Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Day in the Life

In the absence of anything worthwhile to write about I thought I’d give you a glimpse into the ultra-glamorous daily life of a writer. My day goes a little something like this…

“Mom! Mom, wake up, the toilet’s overflowing!”

“Wha-What?” I leap from the bed and step down on something wet and warm that squishes up between my toes.

“And the cat threw up somewhere.”

“Yeah. Found it.”

I get my incredibly brilliant, well-behaved, adorable children fed, dressed, and in the car… with only minor injuries and emotional trauma (they can work it out later in therapy). As we get into the car the content of my son’s backpack spills to the floor. Trying to stuff the mass of papers back into the bag something catches my eye.

“Why does this note say you are responsible to bring snack… TODAY?”

“Oh yeah! I get to bring snack today.”

“We have to be at school in 15 minutes!”

“I want to bring snack mix, fruit salad, and gummy worms.”

“Aaaarrrrgh!” I rush back into the house and fling open the fridge: milk, eggs, cottage cheese, and a container of something that has been there long enough to growl if I come near. I open the cupboards: pasta, soup, tomato sauce, box of granola bars – YES! I grab the granola bars and race back to the car.

“Aawww, Mom. I hate granola bars!”

After I drop off my angelic children to school I drive off to my day job… working for the government. Here’s a typical conversation…

“Hi, I’m calling to inquire why my application forms were sent back,” I say to the helpful person on the line.

“I’m sorry but they were on the wrong version of the form.”

“Oh, I thought I had used the most recent version, when was it updated.”


“Um, but I sent you the packet two weeks ago.”

“It still needs to be on the correct form. Also you need to submit your privacy paperwork.”

“I thought I had,”

“You submitted the Privacy Review Form, but we also need the Data Security Review Plan. You can find it on our website.”

I scan a list of forms as long as the Mississippi. “I can’t find anything by that title.”
“It’s under ‘IRQ Appendix K.’”

“Riiiiiight. Of course.”

I make it through the day and come home to the kids. Now it is time for their activities: ballet, swimming, piano, gymnastics, and my personal spring favorite – standing in the pouring rain watching T-ball practice. Oh yeah, life is good.

Then it’s time for baths, PJs, stories, and bed. The kids NEVER want to go to bed. I reason with them that soon enough they will be working long hours and raising kids of their own and will long for more sleep. This argument has yet to be effective. So I put them to bed. And back into bed. And back into bed. And back… you get the idea.

After they are finally asleep and I finish my chores it’s time to write! If I’m smart I go straight to writing. True to form, I usually check my e-mails first. An hour or so later I glance at the clock and realize it’s close to bed time and I have written nothing except a witty e-mail. Panic building, I open my manuscript and stare at the hypnotic white screen before me. Then it hits me – inspiration! I write and write until I get to “asdlkfjeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” (my head hitting the keyboard). Somehow I drag myself to bed only to be woken again by the next day’s disaster.

Oh yeah, nothing but glamour! So what is a typical day for you like??

Amanda Forester


  1. Well, mine are a little better than that, now that my kids are 21 & 24, but there was a time...

  2. That sleep argument is a good one. Too bad youth is wasted on the young

  3. My life is a storybook of disasters. When I was without electricity for 18 hours on Saturday, I did all the reasonable things, looked for my lanterns and flashlights, which I couldn't find in the dark, ran around with my laptop open to shed some light. Found a candle, no wick. Watched as the water leaked out of my freezer from the melting ice. Couldn't get my garage door up (even with the manual override), so I could go to the corner service station for ice, if they had any, and planned to go to work (horrors, just so I could get some work done on my laptop in our break room). Then tried to start my son's car, dead battery. Cell phone battery dead. Laptop battery died after 1 1/2 hours. Hmmm. It's not a typical day, mind you. But it is a typical disastrous day for me. LOL But you know what? I need them for using in my stories, every once in a while. :) Although I wouldn't wish them for anything!

