an hour in the day in the life of

damn dog

All of my furniture looks a bit like this...

Pulling EVERYTHING out of their toybox while I do damage control in the other corners of the house

Sitting on the stove with a cheese grater trying to pry open the bottle of vitamins

I never thought I would be one of those greasy pony tailed moms, and yet here we are. That aint product ladies and gentlemen.

Where do you figure all that apple peel is going? Why it is in a little pile at my feet of course.

Annnnnnnd, he's out.


Just in case you forgot, I don’t have all my shit together.

This morning I woke to find that the dog had tried to pull the homemade bunting garland off our tree sometime in the night.  I looked over and he was laying on his bed, clearly exhausted from being up all night.  Thankfully we had the foresight to anchor that shit to the wall or I am sure it would have been much worse than cockeyed and disheveled.

Before I had kids I would read blogs and articles about the insanity of motherhood and the peanut butter smeared on every imaginable surface and I thought I would be different.  “Oh no!”  I told myself.  “I will be pretty and fit and always always shave my legs.  I will never, ever give them sugar or processed foods.  My house will be clean and perpetually smell like apple pie.  Oh and I shall knit all their clothes and let them play only with homemade wooden toys.”  Yeah, I was a douche bag.  It wasn’t my fault really.  I know friends and family members who have no kids are thinking the same thing when the read this stuff and witness it first hand.  I just bite my tongue when I feel the urge to enlighten them.

I never thought I would be the frazzled looking mom with the greasy pony tail buying stupid toys because I just don’t want to deal with the meltdown.  And yet, here we are.  I can’t recall the last time I washed my hair.  Monday maybe?  Wait, what day is it anyway?  I never thought my body would ever be this doughy.  The other night I was going through old photos and I realized a few things; 1) just how much I had neglected my eyebrow manicuring since Silas was born; 2) I had no idea what a messy house was back then; 3) how perfectly wonderful my pre baby body was (yeah, the same one I loved to loathe back in the day) and 4) what the hell did we do with all our spare time and energy?!

Fast forward to today, and it would appear that Huck and kids are in cahoots to make me mental.  After nearly four years of being a mom, I am still astounded by the damage they can do in very short periods of time.  Every time I take 15 minutes to do something that isn’t perpetual sweeping, picking up, or tidying, any semblance of order quickly dissolves.  It is ridiculous.  I know my attempts are futile, but if I were to stop, I am quite sure our house would look like an episode of Hoarders in about 48 hours.

I am certain our children are no different than any others in their mess making abilities, though I like to believe they are rather gifted in this category.  They paint windows and tables with their food and leave trails and piles of apple peel in every imaginable place.  I have a pile of dirt, fur, glitter, cereal, and paper in the corner that I feel isn’t worth my while to pick up with the dustpan until it resembles a small mammal.  What is the point, a new pile is only an hour away.

I brush Poppy’s hair at least once, if not twice per day, but you would never know it.  It resists order just as much my two children do.  I fold blankets and stack them on a chair to place in a cupboard only to turn around and see that someone has efficiently flipped them off and unfolded them while I was changing a diaper, sopping up spilled milk, or filling a snack request.  I clean one side of the front room while they pull the opposite side apart.  And so goes my day.

I’d like to get out more, but that is a feat in and of itself.  Even when they are strapped into a double wide jogging stroller with books, toys, drinks, and snacks the demands are endless and I can’t fit through most store doors or aisles anyway.  I always think I am going to be uber productive, but my nerves (and therefore, my brain functioning) are usually shot after about an hour or two.

I am a rumpled mess 98% of the time and I sometimes fantasize about what we would do if we didn’t have kids, but then I remember the wise words of my very favourite comedian Louis CK, “What the hell is an adult without kids?  What’s the point?”.  Someday my house will be quiet and orderly and my brain functions will return to normal and I know I will get weepy just thinking of their sweet little jam covered faces and the way they smell after a bath in their fresh jammies.  My only hope is that they give me loads of grand kids, visit often and forgive my parenting blunders.

Until then, I have a glittery creature in the corner to either name or dispose of and a toddler who has unraveled a spool of thread and needs detangling.

