Last week I had the good fortune to organize a girls night out with a bunch of local moms. Some I knew, some I didn’t and all seemed to have the same question: “Tell us about a typical day. What is it really like with all of those kids?”
One reply would be that there is nothing “typical” about any day in the Lyons Den. While routine reigns supreme, much like our rules, our routines are quite often broken. We do our best to just roll with it -- something that does not come naturally to me! With that in mind, here’s a glimpse into a recent day… let’s call it Tuesday… a Tuesday when the sitter and I both had the day off from work and I was the full-time LyonsDenMOM that I love to be!
5:45AM Wake up. Reluctantly drag sluggish self out of bed, bundle up for run, stagger to turn on coffee pot on way out.
6:00 AM Meet friends for cold, dark, icy morning run.
6:45 AM Return home feeling great and ready for the day ahead. Unload dishwasher, consume large cup of coffee.
7:00 AM Drag 1st grader out of bed. Poke, prod, prompt him to get dressed, eat breakfast , brush teeth, comb hair and bolt for bus.
7:30 AM Put boy on bus; take dog for walk.
8:10 AM Return from dog walk. Peek in at Princess PreSchooler; urge her to get up and get dressed
8:15 AM Greet boys bouncing in cribs. Lliterally. Two year old triplets are catching air as they greet me enthusiastically and in unison alternating between “How are you today?!” and “GET ME OUT OF HERE!!!”
8:30 AM Husband leaves. Early. Thought he was going to drop off Princess PreSchool but he can’t. Panic. Only have a half hour to get four kids fed and dressed and out the door!
9:15 AM Missed the deadline. Drop the Princess off. Late. Again.
9:30 AM Back home. Cubs still need breakfast and are due at “Stepping Stones” in fifteen minutes. Devise a quick game of “Pass the Banana” to get some nutrition in them before bolting out the door again.
9:45 AM Cubs class starts.
10:00 AM We arrive. Hang three coats, gather three hats and six mittens. Wash six hands. I depart amid sweet protests of “no Go Mama!”
10:10 AM Home. House looks like a tornado went through it. Time to make beds, tidy cribs, clean kitchen, thrown in laundry and take a shower.
11:35 AM No time for shower. Again. Arrive to pick up Cubs (5 minutes late); wrestle them into hats, coats and mittens; begin walk to pick up Princess PreSchool. Realize we will never make there on time. Again.
11:55 AM Shortcut turns into long-cut due to ice and snow. Barely survive nature’s slip & slide as I make three trips to get triplets up and over snow bank. Thankfully, Princess PreSchool and her teachers are forgiving as we literally slide in the door. Late. Again.
12:00 PM Sun is shining, kids are bundled up, Mom is feeling game and decides for some outside playtime before stopping for pizza on way home.
12:30 PM Pizza and juice boxes followed by the resistance and rebelliousness one might expect from a trio of tired two year olds and their feisty four year old sister.
1:15 PM Head home. Ten minute walk turns into 45 minute crawl with avid attention given to Con Ed workers, snow plows, dump trucks, even delivery trucks. My curious Cubs stop to take it all in. Tedious, yes, but so far this still beats a day in the office!
2:00 PM Home at last. Already well past nap time. Need to quickly bathe triplets and tuck them in so I can bolt back to bus stop for 2:30 pick up. I can’t be late; if I’m not there, they will return my 1st grader to school and that would really screw up my afternoon!
2:35 PM 1st grader flies off bus and into my arms with a huge grin. I love this day.
2:45 PM 1st grader and Princess PreSchooler brawling as triplets scream from cribs. I hate this day.
3:00 PM Snack time for “big kids” as I sort mail and consider what to do for dinner. Roast chickens (yep, we need two of ‘em!) sound good. Plan to put them in at 4:00.
3:15 PM Can’t stand the bickering anymore. Turn TV on and sort through hurricane of hand-me-downs as big kids absorb mindless drivel courtesy of Yo Gabba Gabba and Wow Wow Wubzy. Who comes up with this stuff?!
4:30 PM OMG! How is it 4:30?! Why are there piles of clothes (2T, 3T, 5T Girls!) covering every surface of my living room?! What about the chickens? We’re supposed to eat at 6:00! Must put chickens in oven NOW!!
5:18 PM Chickens are in. Took longer than expected. Big Kids finishing another snack. Little kids up from nap; angry and demanding “GET ME OUT OF HERE!” They no longer ask “How are you today?!”
5:20 PM Bath time for big kids; diaper change for little guys. All are singing and jolly now. I love this day.
6:00 PM Chickens not done, five kids hungry and screaming. I am exhausted, aching and ready to tear my hair out. I hate this day!
7:00 PM Feed kids cooked bits of chicken as they polish off another gallon of milk. They tell Dad about playing “Pass the Banana”, going out for pizza and how cool it was to see me at the bus stop. I love this day.
So, that’s it! Nothing "typical" about it beyond the prevailing chaos and frequent ups and downs that I’m sure are familiar to most moms. As for me, well, I admit that sometimes it's a break to go to work but, I relish my time at home and truly do love these days.