5.58am – The Baby wakes up – this is considered a lay in – immediately grateful for extra hour of sleep.
6.16am – Still sitting on edge of bed whilst The Baby uses you as a climbing frame as you try to remember your name, what day it is and how many children are in the house.
6.20am – Downstairs to inevitably clear up after The Dog. NO MESS! A lay in AND no mess? Maybe it’s my birthday?
6.21am – Open back door to let The Dog out, discover yesterdays mammoth washing session was all for nothing having left it out all night and now it’s soaking wet and covered in next doors tree droppings. More importantly realise it’s raining which means an “inside day” for the kids. Something EVERY parent dreads during the summer holidays.
6.22am – Negotiate with The Dog over going to the toilet in the rain whilst trying to find out if the Grandparents are around for a visit. He pee’s on the floor mid discussion.
6.25am – Nappy change and standard fight to get The Baby dressed. Dodging flailing arms trying to hit you in the face you take a side kick to the ribs.
6.27am – Drop talc, giant white explosion. The Baby is amused. The Dog returns (having been outside to poo on the fallen washing) and walks wet paws across talc covered floor.
6.28am – Put The Baby in play pen. The Baby breaks free.
6.29am – Put The Baby in play pen. The Baby breaks free. Put Baby TV on in the background, Baby contained.
6.30am- Boil kettle to mop floor and make 1st of 302 coffees. Maybe aunties and uncles would like a visit? Too early to call anyone.
6.35am – 7am – Mop floor, tidy front room, organise toys in play pen (yes actually), unload dishwasher, first load of yesterdays washing in washing machine, feed The Dog, make The Baby’s bottle, clean the kitchen.
7am – 7.30am – Feed The Baby whilst catching up on last nights tv that you fell asleep watching.
7.31am – 8am – Play with The Baby, combination of play pen activities, Baby TV and removing anything expensive or useful from a dribbly mouth including remote controls, phones, ipad etc.
8am – Wake up The Bearded One reminding him the kids would be arriving in an hour. Am told he needs another 30 minutes sleep as he needs to drive to Bolton and back today. An 8 hour round trip. Brilliant.
8.02am – Check The Baby is happy in the play pen, all potentially life threatening objects have been removed and get in shower.
8.03am – Switch shower off thinking you can hear crying. Repeat for all 6 minutes of shower time (if you’re washing your hair and shaving to the knee – 3 minutes otherwise.)
8.09am – Retrieve The Baby from pen and attempt to get dressed whilst removing Baby from life threatening situations.
8.15am – Smear BB cream over face, hope you’ve picked up a dribble free blusher brush, apply mascara spider eye style, put wet hair in messy bun and you’re done.
8.17am – Reheat cold coffee and make packed lunch for The Bearded One.
8.30am – The Baby is having a tantrum because I haven’t prepared his second breakfast quickly enough.
8.31am – Stick Baby in high chair with some cheerios to distract him whilst rushing to make second breakfast.
8.35am – Feed The Baby and tidy kitchen again waving The Bearded One off to work with The Dog (thank god).
8.45am – Second load of washing ready, hang out first load.
8.55am – Kids arrive. Very excited and all descend into the play pen with The Baby.
9.01am – The questions begin, “whats for breakfast/lunch/dinner for the next week? What are we doing? What are you doing? Where are you going? Who’s on the phone? When’s lunch?” and so on…
9.15am – 1st round of tea & biscuits. Tidy front from kids arrival.
9.30am – Everyone has made their peace with an “indoor day”. Apparently.
9.30am-9.45am – Referee argument over what movie to watch. Actually debate whether to show them something on the “banned list” just to shut them up.
9.45am – Put the Baby down for a nap. Baby refuses to sleep. Put Baby down. Repeat until 10.06am.
10.07am – Whip cream to finish banoffee pie. Realise you bought double cream and have no idea if it will actually whip. 15 minutes later and you’re done.
10.23am – Begin prepping Shepherds Pie for tonights dinner by peeling 3000 new potatoes because you realise thats all you have in the house and the idea of trying to get everyone out in the rain for a bag of maris piper makes you want to cry.
10.33am – The Baby wakes up.
10.45am – Second round of tea & biscuits.
10.52am – Change an explosive nappy.
10.57am – Argument breaks out over what movie to watch next because anything imaginative or creative is apparently out of the question. Bring out a light up bubble gun to distract. Should have known better. World War 3 ensues.
11.01am – Argument over and bubbles empty, get Baby a snack.
11.15am – More washing.
11.30am – Demands for lunch begin. Refuse to give into snack demands. Refuse to believe death from hunger is imminent.
12pm – Make The Baby lunch.
12.15pm- Make the children lunch. Jam sandwiches, one without butter, one with. Tuna without mayo (out of choice!) some in triangles, some squares. Explain that fruit is a necessity and banoffee pie is for tonight’s dessert.
12.30pm – Clear away explosion of mess from kids lunch. Check phone repeatedly for call backs from family members about a play date.
12.31pm – Check weather repeatedly to see if we could possibly venture out. Negative. Pouring!
12.31pm-1pm – Washing and folding clothes, explaining furniture is not a climbing frame, we can’t go to the cinema with The Baby, no The Baby and I cannot wait outside whilst they go to the cinema and so on.
1pm – The Baby goes down for a nap.
1.01pm – The Baby is awake. Settle Baby.
1.02pm-1.21pm – Repeat until asleep.
