Rediscovering the 'Me' in 'Mumeeeeeee'

'I have always thought that there is no more fruitful source of family discontent than a housewife’s badly-cooked dinners and untidy ways'. (Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management, 1861)

November 25, 2009

Tiny Details

Why is it that there always seems to be something else to do, or something you forgot to do, when you are already doing SO much?

For example, after getting myself and both boys washed and dressed on a morning, you’d think we’d be ready to pop on our coats and shoes and head off for the day. But, oh no. I must first attend to a hundred tiny details, absolute minutiae which, if forgotten or over-looked, will cause utter calamity. I will give you just a selection from this morning…..

1. Make 2 slices of toast (standing and holding the toasting handle down because it is broken and there isn’t time to fix it or buy another). Cut one slice into 4 triangles, leave the other as a whole piece.
2. Apply Burt’s Bees to two-year-old’s dry patch on forehead
3. Apply Vaseline to four-year-old’s sore patch on top lip
4. Blow four-year-old’s nose and put tissue in his pocket for pre-school
5. Find small green car which two-year-old is losing his mind over
6. Put cheque into crèche bag, otherwise my children will be evicted
7. Have a serious chat with two-year-old about how he must remember to be a good boy at crèche today and not bite anyone
8. Remind four-year-old not to pick his nose but to use tissue in pocket
9. Remind four-year-old not to use the hand-soap at pre-school as it makes his hands sore
10. Find red cup for two-year-old’s milk for drinking on the way to crèche
11. Put shopping bags into car because I’m going straight to the supermarket after crèche drop
12. Take buggy out of the boot to make room for the shopping
13. Allow two-year-old to climb into the driver’s seat
14. Fiddle with four-year-old’s seatbelt which is somehow all twisted, again
15. Fiddle with very temperamental lock on house door and swear
16. Start car engine and pretend the car will go without us to entice two-year-old into his own seat
17. Go back into house for four-year-old’s lunch box which I thought he’d taken out to the car
18. Grab another tissue and blow four-year-old’s nose again
19. Find Track 16 on the Abba CD before everyone has a complete melt-down
20. Get teddies out of crèche bag for two-year-old to hold, along with milk, while driving to crèche
21. Arrive at crèche – ensure four-year-old gets out of car first
22. Let two-year-old press the buzzer and then wait for him to say hello to the cuckoo clock and the bee mobile
23. Sanitise everyone’s hands with gel to prevent swine flu
24. Deposit two-year-old. Try and ignore his look of utter desperation and head upstairs with four-year-old.
25. Deposit four-year-old.
26. Dash back to car and speed off to supermarket. Screech to a halt. Turn back and take two-year-old’s teddies into him.
27. Speed off again, avoiding the strong urge to make a diversion into the lovely new coffee shop which has just opened opposite the creche.

Is it any wonder I look ever-so-slightly harrassed?!



  1. oh wow - it is insane isn't it - totally all the tiny I wrote a list it would read very similarly..well done on getting all that done

  2. yep - if you list all we's easier going out to a paid job, isn't it? I would have been very tempted by the nice coffee shop......that is the perk we enjoy. Choice and freedom. xx

  3. If ever there was a woman who deserved a coffee and cake it sounds like its you

    I found that writing down EXACTLY what I did during a day made Mr realised VERY quickly that my so called relaxing maternity leave was anything but

  4. Yes, thought my head would explode before 8.30am as well. No wonder we all sleep through Coronation Street. Or is that just me?

  5. Oh yeah. Very true, this post. Had husband run late for the last two days so he took son into school, which left me blissfully with only one child to deal with. Reminded me of mayhem on other days.

  6. Its great to see that we are all the same, just swap girl for boy in above and its me, except I would have gone to coffee shop and forgotten about shopping!!!

  7. Sounds like you are living my life, left home at school drop off, to return in time for preschool drop off, with shopping in car after my weekly treat of shopping with my mother and minimad. I HATE Thursdays

  8. Oh we are like those sliding doors parallel lives (although you write much better blogs). The official reason why our front door stained glass panel broke was because I slammed it too hard to get the alarm activated. The unofficial reason was I slammed it in a mummy huff out of sheer (or should that read, tear) frustration at the impossible but necessary task of getting two toddlers out the door by 8.30 in the morning, with the right weather appropriate clothes, lunches, bags, toys and myself.

  9. Love it - can you imagine the 'to do' list if you saw every single one of these coming? I remember pretty similarly fraught times/mornings/attempts to get out of the house with baby/toddler/nursery-bound twins and as much as I can breathe easy that those days are behind me and you can look forward to a bit more piece, the stuff that remains as school takes the place of the nursery, for me anyway, is: hunt for glasses, hunt for car keys, hunt for three coats in three different places, you get the picture. I am useless.

  10. ...And so useless/frazzled I even make myself come back and tell you I know that should say peace and not piece, I'm off for a cider. x

  11. Sounds familiar! Thankfully I only have to say and do all that for one child. At times I have been tempted to record myself and play the tape back rather than constantly repeating myself day in day out!

  12. There's always a million things to do in the morning and not enough time to do it all in!! Sounds like you manage it well though :)

  13. Ah, pleased I'm not the only stressed-out mum.

    It makes you dizzy dunnit?

    Hang in there only another 10 years to go...

    Love RMxx

  14. Oh that's fantastic - those of my friends who haven't yet had the pleasure of all of this can't possibly realise the number of tiny things you do each day. We have similar routines with who gets in/out of the car first on a daily basis - twins, everything has to be FAIR!


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