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  1. Posted December 13, 2012 at 4:00 pm by aloadofoldtat | Permalink

    I guarantee you that you do come out the other-side. I can also remember thinking what on earth did we do with our spare time pre child; because we have a large gap inbetween. I recall that I thought I would never read a newspaper or a book ever again. Instead we used to read the television because we had to use subtitles because we couldn’t hear a thing. Now when we have been in the company if the next generation, I ask was it really that noisy with our children and my husband replies; yes you have just forgotten. The thought that I could in any way forget my children just brings tears to my eyes. So hold yours tight and roll with it because they are the greatest joy you could possibly have in life.

    • Posted December 13, 2012 at 4:08 pm by erin | Permalink

      Bittersweet isn’t it…le sigh.
      Thanks for the reassurance for the other side 😉

  2. Posted December 13, 2012 at 4:28 pm by Stephanie K. | Permalink

    Oh, I just love you so much. I almost called information to get your phone number just to tell you that.

    You still look radiant, greasy ponytail and all.

    My sister put my brother on the stovetop once where he proceeded to turn on the element, thus melting his rubber diaper cover to it.

    I ate poo out of my sister’s potty, my other sister drank bleach, and here we are…all alive.

    And I just became a mother of four. Chaos and mess reigns…the tradition of motherhood continues.

    I surrender. Sounds like you’re on your way to waving the white flag, too, and that’s just as it should be.

    • Posted December 13, 2012 at 4:37 pm by erin | Permalink

      The feeling is quite mutual my dear!
      And yes, the white flag is slowly being raised.

  3. Posted December 13, 2012 at 4:48 pm by Greer-Typically Red | Permalink

    Hear, hear. They look like perfect angels in that first pic. Cheeky!

  4. Posted December 13, 2012 at 4:49 pm by Arianne | Permalink

    Your honesty is so refreshing. It makes me laugh out loud. I’m soooo with you.

  5. Posted December 13, 2012 at 4:54 pm by Michelle | Permalink

    You must be young. Under 30 I’ll bet. You have all the tell-tale signs. :)

  6. Posted December 13, 2012 at 5:06 pm by kalise | Permalink

    Yes, yes and yes! I’m a mama to twin 4 year old boys and it is mass chaos approximately 89% of the time. Let’s chat about how they managed to get my 10# bag of organic (what, what) sugar out of the cupboard and then dump it on the CARPET. Or how I declare Tuesdays “pajama days” because I can’t face getting out of the cozy fleeciness. You are doing an excellent job. Chin up, mama, we’re all in this together. Thanks for keeping it real…

  7. Posted December 13, 2012 at 6:33 pm by mel | Permalink

    Ohhhh this, you nailed it! Every mama is right with you clapping/crying/chuckling at the truth of it all. LOVE the description of your glittery mammal.. I figure the dirt just ensure a better immune system.. amiright?! hehe.
    I’ve been planning a blog-series about this notion of ‘what they didn’t tell you’ about having kids… but we don’t want to scare the child-less too badly do we (?!) ;o)
    Anywho, love you, love this. Funny how these fleeting moments can last forever somedays….
    needle and nest

  8. Posted December 13, 2012 at 8:36 pm by Melissa hansen | Permalink

    I do love all, I mean all of your blogs. They make me smile and reflect on my day and I thank god that I’m not the only one that has the same thought on parenting and the chaos we call life. I love the real life saga of feather and anchor.
    By the way your a fantastic mother and you look great with a bit of grease.

    • Posted December 17, 2012 at 10:19 am by erin | Permalink

      Glad you enjoy the blog and thanks so much for the kind words.

  9. Posted December 13, 2012 at 8:42 pm by Morgan G | Permalink

    Girl, your honesty is a breath of fresh air. My daughter is five and just getting to the point where she will sleep in her bed two out of seven nights of the week. And she asks for snacks and candy nonstop, as soon as she wakes up in the morning. She recently asked for a Barbie for Christmas and I obliged, but since a relative just got her one for her birthday I can take mine back to the store and get her what I really want. Small but precious victories.

