Even the best planning cargo south when an early morning flight for a work trip appears on the schedule. Wait, five of those in an eight-day span. (I'm not counting a driving work trip, but if I did, that would be six trips in nine days.)
Now, it's not like these trips magically appear on the calendar. They are planned at least a week or two out and I try to control the timing based on our overall calendar. This is where the family calendar is critical. During football season, Thursday and Friday traveling is rare. Pep rallies and games take priority. During basketball season, Tuesdays and Fridays are out. Games, again. Husband's job, detail. Evening activities also come into part of the planning. Because I've got twins to get from school to home to activity to home again -- homework, dinner and baths get squeezed in there, too.
Yes, I have a great after school sitter and a neighbor who jumps in and helps more than I deserve -- thanks, McCall and Anna. My parents, sister and bro-in-law also pitch in as they can.
But they help with the afternoons and evenings. Those early morning flights mean, well, I wrote the word but I'll type it again, mornings.
Mornings are well planned in our house. The evening-before packed lunches and setting out of outfits is a given. My work stuff, chosen work outfit and meal plan is also taken care of prior to the morn. The unpredictable factor is the ease in which the girls jump out of bed, cooperate gracefully and eat their breakfast in a timely, un-whiny manner. Not to digress from the topic of this post, but there are mornings when the girls are knocked out asleep while I dress them. I can get it done with Camille,in the top bunk ... even putting on leggings can be done while they sleep.
So what about the mornings when I am up in the 4s to catch a 5 a.m.-ish flight. I don't tlike when I hear the alarm scream at me those mornings, but I know I have to not only get myself done,,but also take care of everything else to make the controllable morning events controllable.
I make the sandwiches, pop the lunch boxes in the backpacks, fill up the water bottles and put those in the side pocket of the lunch boxes. I put out shoes and socks, along with a jacket if the weather calls for that need. I put out hair-doing stuff. That doesn't always get taken care of .... but I put it out. I ready and set out breakfast, too.
Then, I get to leave. I'm tired and dreading finding parking in long-term parking because the short-term parking has been torn up at our airport, but I get to leave.
G gets to get the girls up, dressed and out the door. Notice, I didn't write he does their hair. Maybe a brush gets run through Camille's tangled locks and Caroline might get a hair milk spray on the curls.
Yet, they do get out the door, to school and on time.
And, I'm on a plane. Sometimes, I have wi-fi so I can watch a show or pin new hair-dos after searching for 'hairdos for little girls by dads in the mornings when their wives are on a work trip.' Sometimes, I have to read or catch up on lists. Sometimes, I quietly drink my free coffee. Everytime, I think of how G gets out the door in the morning with two girls and all that means and requires.
And, everytime, I think about the flight points I'm earning so that one day, all of us, can wake up in the 4s to go on a fun trip somewhere. With hair done and breakfast at the airport.