It’s how I often write, it’s how I usually talk, and frighteningly enough, it’s the way I think. Here’s why. In bullet form. Oh be quiet.
I like to do things in a
logical sequence. Doing what’s due
first, and working my way through. If I know one child will freak out more by
getting his ice cream second and not first, he gets it first. Yes it’s playing
favourites. We all have them. Even your
If we are having people over, I
clean the house in the order of the rooms they are going to most likely be in.
Follow me here. The front hall, the
hallway leading to the kitchen (everyone hits the kitchen first – some never
leave), through to the dining room, the living room, around the corner and into
the bathroom. Normally there are kids in
my family room so sensible people avoid that – and because there are kids
there, I can’t really be expected to keep that room clean anyway, can I? And I
don’t go anywhere near the upstairs bathroom as that is my kids’ primary
receptacle. Besides, if someone needs to go to the bathroom that badly that
they race upstairs, they’re not going to notice the mess, now are they?
Like most Moms, my days range
from the ridiculously busy and overscheduled to the mind-numbingly boring and
monotonous. Having a “list” in my head
allows me to trick myself into thinking I’m getting things done and moving down
a path of accomplishment. This, versus feeling like I’m a hamster on a wheel or
Mom in a mini-van secured to the house with a stretchy cord that allows it only
to circle back and forth between the schools, the hockey arenas and the
inconveniently located playdates.
I have four kids. I do things
in order to make sure no one gets missed. For example, when I’m serving dinner,
I always put out their plates of food in order, from youngest to oldest. That
way, the younger ones’ meals start cooling faster than the older and the
younger ones like my cooking and the older ones don’t so I can get compliments
first and complaints second. My oldest daughter has begged me to serve her
first but I just can’t do it. She’s
going to complain about that vein in the chicken again.
· With 18 years of parenting experience under my belt, I’ve discovered that things that seem like a big deal really aren’t when you work through the logical consequences, step by step. For example, some Moms might get upset if their child wears the same t-shirt for four days in a row. After all, here’s what might happen that’s bad…okay, no I can’t think of anything. Really. Here’s what good thing could happen – less laundry for you. Step 1: Wear the shirt until dogs start licking it for snacks, Step 2: Put it in the laundry with the one other shirt you wore this week. Perfect.
Frankly most of my days are spent working through lists to get me to the end of the day, where I can start compiling the next one for tomorrow. Now excuse me while I check off “Write column” and add “Buy chicken.”
Kathy Buckworth’s latest book “Shut Up & Eat: Tales of Chicken, Children & Chardonnay” is available on March 21st at bookstores everywhere. Pre-order your copy today and visit www.kathybuckworth.com for details on book signings and events.