Rookie mistake. I took the kids to the playground. By myself.
I was feeling like SuperMom. I'd gotten the kitchen cleaned up, done several loads of laundry, got the kids through their ABA therapy, had a friend over, made lunch, cleaned up lunch and I thought, "The kids are squirrely. I'll take them to the playground. That'll be fun." Seriously? What the hell? Did someone spike my espresso with stupid pills? I know better than this. And I certainly know better than to take the dog with us too! But no...
So, I loaded the kids and the dog into the van. A task in and of itself. Pop likes to go look for cats. Buddy the Yaptastic Bastard Dog likes to take a dump the second he exits the house. Of course, we have shared front yard with the rest of the strata, so I can't just leave it for later. Someone will see and it'll be a scandal of Lewinskyan proportions. I swear, he holds it as long as possible on the off chance that he'll get to shit somewhere other than the backyard.
Pop started to cry. "GROUNNNNN". This means "playground". He wanted to go the playground and was mad because he thought getting into the van meant we weren't going to. But I picked him up and put him in the van, letting him cry. Crackle climbed in without much fight. We drove past about 5 schools to get to a school that has a protected yard. That is, I need a good 50m of run time in case one of them bolts. If Crackle bolts, it's major because he's FAST and doesn't respond to "STOP! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD! STOP FUCKING RUNNING!". And I am not fast. Every ribbon I ever got said "Participation". So we need a school with lots of room between the play area and the street.
We got there and someone was doing maintenance on the school. He gave me the evil eye as Crackle screamed for no apparent reason, but we ignored it, and went around to the back. They played for about 10 minutes. During this time, Pop cried for me to help him climb, while Crackle tried to eat paint chips, run into the open classroom and otherwise get in trouble. The dog took another dump, which I had to pick up with a granola bar wrapper and then toss into a bush because I had nothing with me because he had just shit 10 minutes before. Then another Mom showed up. With three kids and a big bag of McDonalds food. Well, crap. Crackle is not to be trusted around food. He will take it right out of strangers' hands and eat it. And McDonalds... damn. He'd be sick for two solid weeks.
So we left. Of course, this made both of them cry. I promised and promised that we'd find another playground. We got back in the van and Crackle would not stop. I kept telling him, "We're finding another playground. Don't worry. Don't cry. We're going to play more." Unfortunately, he wasn't crying for that. He was trying to tell me that he needed to pee. So in the 6 minutes between the two schools, he peed the car seat. I keep extra pants in Halen (my van. Get it? It rocks) so that wasn't a huge deal. Except that while I was changing him, Pop ran off. No harm, no foul, he'd gone to the play equipment. We caught up with him and I let them play. This lasted about ... mmm, 5 minutes? Crackle started eating the blackberries. Which wouldn't be a terrible thing if a) they didn't affect him like crack or meth to the average person; b) I could be sure they hadn't been sprayed with pesticides. He wouldn't stop - remember what I said about him and food?
Final nail in the playground coffin? Two kids showed up and I suspect they were raised by wolves. Or Republicans or something. Because they pushed past Crackle on the slide to get down it ahead of him, and then made some snarky comment I didn't quite hear, but being the mother of Snap, recognised immediately as snarktastic. I didn't trust the words in my mouth not to come out as anything but a steady stream of profanity, so I said nothing. I turned to look at their bitch (What? I said they were raised by wolves!) and she gave me a look of "WHAT?!" so I shook my head and turned back to Crackle who was eating blackberries again.
That's when I lost it. "THAT IS IT! WE ARE GOING. NOW! MOVE! BACK TO THE VAN THIS SECOND!"
Oh right. And three seconds before all of this, I dialed MrFCS so I could vent for a few seconds. So just as he answered the phone...
"THAT IS IT! WE ARE GOING. NOW! MOVE! BACK TO THE VAN THIS SECOND!"
"Um, is everything okay?
"NO! GODDAMN IT! *insert steady stream of profanity here*
So we got home. I threw the pants in the wash and said to Snap, "Look after the kids for 10 minutes so I don't kill them." (No, there was no worry of me actually killing or even hurting them. Don't fret.) She lasted about 2 and a half minutes.
When MrFCS got home, I didn't even wait until I had supper ready. I poured a large glass of wine.
They went to sleep at about 10:30. I'm going to start crocheting a SuperMom cape, I think. It'll be ironic.