Mondays are supposed to be the chance to start a new week, full of possibility and promise. But we all know they aren’t. They are the day that steals our joy almost as soon as they begin.
Yesterday, Monday, I started my day off right. I am using a new running app. I love it, It tells me what to do. “Ok, start running for 3 minutes,” “And lets walk for 1 minute, ” “Now sprint for 15 seconds…” I ran 3.5 miles and I felt pretty great. Like I could take on the world right? Well, the world is very different from 3 homeschool kids.
As soon as I got in, Liv greeted me at the door. John was finishing up his breakfast and headed up stairs so I was in charge. I always hope she’ll sleep until I can at least get a cup of coffee in me, but this is Monday so no such luck. I made her some pancakes (the microwaveable kind, I’m not a hero on Mondays) and myself a cup of liquid gold. The boys joined us soon after… everything was going ok so far. I fixed their breakfasts and headed up to get a shower. The boys had instructions, “Eat your breakfast, clean up your mess and get dressed for school.” Easy right? Think they followed them? Nope.
Almost as soon as I stepped out of my 2 minute shower, I heard the boys fighting in my bedroom. I walk in to find them both, still in their jammies, rolling around on my bedroom floor like a couple of hyenas. I felt the urge to scream but I held it together. I sent them to their rooms to get ready and I threw on some clothes. Olivia and I walked down stairs… that’s where Monday began.
There were breakfast plates all over the table, at least my sweet husband had moved his to the counter by the sink… As I took inventory of our beautiful new home I saw that the boys had flooded the bathroom floor and left their dirty clothes in a pile in the middle of the water from showers the night before. There were shoes and toys strewn about from the front door to the back. A half eaten bag of pretzels on the couch, open… and tiny plastic wrappers everywhere… I picked one up… Pecan Swirls… they had literally opened them, ate them and just dropped the trash. Really? I realize that kids will be kids, but these boys are 8 and 10, they know better. Monday.
I called the boys down and I yelled. They hurried around, cleaning their mess. Olivia following behind them, barking orders herself… she’s seen me do this a few times. Once it was picked up I had them sit in their desks with a pencil and paper. We were having a come to Jesus meeting. I wrote House Rules on the white board and they copied them down.
1. NO TV Until after school is over
2. Clean up your own messes
3. Turn the lights off when you leave a room (this is a big problem in our house)
4.Put your dirty clothes away
5. NO SMART MOUTHS (this one is for Collin… he’s sassy like his momma)
6. Follow directions the first time
Simple rules really, in my mind I think they should already know these but clearly my kids needed a reminder.
We laminated the rules and taped them to their desks, a constant reminder. I felt pretty good about my meeting so we started school.
Kaden goes first, always… Collin plays with Liv until it’s his turn.
School went pretty well with Kaden, he was having a good focus day (he’s our ADD boy) and we ended with a smile.
Then it was Collin’s turn, Kaden went upstairs with the instruction to watch his sister. I told him that if she wanted to watch TV they could, but it had to be one of her shows… Clifford, Sophia, Doc McStuffins… Shows that wont suck a 10 -year-old boy in. I knew that he would pay attention to her if they were watching “baby” shows.
I went back downstairs and started school with Collin. 15 minutes later, Olivia came walking down the stairs alone (she’s not allowed to ever be on the stairs without holding someone’s hand), covered in blue gatorade. You know that if a toddler is covered in anything, chances are something else is covered too, right? So I call up to Kaden…
Me “Where’s your sister?”
Kaden “She’s right here mom.”
Me “You sure?”
Kaden “Hey! Where’d she go?!”
Me “She’s down stairs wearing blue gatorade”
I asked Liv where the mess was and she says sweetly “Come on mom, I will show you!”
I go up and there’s gatorade everywhere, on the table, on the carpet… beige carpet with blue gatorade is a shocking sight. After I surveyed the damage I noticed that Kaden was watching Hot Wheels. Hmmm… that’s why he didn’t even notice she was gone. You see, some people don’t realize that ADD kids have laser like focus when they are interested in something. An atom bomb could have gone off and he wouldn’t have flinched.
I lost it. Yelling, screaming, angry words left my lips. I threw a hissy fit, cleaned up the mess and reinstructed Kaden… then headed back downstairs.
Not long after, Kaden and Olivia came down to play playdoh at the kitchen table. Great, that’s a quiet activity, she’s not in danger of falling down the stairs, I’m good with this. Liv gets into playdoh, she loves it… which is why she had a poopy accident yesterday, on Monday, because she had to go and she didn’t want to stop playing. Cleaning up poo isn’t fun, ever. Well played Monday. Well played.
Now I’m sitting there, after cleaning up the mess, trying to dive back into school with Collin, I can’t find where we left off because I’m flying by the seat of my pants anyway… I didn’t do lesson plans the night before because there just wasn’t time. See, we are in the throws of the MLB post season and this is a big deal here in the Herrell House, a virtual holiday if you will… My sweet husband thinks it’s a holiday from bedtime… our boys have been sitting up until 10:30 or 11:00 Every. Single. Night. For a week!
I know you girls know what I mean when I say that by the end of the night, I don’t want to see my kids… at least not awake. I prefer to see them sleeping soundly in their beds. I love them dearly, but I have been needed, wanted, touched, climbed on, wiped on, and tasked all day long. I need a break. I wand some adult time, nothing crazy, just having an hour or so where no one needs anything from me. I don’t have to wipe a bottom or pour a milk, or clean up a mess. Just to talk, watch TV, veg out a bit. The volume level in our house drops drastically when our kids are in bed. I’m craving quiet. I’m not getting that right now and it makes for a very cranky momma. We need downtime. NEED, not WANT…
So back to Monday… we finally got done with school and I sat down to do a bit of work while the kids ate lunch. That’s when Collin appeared, asking for the dustpan. Now, this isn’t a normal question for an 8-year-old boy so of course I had to investigate… he spilled a bag of popcorn all over the kitchen floor. #Monday
I could go on and on about how our day derailed. The broken trinket a rogue baseball hit, the missing baseball bat that we still haven’t been able to locate, all the countless spills, quarrels and inconveniences but I’m sure I don’t have to… You likely have a similar disdane for Monday. We all do. Our Mondays, or Tuesdays or any days… are filled with the craziness of motherhood. My stress outlet is to share mine with you. I find a bit of comic relief to put “pen to paper” or key to screen in this instance?? It helps me laugh it off to know that someone else is laughing
at me er… with me?? So thanks for reading and I hope we all have a better week!