  10. Posted December 13, 2012 at 9:27 pm by Kelly | Permalink

    Amen, Sista!! If you were a fly on the wall in my house, you would see much of the same! With 3 kids four and under plus 2 daycare kids just to make ends meet, my house is chaos!! Your words are like a breath of fresh air. Sometimes, when I feel like I’m drowning, I read your blog and I know it will be okay.
    Thank you for your honesty.

  11. Posted December 14, 2012 at 1:55 am by KC | Permalink

    Oh I so adore you! You might as well have written out my life in this post. I took a shower yesterday out of force because I could remember at all when I had done it last maybe s week? Oh and heaven forbid I take off my glasses to see my unibrow. I love the picture on top of the stove. The other day I found baby on the back of the toilet!

    I still think about posting mess keeping it real pictures all the time. I take them in my head because I can’t find my camera sometimes under all the clothing that gets barfed up all over the house though I just put it all back ten seconds ago.

    Lovely quote!

  12. Posted December 14, 2012 at 2:48 am by Johanna | Permalink

    Oh my goodness.. I am a bit laughing, a bit nodding my head, and a bit crying at this post. It is so true, every last thing you say here is exactly what I am feeling today.
    Hugs to you my dear.

  13. Posted December 14, 2012 at 4:50 am by teresa c | Permalink

    Kids have a gift to get us down to earth, don’t they? And to makes us feel a failure moments before feeling utterly alive and in love. To choose what is really important and to let go of the rest. And change our minds afterwards, and again and again and again…
    I want to have a second child. I will probably be a mess. but on the other hand… I’ll probaly regret later on if I don’t live it. :)

  14. Posted December 14, 2012 at 8:35 am by dre | Permalink

    This is where I get to say that other super true thing that only parents of kids who are now TEENAGERS OMG get to say— It feels slow now, but you’re going to blink and they’ll be big. Just wait. You’ll get to wash your hair again, I promise. But the piles and trails? They never stop. The difference is you can hand the broom over. So now is the time to practice laughing, playing and being patient, because when you look back on this, it won’t matter if your shit was together—if the beds were made and the living room always ready for company, lol. What you’ll remember was if you were smiling or not.

    As always, thanks for the great post. Those pictures are a riot. 😀

  15. Posted December 14, 2012 at 9:28 am by Robyn Da Costa | Permalink

    Oh Erin, you hit the nail on the head!! We’re in the same boat with millions of moms, but our babes are sure worth it :)

  16. Posted December 14, 2012 at 12:27 pm by teresa | Permalink

    ha ha ha. upon trudging down the stairs this morning we found that our lovely dog rosie decided to attack my knitting basket. goodbye teacher ornaments! (3 montessori teachers and one dance teacher will have to survive without a hand made ornament this year). i just ran out to meet a local photographer (x mas presents of sitting fees paid for grandparents on both sides… family portraits for the new year!) wearing a floor length skirt, legwarmers, wool socks and winter boots. no bra, a ratty thermal shirt and an apron. ha!
    the me 10 years ago living in nyc, making sure everything looked just right before going to a class would have turned in her grave!

    i practice surrender every. single. day.

    sending love!

  17. Posted December 15, 2012 at 6:01 am by Maureen | Permalink

    THANK YOU for being so honest and showing your dirty floors and ripped furniture and the imperfect corners of your house. I have three kids and that’s whay I check your blog religiously. You make me laugh and feel like I’m not alone. Your children are beautiful. Hang in there, and I will, too.

  18. Posted December 16, 2012 at 9:37 am by christine m. | Permalink

    Bless you for telling it like it is! So many mom bloggers gloss over the nitty gritty and just share the shining moments of wonder. You are doing a great service to many moms out there feeling inadequate, guilty or ashamed as they compare themselves to the abundance of mega-moms they see online.

  19. Posted December 16, 2012 at 10:17 pm by Amberlea | Permalink

    Sooooo… you’re telling me my house won’t perpetually smell like apple pie?

    • Posted December 17, 2012 at 10:18 am by erin | Permalink

      Something like that 😉

  20. Posted December 19, 2012 at 9:25 pm by Sarah | Permalink

    Ha I laughed out loud when you called your former self a douche bag. I can relate, I was a douche bag too. I look back on some of the stuff I used to say about parenting and I want to reach through time to slap myself in the face!

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