Monday, January 4, 2010
pool in the kitchen
If there's one thing I know about getting through the day, it's that late afternoons before dinner time are of critical planning importance. No matter if the little fellas wake up from afternoon nap at 2:30 or 4, they whine, cling, and cry their way through until dinner is on the table. By this time, I am also tired, and sadly, I rarely have a solid dinner plan. I do a lot of wandering around the kitchen, looking blankly into the cabinets the same way a person like me might look under the hood of a car, dumbly expecting the solution to emerge with neon lights and a happy little tune.
As I enter this new year, I have rededicated myself to planning this time of day ahead of time. I have reserved Sunday nights for menu planning, and unlike many of my friends who only make dinner menus, mine will include all three meals plus snacks. How much easier is my life going to be when I know what needs to be cooked when, which snacks to pack up or set on their little table, and what meals are on the way? It is a relief just thinking of it.
Last week, the whining was really wearing me down. Typical meal-prep video distraction was not working. I was too tired to try to make dinner with one 30-pounder on my back and another 20-pounder in my arms.
I ran out in the rain and grabbed the summertime wading pool, flicking off those ugly Portland slugs as I jogged towards the door. I carried it in over the pulling hands and whiny cries and dumped it on the floor, then put two small bins filled with warm, soapy water into the pool right in the kitchen and let the boys go at it.
We turned up the heat, stripped off their clothes and dropped in some toys, and I bought myself 20 minutes to get dinner ready. Granted, it resulted in a wet floor and extra cleanup for me, but this is definitely a trick to remember for hard days that I will no doubt be using again.