Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Wow! (03/11/10)
TITLE: All in a Mom's Day
By Francy Judge
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Then I realized it was Monday, and kids need to be woken. Let me clarify—three teenagers had to be woken. Pulling a caterpillar from its cozy cocoon would be easier than unwrapping Elijah from his quilt before he’s ready to rise. After fifteen minutes of nudging produced only nasty groans, my arms wilted to quarter past pleasant.
Showered, dressed, teeth brushed, hair gelled, and bags packed . . . they almost had their act together before the bussed rolled by.
“See ya,” Andrew called out as he left first. He was excited about baseball tryouts and had his sports bag ready. Meanwhile, Stephen was still searching for something, and Elijah was hunting for sneakers. And 60 seconds ‘til the bus takes off without them.
“Where did you put them?” I demanded. “Didn’t I tell you to leave sneakers at the—oh no!” One of Andrew’s cleats lay near the closet. “He must have taken one old cleat and one new.”
Stephen, with 10 seconds to spare, was checking his backpack when I shoved Andrew’s cleat inside. “Give this to Andrew, okay? Now, run. You’ve got 5 seconds.” He ran.
Two down, one to go. Elijah skated around the living room in yesterday’s socks, still checking corners for the mysterious disappearing sneaks. Did they skip away?
“Oh, I know,” I announced as a revelation hit me. The sneakers did skip away in the hands of my five-year-old daughter who decided to be helpful last night and clean the house. “Check the closet.” I couldn’t get mad at Jordan for helping; even though Elijah missed the bus because of her helpfulness.
Sure enough, Elijah found his sneakers tossed in the closet of no-return. Much sports equipment has hibernated there for a season, never to be seen again. When he pulled out his sneakers, the laces smiled, happy to be rescued.
Elijah held them up victorious. “Can you drive me?”
“Your dad will have to; my car’s at the shop.”
As he and my husband left, I turned my mind to my next task—getting ready to homeschool Jordan and her brother, Aaron. I shut the closet and Andrew’s other cleat tumbled out on my toe.
Oh great. What else did Jordan throw in there?
Da d’ d’ d’ du du du du . . . who changed the ringer?
Caller ID read L B High School. “Hello?”
“Uh Mom, it’s Stephen. You know how today’s baseball tryouts . . . well, I forgot my baseball glove and hat. I need them before 2 o’clock.”
Okay. I had no car and the boiler man was coming that day and I needed to teach the little guys, but I’d have felt terrible if Stephen couldn’t tryout. Why did he have to inherit the “forgetful” gene?
“Alright, somehow I’ll get them to the main office.” I looked in my wallet. Two dollars won’t get a taxi. I looked out—overcast sky threatening to downpour. I looked at my watch—feeling about twenty-five past calm.
Da d’ d’ d’ du du du du. . . gotta change that. ID reads Empire Auto. “Hello?”
“Hi. It’s gonna run you about 800 dollars and we can have it ready by tomorrow.”
“Go ahead.” I need a car, just won’t be able to pay the oil bill this month. My arms had fallen down to crazy o’clock.
Grandma came down to babysit, and I hopped on my bike for the thirty minute trip against ocean winds to the high school. By the time I got there my hair was dancing in all directions and I was a sweaty mess. But I did it. Mom saved the day.
When I finally got home, Jordan greeted me with a drawing. She wrote: I luvu yer te best WOW n te werld.
Aaron laughed. “She called you WOW.”
I hugged her tightly. “You spelled it right, honey. Today I’m WOW Mom.” My arms were raised again to Thank you Lord o’clock. I made it through another day.
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