By: Kathy Buckworth
My two youngest children are away at camp, and this reprieve from the usual melee that goes on at my house has allowed me to reflect on those things that kids do, that use up equal measures of time and patience that you would just not realize did so, unless you had kids, and then suddenly they were gone. Allow me to explain:
- Being grateful when I walk up the stairs to my house, and open that front door, arms laden with groceries, that I won’t be accosted by stomping feet and grabbing hands who empty out select items in the grocery bag (cookies, fruit chews), without actually helping to put the groceries away. In fact, I find myself having to put away the opened bag of cookies from the family room about a half an hour later. What a treat to walk in with groceries, carefully lay them on the kitchen table, and quietly and efficiently put them away, unfettered, and un-assaulted by comments like “Can you actually buy some good food the next time?”
- Doing laundry once a week and having it stay “done”. No clean, folded shirts taken out of the basket just to be evaluated for “wear-ability” and then subsequently folded on the floor; no pants that need to be washed every day because they only fit properly right out of the dryer. No accusations from the 10 year old of “Who took my swimsuit?” (Because we all like to hide each other’s swimwear just for something to do, and I’m pretty sure those trunks won’t fit me anyway.)
- Getting up, having a shower, getting dressed, eating breakfast and leaving for an appointment. Without having to stop to pull a moldy sandwich out of lunch bag to replace it with one which will likely face the same fate, search for the one white shirt for the choir dress rehearsal (really? They need a dress rehearsal?), break up a fight about who gets the last bit of “good” cereal, break up another just as annoying fight over who gets to pick the morning cartoon, while studiously ignoring the silent glare of your husband as he insists you didn’t tell him today was the day you needed him to put the kids on the bus and didn’t he already take out the garbage and terrific I just got mold and sticky cereal stuck to my only clean blouse.
- Not acting as a go-between for doorbell rings and phone calls from your children’s friends that they do or don’t want to talk to or see, depending on their mood and active level of engagement on Minecraft or SuperMario. Not receiving withering glances or eye rolls when ultimately the decision to force them to engage (or not) is the wrong one.
- Not having to entertain the “leftover” child guest who would rather talk to you than play the aforementioned video games. Particularly when you work from home.
Sometimes absence really does make the heart grow fonder. Or at least the hearth to grow cleaner.
Photo by CL Buchanan Photography
Kathy Buckworth is an award winning writer, public speaker, and television personality. She is the author of five books, including “The BlackBerry Diaries: Adventures in Modern Motherhood” and her latest, “Shut Up and Eat:Tales of Chicken, Children & Chardonnay”. She is a feature writer for Sympatico.ca in their parenting, travel, and auto sections, and is also a columnist for ParentsCanada, Womens Post, Ottawa Families, Dabble Magazine, and GoodLife. She also regularly contributes to national magazines such as Canadian Families, Disney Playhouse, and Oh Baby. Her monthly “Funny Mummy” column appears on 25+ websites across North America. She is a parenting correspondent for CTVNewsChannel, and appears on shows such as CityLine and The Marilyn Denis Show.
Kathy is the only two time winner of the Professional Writers Association of Canada Award for Excellence in Humour, and is the 2010 recipient of the Mississauga Arts Award for Established Literary Arts. She is the Managing Director of 4WordsComm.com and has over 18 years of corporate marketing experience, with CIBC, Royal Bank, Telus and Coca Cola Foods. She has acted as corporate/media spokesperson/social media consultant for blue chip companies such as Procter & Gamble, Research In Motion, Presidents Choice Financial and LeapFrog Toys. Visit www.kathybuckworth.com or follow along at www.twitter.com/kathybuckworth
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Kathy Buckworth Award winning author, I Am So The Boss Of You, Shut Up & Eat, The BlackBerryDiaries Feature writer Sympatico.ca, (Travel, Parenting, Auto) Columnist for ParentsCanada, Dabble, GoodLife, DisneyJunior Blogger for Huffington Post Canada, Funny Mummy Syndicated Column CTV NewsChannel, CityLine Contributorwww.kathybuckworth.com and follow Kathy on twitter@KathyBuckworth