This past weekend my wife decided to leave me.
for 3 days to hang out with some of her friends.
And she left me with all three girls. Now this was not the first time I have had all three girls, but it is the longest that I have had them. She left Friday, gone Saturday and returned Sunday. So I had the 3 girls to take care of for 2 nights.
Fill up the days!
My plan was simple. I would fill up the days with activities in hopes that the weekend would scream on past. Well… the days screamed on past, and the nights were just full of screams. But I’ll get to that in a bit.
Friday night I took the girls to Uncle Steve’s to go catch some fish. My brother lives on a little lake and you can pretty much catch the blue gill and the sunfish with just a hook. The only problem is that our hooks were too big and we only caught one fish. (I got the right size hooks and took them back a few days later and we caught like 200.)
Then the difficult part. NIGHT TIME!
Putting 3 kids down to bed is no joke. You can pretty well kiss your read, sing, sleep ‘Bedtime Routine’ goodbye because it just don’t happen. So here is what I do. The older girls watch a cartoon at night and that is their “reading” time. Then I bring them down to bed and lights out. At this point I bring child 3 who is only 10 months old to her room and put her to sleep. Ideally the other two are sleeping by this point, but if they are not we sing and its ni-night time.
Then I proceed to spend the next 45 minutes looking through Netflix only to realize once again that Netflix streaming sucks, and settle on watching a documentary of arcade video gamers from the 80’s. When the documentary is finished I go to bed feeling happier than ever about my life. (Okay… Just kidding, I watched Arrested Development, but I did watch that arcade documentary a few weeks ago… WOW)
Does your kid have a sensor in their brains that tells them to cry when mommy or daddy’s head hits the pillow? Mine does. By the time a drag myself to bed it is past midnight. Well wouldn’t you know it that my little 10 month old angel starts crying about 5 minutes after I am in bed. What works?
Bring baby in bed? Yep… Kind of.
Because now she is hyper and laughing and smiling.
Here is a list of things that happen over the next 2 hours:
Finally after 2am I get out a frozen sack of the magic juice (breast milk). Give her a bottle and she goes back to sleep for good.
On day 2 I met up with a friend, who’s wife was with my wife, and we took our 5 kids to the spring fair. 2 dudes, 5 kids, 9 million other people, rides, cotton candy, ice cream, freaky dudes on stilts in chicken suits, some baby goats, pet a bunny, lose track of a few of our kids, should’a brought the child leash, just kidding I don’t own a child leash, wearing a bright pink ergo, my wife couldn’t have foreseen this moment and bought the grey one, corn dogs, more magic juice, not easy, a few more rides, back in the car, that was way too much work, but the kids loved it.
After that we went over to my brother in laws house. Uncle Jeff has a huge dirt hill in his back yard and the girls ran up and down the dirt hill for hours. Some more friends then came over to Jeff’s house, we played some ping pong then I had a decision to make.
The big decision.
a.) I could head home about 7:30 and put the girls in bed hopefully by 8:30 or 9. OR…
b.) I could leave at 9 and hope they fall asleep on the way home.
I went with b.) and it was a big time fail. You’d think after hours at the fair then hours of running up and sliding down a giant dirt hill would tired a kid out. Sheesh! I might not have helped that I gave them each a few red bulls. (WHOA!!! Just kidding I would never do such a thing to a 2 and 4 year old. And anyway they much prefer the monster drinks.)
We got home and I put the kids down to sleep, which was fairly easy this go around and made sure to give child 3 a bottle right before bed so her little tummy was full.
Well this night she at least let me sleep a few hours and she got up at 2am and started the cycle. She just missed mommy.
I’ll tell you what… Watching those 3 kids by myself for 2 days and 2 nights was quite a ride. That is no easy stuff. First off it gave me a better perspective for single parents out there and how strong they have to be… Props to Ya’ll!
Secondly, you know how fast 3 hours goes by when you have to feed a kid that often? Dang.