copyright Moms In Need of Mercy
Today was just a day. I didn't plan for it to be the way it was. But then again, I didn't really plan for success, either. Going to bed with nothing more than a vague plan for the coming day allowed a whole lot of chaos to enter in. Just the general structure of: "I'll get up, make some breakfast, throw in a load of laundry, start homeschool stuff, and maybe run some errands" just left way too much free time for everything to fall apart. And it did.
Although I have a homeschool routine down for my oldest son (he's six; it doesn't take that long), I didn't really have any structured activities for my other two boys, 3 and almost 5. So they made up their own. Really creative play with manipulatives, like dumping out our small crock that sits on the kitchen counter and holds spare change, keys, and other random items. Now this was all over the kitchen floor. Since baby sister is starting to crawl, and since I would like to avoid another coin-swallowing event, we had to get the change off the floor.
Today's obedience department was closed. But the disobedience section was full of customers. The sole clerk (Mom) grew tired meeting the back-to-back demand for attention and correction.
Really, it's the phone's fault. It rang way too much today. Despite my requests to please let the answering machine get it, sometimes, one of the boys just allowed his desire to be friendly to outweigh his desire to obey Mom--although today, I'm not sure there even was a desire to obey Mom...
So I'd get on the phone, and the boys would get into the cereal--even though they had just eaten lunch. I'd get off the phone, clean up more food messes, and the phone would ring again. And the boys would do their own thing while I was on the phone, which wasn't necessarily a good thing, and usually incurred fighting, whereby one boy would start crying and trying to talk to me while I was still trying to talk to someone else on the other end of the phone. (This is a good way to get off the phone, though, if you're looking for an excuse to cut a call short...)
Nearing the end of the day, we decided to take a walk. Which would have been fine, except for the fact that when we reached the nearby playground, one son came running up to me and announced, "I have to poop!" Yet, off he went to play for a few more seconds, until he would run up to me again and make the same announcement, and then go play again. This happened several times. It was time to go, but no one would go (for reasons above), even though one really had to go.
Finally, everyone decided to obey and home we went. Just a little way from the house, one of the boys decided to top it all off by taking a mud bath. He wasn't trying to. He was only trying to copy his brothers who were climbing snow drifts piled up in our high school's parking lot. He climbed, then climbed down...into mud, and got stuck. As in quick-sand stuck. Me, wearing my new white Marmot parka my husband got me for Christmas, wanted no part of the rescue. But he was totally stuck. So I reached out to him from the curb, and told him he was absolutely not to touch my coat (he obeyed on this one), and I grabbed his arm and pulled him out of the mud. Somewhere in the rescue, he face-planted. But the coat made it out unscathed.
What all this taught me today is that by not more clearly planning for success, I did in fact, plan for chaos.