I don’t know about you but I am looking forward to a couple of weeks with no school runs. Especially no cold and wet school runs.  It feels like I have to add half an hour to my mornings at the moment just to get us out of the door in time for the 5 minute walk to school.  Leaving the house is a military operation.

And it’s the same every morning.  After the cajoling into getting dressed, teeth brushed, changing the baby’s nappy, pleading with my 5 year-old to stop playing with Lego and come eat his breakfast.  I say “hurry up” on loop.  The hour and three-quarters from waking to leaving flashes by in a blur.  But it’s the last 5 minutes that frazzle my nerves and leaves me wondering ‘is it bedtime yet?’!


This is my dance: The Winter Waltz

  • Wrestle baby into his coat
  • Tell the big one to get his shoes on
  • Strap baby into buggy
  • Tell the big one to get his shoes on
  • Place blanket over baby and attempt to do up the ‘buggy muff’ thingy
  • Tell the big one to stop stamping up and down in his shoes and get his coat on
  • Undo ‘buggy muff’ thingy as baby has pulled the blanket out and start the process again
  • Reason with the big one that he must wear his coat with the arms in the arm holes and not as a cape
  • Put baby’s gloves on
  • Explain that Batman’s mum makes him wear a coat too to the protesting big one
  • Put baby’s gloves back on
  • Put my boots on
  • Do up the big one’s coat
  • Put my coat on
  • Stop the big one strangling himself with his scarf
  • Roll eyes and big sigh as the big one proclaims he needs a wee and removes his coat
  • Put baby’s gloves back on
  • Put my scarf and hat on
  • Remind big one to flush the chain and wash his hands
  • “Hurry up”
  • Give up on the big one being independent.  Put his coat, scarf and hat on for him.  Who needs ‘life skills’ anyway?
  • Search for baby’s missing glove
  • Locate missing glove and put back on baby’s hand
  • Put baby’s hat on
  • Discover big one has vanished and begin search
  • Locate big one playing with Lego and begin leaving the house negotiations
  • Maneuver buggy down the hallway
  • One final check that we’re good to go
  • Put baby’s gloves back on
  • Put baby’s hat back on
  • Open the front door to discover in the five minutes you have been faffing around and loosing your sanity it has started pissing it down
  • Internally sob
  • Locate rain cover for the buggy
  • Wrestle rain cover onto the buggy and wonder if you need an actual degree in engineering to be able to fit one of these things
  • Reprimand the big one for telling you to “hurry up”
  • Locate the big one’s wellies and curse yourself for not cleaning them after the last visit to the farm
  • Replace the big one’s shoes with muddy wellies and add ‘cleaning the floor’ to your to-do list
  • Check the baby
  • Give up on the baby’s gloves
  • Ready to go
  • Now where did I put the keys?

I keep telling myself it will be easier in the summer.  But then I remember the sun-cream stand offs!

Anyone else dance to a similar tune in the mornings?


I need superglue for those gloves!


You can read Part two – The Summer Samba here.

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Claire Kirby

27 Comments on The Leaving the House Dance – Part one

  1. Love how you put a hilarious twist to even the most horrible situations. I just do the nursery run at the moment, which is not particularly time-bound, but I realise the school run (and a similar Winter Waltz) is coming soon!

  2. OMG that is so my life.Mine are 5 & 6 and the gloves coat thing is not so much a problem anymore but now they argue about every thing you could possibly think of.Some mornings I could just stand and weep/scream in rotation!Had a hangover this morning…actually thought about not sending them to school because I couldn’t face it!!!

  3. Always with the pissing it down by the time you’re ready haha!! I think I’ve got it easy at the moment with one ten month old…thanks for the heads up! #FridayFrolics

  4. Ahhhh, this has made me all nostalgic…..for the holidays again. I must be mad. The summer is trickier here as we have to go out armed with a mountain of stuff for the beach and suncream up, make sure upvc (is that right?) suits are on, carry all of the buckets and spades, inflatable rings, wind tent etc etc. I am always laden down with stuff and we are normally half-way between beach and home when someone declares that they need a wee and there isn’t a loo in sight. Fun times! #FridayFrolics

  5. This takes me back – funny and poignant! It was always interesting with the twins and sometimes I would just give up after one too many escapees and stay indoors! #fridayfrolics

  6. Exactly! I hate winter and school runs! I cannot wait for the day we will leave in peace and quiet out the door. I could tell you my school run dance, but it would take too long;)). But it was similar to yours when my kids were younger. #FridayFrolics

  7. Our nursery run isn’t quite as bad because I only have one child to manage, but it’s still a constant struggle to get the shoes and coat on every morning, plus make sure she has all the dummies/snacks/toys she wants. No hats or gloves in this house – she just refuses them no matter how cold it is. #FridayFrolics

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  9. Yep! But it does get easier, honest!!

    Thanks for linking up to #Thelist and supporting us through 2014!! Happy New Year xx

  10. I’m with you on this one. Perhaps this is how Beyoncé gets inspiration for her choreography. Stick a drumbeat to your moves and a melody and you’ll be a world class dancer/ singer like her!
    I’d choose hats and gloves over suncream any day myself. It’s all too much! x

  11. Babies and toddlers do seem to be immune to frostbite. I think it must have to do with them not having had time to trash their circulation. Thus life is too short for hats/gloves.
    But, yes, cold weather school runs are the pits.

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