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My husband is out of town for work, leaving me to get three kids out the door to school (well, two kids to school, but I have to bring the baby as well, since it’s not like I can just leave him home alone), to soccer, to dance class, to any place I need/want to go outside of work hours between now and when he returns.

I was realizing as we made our way to my mom’s house – just four blocks from my house – today how much longer everything takes with kids.

Here’s a very unscientific metric I’ve developed:

Going somewhere by yourself: X minutes
Going somewhere with 1 kid: 2X minutes
Going somewhere with 2 kids: 10X minutes
Going somewhere with 3 kids: 974X minutes

Here is what I mean (and this is an abridged version of the first block):

Decision made to go. Change baby’s diaper. Tell 3-year-old to put on her shoes. Tell 7-year-old to change out of soccer uniform. Tell 3-year-old to put on her shoes. Pull baby out of dog’s water bowl. Change baby’s clothes. Ask if anyone has to go to the bathroom. Tell 7-year-old she can only bring 2 stuffed animals. Tell 3-year-old to put on her shoes. Confirm that no one has to go to the bathroom. Reiterate to 7-year-old how many 2 is. Tell 7-year-old she will be responsible for carrying all items she brings. Hand 3-year-old shoes. Get everyone out the door. Shut the door. Lock the door. Unlock the door so 3-year-old can go to the bathroom. Lock door. Put baby in the stroller. Run back up the stairs so that 3-year-old can bring stuff animal, just like 7-year-old. Walk out the gate and four steps down the street. 3-year-old stops and says she’s tired and wants to go in stroller. Explain baby is already in stroller. 3-year-old explains she has to practice jumping from rock to rock. 7-year-old puts all of her items in/on the stroller. Tell 3-year-old to catch up. 3-year-old walks slower. 7-year-old says it’s really hot. Asks for water. Stop to drink water. Ask if anyone else wants water. Put water away. 3-year-old asks for water. 3-year-old says her feet hurt. Look down and see 3-year-old has shoes on wrong feet. Ask 3-year-old if she wants to switch shoes. Told no. Walk 5 steps. 3-year-old sits down on the curb to switch shoes to correct feet. Look ahead and realize there are still three more blocks to go…

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