When Mr Cartside came home exceptionally late tonight, I ran off the things I'd achieved today. And somehow it occured to me that I'm not quite sure when exactly the goal posts of what constitutes a successful and satisfying day had changed.
Today, while entertaining 4 and 1 year old without major tantrums and shouting (an achievement in itself), I started off by matter of factly refusing to dress 4 year old and lo and behold, she did it all by herself in no time. At this point I knew I was in for a winner. When 1 year old even ate her breakfast, there was no stopping me. I proceeded to doing two loads of washing, hung them up and tidied away dry laundry, emptied, filled and ran a load of dishes in the dishwasher, took down Christmas tree and all festive decorations, baked a bread, pumped up tyres, walked without a buggy (but with balance bike and trike) for 45 mins to meet someone for lunch (I usually take the car), had lunch and an adult conversation, walked back (if with 1 year old asleep in the most uncomfortable position on the trike), cooked a healthy dinner, bathed both on my own, got both into bed on my own. I read about 5 books to them during the day too. The TV wasn't on, and what's better even, 4 year old didn't pester me for a DVD. I didn't shout, there was only minor incidents of "toddler trapped in trike" and "I should have taken buggy after all but what the heck, she loved her first ride in the trike" and they both settled beautifully at the end of the day.
High 5s all around.
Nothing exciting, in fact, it's all extremely boring, and still, I feel awfully smug, because I know how exceptional a day this was to manage all this.
I guess it's called being a parent, for better or worse.