If you give a mom (or any female for that matter) a muffin,
... Chances are she will want a latte (half whole milk, half low fat, one smidge of Splenda, extra shot please) to go with her muffin.
Immediately she will mentally calculate that this caloric expenditure will set her back as much as a half-hour on the treadmill.
When she thinks about walking in place for that amount of time when she has so much other stuff to do she will begin to wish that she had an elliptical, or perhaps a rowing machine or maybe even a Bowflex so she could get ripped in as little as 20 minutes, three days a week -- for thirty days! -- or she can have her money back, guaranteed.
Thinking about money will make her feel stressed and she will do some of the deep yoga breathing she read about recently. Thinking about yoga will make her sigh and wish and that she could take a yoga class and then she will again remember the time and the money.
When she thinks of money she will quickly remember her budget.
When she contemplates her budget she will wish that she was a millionaire, then the old saying about the grass always being greener on the other side of the septic tank, or something like that will come to mind ... which will remind her that the grass needs to be cut once more before winter.
For a while she will ponder breaking the minimum wage, child labor laws and her parenting ethics and bribing her youngest child to mow the lawn when he gets home from school, but then she will remember that mowing burns 150 calories and hour so she will open up the shed to get the mower and see that the place is a total disaster!
After she has tidied the shed (including moving all the snow tires, heavy boxes and an old weightlifting set) she'll notice the woodpilenext to the shed.
For the next hour she will chop and stack wood until every stinking muscle in her body cries out for mercy.
As soon as she sits down for a nice break, the dog will begin to whine and bark, which of course means that she needs to go on a potty walk, so she will walk the dog around and around and around the block and when they come to a very unfriendly pup, then they will jog (briskly) all the way home ...
When they get home she will get water for the two of them which will remind her that all the plants in the greenhouse still need to be watered, as do the geese and the chickens
But once she is out in the garden, she will notice that the raspberries and broccoli need to be picked again, the hay bales need to be put up and the fence needs to be repaired ... so she goes to the garage to get the proper tools ...
And when she gets to the garage she will smell -- that smell! "Dear God, what is that smell?" she will ask even though she is the only one home.
After she has emptied the garbage and scrubbed everything she could think to scrub she will eventually discover the dyed salmon eggs that were supposed to have been put into the freezer --oh, about two weeks ago -- and when she thinks of the dates, she will think of time -- she will again think of all the things she needs to get done.
As she thinks of the list she will realize it is so long that she better write it all down before she forgets. After she is done writing the list she will review it. She will be so exhausted that she decides she should sit outside in the afternoon sun for a moment and relax, perhaps do some of that breathing again.
When she closes her eyes and tries to focus on a calming moment, the word moment makes her think (once again) about time.
And when she thinks time she will trot into the house to check the clock and
Drat! She will realize that she needs to be at the school in a half hour (including driving time) and she smells like rotten fish, sweat and chicken doo!
In a panic, she will take a speed shower, get dressed and apply mascara, all in record time
After she has picked up the kid(s) from school, she will remember that she forgot to have lunch, or even breakfast for that matter
Which will make her think that a muffin sounds pretty darn good right at the moment, and perhaps a latte (extra cream, lots of sugar) to go with it.
Story inspired By Laura Numeroff.
Jacki Michels is wife, mom & freelance writer.
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