Since Mazzy and Harlow go to two different schools in two different parts of the city, Mike and I switch off who takes who. Mazzy must leave at around 8am to make it to school on time and Harlow must leave by about 8:45am. For Mazzy, we take the crosstown bus and for Harlow, we walk her to school in the stroller.
In truth, both of us prefer to take Mazzy because it means we are only responsible for one person getting out the door. Mike and I usually tag team getting Mazzy ready regardless of who takes her, while Harlow hangs out in her pajamas until Mazzy is gone.
Also, since the parent who takes Mazzy must be dressed and ready themselves, they are usually afforded that luxury while the other person gets Mazzy’s stuff together. Then, once Mazzy leaves, the parent left behind must get themselves and Harlow ready from scratch.
If you are taking Mazzy, once you make the bus, it’s a very pleasant 20 minute commute. You can talk, play games, test out new snapchat filters and almost always ride with other friends who go to school via the same city bus.
Taking Mazzy also gets your day started a little earlier because you end up heading to work by 8:45am, whereas the Harlow person is just leaving the apartment. So, whoever has an early meeting or a lot to get done at work that day or just can’t deal with the kids for a second longer— takes Mazzy.
With Harlow, you’re rushing to get her ready, negotiating with her to put on her jacket, trying and failing to convince her to wear underwear instead of a pull-up, racing down the street with her stroller (sometimes in the rain), getting to school always at least five minutes too late and then watching her have a meltdown when you say goodbye.
Harlow still has a bit of separation anxiety at school drop-off.
Usually, Harlow asks that I don’t leave (she says “leeb”) and then when she realizes the inevitable, her little face crumbles in this way that only Harlow’s face crumbles, so I stick around for the first activity hoping she’ll get she comfortable enough to say a tear-free goodbye.
Sometimes, I’m able to convince her that me “leebing” is going to be okay on my own and sometimes a teacher helps out. I don’t usually walk out with her in tears— it’s just a waiting game until I eventually convince her to start her rather elaborate goodbye routine.
There are kisses, hugs, noses, crowns, love pats, rainbows and boochies. In that order. “Boochies” if you are curious, are finger pokes in each cheek, which should not be confused with “love pats” (open-handed pats on each cheek). “Rainbows” consist of her drawing a pretend rainbow over your head while “crowns” are pretendsing to place a crown on top. One day, I’ll have someone take a video so you all can see the exchange for yourselves.
Anyway, my point is, that Harlow is the tougher of the two to take to school.
To make up for that, a few months ago, I started a tradition on mornings where I get the Harlow end of the stick— we go for muffins.
If you follow me on snapchat (ilanawiles), you’ve definitely seen your fair share of our muffin-eating tradition.
This means I have to get both of us ready super fast after Mike and Mazzy walk out the door so we have sufficient time. But if all goes well, Harlow and I can sit down to have a muffin (for her), coffee (for me) and chat.
We don’t always eat muffins. Sometimes we go for croissants.
Sometimes we go for monstrous waffles.
And sometimes we go for bear shaped madelines.
Sometimes we eat our assorted pastries at the coffee shop.
Sometimes we eat our muffins outside on a bench.
And sometimes we have limited time and get our muffins to-go.
Sometimes Harlow’s pig eats her muffin.
Sometimes Harlow’s bald Monchichi (which is actually my old Monchichi) eats her muffin.
Sometimes she eats her muffin with sunglasses on.
Most of the time I pick apart her muffin because Harlow finds some sort of unexpected fruit or nut inside.
Which is fine with me because then I get my share of muffin too.
We’ve been doing this for a few months now and carb overload aside, I realized today that I no longer fight Mike over who takes Mazzy to school, because I enjoy my mornings with Harlow just as much.
I just needed to create the same valuable one-on-one time that I felt like I was getting with Mazzy on the bus. So the morning is no longer rush, rush, rush.
It’s rush, rush, rush, muffin, rush.
Then a little bit of tears and plenty of rainbows and love pats.