Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A Typical Day

7:00 Alarm goes off.
I hit the snooze as it continues to go off in nine minute increments.

7:45 Stumble out of bed. All three kids are playing in the boys room - I open the door and tell them to hurry up and get dressed. Throw clothes on myself and hurry downstairs. Make the kids' breakfast. Make the kids' lunches. Go back upstairs three more times to physically remove things from A's hands so he can remember that he is supposed to be getting dressed. Remind J that she is not to pull the cat on her lap and then when he scratches her, clean the cut.
Make breakfast and lunch for myself and eat said breakfast while pushing the kids to eat, clean up, and brush their teeth.

8:10 Go into hyper mode to get the kids out the door.

8:22 Pull car out of driveway. We missed the bus yet again, so I rush the boys to their school and then rush J to her school so I can then rush me to my school.

8:35 Arrive at my school and begin setting up classroom for the day ahead.

I will not go into all the details of the day - that's a post for another time - but here's the quick summary:
Journals, paint, trains, Passover, songs, Circle Time, calendar, Matzah and bread comparisons, bathroom journeys, snack, clean up, coats, outside, school bags, dismissal, lunch, play, clean up, dismissal number 2.

1:05 Drive DN-J over to my friend's house to pick up J (she picks her up from kindergarten and watches her on Tuesdays until I'm done work) and then drive both girls home.

1:45 Arrive at home. Direct J to go through her After School Routine (hang up coat, lunch box in kitchen, bring papers to me, do homework if she has any) and push them outside to play (it's finally a nice day).

2:00 Take a break! I drink my one can of Coke for the day and get caught up on FB.

2:15 Blog this post (and help J with her belt buckle, redirect an escalating fight betweent the girls, answer ten questions, and "ooo and aaa" over J's picture for me)

2:30 Tackle as much of the following To Do List as I can:
  1. Put in a new load of laundry and transfer yesterday's load into the dryer.
  2. Start tonight's dinner (Beef Stir Fry) cooking on the stovetop.
  3. Unload and reload dishwasher.
  4. Clear off kitchen counters.
  5. Prep tomorrow night's dinner (J's birthday! We will have family over for dinner, my ILs, my parents, my BIL, my niece and nephew, a total of about thirteen or so - J's pick of chicken nuggets for the kids, my pick of Thai Chicken for the grownups. Hope it's good!)

3:15 Put girls in car so we can drive to Giant and pick up J's birthday treat to share with her class tomorrow (Jello - don't ask me, it's what she wants), chicken nuggets for dinner, cake mix and icing (yeah, I'll make it, but not quite from scratch)

3:35 Pick up boys from their bus stop. Give all four kids a snack and then drive DN-J home (about 25-30 minutes round trip).

4:20 J's dance class - While J dances, A and B do their homework and I do everything short of standing on my head to keep them doing their homework.

5:40 Home. Eat dinner and then allow the boys to have some electronic time (they get 15 minutes a day).

6:30 (or so) Begin getting everyone ready for bed.

7:00 (hopefully) Everyone in bed/Quiet Time (they can read or talk quietly in bed)

7:30 (give or take) Lights Out

7:31, 7:33, 7:35, 7:37, etc. Send J back up to her room

8:00 Collapse on couch to watch some TV and fold the laundry and . . . whatever else I am able to do that requires little thought or energy.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


I like to sing. When the kids were a lot younger, they used to look up at me adoringly while I sang to them. It was heaven - a captive audience who loved every note I sang.

Then they got a little older. Suddenly my operatic voice made them hold their ears. Luckily I knew not to take it personally (some people have paid to hear me sing) but it still was frustrating to not be able to sing things I wanted to sing. I sucked it up and picked new things to sing, but slowly began introducing some of my favorite songs into our bedtime routine.

Being around kids all the time (both my own and in my preschool class) I find myself singing ALL the time. And it doesn't have to be a real song - I'm forever changing words to fit the situation. Sometimes the words work out, sometimes they don't, but singing, "It's Circletime. Oh, yes, it's Circletime" to the tune of "Suppertime" seems to always get the kids moving to our circle rug.

I've taken my songwriting "abilities" and applied them to our bedtime lullabies.* Here are some of our favorites:

Dreamland (Sung to "Over the Rainbow")

Somewhere out there in Dreamland

Dreams do come true

If you want to go to Dreamland

Hush, I'll tell you what to do

Just lay your head and close your eyes

And soon you'll be flying high in Dreamland

Close your eyes and go to sleep

Even if you count some sheep

You'll be flying high in Dreamland

Somewhere out there in Dreamland

Dreams do come true

Go to sleep so you can discover

How to make all your dreams come true


Sing Me A Song (Sung to "Piano Man")

One night J looked up at me and said, "Sing me a song, Mommy" and "Piano Man" just popped into my head.

I'll sing you a song

I'm your Mommy

I'll sing you a song tonight

It's short and it's sweet and it'll lull you to sleep

So close your eyes and start to doze

La, di, da, di di da, etc.



Sleepytime (Sung to "Summertime" from Porgy and Bess)

I have always loved this song and have sung it in concerts and at auditions many times, long before Fantasia sang it on American Idol.


It's time to go to sleep now

Yes, it's gettin' dark

It's time to close your eyes

So lay your weary head

Right on your pillow

'Cause morning will come soon

So go to sleep


Go To Sleep (Sung to "Lullaby" - I'm not sure what the real name is, but it's the traditional lullaby song, "Lullaby, and good night ....")

This is my desparate song, the one I sing on the days I begin counting down for bedtime by noon, the one I sing when my head is pounding, they're all still talking, I still have a load of laundry to fold and lunches to make before I collapse; I'm sure you know the kind of nights I'm talking about.

Go to sleep

Go to sleep

Please, please, go to sleep now

Close your eyes

Close your mouths

Please, please go to sleep

If you don't

I don't know

But I might start to scream

So go to sleep

Go to sleep

Please, please go to sleep.

* In case anyone is actually still reading this blog and actually likes my lyrics, you're welcome to use them and/or link to them on your blog. Just please remember to make note of the fact that I am the author. Thanks!

Monday, March 08, 2010

Menu Planning

I didn't get to begin Menu Planning until now, so dinner tonight is pizza.

Tuesday will be that darn stew that I have all the ingredients for and just haven't made. Yet again.

Wednesday - Thai Chicken (in the slow cooker, of course)

Yes, I know I had this on my plan three weeks ago, and again on my plan two weeks ago when I said I didn't follow my plan three weeks ago. Yes, that means I didn't make it then either. Sue me!

Thursday - Mini Quiche

Made this two weeks ago and all three kids LOVED it!

Friday - Potluck Shabbat Dinner - Vegetarian Entree of Corn and Black Bean Salad

Saturday - Mish Mash/Leftovers

Sunday - Pizza at a fundraiser at our synagogue at which the kids and I will be performing.