What the Hell I Did All Day

I’m so tired lately.  Even more than when I was working.  Why, I asked myself, was I so exhausted when all I was doing was housework and caring for a toddler?  A will be two shortly and is busy, but still, just one–why, the older one is at school!  So, I decided to write down what I did.

6:00–A starts yelling, “Mama, are you?”  Go get A.  Commence getting two kids fed, dressed and brushed.  Give A’s sippy a “time out” when she pours it on the floor.

8:30–Take M to bus.  Struggle to get A into jacket as she hollers “I got it! I got it!” and tries to zip it herself.  Eventually just put jacket on backwards.  A is pleased, and takes a party horn, stuffed sheep and spatula to the bus.

A runs down the retaining pool with the other kids.  Retrieve horn, sheep and spatula from mud.  A cries because “sheep dirty.”

9:00–Return home.  A washes hands and sheep.

Wash dishes as A takes out the silverware basket, yells, “shopping!” and flees.

Find basket under couch.

Stop to read Elmo Makes a Gingerbread House.

Read Elmo Makes a Gingerbread House.

Read Elmo Makes a Gingerbread House.

9:30–Resume dishes.  Stop dishes when A opens the pantry and empties a box of sesame seeds on the floor.

9:45–finish dishes

10:00–A takes off her diaper and attempts to put it on a doll.  Rediaper A, find diaper for doll.

Play with blocks.

Put cleaner in the toilet.

A pulls her shirt over her head, is now “blind” and crying.  Fix shirt, hug A.

Read Elmo Makes a Gingerbread House.

Pick up toys.

11:00–Try to fold laundry.  A pipes up, “potty!”  A sits on the potty and throws toilet paper in for ten minutes.

Try to fold laundry.  A declares, “Helping! Helping!” and attempts to fold socks.  Once folding socks loses its appeal, she attempts to carry laundry up the stairs.  Laundry promptly falls down the stairs.  Re-fold laundry.

Read Elmo Makes a Gingerbread House.

Read Elmo Makes a Gingerbread House.

12:00–Make lunch.  A eats lunch, using a plastic pocket bib, becauswe I made soup.  At the end of the meal, A cries, “ta-da!” and whisks off the bib, dumping the accumulated soup all over her clothes.  Change A’s clothes, do laundry.  Clean up soup from the floor.  A removes all tupperware from the cupboard and sits inside, yelling, “boat!”

1:00–Pick up tupperware.  Finish cleaning toilet.  Read Elmo Makes a Gingerbread House.

1:30–A takes a nap.  Watch American Horror Story on Netflix and revel in a single hour of TV with profanity.

2:30–Get A up, snuggle, have a snack.  A spends an hour playing outside on the slide while I help her climb, and digs out all the soil in my flowerpots with a spoon.  Remove A before she digs the ashes out of the grill.

3:30–Time to go to the bus to get M! A runs off, yelling “Hiding, hiding!”  Extract A from behind the toilet.  Locate her shoes.  Extract small toys from shoes.

3:45–Chase A down the hill, back up hill.  Repeat five times.

4:00–While M distracts A, hide Elmo Makes a Gingerbread House in the couch.

M does homework.  Irritated at lack of attention, she demands to be walked through every problem, despite the fact she’s been able to do them all for a year.

5:00–Attempt to make dinner.  Peel potatoes.  “Helping, helping!” A drags a chair over and climbs up, and begins playing in the water.  After unsuccessfully removing her twice, I give her a small bowl of water and a mixing spoon in the sink to play with.  M comes in, demanding math help.  As I turn to look at M, A pours the bowl of water down the front of my shirt, then tosses the bowl and the floor, calling, “Bowl, fly!”

5:30–Shove dinner in the oven, change clothes, do laundry.

6:00–Eat dinner.  Don’t even want to talk about it.

6:30–Clean kitchen.  Dodge A as she attempts to unload the dishwasher, snatching up glasses so she won’t drop them.

7:00–Take shower, enjoying a few minutes of alone time.  Finish rinsing the soap off my face to turn and see A and M standing pressed against the door, staring at me.  “Don’t worry, Mama,” M says.  “We’ll just watch.”

7:30–Engage kids in a fifteen minute pick up.  Commence locating pajamas, toothbrushes, stuffies, baby dolls, and the now-dry sheep.

8:00–Put A to bed, read to M.

8:30–Tutor surly middle schoolers in the fine art of semicolons.

10:30–Fall into bed.

10:50–Be awakened to M staring at me.  “Don’t worry,” she says.  “I’m just watching.”

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