Valentine's Day was coming up so on Monday I went to the craft store and spent $25 buying hearts, stickers and tiny "LOVE" doo-dads to signify my children's undying affection for their classmates. Tuesday, I pondered which dinner I could make for the sitter to serve up and settled on whole wheat pasta. When I noticed we had an after-school wine-and-whine playdate on Thursday, leaving me with one less day to make Valentine's Day cards, I suddenly realized that on Wednesday I would have to get the kids, help Monkey with his homework and help them make about 35 Valentine's cards all while trying to shower and look appropriately corporate for my 5:30pm departure.
This is what would happen if my husband had a work event Wednesday night:
- Go to work
- Leave work and go to event
This is what happened to me Wednesday night:
- Worked from home until 2ish, wishing I had five more minutes to make a few more calls
- 2:40 Picked up Monkey.
- 2:50 Picked up Munchkin.
- 2:51 Told the kids they had time to play, but they had to do homework and make Valentine's Day cards before the sitter arrived.
- 2:52 Whining commenced about why they have to suffer through glue and miniature hearts to make cards.
- 3:00 Arrived home, gave kids time to play while making a triple batch of brownies for the school party and play-date. Started boiling water for pasta dinner (also, took out one load of laundry from dryer and put another in but that is unrelated to Valentine's Day).
- 3:30 Put brownies in the oven. Had kids start decorating Valentine's day cards. Wrote classmates' names for Munchkin, wrote "To" and From" on Monkey's cards for him to fill out.
- 3:31 Whining commenced about having to make cards for everyone. ("Why can't I just make three of them?")
- 3:32 Tried to keep glue from getting on table and stick-on hearts from getting all over the floor.
- 3:45 Ran downstairs to move laundry from washer to dryer.
- 3:50 Cleaned house before babysitter arrives so she doesn't think I'm a complete slob.
- 4:30 Kids said they're hungry, which was not, of course, on the schedule at 4:30
- 4:45 Had Monkey start eating while doing math homework
- 5:00 Sprinted to bathroom to take shower and figure out which out-dated work outfit is suitable for event
- 5:15 Had Monkey read assigned book out loud to me while I got dressed. He doesn't want to read it to the babysitter so there I am running around half-naked and applying make-up (for once!) while he follows me around with a book.
- 5:40 Babysitter arrived late to see the formerly clean kitchen covered in pasta sauce and brownie crumbs.
- 5:41 Started dishwasher. Tell babysitter to have a brownie with the kids and run out the door to the peacefully quiet and un-glittered car.
- 5:45 Went to event
In the end, I made it to my event and my kids had homemade Valentine's cards for their friends and teachers. However, my dining room looks like a huge purple and red glitter bomb went off, leaving shards of tiny hearts and ripped stickers all over the floor. Considering the supplies cost more than the three-dozen neatly printed Valentine's Days cards I could have bought and that signing those cards would have taken less time than creating these, I'm not sure if the cost-benefit analysis comes out in favor of homemade cards.
That said, I'm going to wrap up those over-priced and overly-messy supplies and put them away because I know that by this time next year, I'll have forgotten about the mess, the time, the cost and my children's agony (Oh! The agony!) and want to do it all again.