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24 Hours in the Life: Part Who Really Cares Anymore

24 Hours in the Life: Part Who Really Cares Anymore

August 7, 2007

6:00 pm 11 yr old asks if he can grill dinner tonight. Oh twist my arm. He decides to grill sausages. He gets them all ready, goes outside and begins grilling them when the grill stops working. I can’t believe that it has run out of propane we just filled it not long ago. We try to start it with a match…nothing.

So I end up having to put the half cooked sausages in the broiler, even thought it is about 190 degrees in the house.

To make up for this torture I feed the kids their dinner on paper plates so there will be minimal clean up.

6:38 Dinner is over. Clean up. My 2 and 4 yr olds are doing a “project” which involves cutting up my mail and gluing it to the kitchen table. I oooh and aaaah enthusiastically over their creations. I start the kids on their shower line up. No one ever wants to go first. One of those things I just do NOT understand. We negotiate the line up for so long and so fiercely that I feel completely confident that should the Koreas call me up I could get them to skip and play hand clapping games together in a matter of minutes.

7:07 6 yr old comes down from his shower. Soaking wet, hair still soapy, legs still caked in dirt, yet wearing pajamas. Questions of how can you still be dirty after being in the shower are met with an incredulous eyeroll.


7:15 Get kids to do their chores. Chat with various kids about various things, none of it particularly note worthy, just the end of the day type stuff. Do some more laundry.

7:45 Bring the 2 and 4 yr old upstairs and give them a bath.

8:30 Kids are all bathed. They sit down and watch a Netflix movie. I finish up my BlogHer post.

9:00 Bring 4 yr old daughter up to bed. Tuck her in. Turn on her fans (the princess must have two). Make sure there are no peas under her mattress. Read a quick bedtime story. Comfort the tears when I say I can’t read a second one. Bring the book downstairs and put it on the couch to read to her in the morning. A compromise we seem to make almost every night.

IMing with Mir and talking about our garbage output. My family doesn’t make that much garbage. Not sure why. Wow, my life is exciting.

Tell everyone it is time for bed.


9:45 Repeat my nightly refrain. “Closing time! You don’t have to go to sleep but you can’t stay here.” Tonight I added the extra special “Make your bedroom your new beginning. GOOD NIGHT!”

9:59 pm One benefit of having a child with ADHD who is an insomniac is that he will do chores at night rather than go to bed. He is vacuuming right now as I type this.

11 yr old tries to clean up the paper mess on the table, when Miles runs over yelling “I not done my scissor game!”

10:15 The 24 hours ends very much like it began. Miles laying on the floor insisting he is not tired. My 11 yr old walking around looking for “something” he can neither describe or name.

Posted by Chris @ 11:39 pm  

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  1. diatribal says:

    Wow. I’m tired just reading all of this. I’m not being cliche with this, but where do you find all of your energy? Do you have anything special that you do to get you through the day?

  2. Deputy's Wife says:

    Is it alright if I borrow your nightly comment to the kids? Love it!

  3. Scout's Honor says:

    She must have the same talent my mom did. After six kids and 26 fosters in 6 years, she had this brillant “I can fall asleep at the drop of a pin” habit and wake up 4:59 seconds later; this was 1 second before the timer she asked one of the kids to set. To this day, she naps for five minutes at a time. As for me, with only three kids, I didn’t get the napping talent. Boohoo. No energy. Kust lots of caffeine.

  4. Mary O says:

    Loved hearing about your day! What a great bunch of posts.

  5. Shannon @ Rocks in my Dryer says:

    I’m sure this was a lovely post, but I’m rather distracted admiring your wall color.

    And the cute kids, of course.

  6. katieo says:

    You have completely made my day with these posts.

    That’s all,
    thanks for sharing.

  7. BetteJo says:

    Energy, you have way more than I ever will!

    I’m tired too, having read this all day. And I didn’t tell one single kid to do one single thing.
    Come to think of it, where are they?

  8. Lynda Hitt says:

    See…your life isn’t so awful different than the rest of us. It’s just multiplied by 2 or 3 or 7. I swear that sometimes my 1 left at home can feel like 7 and then add my two nieces to the mix when we go there and I feel like I live at your house. I admire that you can do all that you do and have all of those kids, really, I do.

  9. carrien says:

    Chores before bed. Does that work only with the big ones. I can never seem to get mine motivated just before bed ‘casue their tired, but that’s when I notice that its not doen yet. Okay, I have just confessed that you are way more organized than me, but that shouldn’t surprise you.

  10. bluepaintred says:

    why does the four year old have a bed time and miles doesnt?

  11. Chris says:


    Miles take a nap and she doesn’t. My 6 and 8 yr olds usually go to bed earlier than they have the past two nights. But it is summer and we had tv shows to watch ;-)

  12. Chandra says:

    Loved reading about the day! Thanks for all the post :)
    I better call it a night!

  13. Debbie says:

    Your full house semms busy, but fun. Great posts, now get some rest!

  14. Jessica says:

    WOW! I admire the ability to stay up that long with that many kids LOL. Makes me feel bad when I complain about only having one ;)

  15. Sara says:

    Your Koreas comment had me howling. Nice one.

