Mommy Math: Bracing For The School Year

btn_mommymathYou know, even if you sucked at math in school — as I most certainly did — once you become a mom, you find you can solve “real world” math problems like you’re channeling Pythagoras and Newton. See how many of these you can answer. Remember to show your work!

1. Barb and Danny are taking their newborn home from the hospital. If they live 20 miles away and are driving 45 mph, how many minutes before they have their first “new parent” anxiety attack?

2. Nancy has a colicky infant. Jenn’s toddler is having a “terrible twos” meltdown. How long before they hide in the closet, break out the Xanax and bourbon and start doing shots?

3. Karla’s husband Michael is away from home on a week-long business trip. If the plane is traveling at 567 mph, and he flies first-class from Miami to Los Angeles, with complimentary champagne service, how long before Karla burns him in effigy for leaving her alone with a sick (and by sick we mean puking like a binge drinker at a weekend frat party) baby?

4. Christy bakes 12 chocolate chip cookies that are all exactly 2 inches in diameter. If she gives 1 cookie to Li’l Davey and 1 cookie to Li’l Johnny, how many nanoseconds will elapse before one child starts screaming that the other got the bigger cookie?

5. Charlotte spent 4 hours picking up toys. If her son has a 2-hour play date with a classmate who’s due to arrive in 10 minutes, how long before her house is trashed again?

6. Paige has stopped at 3 stores while running errands with her toddler. If she dashes into 1 more store, and leaves her diaper bag in the car, how long before her 2-year-old has a diaper blowout?

7. Jayne drops off her 2-year-old at 8:15 am on the first day of nursery school. If Jayne’s office is 8 miles away and she is driving 35 mph, how many minutes will it take for her to pull off the road, sobbing with separation anxiety?

8. Denise has 3 children. If her Older Child has soccer on Mondays and Wednesdays and Sundays; and her Middle Child has ballet on Tuesdays and Thursdays and piano on Fridays; and she takes her Baby to Mommy & Me on Saturdays, when does Denise buy a one-way ticket to Hazelden?

9. Maria just spent $400 on the Lego Death Star model kit for her 8-year-old. If the model has 3,803 pieces, and the 8-year-old has been working on the model for 6 hours, at what time will Maria discover that a key piece to complete the model has been irretrievably lost?

10. Sherri nurses her infant every 2 hours. If she drifts off to sleep at 2 am and needs to be up at 7 am, what time will her 18-month old wake up wailing with croup?



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  1. Laughing so hard! Michelle (me) just spent all day (ok lets say 5 hours) cleaning and sanitizing her youngest child’s room while he is away at sleepaway camp. When he comes home from camp in a week, how long will it take before she finds 2 plates, 6 waterbottles, a half eaten box of Cheezits and a spoon in it again? I should have taken before and after pictures. I might have a blog post there. Haha
    Michelle recently posted…When Do Online Friendships become “Real Life” Ones?My Profile

    • Norine Dworkin-McDaniel :

      For sure, a blog post! Maybe a series. I’m thinking we might have something in Kid Room Archaeology! (Hey, you didn’t find Jimmy Hoffa in there did you?)

  2. I taught middle school math and these math problems even scare me, lol!! Seriously too funny and so needed this laugh on this Monday morning. Thanks for that!! :)
    Janine Huldie recently posted…WordPress 3.6 Update Is Good To Go For UpdatingMy Profile

  3. Ok, I just found myself saying, “Yes! Yes! YES!” I think I worried the hubs a little about what I was reading. Each and every one, you nailed it!!
    Val recently posted…KEEP IT SOCIAL the week of August 4 in reviewMy Profile

  4. Sharing this! So funny and true!

  5. My answer – no more than 5 minutes (seconds for a few of these). Loved the burning him in effigy one – that one is very relatable for me!
    TheShitastrophy recently posted…I Just Forgot – Or Why We are the BEST Mom’s EverMy Profile

  6. All of it – so true! I love the probability of discovering mommy math in my life, and the improbability of solving ANY of the problems.
    Tamara recently posted…We Made Our Own Blogging Convention!My Profile

  7. Ha! So funny! I totally suck at math, but THESE I can answer! :-0)
    Lisa @ The Golden Spoons recently posted…Tuesday Ten – Back to School EditionMy Profile

  8. I totally aced this test, but YOU aced it even more! Thank you for highlighting every anxiety-provoking situation a mother could dream of (in the most clever manner, of course…BRILLIANT!) and even some that I haven’t yet encountered. Now, I have to go get my Xanax and Bourbon…

  9. HILarious… I needed a good Monday laugh!! :)

  10. HA! Once again, perfection. But on a more serious note, math homework SUU-UUCKS. I hated it in first grade (my kid’s, not mine.), and I can only assume I’ll hate it even more in second grade. But my local wine shop will love it, given that they keep me well supplied with my homework-coping-mechanism of choice. :)
    Stephanie @ Mommy, for Real. recently posted…Advocating For Your Kids Vs. Being A Helicopter ParentMy Profile

  11. I never realized I was a genius at math!!! Thank you!! This is great!!!! Love, love, love!
    Kathy Radigan recently posted…My Normal HeartMy Profile

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