Time at home watching the kids, however much I enjoy it, is always an experience I view with a little trepidation. My kids’ moods seem entirely dependent on small incidences, and a broken toy here or accidental hit with a football there, can cause a good day to crash into a tragedy in 0.7 seconds.
And when it rains, my God, it can be a nightmare! All that pent-up energy and boredom does not for an easy time childminding make!
I recently realized that every time I am left alone with my kids, I always find myself a step behind them, only running after them when I realized that they are up to no good. Don’t get me wrong here; they are great kids, 11 year old Faith, 9 year old Bob, Lucy who’s 6 and Brandon who’s barely two. But all of them together make a team that will rain terror on any parent.
Let me give you a clearer picture, Suzanne is old enough to know what’s right and wrong, so she’s not really a major concern, but it’s like she always feels she constantly has to fight for my attention since all her smaller siblings are a handful, I believe Christopher and Anthony’s main ambitions so far are to give me a heart attack, that’s why they always find the most dangerous games like sliding down stair rails and jumping from furniture to furniture. Crystal is in that discovery stage where she will pretty much pick up and explore anything she’s never seen before, no matter how dangerous.
So one afternoon, I decide that rather than remain a step behind all of them, Life would be much easier for me if I got them all in one place, and tried to get them to do something together. That way, we can all hang out and have fun together, they’ll all be in my sight and hopefully we can achieve something that’ll make my wife proud. I decided that baking would be the most appropriate activity.
Until now, I am not too sure whether Chris, Suzanne and Anthony agreed to bake with me because they really wanted to, or because it was raining outside and so they could not go out running in the backyard like the always do when I ask them to help me do something. Anyway, the best thing was that we were all together and ready to make a nice big chocolate cake.
I was in charge of measuring the ingredients and adding them into the bowl as Suzy did the mixing, Chris’s job was to fetch everything that we needed while Anthony took what I think was the best role, barking orders like a pro chef and making occasional remarks like; “that’s not the way mummy does it” to which I kept responding with, “this is a new recipe honey’. Crystal just sat in her chair and watched us for a few minutes before she turned her attention to her toys.
The tricky bit came when everyone wanted to take turns mixing the butter and in no time all of us were holding onto the bowl, I was holding it in place while everyone else tried to do the mixing. Once everything was ready to go into the oven, we all agreed to clean up the kitchen as the cake was in the oven. Once more little Chrissie watched as I helplessly tried to keep everyone from breaking something.
Once the cake was ready, everyone wanted to jump in right away and start eating but it was still hot. It took a lot of convincing to get them all to do something else we waited for it to cool down. And when it finally did, we all got to sit down and enjoy the fruits of our hard work. It was not the best cake I have tasted, but still it was a great achievement, a day that hope they would all treasure they all grow older.