1) Check the thermometer. 39 degrees. Let’s wait a little bit.
2) Check the thermometer. 40 degrees. Ok. Let’s do this!
3) Announce: “Let’s go outside!”
4) Children scream and scatter in every direction with joy.
5) Oldest starts yelling, “I’m still in my jammies!”
6) Twin B toddles over to the shoe bin and pulls it down on head while repeating, “Shoes. Shoes. Shoes.”
7) Twin A starts crying because he is confused.
8) Dog jumps up and down by the door because she heard the word “outside”.
9) I run around like a crazy person trying to gather 3 coats, 6 shoes, and, hmmm, 6 socks.
10) I ask my oldest to go upstairs and gather 6 socks.
11) He cries because the stair gate is locked and he can’t get upstairs to get said socks.
12) I find 3 half-dirty socks on the floor, so then I unlock the gate and ask him to get only 3 socks from upstairs.
13) Babies try to rush the gate and manage to get up a couple of stairs.
14) I pull Twin A back down.
15) Twin B gets farther up the steps.
16) I pull Twin B back down.
17) Twin A gets back on the steps.
18) I heave both of them down the steps. (Combined, they weigh more than 50% of my own body weight.)
19) I re-lock the gate.
20) I find a 4th dirty sock on the floor.
21) I yell upstairs to my oldest that he only needs to get 2 more socks instead of 3. He can’t count very well so it doesn’t matter.
22) I sit down to put Twin A’s socks on.
23) My oldest cries because the baby gate is locked and he can’t get off the steps now that he has found 2 or 3 socks for me.
24) I heave Twin A off my lap.
25) I unlock the baby gate.
26) I tell my oldest to sit down and put his socks on.
27) Breach! Breach! Twin B has made it up a couple of steps.
28) Repeat steps 13-18.
29) Twin A removes the socks that I had just put on.
30) Oldest puts on socks. I tell him to take off his jammies.
31) I put Twin A in my lap again and put his socks on.
32) Twin B runs off with Twin A’s shoes.
33) I get up to chase Twin B and retrieve shoes.
34) Twin A cries because he thinks he can’t have any shoes.
35) Twin A takes socks off again while crying.
36) Repeat #31.
37) I put Twin A’s shoes and coat on.
38) Oldest cries because he can’t get his jammie shirt off.
39) I get up and help Oldest with his jammie shirt. I put his real shirt on.
40) Twin A cries because he doesn’t know why he isn’t on my lap or outside.
41) Twin B has run off with his own shoes and hidden them.
42) I chase Twin B.
43) I retrieve socks, shoes, and coat for Twin B.
44) I sit Twin B in my lap and get all items on him.
45) I get up to put Oldest’s coat and shoes on.
46) Twin B has taken off his shoes.
47) I sit down and put Twin B’s shoes on.
48) Repeat #40.
49) I open the door to the deck.
50) The dog rushes the kids and knocks babies down.
51) Twin A cries but Twin B doesn’t (as always).
52) I pick up Twin A.
53) We all actually walk outside.
54) I am barefoot and coatless. It’s 40 degrees and I forgot my own coat, shoes, and socks.
55) I try and fail to convince everyone to come back inside.
56) I carry Twin A inside.
57) Twin B runs away to the other end of the deck.
58) Twin A cries as I leave him inside.
59) I capture Twin B.
60) Twin A escapes back outside.
61) I retrieve Twin A.
62) Twin B escapes back outside.
63) I heave both twins inside. Together, they make up over 50% of my body weight.
64) I open the stair gate to get my socks from upstairs.
65) Repeat steps 13-18. Just kidding. I slip through the gate successfully, but they both stand at the bottom of the stairs and sob.
66) I come back, put on my own socks, shoes, and coat – while two babies cry.
67) We all actually walk outside.
68) Somebody pooped.
People ask why I don’t “just” do an exercise DVD after the kids go to bed.
I can’t wait for summer: no socks, no coats, fewer maneuvers.
This was an easy day. Staying inside on a rainy day is worse.
Stay tuned for how many maneuvers it takes to BE outside.