Get up, get the girls up, get out of the house and into the bus and over to IKEA to celebrate the last day of the school holidays.
Our carer arrived at 7.30, halfway between our holiday time of 8 and our termtime 7am visit. Easing us back into our routine gently. Just as well, since tomorrow morning I need to be out of the house with Little Fish before 8.
So, both girls up and dressed and ready for the day by 8.30. We pootle around the house for a while, waiting until the traffic has died down a little.
9AM and I remember a few admin phonecalls I need to make. I know which hospital LF and I are supposed to be at tomorrow morning, but we could be seeing any one of half a dozen specialists at that hospital, so let's find out (and double check the appointment hasn't been cancelled). Quick phonecall to the hospice to try and book Mog in in March. My parents want Little Fish for a couple of nights, so if this comes together then I might actually have a 48 hour pass.
Bob comes back and I approve his plans for the day, LF creates a mini vortex of chaos in the kitchen and I clean the worst of it up, load us into the van and am amazed to discover it is already 10.30. Not entirely sure how that happened. No matter; we just need petrol and then we'll be on our way.
I pull in at the petrol station, wince at the price, but am pleasurably suprised by the lack of queue. Being later than planned has paid off. As I enter the shop I realise I haven't had any breakfast and so grab a ham and cheese sandwich and queue at the food and fuel stop. The manager and the assistant appear to be in the middle of a row. Apparently the woman who left the shop as I walked in has walked out without paying. Except that she has paid. Only, she's paid my fuel bill, not her own. This naturally takes a while to sort out, and involves four assistants chasing the woman to catch her before she drives off. Eventually it is fixed, and I hand my sandwich over to be heated up. The man before me at the till has also been waiting for a hot sandwich, his and mine are put into the oven together. And slowly slowly heated. Argument between the manager and assistant continues. Ping and the oven is ready, splat and my sandwich is spread over the floor. Another one is grabbed, the man who has waiting approximately 15 minutes for his wishes me luck, and I wait for the new sandwich to be heated.
20 minutes after I walk into the shop I am finally able to leave, and we are on our way.
An uneventful shop (sorry if that's a disappointment!); we get everything on our list (large plastic tubs for the garage, some underbed storage and a new lampshade for Mog), and a few things not on the list (chocolate, magnetic tubs and a hammer).
Home James, also uneventful. I unload the van, plug Little Fish into her somewhat late tube feed, and build the boxes and drawers for Mog's bed (all cardboard, no hard labour involved). Fired with enthusiasm, I turn out Mog's wardrobe. All baby stuff is thrown into one of the large bins, anything outgrown which will fit Little Fish is now not exactly folded neatly in her drawers but at least tossed into the corner of her bedroom, anything not belonging to Mog has been
The new storage is filled neatly with 5 ml and 10 ml syringes, extension kits and bungs for her gastrostomy, gauze wipes, foam mouth swabs, syringe tips, all stacked beautifully in their own little boxes, so organised and so tidy, so clean, so unlike the rest of the house. In the tidying process detritus has naturally found its way through to the sitting room, the kitchen, my room, the bathroom; in fact the whole house is now coated in a layer of empty packaging, old cardboard boxes, out of date syringes, and the new lampshade, which inevitably turns out to be not simply a shade but a whole new light fitting, so will need some expert assembly by someone other than myself.
Never mind; it is now 6pm and the girls have been fed and watered. School tomorrow for Mog so an early night is in order; I can get them both settled in bed then sit down and relax for the evening. I'll ignore the chaos; it will still be there in the morning for me to deal with. Until my brain starts kicking into gear. It takes a while. First day of term tomorrow, hmmm that means tomorrow must be Tuesday. Now if tomorrow is Tuesday, that means today is Monday. Oh, that means Guides tonight. Ah well, the babysitter won't mind a bit of a muddle; she's used to it and if I time things right she'll even sort some laundry for me. Excellent. Except hmmm this is the first Guide meeting of term. That means no babysitter, that means the senior Guides and all the leaders are coming here for the evening to plan the term. Argh, that means that the girls will be arriving in a little over an hour; I need to get my girls to bed and tidy the house and somehow reduce the chaos to manageable proportions.
Into the black hole that is my bedroom go even more piles of stuff. Under the settee go more stacks of toys. Dirty dishes loaded into the washer in double quick time, girls filed into bed after the shortest showers ever, and as the doorbell rings, the last of the paper makes it to the green bin.
One Guide meeting happens, we plan our programme, and now I can sit and enjoy the blitzed house. Except that it doesn't quite look as good as it did three hours ago...somehow the instant tidyness has been undone over the course of the meeting; chocolate wrappers and felt tip pens are scattered across the floor, kitchen chairs and other bits and pieces are filling the sitting room. Oh, and I can't reach my bed from the door of my bedroom.
Best go and sort something.