I am not a morning person. By that I mean I cannot string a sentence together before 9 o clock unless you count a series of grunts as communication. I find I hard to function before I have had breakfast and a vat of tea, or two. So getting three under five year olds ready for school is not easy. I’ve got a bit complacent about getting up, because the twins are still toddlers they tend to rise at stupid-o-clock so I never worry about setting an alarm. This was mistake 1. On Monday, they overslept and woke at 7.50. I have to leave the house at 8.20. There is simply not enough time to feed three children and chase them around the house throwing clothes on them.

By 8.15 we were pretty much there. Breakfast had taken a bit longer than planned because the twins learnt a new word. They are 17 months now so words are coming thick and fast and it’s so exciting when they learn a new one.  They weren’t too keen on the weetabix I had made them so I was trying to spoon in a couple of extra mouthfulls. It was one of those lovely moments when all they have learnt came together, twin 1 has been practicing head shaking for a couple of days and they have both copied me saying no, after all it is a word they hear on a minutely basis. I swooped the spoon towards twin 1 and she shook her head and said, “no!’ closing her mouth tightly. I looked at their big sister and we both laughed because it was such a surprise grown up action. I tried again, and of course got the same reaction. I tried twin 2 and she giggled and shook her head “nah!’ she said. Oh how we laughed. Until I saw the time.

Grabbing children and clothes I bundled them up as quickly as I could, until they pretty much had the right amount of clothing each. My daughter spent most of the time drawing on the whiteboard. I didn’t want to stop her because she wanted to practice writing a sentence for school. If they want to write you have to encourage them, even if it makes you five minutes late. She wrote: I wet to tikbl on ic. I was so proud. Well I was mainly snapping at her to get dressed or we’d be late but inside I was proud. In that infuriating four year old way she eventually got herself ready.

Mistake 3 was going upstairs. I try to only pop upstairs for a moment but sometimes it’s unavoidable. I had to find shoes which my daughter swore weren’t by her bed. Where did I find them? By her bed. While upstairs I also realised that, although the children were dressed, I was still in my dressing gown. When I came down, after hastily throwing on clothes, some of it matching, they were all giggling. “Look what I’ve done,” my daughter said proudly. This is one of those phrases which fills a mother with dread.

I looked in horror at the girls. She had found the face paints we had used from halloween and drawn whiskers on her sisters, and in what could only be a tribute to Movember a white beard all around her mouth. It was at this point I lost my mind.

Face paint: Not funny or clever!

“WILL YOU LOT STOP BEING SO ANNOYING!” I screamed as I tried frantically to wipe off the black facepaint off twin 2.

Twin 1 gave me her best cheeky imp smile and shook her head. “No!” she said.

Wot So Funee?