I woke up this morning crabby. Which wasn’t so surprising, considering how completely vile and low down I felt when I went to bed. A mood this bad comes along maybe once or twice a year and tends to linger when it does.

All morning I struggled with the urge to snap at every living, breathing thing in my path. This afternoon? Happy as a clam. “What happened in the interim?” you may be thinking.

Simple. Lunch happened.

I have no real ability to get across to you how much I love lunch. It is my favorite part of the day, I think. (No! Wait. I meant to say every blessed moment with my darling husband and adorable children is my favorite, of course. Only a terrible mother would prefer lunch over homework time with her offspring or cleaning the kitchen with her spouse. Um…right?)

I love, love, love a good lunch. I will never understand you folks who throw back a yogurt at your desks or skip the noontime nosh all together. That’s crazy talk! Lunchtime is a respite from hours of rushing, panic and bedlam. Oh, sure. Maybe not for you, but it’s par for the course in this house.

Here’s how my mornings tend to go;

6:30 am; Wake up self, wake up Elder Son for school, step on scale, shriek. Lay on bed morosely before dragging chubby self to kitchen for coffee.

7:07 am; Run son out of house by screaming, “You’re going to miss the bus! And I am NOT driving you to school, Mister!” repeatedly. Flirt with death by attempting to rouse Miss Teen Wonder from slumber. Narrowly miss injury by leaping out of the path of Little Man as he makes a frantic dash for the television.

7:30 am; Wrestle youngest son away from television. Tell him he has to get dressed. In clean clothes. All of them.

7:42 am; Begin yelling at Miss Teen Wonder to GET OUT before she misses the bus.

7:45 am; Those aren’t clean clothes.

7:46 am; Yell more. Add Sporty Twin and Drama Twin to the mix– yell that they need to get down here and eat breakfast NOW.

7:47 am; Those aren’t clean, either.

7:48 am; GET OUT OF THIS HOUSE BEFORE YOU MISS THE BUS!

8:00 am; Fine. Just wear the filthy pants. I don’t even care, anymore.

8:15 am; EVERYBODY OUT!

8:20-9:50 am- Fold laundry, prep supper, training run, stretch…Holy Jesus! Is it that time, already?!! Shower, curse, dash for car.

10:25 am; Dang nabbit! Late again. Run to shop, thank sweet Lord for dependable business partner. Put head down and crank out cookies.

12:30 pm; Clouds part. Angels sing. Pull from favorite foodstuffs squirreled at shop to make perfect lunch of exactly what I am hungry for. Eat. Sigh. Smile.

Do you see? Do you see how wonderful and calm and completely different lunch is than any moment proceeding it? I’m not in charge of anything or anybody other than myself. I don’t have to wrangle wayward youths to the dinner table or endure critiques of my cooking skills or my general level of meanness as measured in number of vegetables on my child’s plate. In short, no comments from the peanut gallery.

Here’s what todays lunch looked like– it was prettier by far in real life than this photo. Dammit, Jim! I’m a cookie baker, not a photographer! (Extra blogger points for Star Trek reference.)

Vegetarian meatloaf, mixed veg, broccoli in cheese sauce and butter lettuce with Caesar dressing. Number of items on plate offspring would willingly eat? Zero. Entire mealtime with no complaining? Priceless.

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The Rise & Fall of a Momocracy

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