Madness.  Chaos. Insanity.

Does that give you any idea of how our mornings look from Monday-Friday each week?

It’s crazy-land around our house!

I know we’re not alone… I know that there are millions of families across the country going through exactly what I’m going through (to some extent) at the same time I am going through it, but it is bonkers at our house in the mornings!

Here are our family stats: 2 working parents (1 with normal hours, one with a changing schedule), 2 school-aged children, 1 happy puppy.

Morning Madness

Here is our morning play-by-play:

5:15am: 1st alarm goes off.  Snooze.

5:30am: Backup alarm goes off.  I turn it off… thinking I’ll get up in a moment.

6:02am: I get out of bed in a slight panic.  As I dash to the bathroom I decide whether I absolutely need to wash my hair or shave my legs.  Time is of the essence!  I jump into the shower.

While I’m in the shower, my son sneaks into the bathroom and sits patiently on the floor, waiting for me to get out of the bath (some mornings).  I have no idea he is there.  He is stealthy.  He is a ninja. 

I finish with my shower and throw open the shower curtain, surprised by my stealthy son.  “Hi Mommy!  It’s morning time!  I’m ready for breakfast!!”  I throw on my clothes quickly and tell myself to remember to put on deodorant next time I’m in the bathroom…

Now it’s time to open my daughter’s door and give her the first gentle nudge towards getting up.  I hear movement from the top of her loft, so I know she’ll be up soon.

Little Man and I head downstairs and I begin turning on lights.  He’s complaining about the light hurting his eyes while our dog Sam is literally glued to my legs and oh-so-happy-we’re-finally-awake-so-we-can-rub-his-belly… His little nub of a tail is wagging and he’s licking both of us like it has been twenty years since the last time he saw us.

I finally find Sam’s collar and take him outside for his first morning pit stop.

When I get back inside its time to round-up clothes for school and get breakfast ready.  I head upstairs to make my second attempt at stirring dear daughter from her beauty rest and this time I’m greeted with a groggy, “I’m getting up!” from her loft.

Back down to the kitchen, I grab Little Man’s orange juice and cereal and my groggy redhead greets me with a sleepy hug.  Their breakfast is served and now I begin ironing our clothes.  All of this is accomplished with our 1-year-old English Springer Spaniel glued to my legs.  While I iron, he is laying comfortably on my feet.

Five minutes later I’m headed back upstairs, with the dog trailing close behind.  The kids are at the table chatting about the fact that my son really is a ninja and how he is trying to keep his identity a secret.  Curly Q is arguing against his logic.  Neither of them are eating their now soggy cereal and I have to urge them to hurry along.

I dart upstairs, trying not to trip over the dog who is indicating that it is time for him to make his second trip outside.  This time for a more pressing task…

I take the dog out.  Again.  And he takes his time, circling around, trying to find the perfect place to make his deposit.  I’m praying that none of my neighbors are looking outside due to the fact that it is brighter out and they would catch me in my bathrobe with wet hair and in my pajamas (if it’s cold).

Back inside (finally), I again urge (a bit more forcefully but not yelling) the kids to finish up with breakfast so that they can get dressed.

By now it is 6:50ish and my sleeping husband has been awakened by my rising voice as I talk to the kids.  He gets up and does his own urging…

I begin drying my hair and doing what I can to look somewhat presentable for work.  About the time I am ready to start putting my makeup on, child #1 comes into the bathroom to brush their teeth.  I scoot over to make room in front of our tiny bathroom mirror and continue applying my makeup.

Child #2 comes into the bathroom at about the time child #1 is finishing up with their teeth.  I stop applying eye shadow to comb their hair and shift so that there is enough room for the three of us in the bathroom.  Child # 1 departs and I resume my makeup application.  Then it is time to comb Child #2’s hair.  Upon their departure I am left wondering where I left off in my beauty and then I thankfully remember to put on my deodorant.

All of a sudden, some form of madness ensues downstairs.  Now that the kids are very close to being ready they do one of two things:  They either get their shoes and coats on as they are supposed to or they decide to goof off with the dog.

The deciding factor is whether their father has made it downstairs yet.

If their father is downstairs, he will do some rather vocal urging that they finish getting ready.  This is directly related to how much sleep he has gotten since he got off work and how much yelling I’ve had to do up to this point…

If he is not downstairs, it is playtime with the dog.  There will be running.  There will be fetching.  And at some point someone will fall or trip or go into a laughter fit with the dog.  From upstairs, crying and laughing sound the same to me – and I’ve learned to tune both out over the hum of my hairdryer.  Unfortunately my sleep deprived husband is unable to do so…

We generally make it out of the door by 7:35ish, all still in one piece and all ready for the day ahead.  I absolutely cherish our ride to school each morning.  Their perky chatter and excitement about the day combined with singing goofy songs or telling silly stories all seems to make up for the yelling and chaos that just occurred in our home.

Some days we do better than others.  Some days I am about to pull my hair out. Occasionally feelings are hurt.  But more times than not, I’m a bit sad as I drop them off at their schools and send them off to learn and expand their minds.

The car is emptier.

It’s a little too quiet.

And usually by the time I get to work I realize that I’ve sung along to the KIDZ BOP CD a bit too loudly and for a bit too long.

And I’m finally able to have a cup of coffee.


What is your morning routine like?  I’d love to hear your funny stories on the Graceful Mess Facebook page!


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