I would like to start off by saying that if you are one of those awesome moms who can Pintrest and make homemade anything, I salute you. I like to say that I have other talents when people ask if I sew or craft and then don’t elaborate on what those talents are. Over the last couple years I have gotten very good at saying no to my kids who want to participate in every event the school puts on for them. We do SOME of them but my oldest wants to do ALL of them and honey, it just isn’t happening. I’ve prided myself into winging it the night before. I have a friend who became one of my personal heroes when she posted on FB the night before the school’s Halloween dress up day searching for costume stuff. I applauded her owning that she was super busy and didn’t get to it until the night before and I actually like her more for her realness. That is usually me but my mom is a Halloween nut and takes the kids shopping for their costumes weeks in advance. She is awesome, you’ll hear my say that a lot. But I digress. We moved at the end of March and it was a crazy month. I honestly don’t know how we pulled it all off. It was A LOT of changes for the kids. New house, new city, new school, and new church. I managed to get the essentials unpacked and felt like we were settled in. What I wasn’t planning on was it to be “Spirit Week” at the kids new school with a new theme every day. There was crazy hair day which is the easiest one to do last-minute but it was of course on Monday so I had completely forgot until I was dropping the kids off in the morning and saw all the other kids with crazy hair. So after school on Monday I start searching for their stuff. Tuesday was Costume Day and Wednesday was Beach Day. I live in Canada and March tends to be cold still so all the summer stuff fell under the unpacked category because I didn’t think those were essential…until Beach Day. But I couldn’t think about Beach Day yet because of Costume Day. I racked my already tired brain for an idea what would appease the 8-year-old. Finally at bedtime I thought Princesses. They have their nice dresses for church all they need is a crown or tiara…something princess that was cheap and easy that I could find at the dollar store. (Now before I get emails from people suggesting that I come up with something more gender role neutral I’ll just remind you that at this point in my life I’m getting up every 2 hours with Baby #4 and I’m looking at what we have unpacked and was coming up with NOTHING. Don’t judge.) So kids are in bed, hubby is home from work and I am punching in the address to the nearest dollar store in my phone, excited for some baby free outside the house time. I arrive and casually go up and down the aisles. Not bad dollar store I think. Then I go up and down the aisles again. No princess stuff. Not a wand, not a crown….stickers and coloring books with princess stuff but that’s it. Ok let’s go to Superstore, I need to pick a few things up anyways, off I go. Grab what I need and head for the toy section. No princess stuff. I head for the cookie section because the panic is starting to set in as I look at the store closing times getting closer and closer. Eat four cookies in the parking lot while I search for another dollar store that’s open. I got here in record time. Up and down the aisles again because maybe I’m missing something in my exhausted state. No princess stuff. So I’m standing in the food aisle of the dollar store trying to keep it together and figure out what I can throw together for a costume for my oldest two girls. I wandered over to the clothing section and see a cute little baseball cap with a butterfly on it. Hmmm, didn’t I see cheap little butterfly nets a couple of aisles over? SOLD! They can be butterfly hunters. I grab the hats, the nets and a couple decorative butterflies to attach in their nets and its only cost me $30, a little of my dignity and a lot of my sanity. I’m so done at this point and as I bring all my stuff in my hubby can just tell I’m a women on the edge. He bravely asks how it went and I relay my whole no princess stuff story and at the end say that I’m just so tired but that isn’t the saddest part. I tell him the saddest part is that the girls don’t know the effort I went to get them a costume for tomorrow and there is a good chance they will be disappointed because it’s not the princess costume we talked about. Now my husband knows I don’t usually go to this much effort for something as silly as costume day. He asks why. The answer is Mommy Guilt but that’s not what I said. I told him that I feel bad that we completely change their lives and I can’t do anything about that because it was the right choice for our family. But if not being one of the only kids who doesn’t have a costume helps the new kid transition go a little smoother it will be worth it. Looking back I realized that I’m not usually the mom who dollar stores it up for costume day for her kids the night before, I’m usually the one who weighs the time and stress of the family as a whole and then decides where our energy goes even if that means my answer is no more often than my kids would like. But I am the kind of mom who would do anything she can for her kids because she loves them. Mommy guilt will make you do some crazy things. The struggle is real. But it’s not always going to be like this.