Ever had one of those days where everything seems to be working against you? When anything that can go wrong, will? Let me tell you a story about a mom, a holiday and a soccer game.
I was up late last night. Or actually, early into the morning, trying to get things ready for Mother's Day. Baby slept fitfully, which means I did, too. I wake around 7:00 and try to come alive for a busy day. First on the agenda: get prints made from my digital camera of kids at church. We're making a Mother's Day craft in the morning and I have to get these pictures developed. No sweat. I can do it online and go to Wal-Mart and pick them up within an hour and get a few other things I need while I'm there. I can be back in plenty of time for my parents to arrive at noon, go to lunch with them, then Brother's soccer game at 2:00. After that, I will have to meet up with a friend who has printed off another part of the Mother's Day craft for me since my printer is broken. Then I can get everything ready for the craft this evening. Sounds simple, right?
So, I get out of the shower and sit down at the computer to order the prints. I click on the "Order Now" button, which I've done many times before. However, I am greeted by the "Verified by Visa" screen, which says I have to verify the Visa I am using before my order can be complete. Have I done this before? I can't remember. It's asking for a password, so I enter one of the two passwords I use for everything. No dice. I enter the other possible password. Nope. So, I try to start a new "Verified by Visa" account, but it says I already have one. Okay. I click on the "forgot your password?" link, which says I should contact them. So I call the number. No one there. I check the hours. They're closed on Saturday. HOW CAN I CONTACT YOU IF YOU'RE CLOSED??!! So, I try my husband's card. Same thing. And then I finally get a screen that says I've had too many failed attempts and cannot complete the transaction. So, I decide to use my church credit card. It's for church, so I may as well. But they need the billing address, which I don't know. So, I call three people to get the number for the person who should know the billing address. But he doesn't know either and our pastor is out of town for a funeral.
Okay, maybe I can put the pictures on a CD and take the CD to Wal-Mart and use their little, picture maker thingie to make the prints. Turns out, I don't have the right kind of CD.
All I need is twelve little pictures. I'm not asking for the Van Gogh exhibit from the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
An hour and a half later I am no closer to having my pictures. I'm running out of time to go to Wal-Mart and be back in time to meet my parents. Perhaps I can go to Wal-Mart after the soccer game?
I decide to put in a load of laundry. It's the last of the laundry detergent. I put in light colors and leave it to wash. Mom and Dad are due in about an hour when I tell Brother to go get dressed for the game. He then asks if I have washed his jersey.
I just used the last of the laundry detergent and his jersey was not in that load. Laundry detergent is on my list to get at Wal-Mart, but I haven't made it there yet. When he isn't looking I dig it out of the diry clothes and give it a sniff. It doesn't smell dirty. I toss it his way. "Did you wash it?" he asks. "U-hu," is my reply. It's not a lie. I did wash it...just not recently. I tell him to get his shin guards, socks and cleats and I'll help him put it on. "But, Mom," he says. "I don't have any socks clean."
I open the dryer and frantically dig in the whites I put in there last night, praying to find clean soccer socks in the midst. The entire time I am wondering why this child, who keeps me apprised of the time every fifteen minutes and the status of clean undergarments in his drawer at all times failed to mention earlier that he had no clean soccer socks. Ah Ha! I find one. But only one. One clean soccer sock.
So close, yet so far away.
I go to the hall closet and start digging like a dog digging for a bone, throwing dirty laundry into piles behind me. I find the lost sock. I gather up enough whites for a load and head to the washer. The colors are done. I grab the whites in the dryer, throw them into a laundry basket that already contains three loads that need to be put away, throw the colors in the dryer, and start the washer filling. I look around to see what I can use for detergent. Dishwashing liquid. I grab the bottle, give it a couple of squirts into the tub, throw in some bleach, and VOILA! begin the washing of the prodigal sock.
My parents arrive and we all head out to lunch. Brother, in soccer attire, with one slightly damp, yet lemony fresh, sock.
After lunch we head out to the soccer field. It's hot. Baby hasn't had a nap. Brother played his worst game...ever. My parents drove an hour to come see him play and he was in the game for about five minutes, which were painful to watch. It was almost like he had never played before. So we sat in the hot sun with no sunscreen (because I forgot it) for an hour so Brother could play for five minutes. By the time it was over, Baby was a complete and utter mess. Two hours overdue for her nap. We all get in the van to go home and Baby is screaming. Mom tries to be helpful and buckle her into her carseat, but Baby stiffens and throws a world class fit. I am just trying to get the van started so we can get moving and (hopefully) Baby will konk out.
And she does fall asleep in the van. Dad takes Brother and Sister to the store for root beer float supplies while Mom and I take Baby into the house and put her to bed. It's about 3:00.
