Etienne and I take turns to read to the kids at night and make lunches for the next day. It generally takes longer to prepare lunches, but the chance of injury is considerably less.
This is how it goes:
At the appointed time we have a race down the passage to the bathroom where we fight to brush teeth and end up wiping toothpaste off every available surface. After shouting because Daniel scraped his dropped toothpaste off the floor with his toothbrush. Or because someone tried shoving their toothbrush up the spout of the tap.
But I digress.
We then arrive in the girls’ room where we put their pillows on the floor. (At this point I need to add that this whole lying-on-the-floor-reading-thing was not my idea. I blame Etienne for this incredible lack of judgement.) We then have an extended negotiation about who wants what book. Followed by another extended negotiation about who gets to go first.
And this is where it gets dangerous. Reading to the child in question entails the child being read to lying on Mommy/Daddy’s back. Which is more of a bouncing repertoire of knees to the parental kidneys on a good night. This is after hopping up and down on your back.
The children that are not directly being read to ask where things are in the book. They specifically ask about things that are in plain sight on the pages of books that they have read approximately 400 000 times before.
The children that are not directly being read to are also always keen to brush hair. Specifically the hair of the parent that is trying to read whilst being used for a trampoline whilst fielding questions on the picture content of the book.
You know what’s the saddest about all of this? I absolutely love the chaos of reading time. I love being in such close proximity to my kids so I can rub my cheek against that of the child lying on my back or tickle the back of one of them lying next to me. I love that they love books and don’t fight about being read to. I love that they love being with us. And I love their clean just-bathed-ready-for-bed smell.
So, much as I whine about chaos I love it. Do I really want angelic children that sit quietly whilst being read to? Hell. No.
Just a quick pic share for posterity even though they were posted on twitter and FB: