So, here’s how today went. It snowed, just a little, not enough to make driving unpleasant, or so I’d thought.
An inch, powdery; a sugar coating for the dingy snowbanks and drift piles hemming in the roads and driveways.
But it was slick on the roads, slushy where they hadn’t plowed, and I was ahead of the sanders. Slow going. Despite leaving for work five minutes early, two-thirds the way to work, I was five minutes behind. And then, I hit traffic.
I commute on 13 miles of back roads, only crossing two numbered state roads, so “Traffic” is a relative term. On the last leg, I pass the turn for a regional high school. When the weather’s bad, but not bad enough to keep people home, there’s always a long line of cars waiting to make the turn, because they’re driving students who would otherwise walk, or stand outside waiting for a bus.
All I can say is, it must be nice, having the luxury to drive your teenager to school just because the weather’s nasty. Me, I’d have to put my kid out in the cold to wait for the bus, or tell him to wear an extra scarf for the walk. I have a job I have to get to, a job for which I’m now going to be late.
I’m ten minutes late, all told, by the time I get us there, unpacked from the car, into the house, out of our coats and boots, and upstairs to Betty’s room. No passive aggressive mention of my tardiness, which could, frankly, be good or bad.
Despite my lateness, I’ve got Felix and Betty dressed and breakfasted by 9, which is when everyone departs the house, leaving me to tend to Elmer, and hang out with Felix while Betty’s at preschool.
I take the boys up to Elmer’s room, get him changed, washed, moisturized, vitamined, and dressed, and kick back to let the boys play on the floor for a while.
While I was changing Elmer, Felix was drawing with a pen and notebook he found in Betty’s room. he was drawing with a ballpoint pen on a mini notepad, on the white, yes, white, sofa in Elmer’s room.
Enter the streak of blue ink across Elmer’s pristine, textured white upholstery.
We’ll discuss the wisdom of a white sofa in a little boy’s room at another time.
Anyway, where was I?
ACK! Ink! On the sofa.
I scramble off to find some rubbing alcohol and a rag, but while I’m gone, Elmer decides I’ve abandoned him. Never mind he’s safely contained with Felix in a babyproofed room full of his own toys; he has been abandoned!
He’s a crier, folks.
So, I’m all panicky, Felix is worried because I’m worried about the ink, Elmer’s howling, snot and tears pouring down his little face, and the ink stain is ever…. so… slowly… starting to release and blot up.
I get the majority of the stain out, enough to contain the fury Mrs. C. will feel when she’s discovered someone’s sullied the white sofa. Hopefully enough to keep them from asking me to reimburse them for the cost of having it cleaned.
Because, yes, they told me once that I would be financially responsible for any damage Felix did to their belongings.
So, I scoop up the crying baby, soothe him, and realize it’s his naptime. I send Felix to play in Betty’s room for a few minutes while I settle Elmer down. It takes some time, but I finally manage to ninja him to sleep. I creep from the room on stealthy toes and collect Felix from Betty’s room.
We sneak downstairs.
“Mama, can we go to the playroom?”
“We can, but what do we have to do first?”
“My pants are wet.”
So, while I was settling down the cranky, tired baby, who was crying because I had to neglect him for ten minutes to clean up a mess my three-year-old made while I was busy changing the baby’s diaper, my three-year-old had an accident.
And it’s not even noon.