Mid week, what’s been going on?
Monday started out as my usual Mondays do. We went grocery shopping. Somehow I have perfected the art of grocery shopping because I can get in and out in a matter of 30 minutes – 25 on a really good day. Monday was pretty slow in there, so we were able to actually take our time and not feel like we were in the way. See, shopping with four kids, to me, is a matter of us staying invisible. I know what people think when they see us coming. I’m sure I’ve had countless amounts of eye rolls and “Oh no, here comes trouble,” and I get it. I’d do the same thing. And I stress myself out making sure the kids are good and not in the way, that it goes without say that I’ll forget something on the grocery list.
So, Monday, as we were checking out and I was telling the kids to stay by the cart while I bagged groceries, I got the compliment all parents love to hear: “I see you here every week, and those kids are just so well behaved.” That’s a direct quote people, because it’s been forever burned into my brain. Somehow, something I’m doing is working.
I often get asked, “How do you do it?” I wish I had an answer. I think it’s part inherently good kids, part consistency, part solid parenting. When I had Mae, I told myself, “Look, lady. You wanted three kids. So you have to suck it up and do a good job, because everyone’s waiting for you to fail.” Perhaps not everyone, but trust me, everyone loves to be nebby and most of all, dirty laundry. I’m sorry to say, we’re not all that exciting around here. We just do what we have to do. I don’t have a rigid schedule, I don’t secretly beat the kids. We tailor their punishments to fit the kid, because let’s get real here, not all kids are created equal. While staring at a wall works for Mae, it’d be overkill for Claire. But when it comes down to it, every day, I just try to survive, calmly, so the kids don’t know I’m secretly hoping I don’t kill them or ruin them for life.
Another thing I get asked often is, “How do I have the time?” Well, right now I have the time because Claire decided she wanted to wash the windows (don’t ask,) Audrey is staring at me, eating her fists, Luca is playing with Legos and Mae is ‘assisting’ him. Then comes the question, “Why aren’t you playing with them?” It’s simple, really. I play with them a lot of the time. But how will they learn to grow in a world where I’m constantly on them?
Lastly, it’s seriously so much easier with multiple children in the mix. They have each other to entertain themselves and I get a little bit of me time, which really consists of me doing all the things I normally do, but without a kid hanging off my leg. Because in the end, I wake up and there are eyeballs on me, I type, there are eyeballs on me, I clean, there are eyeballs on me, I cook, there are eyeballs on me and when I try to go to the bathroom, there are always eyeballs on me. I’m forever followed and never alone, so I take what ‘me time’ I can get. It’s for my own sanity.
So Monday. Yes. We shopped, then we played around the house, did some cleaning (fun times, I’m telling you,) played outside, went to the gym and made some dinner.
Tuesday was an exciting day, because we got ourselves a new door. OK, so I remember back in the day when an exciting day would consist of going shopping for new clothes or going on vacation, but I’m boring these days and a new door is seriously enough to make me happy for a month.
The guy who installed it was super professional and wow did he do a fantastic job. I mean, stellar job. He took three hours, and that was because he literally had to remove the door jamb because the old one had rotted out and wasn’t large enough for the new door. So he had to chisel away enough frame to fit in the new door that had to literally be custom built to our house because of course our house isn’t standard.
During this time with all the sawing and the hammering and chiseling, Mae and Luca napped. I mean, seriously, it was like all the stars aligned and everyone did what they were supposed to do, saving the door installer from hours of “What are you doing?” “What’s that?” “Why do you do that?”
Best part about the new door? You can’t slam it. With four kids and a step-dad who loves to, accidentally, slam the door, I’m over the moon about this.
Oh, and it has a storm door. A STORM DOOR.
And here are the obligatory before and after photos:
Then we had the gym to get to, dinner, books then bed.
I also had the opportunity to draw Henry, my friend Lindsay’s son. She was my very first friend I made when we first moved to Clarion. She has made me countless gifts for the kids, so it’s seriously the least I could do. It was two hours of solid, honest work. I freaking love drawing.
And the drool killed me. I had to leave it in the photo. Such a sweet face.
This morning, the kids took turns doting on Audrey. When people ask me if there’s been any jealousy about the new baby, I should seriously show them this video. This is just a few clips put together. But the last few are from this morning. Also, you will see what happens when Claire gets my phone. Also, Mae did pick up her Legos, just an FYI.