Mar 9, 2011

Minute by minute

6:20 a.m. I stir for the first time since going to bed before 9:00 p.m. This is a glorious realization. I listen for signs of life. There aren't any. I think about getting up to take medicine but pull up the covers instead.

6:45 a.m. Lexi wakes up. She talks and laughs in her crib, and then starts kicking the wall that her crib shares with my headboard. Good morning, sunshine.

7:00 a.m. Garry gets up when Gavin comes into the room. He fetches Lexi. I marvel at the quiet house, take my Zofran and Prilosec, and check email. It's a good morning; two personal messages are in my Inbox.

7:15 a.m. Garry showers. I mosey downstairs (this action stunt brought to you by the absence of an IV pole) in search of the source of silence. Tyler is quietly reading, and Zachary is....asleep. I rub my eyes, check the clock, and confirm I am not dreaming. Asleep at 7:15. This is unprecedented.

7:16 a.m. It feels like a criminal act worthy of incarceration, but I wake up Zach (by speaking through his locked bedroom door) for school. He actually has a Chess Club meeting at 7:45. Time to get moving.

7:20 a.m. The kids eat. I can't eat until my meds have been stomach juice for an hour. While I leave the table to brush my teeth, Gavin and Lexi engage in a yogurt war that covers their pajamas, faces, hands, and hair, plus the table and high chair tray. The yogurt flavors make a horrific smell when combined.

7:40 a.m. We kneel for family prayer. Zach and Dad are out the door. The Littles get dressed.

7:55 a.m. Garry is back to take Tyler to school. He thinks Lexi looks like a Christmas elf in her adorable new outfit. I love it.

8:00 a.m. Dragon Train entertains Gavin and Lexi while I shower. I give them strict instructions not to leave my bedroom or destroy anything. The worst they do is try on all of my socks.

8:30 a.m. I'm ready for the day (in fresh pajamas). Finally, I eat. The Littles play on the table while I breathe deeply and consume my cereal in a Zen-like trance.

9:00 a.m. I help Gavin and Lexi put on their shoes and jackets (again) so they can go play at a friend's house. They leave.

9:15 a.m. I'm wiped out. I take a breather on the couch. I get a couple of phone calls.

9:30 a.m. I revisit email and Facebook, make an afternoon play date for Gavin, and then stretch out in the recliner and turn on a movie. Miss Congeniality has never been so funny, but it feels odd to be laughing out loud in a house by myself.

11:30 a.m. Do I have to move?

12:00 p.m. Yes.

12:05 p.m. The kids come home from their morning of fun. They have been to Chick-fil-a, where apparently Lexi got stuck at the top of the play structure. The Littles are both wearing the same clothes they left in, which means it was a morning free of extraneous bodily fluids, so I am happy.

12:20 p.m. Lexi gets in her crib for nap time. She is hysterically giddy as I sing the selections of her choice: Po'corn, Froggie, Bitsy Bitsy Bisty Pider, and Zippy Doo Dah. She doesn't appreciate my leaving and kicks the wall for a while in protest.

12:30 p.m. Gavin emerges from the basement completely naked. He puts on a pull-up and pajama pants but refuses a shirt. He gets in my bed and so do I.

12:35 p.m. Normally he is asleep by now, but he must have taken a stimulant at lunchtime. This boy is w-i-r-e-d.

1:00 p.m. At long last, the boy falls asleep. I get out of bed and take a much-needed second dose of Zofran.

1:05 p.m. I re-heat barbecue chicken and rice for lunch and eat it while starting this.

1:35 p.m. I retire to the couch for more television, wondering for the umpteeth time what that annoying, repetitive noise is. It sounds like a shoe is flopping around in the dryer. I can't figure out where it's coming from, but a "thunk" every eight seconds gets old.

1:45 p.m. I fall asleep on the couch.

2:30 p.m. Gavin walks into the kitchen crying. He doesn't like that I left him in my bed alone. As I walk him back to bed (he's clearly still in the zone between asleep and awake), Lexi cries. Great.

2:35 p.m. Despite Lexi's whining, Gavin falls asleep as I tickle his bare back. I ease out of bed with expert stealth.

2:36 p.m. I tiptoe into Lexi's room. She's still on her back, under the covers. She's upset that one of her boots is off. Once I rectify that situation, she's as happy as a clam. She says, "I had a dood nap."

2:40 p.m. Lexi tunes into cartoons. I check the phone for messages
(the phone always enters silent mode during nap time). There's one from my OB from five minutes ago. I call back the nurse. She tells me that my persistent thrush, which we discussed yesterday, needs to be seen by my Primary Care physician. "That's not normal in pregnancy." Great. I'm the poster child for "not normal" these days.

2:45 p.m. Gavin wakes up for good. This time he's inconsolable. I finally coax him off my bedroom floor with the promise of chocolate and Yo Gabba Gabba.

2:50 p.m. Lexi and I walk to the mailbox. (Thanks for the card, Emmy Z!) Lexi wants to walk around the block and despite my concerns about leaving Gavin alone, I think about humoring her until she runs into the street. I carry her home under my arm as she screams of injustice. As my hair blows willy-nilly in the wind, I remember how much I need a hair cut.

2:56 p.m. I find Gavin perched on the counter, naked, raiding the chocolate.

