Monday, November 17, 2014

A stumble through my morning

I'm fairly certain most people know I'm not a morning person.  In fact, those who know me well may bear the emotional scars to prove it.

But after 30 plus years, I am still forced to deal with mornings.  Every single day.

You would think I'd have a plan by now.  To make the hours between dawn and drop off more bearable.  But I really don't.

So let me walk you through my morning.  Or perhaps, I should say, stumble through with me.  Step carefully, as you will probably be snapped at, and watch as I brush away the fog and slowly emerge.  Human.

Of course it all starts here.

The sacred first cup.  Need I say more?

It's a dream of mine to sneak downstairs, every day, before the children.  But tragically, I also love sleep.  Plus, I've realized that no matter when I wake, at least one of my kids can literally feel how much I need that moment.  They can sense that this quiet cup is the very best part of my day, and they rush in first thing to destroy my peace.

This morning it was this one.

Generally we're a no TV during the week family.  Let me explain.  I went a little insane last year, and now I'm too proud and stubborn to reverse my decision.  So we shut off the TV, but we can't shut off the kids.  All. Week. Long.

Elmo in the morning is a necessary exception though.  There's just no way to ready myself and three children with this one running wild.  So I sedate him to the comforting nasal inflections of his favorite red friend.

It frees me up to do this.

Ah, lunches.  My mom literally packed my lunch every day from Kindergarten through my senior year of high school.  And when I interned at her company one summer during college, she packed my lunch then too.

I'm pretty sure she's an angel.  Because I've been packing my kids lunches for three years now and every single morning I want to crumble to the floor and cry.  I hate it so much.

Every few weeks, Aiden comes up with the brilliant idea, why don't I pack lunches the night before? So I don't have to do it in the morning?

I don't know how to explain it to him, but I just can't.  I can't do one more food-related task at the end of a day that revolves around nothing but food.  I mean, no kidding, I go from packing snacks and lunches to making breakfast to making my own breakfast to making Benjamin's snack to making our lunch to making things for my kids to take in their snacks and lunches to making dinner to cleaning up dinner and if I have to think about anybody else's food needs past 7:00 I will literally scream!

Feeding three children is never-ending.  I mean, really, can't they just not eat for like, one day?

And breakfast hits at the exact worst time of the day.  I was never much of a breakfast person myself, so eggs feel like way more work than they're worth, we somehow never have bread for toast, and I just can't bring myself to feed them sugary cereals (the only kind they like).

But I know breakfast is very important, blah, blah, blah (as Finn would say).

 So now we drink our breakfasts instead!  (Note the happy faces!)

Really, it's genius.  They get a belly full of bananas, oats, peanut butter and yogurt.  That they suck through a straw.  And I get to blend up breakfast in one giant cup and am left with absolutely NO CRUMBS.  Zero crumbs!

I am still left with the usual morning mess, though.  Because I'm too busy screaming SHOES, COATS, CAR! over and over again to find the time to run a sponge across the counter.

I tried to capture it here...

and here...

But when I looked back at these picture I realized I am totally one of those moms.

I have literally referred to this at the tornado that blows through my house every morning.  A tornado?  It barely looks like a breeze swept through here.

So I'm sorry.  I'm so sorry to anyone I've asked to excuse my giant mess when what I really mean is that the kids left their smoothie cups on the table and that's about it.

Please, forgive me for my vast insecurities.  And as punishment, next time you're here, ask to see the upstairs.  No.  Demand to see the upstairs.

Back to the morning.

I eventually get the kids to school.  Once in a while we even get there on time.

And then we come home.  And I'm left with one kid and no husband.

I tried to capture my peaceful household after they all leave, but this one stepped right in front of the camera.

Ruined my shot.

Ah.  Much Better.

If you have any advice or suggestions that might make my mornings more efficient and bearable, I welcome them.  Really.  I most definitely won't take them though, unless it involves you yourself coming to my home every AM to wrangle my three children with your own bare hands.  (And that's wrangle, not strangle, people.)

But the suggestions are certainly still welcome.

So here's to this morning.  And to the many, many more to come!


  1. I'm sure Becky would happily make their lunches if she could. I invited her to come clean my house since she's retired now but she turned me down!

    1. Haha! I'm sure she would! If only she could ship them overseas every morning...

  2. And just like you remember, the love your mum/mom bestowed in what she did in her mornings for you, so too will they remember!! Everyday Bella was in High School I took her morning coffee and toast to wake her up. She'd had her own nanny who had done that for ten years before we moved here. She hated the move. She missed her nanny, she missed her life and that world. She was a spoiled expat kid for sure. So, to ease her pain I made her breakfast every single morning of her high school life. It just started to try and make her smile and then I felt somehow that this was a 'big deal' that I was now the only one to take care of her. Some mornings she didn't eat it, some mornings she stumbled down the stairs with her coffee cup only half empty but I had done my duty. I had given her breakfast. Now, there were nights she didn't get dinner because by then I didn't know what to cook or have the energy for that meal, but boy did she get breakfast. I wonder if she thinks now on cold winter mornings how lovely it would be to have mum/mom deliver her coffee to her bed so hers was a gentle start to the day? I love the chaos of the mornings Kim, only because it lets you love the peace that follows. Your kids will remember and thank you!! With love!!!

    1. What a sweet memory! I'm sure she does miss the coffee delivery... but probably more the deliverer than the actual coffee. Love how you didn't always get around to dinner:) I think I'll adopt that motto. As long as they get breakfast...

  3. Oh my oh my how I dislike the mornings as well. And particularly because my husband is so good at getting up on time and my bed never wants to release me. So on the mornings that it is just me getting ready for work and getting the boys ready for preschool....I literally feel like we are all moving through thick morning sludge. My mother "let" us make our lunches as soon as we could effectively use a knife (same for breakfast)...that tradition is extremely appealing to me but I'm having a hard time convincing my five year old of how fun that would be and my 3 year, well, lets just say he has the enthusiasm but the skill...the evidence is etched in our dining room table. This too shall pass???? Deep breathing??? Robot nannies???

    1. So funny, Amy! I completely know what you mean by the thick morning sludge. Or like, those nightmares where you know you need to run away from something, but you just can't make your legs move that fast. Why is that? I don't know how you do it getting yourself ready for work as well. I'll be the first to admit I'm on an every-other-day shower schedule, and I truly can't imagine fitting one in every, single day. Aiden does want to make his own lunches, but I'm pretty controlling. Maybe I need to let this one thing go.

  4. I am adopting the breakfast smoothie - brilliant! Now, if you want to see a real morning tornado, I will send you a picture of our table/kitchen tomorrow :)

  5. I really related to this post and am happy I stumbled upon your blog. (Thanks Scary Mommy) It is refreshing to know that I am not the only one who struggles with mornings and I only have a five year old boy. School days are glorious when I can come home and go back to sleep. It really makes me feel like I don't need any more babies messing up my sleep schedule! It is a moment in this season of my life that I appreciate.:) Blessings to you and your family from Atlanta, Ga.

    1. Thanks for coming over, Kat! Oh, how I long for the days when all of my kids are in school and I can go back to sleep after drop off! Sounds beautiful...