  4. Yep. That's pretty much my life!

  5. I think you reminded me why grandchildren are so wonderful. Take them to the park, zoo, or out to lunch and then back home!

  6. You guys are soooo funny!! I'm lucky my baby is 21 and out of the house. I still have his cat, so I know the...walking across the floor in the dark and squish. Yuck! and Son of a! And that's a good day/night. The fun never stops!

    Amanda, your kids sound like normal, pain in the rear, wonderful, lovable, want to sell them at the next yard sell, children. But don't panic, wait till they hit puberty.

  7. I don't know how you manage to do it all with kids stil in the house! My days are easier than yours - much easier! Thanks - I needed to be reminded!

  8. Ah the GLAMOR!

    Amanda, I believe your typical day is even more glamorous than mine. But my LC (Lovely Child) only shows up on weekends to eat everything in the fridge and do his laundry... oh yeah and hog my computer.

    Oh, and I have TWO dogs so twice the barf potential. :-P

    Hang in there!
    sitting here in flannel PJs and bathrobe right now

  9. Cheryl - wahoo - grown and launched - you must have doen something right! I look forward to that day... well maybe. I need to tackle kindergarten first.

    Judi - I am always more convinced by my arguments than my kids are. I generally start with a cogent argument and end with bribes... I mean 'positive reinforcement'.

  10. Terry - the thought of you running around using your laptop screen as a light source made me laugh out loud! Clever too! I would never have thought of it. Anytime our lights go out I find the flashlight batteries are dead - used up by my ever so wonderful children! I'm glad you survived the day - where would we be without electricity!

  11. Shana - glad to know I'm not the only one in this leaky boat!

    Amelia - wish I could have started with grandkids, kinda ease my way into the parenting pool.

    Jessica - puberty... the word strikes utter fear in my heart

  12. Joanne - can I come over to your house to play?

    Aunty Cindy - my son is only in signle digits and still can manage to go through an amazing amount of food. I fear we'll be taking out a second mortgage for the teen years!

  13. Then they leave home and go to college and phone in the middle of the day "Hey Mom. You busy? My computer's caught a virus and I've got hand my homework in."

  14. Were you writing about me? Wait...have to get the kids in the shower. Talk to you later :)

  15. I thought about telling you about my glamorous existence here on the French Riviera, and maybe I will someday. But first I must take a dip in my Olympic sized pool, before breakfasting with three Hollywood stars who would prefer I not mention their names. After that I have to put in a full day at the spa, and tonight I've promised to look in on a designer friend's collection.

    I don't have time to do the story of my day justice.

  16. Sheila - isn't it nice to know they always will need their mom (or at least mom's computer)!

    Victoria - not sure how it happens but I somehow when I give the kids a bath more water ends up on me than them. A scientific wonder.

    MM - can I be you tomorrow?? Just wondering. Call me...

  17. Oh, Amanda, I feel for you, I truly do. The good thing is...they grow up.

  18. Sorry I'm chiming in late. We had the Special Olympics yesterday, which meant I had to run and get Twinkle Toes Tuesday night from her part-time home, brought her back and ate a very late dinner. We were up at the crack to feed the dogs, the cat threw up on the sofa, yuck, I got my Very Special Olympian to school, called the other kids' schools to say they're not coming in, fixed lunch for all of us and then spent the day standing in a windy 45 degree field. When my son let his "girlfriend" swipe his sweatshirt, it was ine he wore since I still had a sweater and a jacket and he was in nothing but a t-shirt. We watched my VSO win two silver and a bronze medal, packed up the family and went home to cook dinner. The glamour never stops...

  19. Kathryne - half the time I'm wishing they would grow up quicker and the other half I'm ponding how to keep them my babies forever. I blame my split personality on motherhood (though some may say it is a pre-existing condition).

    Robin - sounds like you have some pretty cool kids! Though I love how your son's chivalry lead to the loss of YOUR sweatshirt. Gotta love it!