  16. Heather says:

    I am glad to see I am not the only mom out there that lets her 2 year old stay up to 10pm. Thanks for taking some of the pressure off me!

  17. Carola says:

    Amazing how productive your day…while me, instead, I just spent half an hour reading blogs (probably more, but I won’t admit to it)

  18. Wicked Stepmom says:

    You inspire me, as usual!

  19. Woman with Kids says:

    Ohhh! I have an ADHD kid who’s an insomniac! Can’t wait to have him vacuum, lord knows someone should vacuum once in a while. And it doesn’t seem to be me…

    Also? If you get answers on how one can shower, be covered in soap and yet still filthy? Please pass them on. Boy 2 manages that same feat.

  20. Esme says:

    That was a really fun read. And it was great to see how your household functions! (Gawd, I wish I could get my 13- and 11-year-olds to grill dinner. I can barely get them to set the table without their eyes rolling so far back that they touch their own brains.)

  21. Beth says:

    I loved this whole thing. Also, I would like to borrow the ADHD insomniac. Just at night, though.

  22. Ashley says:

    I really enjoyed reading this. Sounds a lot like my life. I only have 6 kids. My husband doesn’t quite understand that sitting outside watching the kids play is a chore. It is, and it’s one I dread. Oh, and I wish my ADHD kid loved doing chores?!!?? Maybe the up and coming ADHD kid will! Ha!

  23. Jackie @ Family Daze says:

    I absolutely LOVED these posts! Please do another series soon!

  24. Jeanne says:

    So, you close your whole down stairs at night? I close the kitchen. “Better get what cha want now, it’s closing….”

  25. Christine says:

    I borrowed my ADHD niece for the day so she could play with my two at the indoor playground while I chatted with my neighbor (it’s raining today).

    Now she and my 4-year-old are playing board games while I ‘pay bills’ on the computer and the 2-year-old naps. All this freedom for the cost of admission to the play center and two slices of pizza at Papa Ginos!

  26. Melissa says:

    Enjoyable post(s), especially since Miles and my boy Liam are the same age…crazy kids. I must ask where you found the counter dining room chair for your youngest. I need it….now!

  27. OMSH says:

    I yell “Kitchen is closed” every evening after the last bowl of leftovers is put in the refrigerator and the last plate goes in the dishwasher.

    It never really is closed though. I’ve heard children rummaging long after I’ve gone to bed and they are supposed to. Or maybe I’ve just slept in and they are really getting breakfast? Who knows. Roll over and hit snooze.

  28. Susan says:

    I am TOTALLY going to get Henry to do some chores at bedtime. Because that seems like more fun than saying “GO BACK TO BED” four million times.

    Also, I have that Closing Time song stuck in my head now. Thank you. I think.

  29. kris says:

    And what exactly were you doing up at 2:30 am watching cat videos? ;)


  30. Chris says:


    Not just any cat videos… three legged cat videos.

  31. Carrie says:

    I don’t know how you do it . . . ! :)

  32. Rae says:

    I can’t even believe how much I enjoyed reading about 24 hours in your life. It’s not even like it’s THAT much different from mine, except for the four extra kids, but I love reading about somebody else’s day. Thanks!

  33. Jackie says:

    How funny - I yell “kitchen closed”, too!! Chris, my ADHD daughter is an insomniac, except she usually cries, moans, paces, etc. at bedtime. I ask her how can you FALL asleep when you are walking around all the time? I feel really bad for her at bedtime, because she truly dreads it.

  34. Suzanne says:

    Thank you so much for doing a post like this! I’ve really enjoyed reading your whole 24 hour “series”. I’d love to do one like this, if for no other reason than when my husband comes home and gives me the whole “What have you been doing all day?”, I can direct him to my blog… before hitting him in the jaw.

  35. Beth says:

    I commented yesterday, but find I keep thinking about your 24 hours.
    I’m sure you were born to do many things, but two of them were to be a mother and a writer. I love how your writing shows how much you love and enjoy your kids (even when they’re being gently mocked). I will fully admit that I am one of the many whose jaw dropped open at the thought of seven kids (but I also have trouble managing my ADHD dog), but it’s a wonderful thing to have kids who are all loved and cared for in a household where they’re allowed to be themselves.
    Thanks for sharing yourself and your family with the Internet.

  36. Tricia says:

    All on 5 hours sleep??? Please tell me this is not a regular habit of yours! Also, not sure if your ADHD boy is medicated… one of ours needed a significant amount of meds in order for him to function all right during the day and then couldn’t sleep. Dr. suggested benadryl at night, but we didn’t want to add more medication, so we opted for a different ADHD med. The non-stimulant. He can now ‘turn off’ and get to sleep.

  37. reen says:

    I’m fairly new to your blog and just love it. Reading about your day was a lot of fun…and exhausting. Wow. And how do you LOOK like that with 7 children? I haven’t even combed my hair in 4 years, and that’s just with two.

    I am going to try a new tactic at bedtime: “Everything outside this bedroom door? CLOSED.”

  38. Hilda says:

    What time do you think a 11 year old boy and a 9 year old boy should go to bed.