So the day-to-day household management around here usually happens without too much fuss. Cheques get paid on time, appointments are made, reply slips get returned to school, last minute requests for costumes or cakes are whipped up with minimal grumbling and important dates are written in the calendar.
But this week something has gone horribly wrong with my organisational powers and I feel like I’m walking on shifting sands of confusion and muddle. It is the last week of term. I am tired and preoccupied with work, the organised child is almost delirious with exhaustion and too much homework while the dreamy child is shattered and even madder than usual. We’ve hardly seen G as he works stupid pre-holiday hours trying to get everything done before we go away.
So far this week:
- The dreamy child lost her dinner money envelope and the organised one left his in the bottom of his school bag and forgot to hand it in.
- The organised child then left his lunchbox at school – or possibly at the childminder’s. The dreamy child is having school dinners all week but by the evening can’t remember what she ate for lunch. Did she eat anything?
- The organised child thinks he might need a tennis ‘bat’ for when he goes to summer camp next month. I think we’ve got one somewhere in the house but I can’t remember where. I forget to look for it but the organised child forgets to remind me, so that’s kind of okay.
- The organised child starts making arrangements for where he is going to meet the childminder at the end of the school day next term. Except that he does not know where his next classroom will be, nor where O’s next classroom will be. Both children, the childminder and I are all very confused.
- I pack my lunch for work and then leave it at home. Two days in a row.
- The organised child looses his asthma pump and comes home with someone else’s. I forget to call the Doctors to get a repeat prescription written up for him.
- Both children have received some Sainsbury’s school vouchers through the post from Granny. The dreamy child thinks she has lost them somewhere in her bedroom. But the organised child then tells her that she never even had them; he has in fact lost them in his bedroom. They argue about who has lost them and then find them in a box of Lego.
- The dreamy child is told she must be a “buddy” for a new girl in her class. This means she has to wear a smiley face pin badge on her uniform at all times, for a whole week. So far she has lost the badge twice - but has at least also found it twice.
- The organised child forgets to hand the vouchers in to the school office but finds the dreamy child’s lunch money in the car.
- I take the Sainsbury's vouchers into the school office and then forget to order school sweatshirts, a size bigger, while I am there. I have two days left to remember to do this or the children will go back to school in September wearing this year’s stained, faded and too-small ones.
- This morning, as she was walking in to her classroom the dreamy child shouted over her shoulder “Oh yes, I forgot to tell you, I need to bring fairy cakes and a packet of straws into school tomorrow!”
This suddenly seems like a monumental task, but I get home from work this evening and make them anyway. Fortunately I am sufficiently organised to have just enough baking marg left in the fridge.