I glanced at the clock. It was only seven minutes later than the last time I’d looked. There were still another two hours until bedtime.
I was having one of those days.
My baby had decided to skip his nap, my two other ones had been at each other’s throats since coming off the bus, and I had inadvertently incinerated dinner. Every toy in the house was on the floor, and both sinks were full of dishes. My husband was still at work, and I needed the extra pair of hands desperately. All I wanted to do was crawl into bed and nurse my headache, but instead I ordered pizza for my hungry kids and sat everyone down to play with LEGO while we waited for it to arrive. It would take at least a half hour. Ten minutes later, while in the midst of refereeing a fight over a piece of LEGO and trying to keep it out of my baby’s mouth, the doorbell rang
“Coming!” I cried as I stood up and hurried to the door. “That was way faster than expected.” I flung open the door and stretched out my hands.
“Huh?” my neighbor Blimi said, giving me a funny look.
“You’re not the pizza guy,” I explained, trying not to look disappointed.
“That’s true,” she replied. “Is everything okay?”
“I’m waiting for a pizza delivery,” I said. “Everyone is hungry.”
“Didn’t you tell me that you were making chicken and potato wedges for supper?” Blimi asked.
“Don’t ask!” I sighed. Just then there was crying in the background. “I gotta go. My kids haven’t stopped fighting since they walked in.”
“Wait!” Blimi said as she stepped into my house.
“Do not go past this threshold,” I practically shrieked. “My house is totally flying. If my shvigger walked in right now she’d take her son home with her.”
“Your shvigger is coming?” Blimi asked as she continued walking in.
“Thankfully, no,” I replied. “It’s just an expression. In other words, my house is a total shrek, and theoretically speaking, if my shivgger saw what kind of a balebusta I am…”
“It is rather messy,” Blimi agreed as she looked around. “But that’s okay, we all have our days. But I feel really bad asking you now.”
“Asking me what?”
“Remember you promised to bake cinnamon buns for the school event tomorrow?”
I had completely forgotten!
“Forget it,” Blimi said when she noticed the expression on my face. “I’ll figure something out.”
“No way,” I replied. “I told you I’d do it and I will. Don’t worry about it.”
“Thanks loads!” Blimi replied, looking relieved, before she scurried away so I couldn’t change my mind. “Oh, and your pizza is here!” she called over her shoulder.
After a quick supper of pizza, I decided to skip the baths and put the kids straight to bed. I pulled out whatever pajamas were in the drawer and got everyone ready to go to sleep. Only afterwards did I notice that the tops and bottoms were from two different sets. But who cares? I put the older ones into their beds and plopped the baby in his crib with a bottle. Within 15 minutes there was blessed silence in the house. I felt like collapsing, but instead I took a deep breath, took out my mixer and picked up the buzzing phone.
“Hi,” I said above the whirring noise of the machine.