Back To School And The Joy Of Shopping Alone

It’s back to school time for my four kids. I did a happy dance on the first day of kindergarten for my triplets.  The joy, the freedom, the peace between my two ears – there are no words to describe this glorious feeling.

My haphazard, scattered, hit-and-miss, summer blogging schedule has officially come to an end.  With four kids at school all excuses for not writing are finished, kaput, dead, no more, and will not be tolerated in this neck of the woods!!!!



“Summer blogging, had me a blast,

Summer blogging, didn’t happen so fast

Four kids home – one crazy me,

Fun and games – all there could be.

Summer days have drifted away,

So back to those blog writing nights.

(Uh Well-a, well-a, well-a, uh!)……


The one thing I learned this summer is that 10-weeks of summer holidays, plus four young kids, sun, pools, camps, parties, vacations, games, and zoo trips results in one frazzled, crazy Mom.

It’s going to take a little time to get back to the real world.  On the second day of school, my alarm clock failed to go off.  Thankfully my little early bird woke me up at 7 am before we really had to shift into third gear to get our school show on the road.

Four kids washed, dressed, fed and watered, lunches made, back-packs filled, car-loaded, kids transported and deposited outside the school door, all happened in a 30-minute flurry of activity.  I was so pleased with myself once I got home to savor the peace of my quiet home.  I daydreamed as I filled the kettle, then turned around to see Luke Skywalker, light saber in hand, staring at me from the counter top.  I had forgotten to pack one lunch box.

Never Forget Luke Skywalker

So off I set again for school, where I chatted with the assistant principal.  I asked her how my grandmother managed to get 13 children ready for school, or wherever it was they had to go each day.  The key, she reminded me, is that my granny never had three children all at once.  The older kids always took care of the younger ones.  I felt a little better then, accepting I am not a complete failure altogether.

I consoled myself with a trip to the supermarket.  Doesn’t sound like much fun, but after enduring 10-weeks of grocery shopping with four kids in tow, I savored every moment.  When I pulled my cart into the check-out line, I was astonished at how empty it looked without those extra boxes of unwanted, sugary, breakfast cereals, no contraband hot wheels cars or Lego figurines, and no unnecessary cookies or juice boxes.

Each time we took a trip to the store this summer, I said a little prayer before I unleashed the hounds.


“Please God, help them be good this time.”


But God’s idea of good for a child in a grocery store, seems to be a little different to mine.

Try as I might to be that calm, shopping-list toting, ever-so-organized mother of four perfectly behaved, cart-escorting children, I never succeeded.  Before we wound our way through two aisles, the boys were inevitably running at break-neck speed, crashing into architecturally beautiful, but precariously balanced displays, or scaring little old ladies to death with their pleading entreaties for the best thing ever since sliced bread.  Before long I transformed into the order-issuing, barking mother I tried so hard not to be.

And so, now that my four kiddos are at school, and I am afforded the incredible pleasure of shopping ALONE, I won’t mind it one little bit if I am mowed down by a toddler begging his mother for one more box of cookies.  I’ll smile and say to myself:


“Those were the days!”



Slán agus beannacht leat!

(Goodbye and blessings)

Irish American Mom