Tuesday, December 18, 2007

DCMM: How to Get Three Kids Up and Out of the House in 20 Minutes

Or, How NOT to Start Your Morning.

1. Don't push the snooze alarm on your clock seven times. Even if you've cleverly set your clock an unspecified time ahead so you never know exactly what time it is, you still can't be fooled by the clock if you're fast asleep. Also remember that if you plan to leave the house with your children by 8:25, you should definitely wake up before your husband shouts you out of bed at 8:13 am.

2. Understand that even if you wish really hard, you can't make the clock turn backwards. And if you do turn your clock backwards, that doesn't mean you've made time move back.

3. Shriek at your three small children to wake up, and hope that they won't shriek back. It helps if one of your kids is six and, in five minutes, can get dressed, wash his face, brush his teeth, and make his bed all by himself without being asked. (Don't hate me. This is the first time this ever happened.) Of course, if you don't have a six-year-old, you probably don't have to be at kindergarden at 8:50.

4. Lack compassion. When you hurriedly check your email and find a note from your stepfather pleading for itinerary information for your aviophobic mother so someone will be able to pick her up at the airport after her 24 hour flight from Australia, put minimal effort into finding it and figure that at least she'll be grateful to be on solid ground, so she won't be too sad about waiting for a ride.

5. Prepare portable breakfasts for your children. Four words: bagels with cream cheese. That way, when the kids are not finished with breakfast when it's time to leave, you can still stuff them in the car without worrying about starving them.

6. Don't let your husband go to work with your only set of car keys. This one is really important. Even if you and all your kids are in the car and seat-belted, all of your efforts are useless if you can't start the car. And while you may be able to accomplish steps 1-5 in 20 minutes, you sure as hell aren't going to be able to make three kids under six walk a mile and a half to school in 35 degree weather in time for the late bell.

7. Swear that you'll be better starting tomorrow. You'll get out of bed at 7:30! You'll prepare lunches the night before! You won't threaten toddlers with their lives if they don't follow orders barked at them by big, panicked parents!

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