I awake to the sounds of joyous children.
At first, I am very confused. Is it Christmas morning again? Did a magic fairy leave new toys and candies? What would make the children so happy?
I lay in bed trying to think over the noise of all the happy screams when it hits me.
I throw back the covers and run into the kitchen, flip the outside light on and peer out the window.
The glass is cold on my nose which only means one thing… snow.
While we slept our world was finally covered in a white blanket of snow.
“Yeah! Mommy Mommy! Snow! We got snow!!!!” the children all happily scream at me.
I smile at them because their joy is infectious.
“Shit!” my brain says to myself, “What day is it?”
I stand there wondering when Jeff stumbles into the kitchen and says, “It’s Saturday,” just as if he can read my thoughts.
Whew, at least I don’t want to worry about the school morning scramble but when I turn around to face my children, I realize that I am going to have to face something much worse.
I can see it in the eyes…. they want to go outside.
“Please, mommy, please,” they all beg together, “Can we go out and play in the snow?”
I look at them and look at the clock, it’s not even 8am and barely light outside.
“Guys,” I say but know this will fall on deaf ears, “it’s too early to go outside.”
“Please mommy, please!” they all beg again.
“What about breakfast?” I ask. “You need to have breakfast first.”
They look at me and then look at each and in a blink of an eye, they are at the table waiting for cereal.
I putz around the kitchen trying to delay the going outside process for you see, this is the first snow of the season and I have no idea where any of the snow stuff is or if it even will fit the children. I hope that soon the children will forget about their need to play outside in the snow and be seduced by the TV and video game systems instead.
“Mommy, hurry!” they all scream at me, “We want to go outside!”
I put breakfast before the children and with the speed of lions devouring their prey, they inhale the food.
As I stand there impressed with their speed, I realize I need to face the inevitable. There is no way I can stop them from going outside. I walk the the closet where I shove things I don’t want to deal with and begin the process of finding the snow gear.
This closet scares me. I only open it long enough to throw something in there but really have no idea what is actually in there. Monsters or elves could live in there for all I know.
“Mommy, is this my snow pants?” Jake asks holding up a pair of pants that are 3 sizes too small.
Crap! The children have started in on the closet. This will not end well.
I take a deep breath and face my fears, “closet… it’s just you and me.”
I pull out coats and pants and gloves and boats. Some of it too small and some of it just right.
“Mommy, what is this?” Quinn asks.
“Um, I think that is Daddy’s old swim trunks we couldn’t find from last year but I am not sure,” I answer.
Soon I am surrounded by children wiggling into snow pants and recite a steady stream of, “No, those are not yours, they are Hayden’s, No, that is Claire’s. Wrong feet, Jake, Make you sure all go potty before putting snow pants on, Put your boats on first and then your gloves, Please go potty, Spread your fingers wide when instead the glove, Wait, you have to be zipped, Stop you need a hat, Do you want some help, Still… wrong feet Jake, Wait, you actually need to wear your coat.”
Finally, after what seems like hours, they are all properly dressed in snow gear that sorta of fits and off they go.
As the garage door shuts behind the last child leaving, I stumble back into my bedroom and flop on the bed.
“Well, that was exhausting,” I say to no one but hope someone will hear and have sympathy on me.
I lay there just listening to the silence and take a deep breath to relax my tense, stressed out body.
The quiet that has come over the house makes the snow dressing battle kind of worth it.
Suddenly the garage door bursts open.
“Mommy!” they yell, “It is rweally cold outside!”
By now they are all inside and stripping off the snow gear sending pieces of snow flying all over the house.
I wonder if I blacked out and missed a chunk of time. Could be possible, I had fallen asleep for a half hour or so which in my mind was a good amount of time to play outside. Seriously, more than five minutes had to have had past.
I sit up and watch my children fall all over each other while shedding their snow pants.
“Mommy, can we have hot chocolate?” they ask now climbing on the bed touching my with their cold hands.
I look at them all and say the only thing my tired body can muster, “I don’t know, go find daddy.”