3:15 p.m. I am trying to coax Gavin into clothes ("Can you put on underwear by the time I count to 10?") when my friend shows up to fetch Gavin. She doesn't have a car big enough for two extra kids, so Lexi stays home. She is beside herself when Gavin leaves without her. I console her with the promise of new jammies and shoes, which happen to be in the box we just found on the porch. I ignore the running mental tally of bribery tactics I have employed with my children in the few hours they have been in my care this day.

3:27 p.m. Lexi is clomping around in hot pink sparkly shoes, saying "peety, peety, peety shoes." I am admiring the stack of clearance pajamas I scored online at The Children's Place, but also marveling at how big they are (24 months). My baby girl is growing up.

3:30 p.m. Lexi sits on the couch with a bowl of goldfish crackers to watch Ni Hao Ki-Lan. I spend a few minutes working on this. She spills her crackers everywhere. Zach and Tyler charge in the front door.

3:31 p.m. I blow my nose and gag on mucus for the 632nd time today. The Flegm Factory is completely disgusting.

3:32 p.m. Zach stands inside the refrigerator as he tries to figure out a snack. He announces that he is going to go to the bathroom, eat a snack, and then do his homework (presumably not in the fridge). I applaud his plan and mention that we need to work on his Science Fair write-ups. He dissolves into tears and throws himself on the couch. Then he thunders down the stairs. Tyler is content with goldfish and Ki-Lan.

3:52 p.m. Zach decides he is ready to power through his homework. Here we go.

4:00 p.m. I get a text that my sweet friend had Baby 5 today. Joy and rejoicing!

4:40 p.m. Having powered through for a while, Zach and I have made reasonable headway on the write-up and display portions of the Science Fair project. A printer malfunction impedes further progress despite an emergency phone call to Dad. I release Zach to sort laundry and join Tyler in the backyard.

4:45 p.m. Lexi is in hysterics about something or other. She screams in the hallway while I check my email. I have a note from a Women's Conference person about the travel forms that are due Monday. I am finally ready to send them, now that I have decided on air travel instead of road travel (yes!). Hm, maybe I'll submit them now.

4:55 p.m. Hmph. The scanner (which I have to use to scan and email my forms, since it is too late to mail them) is having the same problem as the printer. Another item for Garry's list! Lexi joins the boys in the back yard. This lasts about seven minutes.

5:00 p.m. I call Garry with a take-out dinner order.

5:10 p.m. I'm still dinking around on the computer when I hear my electric toothbrush turn on. Lexi sounds a little distressed. I'm amused. I find her on the kitchen counter, where my toothrush is vibrating and spinning in circles. Lexi is terrified.

5:15 p.m. Lexi and I turn break out Popsicles and watch Gilmore Girls.

5:35 p.m. Gavin comes home. He, too, enjoys a Popsicle.

6:00 p.m. Gavin and Lexi have alternated jumping on and off the recliner, twisting in the curtains, chasing across the room, banging on doors, and coloring on each other with a pen for almost half an hour. Garry texts: "Sorry. Long lines and slow service."

6:07 p.m. I wonder where the big boys are. I put on a coat to determine their location in the neighborhood and find them wheeling their bikes into the backyard. Excellent.

6:20 p.m. Garry arrives with take-out. We distribute, sit down, and pray. Then the phone starts ringing. I miss calls one and three, but the second call occupies ten minutes. It's a neighbor, the mom of the boy my boys were playing with. Apparently one of mine broke the other boy's brand-new toy.

6:30 p.m. There is much weeping and wailing as we discuss what really happened outside this afternoon. I feel like a priest at confessional. This parenting thing is not for the faint-hearted.

6:50 p.m. We begin clearing dinner. I'm pretty sure mine won't stay. I take another Zofran pill ten minutes early.

7:00 p.m. Tyler and I depart for the store, intent on buying a replacement toy for the neighbor. Zach finishes up the dishes. I think my winter coat is a nice complement to polka-dot pajama pants and Crocs slippers.

7:15 p.m. I conference on the phone with Garry. The same toy is not at the store where the neighbor mom purchased it yesterday. We settle on a replacement of greater monetary value that might compensate for my boys' prior bad acts, which the neighbor mom announced for the first time on the phone tonight.

7:30 p.m. Tyler and I return home with a few groceries and a bow and arrow set from the premier toy store known as Albertson's. Lexi's new pajamas look adorable (even backwards). She goes to bed.

7:35 p.m. The boys rehearse their apologies and then we walk across the street to deliver the replacement toy. No one is home.

7:37 p.m. Tyler goes to bed. Zachary adjourns to the garage to commence Operation: Pinewood Derby Car, phase two.

7:45 p.m. My friend calls and we catch up for 20 minutes.

8:00 p.m. Garry and Zach leave to buy weights for the derby car at Home Depot.

8:15 p.m. I catch up on emails and Facebook. Once again I'm grateful for the upcoming transition of getting into bed without changing my clothes. Wearing pajamas 24/7 has many perks besides comfort.

8:45 p.m. I'm ready for bed. I am exhausted, having done absolutely nothing today. Garry and Zach are drilling a hole into the car to insert the lead weight. I'm confident they will find a spectacular solution. I can't wait for the finished product. Well, apparently I can wait...because I'm going to bed.

Good night.
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