American Idle

One would think that I would have my day figured out by now considering my child is five hundred years old. One would be wrong.

When she was a baby, I tried Baby Wise, which demanded that I have her on a strict sleep/wake/eat schedule. About nine seconds into this ass backwards method I dropped it (Question to author: "Now how exactly does one teach their breasts not to squirt milk all over the living room when the baby cries in hunger in an effort to "call the shots as the parent"? What's that? You're a MAN and you do not have breasts? Ah.").

Then she was a toddler and had no demands other than an endless stream of Teletubbies and that she be able to chew on my keys while shopping. I pretty much did what I wanted with my day and she was my buddy.

(Ooooh, except for that one time when my buddy decided to completely vanish at Target and a CODE BLUE was announced across the PA system and all the doors went into lockdown - did you know they do this? - and HUNDREDS of people were calling for her and HUNDREDS more were standing at the doors with their bags completely pissed off because they weren't allowed to leave because some stupid mom dared to let her toddler out of the cart and then look away to compare the V-neck to the scoop neck for a SECOND. Don't you love Target? They're almost a better parent than I am.)

Aside from that though, the first three years were gravy. Then four years old hit. And now as of last month, five. And suddenly I'm met with a sullen face and irritated arguments and The Whining (Oh God, the whining) and The Complaining. In all fairness, there's also the adorable conversations (Excerpt from yesterday: "I know why you married daddy. There was a line of boys and you picked him because he was the tallest." So. True. And also his hair.).

So, to maintain that fine balance that is a five year old's emotional stability I've tried several loose schedules:

- Get up early and work in the morning for two hours before she's up, breakfast, then walk the dog together, then crafts, lunch, errands, friends, dinner, bath, bed, lots of wine and Tivo.

This did not work for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that once I started working in the morning, um, I wouldn't stop... and then all of the sudden it was two in the afternoon and Savannah had shriveled into a throw pillow in front of the TV.

Not to mention there was no mention of cleaning or going to the gym and so I spent a lot of time sitting and eating. Incidentally, this was the Year of the Spinach Dip if you check your Chinese Calendar.

So, I tried this:

- Get up with Savannah, clean, breakfast, play with friends, dinner, bath, bed, wine and Tivo.

You see the problem. We would start to play with friends so early in the day that we would end up not doing anything else until dinnertime. Basically, I moved into the park and Starbucks.

So, I REALLY MUST KNOW. Do you have a schedule? And does it allow you to keep your house clean, your kids occupied, possibly work and not include party size sour cream dips?

If you cannot help I'll have to go with what I know and that won't be pretty.

- Stay in bed, skip right to the Tivo.

Little Geisha
"Sorry. Target was totally my bad."

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