So, shame on me for wanting 15 minutes or so to myself. This morning basically started like any other — up at 5:45 to study for an hour, breakfast on the table by 7am, get the girls, the usual routine. After breakfast, we go upstairs and I strip the girls of their pj’s, jam them into their clothes and brush up their hair and teeth. When it’s all said and done, the clock reads about ten minutes after eight. We need to be out the door and head to the car by about 8:30. Inevitably, Co decides to have her morning constitutional (read: poop) right at breakfast, but lately, she’s been holding on to it until 8:29.
In the 10 or so minutes between the end of the morning hygiene routine and heading to the car, I take a few minutes for myself. I brush my teeth, maybe put on a little blush or mascara, and usually park myself in front of the computer to check my school email account, the weather, FB, or some such nonsense, if only for a moment. And of course, in these stolen minutes, the patter of 3 year old and 1 year old feet sound from overhead. Sometimes a screaming match erupts, usually someone is tattling on someone else, and I throw an obligatory, “Be nice to your sister,” up the stairs before SuperPoking my brother or sending a piece of flair to my lab partner from 10th grade chemistry.
Shame on me for trying to do me for a minute. I look at the clock, it’s about 8:27 and I figure that Co has done her thing, so I can speed change her while Mo puts her coat on and we’ll still get out the door on time. I head for the stair, my foot hits the bottom step, and as I call out, I get a distinct whiff of baby powder —- from two flights up. WTH?
And I’m off, taking the steps two at a time, rounding the landing, up the short, second flight when Mo scuttles out of her room, Co hot on her heels and the both of them are covered — tip to tail in baby powder.
Like someone grabbed them by their pig-tails and dipped them in a vat of flour. There is powder on the floor of both of their rooms, the hallway, in the bathroom, clinging to their dressers and Co’s crib like a thin layer of dust. And I say, “What are you doing?!” and they both say, “Oh!” — like that explains it. Mo regains her composure first and says, “Well. . .(she begins everything with well or actually) we made an ice rink upstairs.
Sidenote: Olivia the Pig, beloved piglet of the Ian Falconer has a series on TV and the episode du jour involves ice skating and a homemade ice rink – – – in the backyard. So I guess I should be grateful it’s powder and not water. I guess. . .
The two ice princesses had covered every inch of hardwood floor, free surfaces and themselves. And in my head, my punctuality gene is saying, “Uh, we gotta go now or we’re all gonna be late,” while my anal retentive gene says, “Oh HAYLE NO! We can’t leave this mess! And look at them!” Yes, they both look like Ashy Larry, like they’ve never heard of Jergens or Nivea.
So, I grab them both by the hand, wheel them into the bathroom and with a very stern, “I’m very disappointed in you,” proceed to blot the powder off of their faces, clothes and hair with a damp washcloth. After a minute or two, I don’t even care how they look. I’m still cringing at all the powder on the floor. I waffle on whether or not to just change their clothes and start fresh or sweep the floor. Anal retentiveness, as far as the house goes, won out and the floor got swept. I sent them downstairs to put their coats on. Little powder puffs followed in their wake and clung to the air, my sweats, and my face. I swept those floors with a vengeance and dust bunnies circled their wagons, tearing off at the sight of me coming.
This afternoon, Mo went to the bathroom and called for me to help her. She washed her hands and I reached for the hand towel to help her dry. A huge cloud of powder rose up in the air between us.
“Mmmmm,” she said. “Smells good.”
Seriously, I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried.