Jeannie Bruenning Author

School begins! | Prickly Pear

School has started and there’s a new normal at the hacienda. This time of year is crazy in any household with school age kids, combine three families, 5 kids attending three different schools and crazy can turn to chaos quickly.

This is the typical schedule through out the week:

  • 4:30am Megan heads to work two days a week and 10:00 the other two.
  • 6:40am Jeff leaves for work with Brian following shortly behind.
  • 7:00am is Raun’s departure – leaving Amelia on the days Megan is already at work.
  • 7:30am is the time for Sage to head to school which is 8 miles away, taking 30 minutes round trip. 
  • 8:15am Liam and Elin head to the bus stop and Austyn takes Emery to school, which is another 30 minute adventure. 
  • This all works except for Mondays when the elementary schools have a late start and 3 of the 4 students attending school have to adjust their schedule. 
  • 8:45am Austyn & Jeannie are at the studio to begin the day.
  • 1:00pm Sage is done with classes and typically has afternoon appointments. 
  • 2:00pm is Megan’s expected return when she starts at 4:30
  • 2:40pm Emery finishes her school day and twice a week has therapy. 
  • 3:21pm Liam and Elin need to be met at the bus stop.
  • 4:00pm Elin begins counting the minutes until Dad get homes.
  • 4:30pm Jeff makes his return.
  • 5:30pm Brian drives up the hill
  • 7:00pm is Megan’s return on her late days…

Then there are the unexpected phone calls: Elin has pink eye, Emery has a headache, My car won’t start…

Where is Amelia when all this crazy is happening? Hanging out with Nana or Neenee or mom or dad, or whomever has a free day.

Then there are the critters. Winston is old enough to take care of himself. Sadie and Charlie go from their crate, or hang out in the “puppy room”. We’ve added 5 chickens this weekend and I hope they have no intention of going to school

The Brady Bunch had Alice and the Jetsons had Rosie, we have a calendar hanging on the wall in the kitchen. It does its best to keep us organized, but it’s only as good as those tending to it. 

Each night we try to check in to make sure everyone who needs to be somewhere in the morning will be able to do so and that we aren’t leaving anyone under the age of 10 home alone. 

We laugh, shake our heads, and rub our foreheads. Some days we just stand and stare at the calendar trying to make sense of it. We say things like:

“There’s got to be a way to simplify this.” 

“Oh geezzz. There’s only one person home tomorrow morning – that won’t work!” 

“When will Amilea be ready for Kindergatern?” 

“Why isn’t Emery driving yet?” 

“Hey Liam! Can you build us our very own Rosie?”

“Where do you get an Alice – cause I think we need one!!” 

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