The kids go nuts on ice cream and root beer while I have coffee on the porch with Mom and Dad. All I can think about is everything I have left to do. The silence between me and my parents is awkward. I'm feeling stressed and not at all social. They leave around 4:30. Baby wakes up shortly after and I load them all back into the van to see if I can solve my picture dilema.
In front of Wal-Mart we are accosted by kids selling chocolate to fund a mission trip. MeeMaw and PawPaw gave the kids each a dollar before they left and they want to use it to buy candy. Root Beer Floats? Chocolate? All in one day? Why not?! I agree, but make them promise to wait until after we eat. I use the memory card on the digital camera to print pictures on the picture maker at Wal-Mart. (cue ethereal angels singing) But they won't be ready for an hour. It's 5:40. That means I can run over and pick up the things I need from my friend and be back here to get my pictures, as well as laundry detergent, and possibly get the kids home for baths by 7:30. We go by the McDonald's in Wal-Mart to grab dinner, but lo and behold, their credit card machines aren't working and I have zero cash.
Is this really happening?
Plan B. Drive thru at another location. The kids get Happy Meals and we are on our way. Baby eats about a fourth of her hamburger and seems fussy. As I get ready to get on the expressway that will get me to my friend's house in 15 minutes, I see the on-ramp is closed.
I have to go all the way around downtown, which takes me twenty minutes longer. I finally arrive, run in, grab what I need and rush back out. We put it in drive and make the trek back to the Wal-Mart. Baby is really starting to cry. I'm guessing she is still pretty sleepy. I know I am. I let Brother and Sister have their chocolate bars. Brother starts asking me random questions like, "What makes your skin come off?" and I don't have the patience to answer him over Baby's wailing. We are almost there. I am thinking of what I have left to do. What is that smell? Should I buy contact paper to laminate the craft? Man, it kind of smells like...Why is Baby so upset? Better slow down through this construction zone. Yeah, it does smell like...I glance back at Baby.
Oh, please, God. Nooooooooo...
Baby has puked. Bits of McDonald's cheeseburger all coated with that lovely vomit slime are all over her.
It just keeps getting better.
Do I go home and forget the pictures? What will we do for a craft? If Baby is sick, it's a moot point. We won't be going to church tomorrow.
But I am undaunted. I have made it this far. I am so close. I won't admit defeat.
I hotfoot it to Wal-Mart, where I am daring someone to get in front of me and wait for a parking space. Go ahead. Make my day. I get the van parked and start digging for wipes, which have been depleted. I used the last one at the soccer game to wipe Baby's snotty face aquired while throwing a tantrum. I find some napkins in the McDonald's bag and go around to get the kids out and try to clean up the mess. When I open the door, not only am I greeted by a vomit covered Baby, but Sister looks as though she is wearing chocolate clown makeup. She has chocolate from ear to ear and all over her hands. I unbuckle Baby and try to clean up with the napkins. It isn't working. My only option is to strip her.
Have you ever seen people out in public with their children in only a diaper? Have you ever clicked your tongue at someone who had their babies out with dirty faces? That was me in Wal-Mart today. I am pushing that cart so fast Brother can barely keep up. I make a beeline for the baby department, where I find the cheapest little sundress I can find, rip off the tag (yes, I saved it and paid for it) and dress Baby. Then I grab some wipes and clean up Sister. It takes three wipes to remove the chocolate from her sweet (and I mean that literally) little person.
I make it out with clean(er) kids, pictures and laundry soap. We make it home by 7:40. I start running bathwater and put Baby in first, then Sister. Brother is last. I fix Sister's toothbrush and leave it on the sink. I give her instructions to brush her teeth while Brother is in the tub. Baby is lurking around the bathroom, looking for trouble. "You'd better hurry," I say to Sister, "before Baby gets your toothbrush." I go to the kitchen and prepare the nightly drink of water before bedtime. Sister comes in to tell me something. "Did you brush your teeth?" I ask. She looks at me. "Well,no," she says. "Baby has my toothbrush." Just then I hear Brother yell at Baby, then Baby wailing. I run to the bathroom to find her sprawled on the bathroom floor, Sister's toothbrush in her hand. "She was standing on the toilet and fell!" Brother informs me. Then Brother starts crying because he scraped his knee playing soccer and the water is hurting it. Sister is crying because...well, who knows why.
It was all I could take. I vaguely remember throwing Sister's toothbrush and yelling. And Sister was covering her ears.
It wasn't pretty.
Baby was okay. We doctored Brother's knee. And I apologized for losing my temper. Everyone is asleep and I have my Mother's Day craft ready for tomorrow. I survived.
And you know what I kept thinking all day long?
Man, this will make one doozy of a blog.