A Real Mom’s Top 10 Reasons to Get Takeout Tonight

It isn’t even lunchtime yet, and I’m already fielding the question that itches at the back of every mom’s brain… “what’s for dinner tonight?” And while I’d love to cook a gourmet, 5-course, Mediterranean diet dinner for us all to enjoy, I also know that the baby’s the only other person in the family besides myself who would eat it.

Okay, fine. So I’ll cook for the two of us. But what about everyone else? Well, the husband is on a sugar-purge diet, so he’s on his own. That leaves the 3 boys: and the only protein they’ll eat is chicken nuggets. *sigh* Well, I guess it’s time to get takeout.

And to fight the mom guilt creeping in over the thought of the second night of fast food dinner this week – here’s my top 10 reasons why getting takeout tonight isn’t the end of the world.

Top 10 reasons this real, tired mama is gonna get takeout tonight

#10. The pans I need to cook dinner are somewhere in the sink pile of dirty dishes.

I’m pretty lucky – I’ve got a large, two-sided sink. The only downside to that is this… I haven’t seen the bottom of the left side of my sink in several weeks. I haven’t seen the pot I need in even longer. In fact, I’m suddenly wondering if it did get washed – and put away with the canning supplies in the storage room downstairs. Which means I either need to walk down to the basement to check or do dishes.

But first, let’s get back to the sink real quick. I’m pretty sure it’s growing some sort of science experiment of doom… I know you can’t smell it, but that’s because our neighbor sells Scentsy and it works crazy well.

Why can’t they just invent an affordable, self-cleaning, and gourmet-dinner-providing kitchen already?

#9. I’m too exhausted from today to be trusted near anything that could be flammable.

Here’s how this morning went, to give you an idea.

Start a load of laundry. Get oldest off to school on the bus. Pick up kids and move the laundry to the dryer.

Notice the eery silence and go investigate. Catch the younger 2 kids “cleaning” the bathroom with the overflowing sinkful of toothpaste-y and soapy water. Watch the youngest boy meltdown because he’s sopping wet. Take his shirt off and watch him shimmy out of his pants and undies in less than 0.62 seconds. Realize that he’s poopy. Chase naked, wet, screaming, and poopy child through the house without letting the poop smear on anything. Clean up said preschooler and get him dressed into something he approves of – and that’s clean (ish).

Wonder what time the kids’ dentist appointment is, then panic and wonder if you missed it. Realize that the appointment isn’t until 3 PM.

Look at the clock. See that it’s only 10:42 AM.

#8. Cooking dinner would only endanger the children more.

Seriously. They like to “help”. Especially the preschooler. And he’ll drag over his neon green potty stool to the stove… and immediately plop his little hands on the stove.

So by *not* cooking a large, involved dinner, I’m making sure we avoid a trip to the emergency department or the burn unit, right?

#7. I’ve been a sous chef all day for the kids.

Maybe I mean a short order chef. I don’t know.

(Maybe I should watch cooking shows to learn the difference between the two.)

Either way, I’ve been taking orders all day. Mealtimes, snack time, and in between.

One child wants 3 chicken nuggets, room temperature, with Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce. No, a generic BBQ sauce will not suffice. Another boy wants graham crackers that haven’t been split in half with carrot sticks (but *not* baby carrots – actual carrot sticks that got chopped up, thank-you-very-much).

The third boy just wants a donut and a glass of milk – which I give him because he’s potty training and he actually pooped in the potty. And my baby girl wants a banana, which I need to chop into teensy tiny bites because she inhales them so fast that I’m worried I’ll have to use my Heimlich skills on her.

#6. I’ve spent the last 4 hours cleaning up the same mess.

That milk? Yeah. I’ve cleaned up similar messes four times so far today. Now I’m off to pick up pretzel pieces that the toddler only *thought* he wanted to eat – and then forcefully spat up across the living room carpet. Yes, I know we have a “no eating in the living room” policy. Maybe after that we can work on the toys strewn about.

#5. I got lost on Pinterest (and in cookbooks!) looking at good food. I’m now too impatient to actually cook it.

Looking at all of that good food made me really, really hungry. And the leftover chicken nuggets, carrot sticks, and graham crackers I ate earlier just ain’t gonna cut it anymore, y’all. I want something yummy, and I want it right now, dangit!

#4. I can’t find the stove.

I’m sure it’s in the kitchen somewhere…

But it’s been so long that I’ve used it as an actual cooking device that it’s become a homework storage device. And I’m pretty sure that if I turned it on right this second, our oldest would burst into tears seeing all of his projects go up in flames.

The younger two would probably laugh hysterically and insist that they can handle the fire with their toy fire truck. After all, it does have a hose – and an ax.

#3. I’m ______ and I’m tired.

Pick any adjective you want to stick in that first spot. I’m busy. I’m nursing an adorable little girl who’s going through a growth spurt. Oh, and yes I’m still getting up 2-3 times each night with her. I’m raising 3 rambunctious boys who like to do parkour off of the living room furniture. And I’m trying to make sure that they’re all fed, clothed, and not in any imminent danger.

The important bit is that last line. I’m tired.

#2. It’s almost 8:30 PM and we really should eat…

I know we both got caught up in evening activities, feeding the kids, and getting them to bed. Well, the good news is they’re all in bed. They’re still chattering away, but they’re all in bed.

And now we’re both too hungry and tired to do much but crack video game jokes and wonder if ice cream counts as dinner.

#1. I haven’t gone grocery shopping in 2 days, so we’re out of food.

The graham crackers are gone. Our whole milk is down to the last few dregs, despite having bought 4 gallons of the stuff a couple of days ago. Oh, and the apples all got cut up into now-offensive shapes, so I had to eat those. The fresh vegetables got used for “science”. And the clementines were used for batting practice. The bananas? “Jungle monkeys” ate those. The bread? Yeah, the dog ate the bread. (Speaking of the dog, there’s a massive pile of vomit to clean up. Yes, it’s amazingly bread-like in its consistency.)

Here’s what’s left: a few frozen veggies, frozen meat of questionable origin, and some flour. We might even have some dent corn or lentils back in the pantry if I look hard enough.

And because I can’t figure out what to make out of those 4 ingredients, we’re getting pizza.

Can you relate? Be sure to share it with another tired momma so she can get a laugh (or a good cry), too.

Kimberly C. Starr

I'm a ginger who loves reading, eating, being a nurse, spending time with my family, and writing about it all. I believe humor is the best medicine, followed very closely by chocolate and tacos. To read more about me, click here.

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