Pete Gilbert">

I Just Want To Brush My Teeth!

It was one of those rare mornings where I set an early alarm, dragged myself out of bed and went for a run. I got home around 6am, with plans of showering, putting on “normal” clothes and definitely brushing my teeth.

One minute after I walked back in the door and turned on the coffee pot, my wife came downstairs to tell me that our son was awake, in our bed and playing with my iphone.

I walked upstairs, debating whether to send him back to bed (risking the possibility he would throw a fit and wake up the rest of the house) or having him come downstairs to spend some time with me. I rescued my iphone out of his perpetually dirty toddler hands, noticed he’d already snapped a few dozen pictures and invited him downstairs to help me make breakfast. I guess my shower, clean clothes and fuzzy teeth will have to wait.

One of my favorite things to make for breakfast is pancakes from scratch. Henry and I rounded up the dozen or so ingredients needed to make pancakes and started our cooking. I thought I might have a window of opportunity to AT LEAST brush my teeth for a moment during pancake making, but thought better of it after the griddle was turned on and my son was very interested in flipping flapjacks. I guess it would have to wait.

At about 6:15 Eloise woke up too early for her own good and noticeably grumpy. She was defiant about getting ready for school. Those problems I would have to deal with later, I had some pancakes to griddle and some teeth that needed brushin’.

At 6:30 the pancakes were finally finished, I headed up the stairs to brush my teeth, when I got distracted by the fact that my youngest, Maggie, was in her room screaming to get out of her crib. Fine, I picked her up, changed her diaper, and plopped her in her high chair for breakfast.

The next hour at our house was kind of a blur. My main goal between the hour of seven and eight o’clock is to get Eloise fed and on the bus. More days than not, all three kids seems to be working against this plan, this day was no different.

Maggie was screaming about regular pancakes I gave her. Instead, she wanted the blueberry pancakes we made. Fine, I’m sure blueberry stains aren’t hard to get off the walls, and out of clothes and furniture, right? After giving in about the pancakes, she decided she needed more dip (syrup). So I poured her a vat of syrup to go with her pancakes and off I went in a mad dash up the stairs to FINALLY brush my choppers.

Halfway up the stairs I was intercepted by Henry, he wanted help putting on his watch. After I helped him, he argued with me that he could put the strap the rest of the way on by himself, then he asked for help again once he realized he couldn’t do it. Next, he wanted me to find his whistle that I wouldn’t let him take to bed the night before. There’s a chance I threw it away, so I was kind of dragging my feet on that one.

As badly as I wanted clean teeth, I needed to get Eloise completely ready before she headed out the door for school. First, I had to talk her into getting dressed all over again, because the first time she put her regular clothes on over her jammies. Next, I had to fill out her reading chart from the night before because she couldn’t be, “the only one in class without her chart completed.” Finally, and most importantly, I helped her open her secret compartment in her princess journal.

At 8:00, Eloise had made it to the bus on time, wearing only a single layer of clothing, Henry found his obnoxious whistle and Maggie was still in her high chair stuffing her face with blueberry pancakes. Finally, two hours after my first attempt, I was able to check off the most important item on my to-do list for the day.

Teeth brushed. Check.

-Pete

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