1.21pm – Reheat coffee, realise haven’t eaten all morning – have bowl of cereal followed by bag of kids crisps, chocolate bar and a frangipan. Diet has gone out the window for another day.
1.28pm – FINALLY sit down. Questions begin again. “What are we doing this afternoon?” “What time is Daddy back?” “Where is The Baby?” “Has he gone for a nap or to bed?” What time will he be up?” “I’m bored what can we do?”
1.32pm – NO MORE QUESTIONS.
1.33pm – Offer an array of activities we could do in this weather. Everything is declined with the Oldest One declaring she now wants a lazy day and has taken refuge on the armchair with a blanket. The other 2 admit defeat.
1.35pm – Reheat coffee having forgotten this has already been done and burn mouth.
1.41pm – Washing machine beeps signally end of its cycle. So. Much. Washing.
1.45pm – Requests for dinner begin.
1.46pm – Mother-in-law calls back and says they’re going to be out all day but come over at the weekend. BUT THAT’S 4 DAYS AWAY!
2.01pm – The Baby wakes up.
2.02pm-3pm – Repeat cleaning, changing, feeding process. Change own outfit as covered in baby food, dribble, snot & probably poo.
3pm – Chaos descends. Everyone is bored having discovered we’re really not going out anywhere and no I’m not joking. They now want to do all the original suggestions. Paper, glue, crayons, paint is everywhere, jigsaws on the ipad (yes the ipad!), tvs on in every room, The Baby is swinging from the lampshade and I’m checking the clock to see if it’s time to open any wine!
3.30pm – I’ve successfully calmed everyone down and order has been restored apart from The Baby who needs feeding, changing and cuddling all at once.
3.35pm – Admit defeat and pour one and only coffee of the day down the sink. Cold. Undrunk.
3.36pm – Reclean sink.
4pm – Begin dinner process for the kids.
4.30pm – Break up another fight.
5pm. Serve dinner for the kids who decide that collectively they dislike different parts of the meal.
5.15pm – Plan meals with the kids for the next week vetoing all pizza and burger suggestions.
5.30pm – Give in and serve banoffee pie having delayed it due to the inevitable sugar rush.
5.31pm – Banoffee pie demolished.
5.32pm – Post dinner clear up begins including wiping banoffee pie off the walls and shepherds pie off the back of chairs. How? Do they slingshot their food into one another’s mouths?
5.55pm – Sit down for 5 minute breather – argument breaks out over tv choice/game playing/who was sitting where. The Baby starts crying – time to start bath, bottle, bed routine.
6pm – Bath is run, kisses for The Baby from the older ones and I take him up. As my foot touches the bottom stair The Small One says “can I have something to eat?”. I want to cry.
6.15pm – Bathtime (which has always been my favourite time once The Baby decided he actually liked having a bath and I wasn’t trying to drown him as he first suspected) and thankfully The Baby is showing signs of tiring. I make the mistake of trying to take away The Rubber Ducky and its a monster melt down.
6.30pm – The usual “I want to be naked, I refuse to wear pajamas” fight with The Baby and he’s finally dressed albeit red faced and screaming.
6.35pm – He’s actually falling asleep! Bottle is nowhere near finished – this might be a disaster later but I’m going with it. Here comes the tricky part, putting him in his crib. For those that haven’t already, make sure you read the “treat your baby like a bomb” entry.
6.45pm – With military style precision I lower The Baby into his cot and horrifyingly find his blanket is wrapped around the button of my jeans. FFS.
7.01pm – Finally unhooked I crawl, yes crawl, out the bedroom reaching for my phone as if hiding from an axe murderer.
7.02pm – Run The Bearded One a bath who is still en route back from Bolton with The Dog.
7.07pm – Break up another fight.
7.15pm – Realise there’s no wine in the house. Debate sending everyone to bed now. All else seems pointless.
7.16pm – Receive text from Bearded One asking if I would like a glass of wine tonight? Knew he was a keeper.
7.30pm – Quick tidy and I finally sit down to write this blog.
7.31pm – Food and drink demands from children. I crack and agree to hot chocolates. The Small One helps me.
7.35pm – Hot chocolates destroyed, they ask for more. After my refusal I’m alerted to the fact The Small One now knows how to make them so “it doesn’t matter if I say no”. I assure them it does.
7.36pm – Remind self to hide kettle and hot chocolate before going to bed tonight.
7.40pm – Question time – “Where’s Daddy? What time is he going to be home? What are you going to do tonight? Can we sleep in the same room? Do we need to brush our teeth?”
8pm – The Bearded One appears, with wine! He barely makes it through the door before the cork is popped and my glass filled.
8.30pm- Kids bedtime – an event. This is the time for “meaning of life” questions or they all suffer from sudden and desparate hunger and thirst attacks.
8.36pm – Kids are in bed relatively stress free, definitely haven’t brushed their teeth and not sure they’re even in pjs but they’re in bed.
8.42pm – Make dinner (reheat from earlier) and it’s time to sit down with The Bearded One and enjoy time together.
8.45pm – Asleep on sofa. Wine in hand.
9.14pm Bearded One convinces me to go to bed. Delighted I go up.
11pm – The Bearded One comes to bed and wakes both The Baby and I up. Get The Baby into bed until he falls asleep. Repeat every 2 hours vowing I will break bad habit of bed cuddles.
5am – Aaaaaaaaand repeat. Give or take a few tantrums.