It’s summer, moms.
Not the beginning of summer when all the moms are floating on clouds made of sand from the beaches of 30A or chomping at the bit to get the best seat at the pool for a touch of golden skin.
Not those first couple of weeks when we are beyond thrilled to hear our gifts’ precious footsteps at seven on the dot because we’ve been up for over an hour making pancakes from scratch with bacon and maple syrup that we lovingly squeezed out of a tree in our backyard.
Not those days.
This is midsummer.
Or as I like to call it: Survival Mode.
This is when that beach vacay is just a memory now (if you were even lucky enough to have one in the first place).
Or when those footsteps in the morning cause you to smother your face with a pillow and pray your kid is just going to the bathroom and not coming to harass you about planning their entire social calendar for the day.
It’s when their breakfast is not a homemade pancake, but one of the Nutty Butty Bars they found in the pantry. (It’s got peanut butter, right? That’s breakfasty.)
You’ve gone to the pool one too many times, TBH, and it’s so hot out there that the pool feels more like tepid bath water.
And speaking of bath, you haven’t showered in who knows how long because if you turn your back for half a second, someone’s going down the stairs on a skateboard.
And about that skateboard, two of your four kids are fighting over it and the little one has suddenly decided at six years old to take up biting her siblings.
Yeah. It’s that time of summer.
So what’s a mom to do?
I’ve developed an arsenal of sorts. It’s helped me fake it through these long, trying days of summer. And it includes these five things I absolutely can’t live without:
- A Yeti Cup
This cup might be the best thing that ever happened to me.
A Yeti is like a mullet.
You know how a mullet screams Business in the front, party in the back?
Well, this cup is housework in the morning, Netflix and chill at night.
Granted 99.9% of the time mine is holding ice water. I’m not *as big* of a lush as I pretend to be on my blog.
But should I need to relax in the evening, I fill that puppy up with a couple of cold ones and the kiddos are none the wiser. (I don’t advocate drinking and driving, so I suggest you only use your Yeti if you plan to walk or be chauffeured.)
And in the A.M.? This thing holds a boatload of coffee.
You can get a whole lot of work done with a java buzz, y’all.
Listen, I know Yeti cups are not cheap. But I’ve heard the knockoffs work just as well.
- A Kimono
Thank the fashion gods that kimonos are in style, although truthfully, I’d wear one anyway.
Kimonos are so versatile.
Swimsuit cover? Slip on a kimono.
Night out on the town? Toss on that tank and a kimono, girl. You’re good.
These things are oh so comfy, but super-cute, too.
They have a real fake-it-til-you-make-it thing going for them. Even if you don’t feel like getting dressed this time of summer, these will make you appear dressed.
Other mom-clothing survival items include: cute tennis outfits even when you don’t play tennis; Nike shorts that you’ve had at least a decade; and the swimsuit you wear around the house to fool your kids into cleaning up because they think you’ll take them to the pool later.
- A Hair Tie
Or a hair clip or band or anything that takes your unwashed pool hair and secures it to your head in a way that doesn’t look completely ratchet.
I have to be honest, however: I struggle with the hair bun thing.
Why is it that I look like a crack-cocaine addict who hasn’t showered in days when I put my hair in a bun?
And then I go on Facebook and y’all look all kinds of put together with your cute little buns and ponytails?
Even with the awful bun, I can’t leave my house without a hair tie around my wrist.
I can never find one, odd, because I feel like I buy ten packs of them every time I’m at the Krogers.
And FYI, at the Krogers they’re about 5xs more expensive than anywhere else. So I’m basically going bankrupt buying hair ties.
But it’s so worth it.
- A Smart Phone, Tablet or Laptop (or all of the above and ten more)
I don’t care what any of y’all say.
Call me the worst mother that ever lived, call me lazy.
While y’all are busy judging me, I’m busy working like a champ because my kids are busy playing a smart phone.
Yes, they’re probably watching the stupidest videos about nine-year-old, insanely rich, YouTube mini-moguls taste testing candy from Japan. (Note to self: put videos of Bear on YouTube to pay for his college.)
But I’m vacuuming my floor without kids whining.
I’m putting on mascara without hearing the screams of one sibling to another. (Just kidding. I haven’t put on mascara all summer.)
I’m getting stuff done. And they’re learning about what happens when you mix Japanese candy and Sprite.
I call that a summer education.
Not to mention, with four kids and a traveling husband, my social life pretty much exists via social media.
Without a smart phone, I’d be an isolated Stay at Home Mom with a Yeti cup.
- A Sense of Humor (and a large dose of grace)
All kidding aside, it’s not lost on me that I am blessed to be able to choose to stay home with my babies.
That may not always be the case. One day, I may want to return to work or have to return to work.
So for now, when I’m in the throes of summer and sticking smiley face stickers on my calendar for every day I didn’t curse at my kids or fill my Yeti cup more than once, I try to laugh off the stress of having four rambunctious gifts, a schizophrenic border collie, and a husband who isn’t home enough to fully understand my insanity. (And it’s because he’s hustling the pavement to pay for this life, so thank you SO MUCH, Clayford. Seriously.)
You can’t make it through motherhood without a sense of humor.
And that large dose of grace? It’s not just for the kids.
You gotta go easy on yourself, too, moms.
It’s hard out here in midsummer. 😉