LaToya Polk lives in Fort Worth with her husband of 11 years Samuel and their five children: Jair, 11; Samaira, 10; Bryce, 4; Japhia, 2; and Joshua, 1. She stays at home but also teaches competitive cooking classes, is a registered childcare provider and Girl Scout troop leader, and the assistant director of The Heroes Manhood Training and Service Club in Fort Worth, which was founded by her husband.
7:30AM I’m awakened by the kids and husband shuffling to get out the door for school. I get to sleep in a little extra because our two youngest stay at home, but I wish I was the one taking my 4-year-old to school today because he wanted to stay home and wasn’t feeling the early morning rush.
7:45AM Joshua is awake and pulling my lips and prying my eyes open, babbling and smiling as if engaged in some sort of game. Japhia, my 2-year-old, is saying she has to go potty.
8AM I make my bed and shuffle through my drawers to find something comfortable yet suitable for the day. Grab my cellphone and the two babies and head downstairs to the breakfast table. That’s the first thing we do. Usually it’s oatmeal and fruit or muffins with bacon.
8:30AM I’m cleaning the highchair and wiping down the walls from my 2-year-old running through the house with something sticky on her hands. After catching up with her, I clean her face and hands and instruct the kids to go in the office for story time.
9:15AM I usually have my daycare children pick a story of the week and we read that story every day. My daughter has chosen a repeat of Green Eggs and Ham. 10AM I allow "theatre" time in order to check emails and return phone calls — KERA to the rescue. They’re content and entertained for a bit.
10:30AM Call to confirm that our Girl Scout camp will have enough food for 100 girls to have a fiesta night. I’ve been a troop leader for six years, and I’ve enjoyed watching my troop of eight go from daisies to juniors.
10:45AM I have to contact the principal of a school that I will not name. In the past, my husband and I hosted a fundraiser that raised quite a bit of money for our graduating class. I hope to do it again this year, especially now that our son made it to fifth grade.
11AM Leave a message with the front desk and move on. The kids have pulled pillows off the couch. Joshua is crying and pulling at my legs, so I have to stop my receptionist work and go back to mommy mode. I ask, "What do you guys want to do today?" and my daughter says, “Chuck E. Cheese!” Every time it’s Chuck E. Cheese. We have only been there two times, so I don’t get it. "Not today. How about we go the library?” “Yay!” Same response as Chuck E. Cheese. Great!
11:30AM Kids are dressed. Their hair is neat and snacks are packed. I let the dog out and give him some water. Now we can board the mommy mobile. I don’t know why I believe the library is a great field trip, but it usually gives me the peace I need. My kids love it and I’m happy they do.
12:30PM My meter has probably run out of money, so I’m praying no one has stuck a ticket on my car window. Get the kids in the car and we’re hungry again.
12:40PM We make it to a fast-food joint to pick up a few items. Don’t judge me! I need a break from cooking every once in awhile. We get the usual Wacky Pack and — instead of fries — I do fruit and milk. That makes it all better.
12:55PM We head home and unload our precious food. The kids are happy because they’re out of the car and have food with some odd toy that I can’t operate.
1:20PM Peace at last. Kids are full and sleepy. I lay them down for a nap. Well, not my 2-year-old. It’s usually a forced ritual of threats and punishment, followed by a hug and a story. Sometimes I have to give in, in order to keep the house peaceful.
1:45PM I let her play with toys as long as she’s quiet for the baby. She agrees and I move on to my chores, which include: washing dishes, laundry, cleaning our room and sweeping the floors. Due to the business of the morning, I’m pooped. The most I can usually do is dishes and sweeping the floors. My room goes untouched.
2:30PM I proceed to a laptop, tablet or my phone to get some more work done. I still haven’t paid any attention to bills or maintenance of home or cars. This usually has to wait until my husband gets home, but I try and tackle the guesthouse because we have someone coming by to view the property for rent. I make sure to clean it and show it at its best.
3:15PM I’m already running late. Japhia has decided to fall asleep on the sofa and it’s time to pick up my children and any afterschool children that I keep. I don’t have many. They’re usually kids whose parents are running late or family friends. Today it’s just my kids.
3:45PM Make it home and start dinner because my class begins at 5.
4:30PM Sit down to read my favorite magazine. Well, I shouldn’t really call it reading. I just look for funny or informative articles.
4:50PM Rushing out the door to go down the street to the church, where I teach a food and nutrition class for club competitions.
6:30PM Class ends and the kids are happy they get to sample different foods.
6:45PM Home to husband and kids, where there is laughter, TV watching and crying — all of the above. I’m glad to be back home.
7:15PM Clean up and get ready for baths.
7:45PM Play with Joshua on the couch, and then Japhia and Bryce hop up there to play with him, as well.
8:30PM Talk with husband. Kids are all getting ready for bed.
8:45PM Read to them and pray with them.
9PM Kids play and stay up talking a little longer.
9:30PM Husband I finally have a quiet house, so we clean up toys and laugh at the show we’re watching.
Diaries are penned by moms (and dads) in the Fort Worth area. The authors volunteer to share a day of their choosing and are not paid or endorsed by FortWorthChild. Send your diary to firstname.lastname@example.org. All submissions are subject to editing and may be cut for space.
Published December 2013