something about that time before school that is so stressful for the parents and the kids! We are lucky with having the school bus, and we live pretty close to school, too. But the school bus also has its nightmares, too, especially during our crazy winters here.

      This is at least one area where I knew that I was the only one... I hear it all the time from my mommy friends. We all have our quirks and differences, though, so sharing about this can hopefully make us chuckle a little despite the frustrations. Thanks for sharing, Laura! You always do make me feel better!

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  5. This sounds eerily familiar. I'm lucky that my kids wear uniforms, so the dressing part is very easy. I also take the kids to school myself, there isn't a bus that comes out here. And I always, always do the homework check at night. Their back bags are packed and ready to go... only thing that goes in in the morning are the water bottles and snacks!!!

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    1. I really need to start checking homework at night like you, and it's something that I've done a few times when I knew there wouldn't be enough time in the morning due to the amount of homework assigned. It makes such a big difference! Now that the weekend is over, I need to brace myself for another five mornings of madness. Lucky us.

      You are my Morning Madness role model, Susi!

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  6. At the moment, hubby takes care of mornings with the kids, but that could change at any time. The only hope of getting out of the house in the morning in our house is to do as much as possible the night before (if I could send them to bed already wearing their school clothes, I'd do it!) Insanity doesn't even begin to describe it :)

    Hope your mornings become 'routine' as the year wears on!

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    1. I hope so, too, Janna! Certain days are more 'insane' than others, that's for sure! I don't know how working parents do it. So last night, I did everything short of the lunch and snacks, and my life was much better this morning. Lesson learned. :)

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  7. Really? Your three hours "free" are used to clean your house? Why do I not fully believe that?

    I live this life, although thankfully homework - except updating the reading log - gets done at night. We have over an hour, and it's still a rush.

    And yes, I'm checking my email before I get out of bed, too. I have a strict 10 minute rule though. I have to! :)

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    1. No, not really, Michelle. :) That's just my way of saying how I never have enough time to do what I *want* to do because of having to clean the house. I'm always bargaining (with myself) about when I can write versus when I have to clean. It's a never-ending battle. But, yes, twice a week, I *do* clean while DS is in school. :)

      To be fair, the kiddos do their homework at night. I'm the lazy one that sometimes waits until morning to check it. I'm getting better, though.

      And I read your post comments--I'm glad it went better today with the dry erase board! I hope it sticks!

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  8. At least it is fitting that it took me so long to comment here, because I can blame it on CRAZINESS and CHAOS, two lifelong pests that I will be living with, apparently forever.
    I totally get your hectic rushed mornings, without a doubt! It took so much adjusting on my part when my kids started school, because I really was surprised how much school "took" away from what LITTLE ME that was left, make sense? It was just another situation where I struggled to maintain some sense of order inside papers and lunches and homework meltdowns and THEN came SPORTS. My mornings pale in comparison to my afternoons. But you already know that. :-)

    Oh! Then came CHILD NUMBER THREE and my Life formerly known as Holding it Together fell apart...but, BUT, something else is in it's place. Something different, but equally as beautiful.

    It's just...a new kind of normal.

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    1. I hear you--it is so hard to have ME TIME when kids are in the picture. I often think about those pre-kiddos days where it was all about me (and us). But you're so right, now there's something else in its place, and I'd trade nothing for it now. My mornings are the new normal, except it *only* took me two weeks to get used to it!

      I'm not a morning person, which makes it hard. And your afternoons? I'm right there with you. Mine are just in music, now with both the kiddos. But I hear sports is even more grueling in their own ways. We need some Mommy Therapy, or group hug, or something. Happy Craziness and Chaos to you!

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  9. Amen, girl. It's a whirlwind in the morning!

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    1. It is. The funny thing is, as soon as they are off on the bus, I come back into the house looking for things I forgot to send in backpacks. I just don't feel all together there in the mornings! Thanks, Missy!

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  10. It's so tough getting out the door in the morning. I try to get as much done the night before. Usually, just getting their backpacks, snacks, and/or lunch ready. I've heard of people setting out their clothes the night before, or even wearing them to bed! :)

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    1. So true! I feel that we need to wake up earlier in the winter just to get all the winter clothing and gear on! It'll be a different set of challenges by then, sigh! Thanks, Asianmommy!

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  11. Crazy morning, girl! Our mornings are also one-thing-after-another but fortunately, most mornings I don't have a time-crunch. No bus to catch. No 9am meeting. Thank goodness! My only time-drag in the morning is breakfast too. Why can't they remember to eat?! Haha.

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    1. Unless kids are starving, playing seems to be more important! Either that or they haven't woken up yet, LOL. This morning madness is in your future, so enjoy it now before time crunch becomes an issue... I miss those no schedule days! Thanks for stopping by, Lisa!

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    2. In my future. Gaahh! Guess it keeps life interesting :)

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  12. YES! Mornings are so crazy! You've got a good system. Our mornings include all that and driving the boys to school which includes dropping off Joey with Jack running behind or in front of us making things difficult.... then getting Jack back in the car and dropping him off, which may include a melt down. Oh kids! Aren't we great moms?

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