Squish and I rocked in the dark in his room at 6:27 a.m. today in my vain effort to lull him back to sleep. He responded by making the sign for milk.
And so began an extra long morning (thanks, in part, to the delayed opening of daycare/school today).
By 8 a.m., it was time to get all of us dressed. With Squish on the changing table, I hollered to Bug, "[Bug], I am putting on [Squish's] clothes now, and then in two minutes it will be your turn."
Bug responded with an enthusiastic, "Okay, Mommy!"
Then I made a big mistake. I thought to myself, "Well, isn't that great? All I have to do now is give [Bug] a two-minute heads-up, and he is so cooperative. We have a loose routine here, and I'm not sure I even really know the routine myself. But that's fine. I have cracked the Three-Year-Old-Cooperation-Code. All [Bug] needs is a heads-up. A little preparation before he has to change gears. I am brilliant. [Bug] is brilliant. Oh, and look, [Squish] is brilliant now, too, in this amazing outfit I chose for him. Fantastic!"
When it was Bug's turn to get dressed, he did cooperate.
After I was dressed, it was time to brush teeth - put on socks - put on shoes - put on jackets - and go.
At this point, Squish was very tired and insisted on being held. So, with a Squish on my hip, I brushed my teeth. I turned to Bug in the hall and said, "[Bug], it's time to brush your teeth now. Come into the bathroom, please."
Bug responded, "Okay. But first I have to get on this [pile of blankets in storage containers that you pulled out yesterday in a bizarre attempt to prepare for the hurricane ... because everyone knows that's when you want a big pile of blankets handy]."
I said, "No. It's not time to climb on [those ridiculous blankets that I thought we might need if the lights went out - not candles or flashlights - blankets]. It's time to brush your teeth."
Bug, climbing on the storage containers, "No. First I have to do this! Then I will brush teeth."
"No. First this!!!!!!!!"
"I have to climb on this first!!!!"
"That's three. Time out."
"No time out!!"
I managed to get Bug to his room and told him I would be back in three minutes. As Bug shouted in protest at me, I went to the kitchen to set the oven timer.
By the time I got back to the bathroom, Bug was standing there looking up at me. I stood silent and pointed to his room. Bug also stood silent.
His expression went from, "I will choose my own place to have a time out, Mommy!"
to, "Am I really in trouble here? Did I take it too far?"
to, "There is no such thing as Too Far! I am the Master of My Own Destiny!"
Which is when he hid behind the bathroom door.
I stepped past him into the bathroom, and with Squish still on my hip, I tried to put on my make-up. All was fine and easy until it was time to put on mascara. Sure, there was the option of skipping the mascara, but honestly, sometimes it feels like the choice is between putting on the mascara or walking into work with oatmeal in my hair. So, I took a quiet stand against All Things Disheveled, and I put on some mascara.
Which is when Squish managed to get it all over his hands.
Eventually, Bug's three minute time out came to a close.
When I turned around to tell him his time out was over, I saw a yellow chalk drawing on the back of the bathroom door.
"Did you just draw that on the door?"
"You know you are not supposed to draw on walls or doors, [Bug]. That is another time out," I said feeling completely defeated.
"I don't want another time out!!!"
When I went to the kitchen to start the timer again, I saw that we were already running ten minutes late.
"Well, you will not get another time out. We don't actually have time for another time out."