By Kate Chapman of This Life in Progress
Things don’t always go smoothly over here in six-kid land. Rough-housing often takes a turn down Mortal Kombat avenue, idyllic afternoons spent in the great outdoors invariably end with rashes of unknown origin, and we are always out of the good snacks.
My husband Gabe and I set a low bar for success. Generally, if everyone is alive and somewhat clothed (nasty bits covered), that counts as a win. By that standard, yesterday was a smashing success. Seriously, we may have peaked. In no particular order, here are the 10 amazing things that happened in our family yesterday:
1: The recycling was at the curb before I heard the truck coming down the street.
2: I got my hair cut and colored. In an unintentional homage to the leader of the free world, I’ve been sporting an orange-y mullet with gray roots. The horror started when I got a haircut I hated, decided I needed a new stylist, and then did nothing for six months. Gabe’s swanky office party is in three days. In a panic, I called a busy stylist my friends love, begged for mercy and got a next-day appointment. The mullet died a swift and painless death and I was so grateful, I bought $70 worth of products to grow dusty on my bathroom counter.
3: My husband resurrected the ancient garage fridge/freezer. It leaked to death earlier this month. We had more than 20 guests coming for family dinner and #allthefoods and nowhere to store anything. I had to throw away pie. We routinely have at least 120 frozen waffles in our home, as well as a stockpile of burritos, frozen pizzas and fried rice packets (stop judging – we feed hordes of children). It was anarchy every morning as the children fought over the measly eight waffles that fit in our kitchen freezer. Some of them were forced to try fruit and yogurt for breakfast. The weak ones nearly starved. This morning, with the garage freezer humming, all is right again in the world of frozen preserved foods.
4. It was sheet changeover day and every kid stripped their sheets. Even with the thirty reminders, we usually are four for six. Six for six yesterday, baby. Six for six.
5: My son Caden was in a play. He did not forget his lines, throw up on stage, or hum loudly and dance instead of singing his solo. Given those are all things people in his genetic lineage have done, this is noteworthy.
6: Except for one moment when my step-son Jack thought Caden said “H-E-double hockey sticks” and asked in loud stage whisper if “we can curse now,” the other kids sat quietly and watched the play. They might have even enjoyed it, judging by the applause and non-snarky laughter.
7: Simon told his brother he did a good job. Authentically and without being prompted. Looked up from his phone and everything.
8. Yesterday’s calendar had ballet, soccer, a carpool, a playdate and the play and everyone was in the right place at the right time(ish).
9: My step-daughter Amy chose to wear a dress I bought her for her Father-Daughter dance this weekend. Tweens and clothing picks are tough anyway, and the stepmom dynamic makes it even more complicated. Our sweet tween fashonista had neglected that dress in her closet so long I’d contemplated moving it over to Lottie’s (because stepmom’s choice for the eleven-year-old=bad, mom’s choice for the eight-year-old=good). I think I played off the gasp that escaped when she said she was wearing it. I’m cool.
10: The dog wasn’t an asshole. Nothing eaten, no door dash escapes. Sat calmly next to me on the couch during a conference call. Must be plotting something.
Yesterday was a practically perfect unicorn day. Even though the mail pile is teetering precariously on the dining room table and the rosebush I bought in July has yet to be planted. Even though I can’t recall if anyone ate a vegetable and I am pretty sure the Littles haven’t bathed in three days. If I die today, I go happy.
This post was originally published on This Life in Progress.
About the Author
Kate Chapman is a mom and stepmom to six children, ages 7-15. She writes about her modern-day Brady Bunch adventures at www.thislifeinprogress.com. Her work has been featured on SheKnows.com, Today Parenting Team, BLUNTMoms, and Stepparent Magazine. When she’s not writing, she’s feeding and watering the children and livestock, and turning off lights in empty rooms. Follow Kate on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.