So Julie arrives here at 7:20 with Alex in tow. Says he might have thrown up a bit in his bed while coughing last night, and his hair might smell like it. Ok, bye!
Gunder wants to stay in bed. He has huge circles under his eyes which makes me feel like a horrible mother.
I realized last night that before I made carpool arrangements with Peggy that I'd told Wendy I'd take her boys to school this morning. Not a big deal, but it bumps Jonas's pick-up time up about 10 minutes.
Alex has been riding in Gunder's car seat, and Gunder has been riding in the adult seat, which is very horrible of me. So I get Alex's car seat out of the garage and muscle it into the car- after having a massive tug-of-war with Gunder's car seat, which has been securely hooked into the metal things behind the seat. Safety and all.
Gunder is inside eating goldfish crackers for breakfast, because that's all he wants. I hurry him along, put on the shoes that are too small (but I don't beat myself up on this one too much because he has an identical pair that are the right size...somewhere) and drag him into the bathroom where I shove his head into the sink and wet his hair down. He screams and I yell that it's just a little water, for crying out loud.
I comb his hair back so he looks like a gangsta from the 20s. His sisters, who have already left for school, would be mortified. I am glad they're not here to see it.
I remember I've already put Alex in the car and hurry Gunder out the door after slapping the correct size of shoes on his feet. Forget to brush his teeth, which is now making me cringe. He's sitting in school with fuzzy teeth. He's a fuzzy-toothed gantsta. But at least I remembered to wash his clothes last night and did get them ironed this morning.
We pick up Kord and Kade, who are looking clean and scrubbed, if somewhat tired. They climb into the car, and I let Kord sit in the front because he's now 13 and the airbag won't kill him if it deploys. Kade climbs into the middle by Alex, and I explain to the boys that he didn't really just throw up, it only smells like it. Yum. Going to school first thing in the morning in a car that smells like barf.
Gunder is sitting in the way-back, and we pick up Jonas, who joins him on his own little booster seat. Peggy is gracious about the fact that it's actually closer to 8 now, rather than the 7:50 I texted her about in a panic last night at 10:30. Gunder and Jonas are Kindergarten and 1st grade, respectively, and they begin telling knock-knock jokes that involve bananas, monkeys, eyes, noses...I draw the line when they begin peeing. I tell Kord that he should remember some of those awesome jokes to tell his friends. He looks at me with a half-smile and rubs his hands together, clearly cold because the windows are cracked to clear out the barf smell.
As we near the older boys' school, Kord tells me he hopes they go to the park and not rock climbing today because he forgot to have his mom sign the release for rock climbing and he really wants to go. Wendy and I have been the closest of friends for years, and I remember when Kord was born. I figure that makes us close, and I offer to sign the release form for Wendy- we both have pretty handwriting- so he can rock climb if it turns out that's what they're doing today. He looks dejected. The release form is in his locker, and I have given him only enough time to get to class before the bell rings. He can't run the form back out to me to sign, and besides, I'm not altogether certain he's comfortable with the idea anyway.
I drop off Kord, remind him to tuck in his shirt (The kids all wear uniforms. I know. We're mean moms.) He says he will and leaves. I swing around to drop Kade off at the intermediate building, where he hops out of the car without a backward glance, likely relieved to be away from barf-boy, who calls him "Cave."
I swing down the street to drop the little guys off at the elementary building. Jonas is telling Gunder something I can't hear because Alex heard "Life is a Highway" playing on the radio and wanted me to turn it up louder. ("Mack and McQueen!") I hear Gunder telling Jonas, "Well, that's a rip-off!" Jonas looks at him like he's from Mars. Gunder says, "They used the wrong building plans, then!"
I am too tired to sort it out, curious though I am. I pull into the congested side-street next to the school and help the boys get out of the back. I help Jonas down, which seems to offend him very much. I try to help Gunder down but he tells me he can do it himself. He jumps down and I barely get a kiss. They take off running for the front door, backpacks flying, with me yelling at them to be good and remember the rules. If I thought they were old enough to be embarrassed by it, I'd also yell for them to look forward to scripture study after school. This works great with my girls.
I maneuver my way out of the obnoxious SUV zoo in my obnoxious SUV and head for home. Pick up a Diet Coke on the way, and when Alex asks for a Sprite, I tell him we need to be healthy and I'll give him a glass of water at home. When we pull into the driveway, he talks me out of going for a walk. He says he doesn't want to, and frankly, neither do I.
We turn on Dora, which he unfortunately loves these days, and I slice him an apple to eat with his goldfish crackers. He also wants some cinnamon toast, and I feel good about the fact that at least one of the little boys got a fairly good-size breakfast this morning.
I slice myself some strawberries to go with my divine Diet Coke, proud that I'm eating strawberries and not Doublestuff Oreos for breakfast. Just to make sure I don't feel too good about myself, though, I sprinkle a little sugar on top of them. Humility is a virtue, after all.