Epic Fail?

7:34.  We are all in the kitchen at this point, dressed and ready to go.  Sid-tastic is sleeping.  Riley and Adrian are thirsty.  I still have to make my coffee and get everyone out the door.  Riley says she wants tea.  I pull out a sippy cup of iced tea from the refrigerator.  I offer it to her.  She starts to cry.

“No, not that one.”

“This is tea,” I say.  “If you want tea, here it is.”

She starts crying even harder.

“What is it?” I ask.  “Why are you crying?”

“You hurt my feelings,” she says.

I didn’t mean to.  I swear I didn’t.  I pulled Riley into a hug.  I forgot what time it was and what I was doing.  I just wanted to hold her and rewind a few minutes and have a little more patience.

“I’m sorry,” I tell her.  “I didn’t mean to.”  I wanted to explain.  “Mornings are hard for mommy sometimes.  I have to get all of us ready and out the door, and sometimes I just get frustrated.”

I got her milk instead in a new sippy cup.  I filled up Adrian’s iced tea.  I made my coffee.  We all headed to the car, smiley and ready for the day.  We left the house about fifteen minutes after I wanted to leave.  But what’s fifteen minutes, really?

Today’s been a good one, except I keep coming back to the morning and hurting my daughter’s feelings.  That’s an epic fail – to borrow some gaming language – right?  But it’s also part of the mother-child relationship.  She’ll hurt my feelings.  I’ll hurt hers.  It happens.  It will happen.  She will cry, and I will be responsible.  I’ll cry, and she will be the cause.  Still, I hate that I was responsible for her tears this morning.  I hate that I hurt her feelings.

Thursdays are just tough for me.  Here’s hoping tomorrow morning, I will have more patience.  And maybe by the time the next Thursday rolls around, I’ll be ready for it, too.

Bad Mood Morning


Most mornings are really smooth.  This one wasn’t.  It was raining.  All three kids were cranky and crying.  I felt like I was forgetting something, and I wasn’t feeling well.  Not good.  The worst part was my patience plummeted, and I know I was cranky, too.

We did make it out of the house, all of us, and only eight minutes late.  And everyone was dropped off happy or sleeping.  All in all, the morning really wasn’t too bad.  And I didn’t forget anything.

Still.  I spent my entire walk to campus thinking about our rushed and tearful time together before we headed off to daycare centers and school and wishing I could have a mulligan.

I’ll do better tomorrow.

Up and Out in 45 Minutes!

While my parents were staying with us in January, we practiced and tweaked our morning routine, so I would be comfortable getting three kids up, dressed, fed, and out the door in time to make it to campus for my 9:30 class.  Honestly, one of my biggest sources of anxiety before Sid was born was figuring out how I was going to handle mornings on my own.  Shawn gets to miss the craziness altogether because he has to be at work so early.  But I am happy to report that we’ve been on our own for two weeks, and already mornings are a lot less crazy and a lot more fun.  Oddly enough, the kids have been much happier at drop-off, too, even though I have to wake them up earlier.  They are full of energy and cheerful!

Here is our step-by-step guide to our mornings along with some tips to get out the door fast:

The Night Before:

1. Pick clothes out for all three kids.  Put in a basket in the playroom.

Note: The playroom is like our staging area.  I have found it a lot easier to get the kids ready if Dragon Tales can be on in the background for one episode.

2.  Pack bags, including my back pack, pump, Sidney’s school bag, and one for the big kids if necessary.  Shawn makes our sandwiches in the morning, and then I usually just grab some fruit and snacks for my lunch in the morning.

3.  Prepare baggies of cereal.  This was a tip from my mom, and I have to say it is genius. Shawn made about ten bags two weeks ago, and we are still working on those.  The point of cereal baggies is to prevent stalling in the kitchen.  Riley would get to the kitchen, complain of lingering hunger, and then lose it.  Completely.  Now, she knows to grab a cereal baggie if she is still hungry.  And one for Adrian!

In the Morning:


1.  Washed, dressed, make-upped, and hair.  Most mornings, I only have time to brush and then up it goes.

2.  Take care of Sidney as much as possible.  If I can, I try to nurse, diaper, and change her before the big kids get up!


1.  Wake big kids and usher them into playroom.  Turn on Dragon Tales.

2.  Get breakfast: toaster waffles, cereal, mini-muffins, or fruit.

3.  Allow about ten minutes for them to wake up a little.

4.  Tackle children one at a time for diapers (as applicable), clothing change, hair, face, and shoes.  When my dad was in town, we came up with a list of critical tasks to help eliminate time lost to extra activities.  For me, this list was really useful, and now both kids know what we need to do to be ready to go.

5.  Nurse Sidney one more time.

6. Start boiling water on stove for my hot tea.

7.  Start car and load bags.

8.  Move kids from playroom to kitchen.  Make sure we have jackets, blankets, and shoes.  My kids don’t go anywhere without their blankets.

9.  Get big kids into the car.

10.  Lock up and fix cup of tea to go.

11.  Take Sidney and tea to the car.

12.  Sing songs all the way to school.

13.  Drop off big kids at their day care center.

14.  Take baby to hers.  Yes, we have our kids at two different locations.  Sidney’s center takes kids part-time and on the university schedule, so either Tuesday/Thursday or Monday/Wednesday/Friday.  She goes TTH and stays with me the rest of the week.

15.  Enjoy Pop Tarts for breakfast at the office.