Tuesdays Through Mid-November

6:30 a.m.: Alarm goes off. I find myself surrounded by sleeping children. Just two, but it seems like a lot to wake up to sometimes. The black cat jumps on the bed. He wants to snuggle. He’s a demanding and aggressive snuggler. I give in, hitting snooze several times.

6:45 a.m.: I shove the cat away. He curls around the head of the child who is mildly allergic to cats and begins to lick his (the child’s) cheek. I get up. I find enough coffee from yesterday in the French press for one mug. I decide it’s not worth the time/effort to make a new pot. I prepare breakfast for the children. The older one appears in the kitchen and begins to eat.

6:58 a.m.: I carry the younger child down to the kitchen, wrap him in a blanket, and leave him facedown on the table next to his breakfast while I head for the shower.

7:10 a.m.: Younger child has returned to his bed, claiming he has no pants, but at least he’s eaten his breakfast, which is a surprising and pleasant change. I find him an entire outfit, then go dress myself.

7:15 a.m.: Why does no one have shoes on? Has anyone brushed teeth? Get your pants on! Why aren’t your pants on? Thank god I packed lunches last night.

7:22 a.m.: In the car. It’s go time.

7:57 a.m.: Drop off older boy at school for orchestra. Drive to Starbucks with younger child. Buy us both coffees (his is decaf, despite his protests) and the chili chicken wrap he asks for. Protein and veggies, right? We hang out, talking, reading a book about the 1936 Olympic rowing team,  talking, taking selfies. I love this time together. He keeps trying to switch our coffees so he can have the dark roast that is not decaf.

8:48 a.m.: Drop younger boy off at school. He strolls in with his backpack, Starbucks cup clutched in his hand. He’s in third grade.

9:16 a.m.: Arrive at work. Dive in. Eat the rest of the chicken chili wrap for breakfast.

5:00 p.m.: Log out. Race out of the office. Email a colleague from the parking lot.

5:30 p.m.: Arrive at afterschool to pick up the kids. Feed them (beef jerky, trail mix, fruit leather, watered-down apple juice) while the older boy pulls on shinguards, socks, cleats. Would love to be the kind of parent who shows up with a cooler of homemade food but people, let’s be real. I let Trader Joe’s take care of this situation for me because I knew Tuesdays would be just one degree shy of a total shitshow.

5:45 p.m.: Drop older boy off at soccer field 15 minutes early. The coach is there, so I feel OK leaving.

6:04 p.m.: Arrive at our CSA farm. Find out what we need to harvest (PYO). Head to the fields with the younger boy to harvest string beans (green, yellow, purple), edamame, cherry tomatoes, tomatillos, husk cherries, parsley, Indian spinach, various hot peppers. Return to the barn to collect the rest of our share. We have a choice between potatoes and a musk melon. Child chooses potatoes, in part because “the bag is cool.” Realize it’s now 6:45 p.m. and we need to go back to the soccer field.

7:01 p.m. Arrive at soccer field. Practice should be over at 7:15 p.m. Younger child wants me to carry him or drag him. He resorts to sitting on my feet.

7:10 p.m.: Coach announces practice officially ends in five minutes, but anyone who wants to stay can play “lightning.” My older child kind of wants to stay. His brother is hungry. Older child is hungry. I tell him he can stay late at Friday’s practice but tonight we need to head home. He agrees and gathers his stuff.

7:46 p.m.: Arrive home. Send older boy up to shower. Brotherly mayhem ensues. Maternal yelling ensues. Child ends up in shower. I heat up Sunday’s pre-prepped veggie chili, then slice green onion and put out a bowl of shredded cheese.

8-something p.m.: Child emerges from shower, dried and dressed. I feed the children and let them finish a movie. I tell them I will be in the kitchen sorting the farm share stuff, if they don’t mind. They don’t mind.

Even later: Younger child finally finishes eating. I send him up to shower. He wants me to stay in there with him to adjust the water pressure and towel dry his back. I have to clean the kitchen and start a massive load of laundry. We somehow compromise.

9:12 p.m.: Older child has agreed to practice violin in the morning, as it sure as hell is not happening tonight. I am about to send them to up to brush teeth, then put them in bed wiith books, then I will read to them and LIGHTS OUT.

9-who-knows-when? p.m.: I will pack lunches for tomorrow, for all of us, plus pack workout clothes for me, check email, and finish cleaning the kitchen.

We normally have a fairly mellow, low-activity lifestyle. But Tuesdays? We maybe drew the short straw this year. Everything happens on Tuesdays. Can’t wait until the younger boy’s soccer practice starts. Will those also be on Tuesdays, at a totally different field? Stay tuned!

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