I like this quote - can't remember who said it or where I heard it, but it stuck with me:
"As soon as you get a little cocky about your mothering, the principal will call and let you know that your son just drove a motorcycle through the gymnasium."
Sort of weird, yes - but it sticks with you, no?
I was a little cocky in my last post about routines. I did do a good job getting the routines rolling and I was enjoying a good day that day. But here's how our "routine" went this morning:
I got up 10 minutes late. I used the snooze button on my new phone - thought it was a 5 minute snooze - nope - ten. I dragged myself out of bed and headed upstairs to make sure the kids were up and going on the good old routine.
Nope. Ashton was reading a book instead of taking a shower and the rest of the kids were asleep.
I sent Ashton into the shower and got the other kids up. But I'd been tired the night before and forgot to set out their clothes - or go over what the schedule and routine was for the morning. Ashton had no school shirts that could be found anywhere. Isaac got dressed quickly and headed downstairs - I asked him to set out the bowls and make sure his homework was ready in his backpack. I got the twins going on getting dressed and got myself ready.
Time for breakfast - just 10 minutes late - we'll still be OK. I realized Ashton was still in the shower and headed upstairs to ask him nicely - again - to HURRY. On the way back down I heard another shower and found that Eliza had decided to take a shower too even though it's not her shower day so I asked her to HURRY.
Got downstairs to find Isaac wandering around aimlessly, no bowls on the table, no homework ready - what had he been doing for the last precious 10 minutes? He had no idea.
Got oatmeal whipped up and sat down to eat. Ashton finally came downstairs demanding that I find him some shorts to wear for gym that day and that they needed to be shorts that went past his knees. I explained that needs for things like new gym shorts should really be stated in advance of when you actually need them. We have shorts that go to the middle of his knee but he said they would be too short. I searched through his stuff and handed him the longest shorts I could find and asked him to put them in his backpack.
I finished everyone's hair, checked all the backpacks, reminded everyone to clear their places (somehow it's SO hard to remember), asked whoever was guilty - and I don't even care who - to PLEASE go flush the poo down the toilet in the powder room right off the kitchen (wondering what that smell was as I was getting breakfast), and asked everyone when their socks are supposed to go on their feet - "before we come downstairs for breakfast" they chorused back. Well, no one remembered that little part of the routine so everyone went upstairs to the laundry room where we keep socks and got socks on, got coats on, got backpacks, got shoes on (some people strangely doing this in slow motion while I urged everyone along with increasingly less-nice urgings). Then I realized Eliza didn't have her glasses on and had her go back upstairs and get them (much to her dismay - going ALL the way upstairs is so HARD. Tell me about it - I've already done it like 10 times today myself...)
I sent the kids to hop in the car while I looked for the keys that I really thought I left on the window sill. Turns out Ashton had taken the keys to the car. I got in the car and saw that Ashton somehow had no coat on - even though I'm pretty darn sure I reminded each child to get their backpacks AND their coats when they headed to the closet. Reminded Ashton for the hundreth time that we live in a cold place and we should always put on a coat when we go outside (St George habits die hard with that guy). He said he was perfectly fine without a coat. The temperature thing in the car said 11 degrees. I sent him back in for the coat.
We headed out - just 8 minutes late. In the car, we had a fun little quiz to see who could remember all the steps in the morning routine. Eliza passed it off with flying colors. Ashton passed it off too - but somehow KNOWING what he's supposed to do and actually remembering to do it are two different things. We dropped Ashton off at school and then I asked Isaac to tell me the routine and he didn't answer. We all realized he wasn't in the car. Oops. The kids in the back thought he was in the front seat by me and I assumed he was in the back.
We headed back home and found a very sad Isaac sitting on the back steps (with no coat - and it was still 11 degrees). He'd been in the bathroom when we left. I'm not sure how he missed all the commotion of trying to find the socks and get the coats and shoes on. I guess he was in the upstairs bathroom since the downstairs one was so stinky. We all felt bad.
We got Isaac's coat and headed out to school for the second time.
When I got back from dropping off the kids, I saw that Ashton's gym shorts were sitting on the kitchen counter. Glad I spent that extra 5 minutes looking for them.
So yes, routines are beautiful. But when the mom gets up 10 minutes late and the reminders of the routine didn't happen the night before and someone needs gym shorts, even the best routines just don't quite work out!
At least I haven't received any calls from the principal - yet!