Here are excerpts from conversations that took place this morning while I prepared the children and myself for the day (for clarity's sake, these started around 5:30 a.m.). I'll let you guess which of us said what:
"Hi [Boy]. It's still night time. Come on up and lay down on Daddy's spot."
"[Boy], [the Girl] is still asleep. Please don't take her pacifier."
"Mommy? Look! It's Anthony*!"
"Yes, I see. Lay down and please be quiet. It's still night time."
"Mommy? Anthony loves me!"
"He sure does. Now please be quiet. It's still night time."
"[Boy], [the Girl] is still asleep. Please stop touching her."
***At this point, I have arisen, and am in the bathroom brushing my teeth. The Girl is in her co-sleeper, and the Boy is playing with his Wiggles rag dolls whilst snuggled up in my still-warm comforter.***
"Mommy? [The Girl] is awake! Her eyes are open!"
"Gurgle, gurgle, squeal!"
"Really? That's great! She doesn't need her pacifier. Please don't try to put it in her mouth."
***Now, I am squeezing the Girl into a new outfit that her Gram sent her. The Girl is two days shy of being five months old, and she comfortably fits into Carter's six-to-nine months sized clothes. Guess mother's milk is really enough for her right now, eh?***
"Mommy? I am GONE." (The Boy is standing in Hubby's closet. The ring of his pacifer is visible between the sleeves of some of Hubby's office shirts, as is his tummy, and his footie-pajama-clad legs.) "You can't find me!"
"Oh dear. What shall I do?"
"Gurgle, gurgle, squeal, coo!"
"Hmmm....maybe if I count to ten, [the Boy] will appear. [Girl], don't eat your sleeve. Here, gnaw on your pacifier."
"Mommy! I am GONE!"
"Oh, right! One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten!"
"Here I am!"
"Great! Now, it's your turn to get dressed. Come on over!"
***After hiding in three different spots -- behind the chair, in the shower stall, and under the blankets, I have managed to wrestle the Boy into his dinosaur shirt, army green pants, and his FAST sneakers that, as he says, are just like "Fa and Daddy's!"***
"Okay, buddy, it's time to go brush your teeth and wash your face."
"I need my wiggly friends!"
"They're on the bed, honey. Go ahead and get them." (This gives me a chance to load up his Sesame Street toothbrush with kiddie toothpaste. He returns clutching his dolls, which resemble a pompom of arms and legs.)
"Here, pal. Time to brush your teeth. No, [Boy], don't just eat the toothpaste. Okay, my turn!" Brush, brush, brush. "Open up! Say 'MONSTER.' Okay, great, time to wash your face."
"I need a drink of water!"
"Gurgle, gurgle, grunt, SQUEAL."
"Okay, here's a drink of water." (I glance worriedly at the Girl. History tells me I've got about ten minutes before she completely fills her diaper.)
"Done? Okay, let's wash your face." (Scrub, scrub, scrub.)
"Thanks, [Girl]." (I check myself to make sure I don't have any baby ectoplasm decorating my sweater. Phew, I'm clean. To keep it that way, I swipe at her gooey nose with the rag, then stand up to pitch it in the laundry.)
"Okay, [Boy] time to go downstairs!"
"Where are my friends?"
"You left them on the floor, pal. Pick them up and bring them downstairs with you."
***My trio hustles down the steps. I buckle the Girl into her carseat, pack up 16 ounces of Mommy's freshest for her meals, help the boy into his jacket, zip him up, and encourage him to put his Wiggles into a vinyl backpack so that they don't get wet in the drizzly mess awaiting us outside.***
"Here we go! We're using Mommy's brown car today. Grab your backpack."
"Coo, gurgle, gurgle."
"No, [Boy]. Please don't jump in the puddle."
"Mommy? The puddle is WET!"
"That's right, pal. Come this way." (I open the door for him.) "Climb on up and into your seat." (I pop the Girl into position and attach the seat belts in all the right spots, shut the door, and come around to the other side). "Okay, [Boy], sit down. Please stop playing with the safety harness. Thank you. Now we buckle, buckle, buckle. Okay, hands on knees!" (I shut the door, climb into my seat, and start the car.) "You can take your hands off your knees now. Here we go, we're on the way!"
"I see trees!"
"So do I!"
***Five minutes later, we're at daycare, I've dropped off my friends, one of whom is dancing and one of whom is grumpily indicating she would like some breakfast.***
And that, my friends, is a typical weekday morning.
*Anthony = Anthony Wiggle rag doll.