So, today is the craziest day ever. I drop the toddlers off at Mother’s Day Out; run back home; throw the baby in her crib for a power nap; flash-homeschool the big kids; go back to MDO early to watch the preschoolers race tricycles and jump through hoops for Olympic Day; go back home, throw some leotards on the couch and tell the two big girls to get ready for ballet while I dump out some granola bars on the kitchen table and holler, “LUNCH!”; take the big girls to dance class; dash out of dance class, see if the girls can finally figure out how to change clothes in the car while keeping their seatbelts on (attempts at which have yielded mixed results in the past); drop off my five-year-old at the main American Heritage Girls meeting place; dash over to PetCo with my six-year-old for her unit’s American Heritage Girls field trip to get a pet care badge; somehow find time in all of this to write my 7 Quick Takes post. I think my son has Scouts too.
If you never hear from me again…know that it had something to do with the events of this day.
“You’re overscheduled!” some might say. “You don’t need all those activities!” I too used to be of the “kids’ activities are overrated”/”reject the frantic pace of The World and cultivate a peaceful life at home”/”what’s wrong with our house that we would ever need to leave it, ever?” school of thought. And then my kids started asking me why they should brush their hair or wear clothes or since we never see other human lifeforms, and began developing startlingly close relationships to their imaginary friends, and I promptly signed them up for 1,000 activities.
I hung out with my friend Rachael at the big Texas Alliance for Life benefit dinner this week, and just had to get a picture with her since she has perfected the “baby chic” look. She wore this incredibly cute poka-dotted dress topped with a black cropped sweater, then had her new little man tucked neatly into a sling in a lime-colored sling. As if knowing that he needed to chill lest he spoil his mother’s fabulous vibe, the baby sat there happily for almost the whole event.
This is so different than when I try to leave the house with an infant. I always remember at the last minute that I need to feed the baby so she won’t scream in the car the whole way there, and then I remember with exasperation (for whatever reason, this shocks me anew every time) that the feeding process can take over 30 minutes. Thus the time I was planning to spend glaring into my closet and proclaiming that I have Nothing to Wear™ is used nursing the baby instead. Now late, I end up grabbing the first clothes I see, usually a mix of ill-fitting maternity clothes and ill-fitting normal pieces. I get to the event, and about five minutes in my sling starts unraveling and the baby’s legs and an arm are flailing around, knocking drinks out of people’s hands. My attempts to fix it end up angering the baby, who is now crying and wants to eat again. She has somehow ended up getting wrapped up in the sling like it’s a strait jacket, and just as I untangle everything and lift her out of it she looks down at me, smiles…and spits up all over me.
I think I would have to have about 10 more kids to be able to socialize with a baby without it being a total disaster.
For those of you in the Austin area, I’ll be speaking on Tuesday at the Relevant Radio luncheon and on Wednesday at the University of Texas as part of Professor Rob Koons’ Chrisitian Apologetics series at the UCC. Rumor has it that an Atheist Club as been invited to the latter event, so bring your popcorn to kick back and enjoy the festivities.
You know how I’m always recommending that book Organizing Solutions for People with ADD? I think that the author should take the book, slap a new cover it, and release a second version called Organizing Solutions for People With Big Families, with the exact same content as the first. Having kids is like having a house full of people with ADD. Her totally streamlined, ultra-simple, eminently functional organizational tips are incredibly helpful when you live in the kind of environment where you might tell someone to “put that shirt in the laundry basket,” and the mere presence of a lid on the basket causes enough of a distraction that 10 minutes later you find her playing princess dressup, using the shirt you gave her as her magic cape. Just a tip.
The astute reader may have read #1, 3, and 5 and thought, “That’s a lot of socializing for a self-proclaimed introvert!” I know. I don’t know how it happened either.