I have snack time. (By the way, I just noticed that if you are typing in HTML mode and you hit the "Bold" button, the code for it is the word "Strong" in brackets. No lie, that is the coolest thing ever.)
But seriously, at 10am and 3pm the kids and I have snacks. The alarm on my phone is set so we never miss it, and thus blood sugar crashes are rare. We get to have our pick from fruit, pretzels, crackers, sometimes cookies, cheese, peanut butter and apples, and sometimes breakfast cereal if Momma is in a pinch. Then we sit at the table and chit chat, or we sit on the couch and watch a cartoon. Now tell me, how many of you that work get to stop whatever you are doing, prop up your feet, and kick back with some string cheese and milk and take a breather twice a day? That's right, this job rules.
I get to watch cartoons all the time. Now, frankly this is both good and bad, but mostly it's pretty good. They have this cartoon called The Backyardigans, and honestly it is the reason we got cable. I was at our neighbors house one day while I was pregnant with Little David and our kids were watching this show and I immediately went home and told David we were getting cable (He had always wanted it, I was the holdout). Not only were the characters funny, polite (a rarity) and creative, the songs were ridiculously infectious. Take today for instance. Today The Backyardigans were pretending to be Secret Agents. They are singing while they try to replace a mission dinosaur toe and tiptoing, and smoothly sliding all over the museum with their mad Secret Agent skills. Consequently I have been singing the song all day "I'm a Secret Agent with a secret miiiiiissssiooooon, Sneaking and Hiding and Creeping Around" while tiptoing around my living room and sliding my feet on the tile of my kitchen, unconsciously mimicking their every move. Embarrassing should anyone just hop in unexpectedly, but hilarious fun when it's just me and the kids.
I get Nap Time. Word. I know that this is supposed to be the trump card because sleep is such a commodity for most people, but I'm putting it here in the middle because I don't always take advantage of it. I'm blessed at this stage in Mommyhood because the Tot and Little David are usually napping at the same time. The system isn't always perfect because, well, we are dealing with toddlers, but for the most part at 1pm, 2pm at the latest, both kids are nodding away in their beds and I have a good hour or two to myself. Sometimes I toss the cleaning into the wind and I lay down on the couch and nap myself. For some reason, the couch is infinitely more comfy at naptime. Other times, like today, I pop on the internet and blog, or read blogs, or just waste obscene amounts of time looking at whatever interests me that day (paint colors, toddler bedding, new books, jogging strollers, coach purses, etc). The time alone is cherished each day and leaves me feeling like I can totally deal with the rest of the day. I swear that if more workplaces gave breaks like naptime our job productivity would sky rocket.
I go to McDonalds guilt free. Say what you will, Nazi Moms of Healthful Habits, I heart McDonalds. I adore the Chicken Nuggets all but dripping in sweet and sour sauce with a great big huge side of greasy, salty fries. Top it all off with a Dr. Pepper and I am in Hog Heaven. I probably couldn't get away with eating all that junk but I'm telling you, the job makes it possible, even sweet. You see, each Friday I take the kids to McDonalds for their special lunch. We all get nuggets and fries and we take them home to eat. There we spend almost an hour eating and playing with the Happy Meal toys du jour. And please, don't knock the Happy Meal toys. Tot got a Shrek figurine that talks about a month ago, and to this day she still sleeps with it every night and we have to pray for him at every prayer. So what would be a poor health choice for me if I was just going alone, becomes a sweet memory that my kids will have of us throwing off the chains of routine once a week and jaunting off to get Nuggets and Toys and playing until naptime. Mwah Ha Ha.
I maybe own one dress. Perhaps the most coveted part of being a Stay At Home Mom is the wardrobe. And by wardrobe I mean Jeans and a T Shirt in the winter and Jeans and a T Shirt in the summer. I don't think anyone would call me fashion forward, regardless of the times I kick my game up when going out with adults. I am always most comfortable in a ponytail (when my hair is long) and jeans and a tshirt. Anyways, I say this is because no matter what I am doing any given day, odds are that if I have showered and put on lip gloss I'm looking dressed up. Moms really have the corner on this market because what we wear has to be comfortable. It's the utmost of impracticality to wear anything that doesn't lend itself to being snotted on, grass stained, cried on, snuggled on, pulled on, tugged on, and slept in. Thus the jeans and tshirts. See why I love this job? I've gotten so spoiled that I don't think I could work anywhere that required me to dress even business casual. Dude, my business casual is my pj's.
I can be crazy spontaneous. Honestly, this is the best part of being a Stay At Home Mom. The freedom. I want Starbucks? Friends, I load up the kids and get me some Starbucks. I need to get out of the house a bit? I load the kids up and we walk to the park. Tot wants to see some animals? We go to the zoo. I'm not feeling so good? I stay in my PJ's and call it a pj day where we watch tons of movies and eat easy stuff. Most things can be done without too much planning, because my entire job is to be with the kids, teaching them to do all the things they'll ever need to do, and I can do that anywhere! We can learn colors on a walk, we can learn numbers at the zoo (Quick Tot! How many monkeys have a red behind?), and we can learn manners anywhere. What other job could I get where I can get up one morning and think "You know, scrap the jobs I was supposed to do today, like laundry and dishes. Today we are going to the park and swing until we can't swing no mo'." That is awesome.
So you see dear Readers, I adore my job. There are so many more reasons to love this job that I didn't list because, frankly, I want you all to still be able to love me and any more of my gloating would send you into a jealous rage, ended only in deleting my blog from your favorites list (I am there, right??). I give you guys so many anecdotes that paint my life as harried and stressful, and sarcasticly funny, but for the most part, it's really just nice. I am so very, very blessed to get to stay at home with the kids and I am so grateful. God blessed Dave with a job that provides well and an ability to succeed at it. And Dave is so very supportive and never gripes when he doesn't have clean underpants because I called an audible and went to the park.
We have our days, like any other job, but MAN, the perks totally cancel out any bad ones. Because for every day that is filled with tantrums, diaper rash, nonstop whining and no sleep, there is a day filled with trips to McDonalds, walks to the library, coloring quietly, baking cookies, swimming in the paddle pool, and snuggles before naptime, all in my most comfortable clothes.
"He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father; and I will love him and disclose Myself to them." John 14:21