It is 9am and I have already failed a handful of times today. Probably two handfuls.

Grady had a four-day weekend with the stat holiday on Friday and a professional day on Monday. We had four glorious days of sleeping in (when did 8am become "sleeping in," that's what I want to know). We had four days of relaxed mornings, rambling breakfasts that trickled into lunch, pyjamas, cuddles, screen time (oh blessed screen time) and nowhere to be at a specific time.

Grady has to be at school by 8:55. This morning we woke up at 7:05. You would think that an hour and 50 minutes is plenty of time to get to school when school is a seven-minute walk from home but you would be wrong. At 8:40 I found myself shrilly demanding Grady finish his breakfast while I threw clean clothes in his general direction and strapped the baby to me while tying my shoes. It. Was. Chaos.

We have a strict "no screen time" rule before school because otherwise Grady zones out completely and nothing gets done, so this morning's lateness can't be blamed on the lull of electronics. It was the curse of busy-ness that did me in. I let Grady play in his room before getting ready for school so I could feed the baby, put on a load of laundry, scrounge up food to pack his lunch even though I didn't grocery shop this weekend, load the dishwasher, return a couple emails, feed the dog, put the dog out, stand on the porch to cheer on the dog because it's pouring rain and he hates to get wet feet so instead of going into the yard to pee he stands on the porch looking bereft unless he has a cheer section, and get dressed so I wasn't doing school drop off in my pyjamas (again).

I failed. I failed Grady because our lateness wasn't his fault but I took it out on him with barked orders and a snippy snappy tone. And I failed myself. I don't deserve to spend my mornings running around like a crazy person trying to do 37 things in 37 minutes. It's making me anxious. Trying to do all the things, and do all of them well, is making me anxious.

I know I need to change it but I don't know how. I don't know how to find the elusive balance where things still get done but I'm not insane. I'm open to suggestions. Tell me your tips and tricks and life hacks. How do you get your kids to school on time and happy. How do you keep your house in order when there is no sleep and your kid isn't old enough to participate in real chores yet (Grady "helps" do laundry but it's all highly supervised. I can't, like, tell him to throw on a load of towels and send him on his merry way.)?

How do I look at what I've managed to accomplish as a success instead of what I haven't managed to do as a failure?