I would like to think I’m an organised Mum. I would very much like to.
You know the sort. They have family calendars. Diaries. And they use them. Appointments, social events and school activities, all faithfully and accurately recorded for posterity.
And the lists! By God, the lists they have! To-do lists, shopping lists, school checklists, and weekly planners. All colour coordinated and cohesive, with efficient ticks beside each achieved task.
By no means am I being critical of these organised mums. Far from it. I am equal parts in awe of, and quietly mystified by such women.
How do they do it? Moreover, how do they sustain it? Such efficiency! Such dedication!
I am a stay at home Mum. I have two extraordinary daughters who have been referred to at times as 'feisty' and 'headstrong'. Along with their gently tousled curls and pretty blue eyes comes the sort of behaviour one might expect from a group of ten over excited toddlers who have been living on a diet of red cordial, in the land of no consequences.
It is not unusual for me to spend a portion of each day extracting food from our ducted vacuum system, or to be engaged in debate with my six year old as to why I won't let her use public transport by herself.
But, I digress.
Whilst I was working, I envisioned that being a stay at home mum would result in a house of immaculate serenity. Meals would be nutritionally balanced. Ironing would be done ahead of time. Children would be reading books in bed, peacefully tucked up after a busy day.
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I would have calendars and diaries. I would use them. I would have lists, and I would actually refer to them. I would have petrol in the car, bills paid on time and a spring in my step.
I do try to be organised. I buy the calendars and I have a to-do list especially purchased for me by a concerned sister (who is one of these organised mums). I do use them. But only sporadically.
I'm not sure what happens to my brain. In January I feel almost virtuous. My new organisational tools are purchased from Kikki-K (I'm sure when I walk in there, they know I don't belong). I splurge on the matching pen. I sift through my emails and record upcoming events.
February and March bring a slight decline in such recordings. April is looking sparse. And then May and June are inexplicably left blank as I decide my head can do the work.
Halfway through July you will see a resurgence in my diligence (usually because I've forgotten something MASSIVE and the mortification is fresh). And so the cycle goes.
I think it's just me. I travelled around Europe when I was 21 with my two best friends. Whilst overseas I lost numerous items, including, but not limited to, my passport, my Walkman, one Birkenstock, my bikini top and several pairs of sunglasses.
Last Christmas I rocked up to my annual girls Christmas party having not registered that it had a theme (oh the shame). I was genuinely bewildered.
So, as another year plods along, and as I optimistically hang up my new calendar (with matching pen), I feel that maybe, just maybe, I can stay focused. Maybe, I think, as I'm dutifully scrolling through my emails, I will be one of those organised nums.
As I quietly ruminate on the concept, a friend messages me, reminding that my daughter's book list is due to be collected. Today.
As I scramble out the door, calendar forgotten, fractious toddler under one arm, I feel that although organisation may not be my strong suit, my ability to brazen it out is unparalleled.
Now, to school! If only I could remember where I put my bloody keys.