Winter has come to Stockholm – the slush, the ice, the freezing rain, but above all, the bundled up kids.
Getting both kids ready to go out is an even more complex process than most kid management. You don’t want them to get too hot. You want them to eat. You don’t want to get too hot yourself. You have to negotiate three levels of getting dressed – in our house, we get the regular clothes, the snowsuit, and the hats and gloves on in three distinct stages, often with more than just the last one taking place outside.
In other words, I’ve been 15 minutes late to work every day this week.
Gabe Stein – an American guy on paternity leave here in Sweden – recently wrote an essay on the challenges of winter dressing for The Local:
While my son was finally fully dressed and ready to go, my daughter started to show signs of rebellion. Except for the tests that she puts me through in public, her dressing-time challenge is my worst nightmare.
This is what will happen.
I have probably already worked ten minutes getting her brother dressed, so by the time it’s her turn, I am already sweating. (A while back I realized that I needed to get dressed last, otherwise I would lose my temper at the first hint of a defiant gaze.) First, she’ll run away, forcing me to either scream no from on the floor in the hallway or chase after her and carry her back. If I’m carrying her back, she’ll most likely be screaming no and speed kicking her legs into the air.
It is a funny scene. I especially appreciate the bit about him getting hot. I too have spent up to 30 minutes all bundled up, about to pass out, while I tried to talk children into their rain coats. It is not a pretty scene.
Gabe later posted a video of the whole painful process …