Monday, November 21, 2011

Best. Mother. Ever.

I know many will be surprised to know I am actually referring to myself. I feel today I have earned a few self-administered pats on the back.

It all started this morning, when I was groggy due to severe heartburn induced by mini-donuts at the hockey game last night. Both Husband and I were up half the night and I self-administered medications three times which only barely dealt with the problem.  I don't know what was in them, but I am forever cured of mini-donuts.

Due to fatigue I dozed well past the time I should have roused myself. This happens all the time occasionally, but the kids' alarms wake them up and they are my fail safe.  Their alarms were not set.

And so at 8:10, I thought we could still make it to school.  It was a given at this point that I would be going in my pyjamas.  Sydney got  up and wandering around looking for clothes, I knocked on Jackson's door which was slammed on my foot. I assumed he wanted privacy to get dressed. I was wrong, he wanted privacy to crawl back into bed.  Owing to the weekend's festivities, Jackson was so bloody exhausted he couldn't be civil tired.

So I did what I never do. I suggested we be late for school. I normally use all my parental capital and most of my few remaining marbles convincing little people to get dressed/ eat breakfast / brush teeth / bring backpack down stairs / put on shoes / put on coats. 

We all climbed into my bed for a bit of a breather.  We enjoyed about 5 minutes when Jackson said, apparently not fully appreciating my sacrifice of punctuality, "Mommy, did you know it's 8:32? I don't know how we'll get to school by 8:40."

He was right.  A little breakfast and negotiations over which winter/fall outerwear was appropriate when it's slushy raining right now but will warm up and just be raining later, and we were out the door. Owing to slushy rain, I opted to take the van with its snow tires. The van was parked on street. I hope none of the neighbours noticed my pyjamas, or thought that I was wearing very colourful and baggy yoga pants.

I dropped them both off a minute before 9 which was 19 minutes past the bell. Note to self: nothing bad happened.

I was still riding the high of the morning triumph at pick-up when Jackson uncharacteristically approached me to request a play date. Actually the potential play datee was more keen on it. I tried to say no but honestly on a poor night's sleep did not have my usual internal fortitude. I thought I had my opening when Jackson mentioned science homework.  But nothing came of it.  So after further lame attempts to defer play date to another day, my usually successful strategy, I agreed we could head to the drop-off loop and meet up with Dad of play datee to set this up.

He was not there. And didn't arrive in the next 10 minutes. My hands were frozen as I had walked the dog before pickup so I told play datee to tell his Dad to drop him off at our place.

About 20 minutes later, play datee arrived with 3 Wii games. And 2 kinds of candy-making kits. Really?? Candy making?

I enthusiastically looked at the selection of Wii games and ignored the candy kits.  What game do you want to play?

"Why don't we play Super Smash Brothers. But first, let's make candy!" said play datee.

I was about to kibosh the whole candy idea, when I stopped myself. 

"Do you need me to help?"

"No. We just need a bowl and the microwave."  Excellent.  It was one of those kid-friendly candy making kits. 

"As long as you don't need me, I guess it's fine."

Not 5 minutes later Jackson came upstairs where I was trying to convince the dog she really wanted to be, and asked if we had a 1/8 cup measure.


I could not find that measuring cup so I looked it up and ascertained it was 2 tablespoons.

"Just one more thing, do you have a small saucepan, double boiler or candy thermometer?" play datee asked.

Apparently, play datee was right. This  one did not require supervision. It required complete parental control.  And so I made red sour suckers. I followed the directions. I averted disaster when play datee tried to convince Jackson that a 1/3 cup measure was actually 3/4 quarters of a teaspoon.  We got the candy all laid out to harden. I futilely asked the boys to clean up and went back upstairs to the dog.

I came down about 20 minutes later when I thought the candy would be ready. The kids had tried it and declared it 'disgusting'.   I guess I won't have to buy that candy-making kit.

I asked them to clean up and went back upstairs. I knew I would be cleaning up later.

Five minutes before play date pick up, I gave one more hail Mary request for a clean up. I was rewarded with a "we need to clean up" from my son to his friend. I was never prouder.

Five minutes later I hear a car door and announced that Dad is here for pick up.  I arrived in the kitchen to find play datee is lost in candy making. He was making another batch and he had just started. He told me he is not ready to go home.  Jackson was uninvolved in candy 2.0.

He has his own project: fruit salad.  He has cut up an apple, de-stemmed some grapes, found some fresh pineapple in the fridges and has dumped 2 fruit cups into a bowl.

"Is this your supper?" I asked.

"No, I'm not hungry."

"Then why did you make it?"

"I thought someone would have it."

"Why don't you have it?"


It kind of fell apart from there.  The play datee tried to get everyone but the dog to try the candy while Dad of play datee tried in vain to usher son to the door.

In all honestly, it didn't end well. I tried to understand the whole fruit salad situation.  I tried to get Jackson to understand that trying to figure out whether the candy mixture was 300 degrees by using the cold water technique was not on my list of things to do today.  There was a lot of lecturing and ear plugging. No one won, and I am back in the comfortable position of being a normally fallible mother.

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