Back in the Life of a House Mistress
My last blog about my boarding school job went down well, so I thought I'd feed the fantasy and take you along in a day in my life. My first day back on the job after 9 weeks off in fact.
Wake up, not that I slept much anyway. It's like that feeling on the night before your first day of school. I'm always so scared I'll oversleep - and if I oversleep, nobody gets to school so it's very important that you're on time. Classic morning get ready time - coffee, shower, tea loaf, dressed.
Shift begins. I go round the house waking up all the students that need to go out for their home=schooling - we're supervising classrooms where everyone does their lessons, it's a bit manic but it works (and hopefully won't be happening for too much longer thanks Boris). On this day, I also have kids in isolation, so I have to wake them up so they can prepare for doing their lessons for the day in their bedrooms.
A quiet moment while everyone is still waking up... so I take this selfie and then proceed to debate whether to post it to Instagram subconsciously for the next 15 minutes (plot twist: I don't post it, cos I figure the pants look stupid and thus regret my outfit choice until the end of my shift).
Common room opens - breakfast begins. I only have 8 kids that need to eat breakfast so it's pretty quiet, so I stick on the radio and have a bit of a dance party.
Final round up - I have some year 5 and 6 students staying with me, so I had to make their breakfast and make sure they had a good start to their day. It was also electronics time, where the kids gather at a cupboard to get their phones and laptops - they can't keep them overnight here until they are year 10, and only year 9 can keep theirs at a weekend. It might seem strict, but if they're to get enough sleep for their busy days here then they don't need screens as a distraction.
Kids that aren't isolating can go to school, but now I have to locate what each isolating student has in the electronics cupboard and get it to them before 8:30AM when school starts. But there's about 13 students in year 7-9 that are isolating, and they have like 2 electronic items each at least. And they live all around the house. So I'm running around like a crazy lady wielding Macbooks and iPhones and Xbox controllers, anything you can think of, trying to get finished in time.
Final checks that all students that should have left, have. Time to put on the register, and have a cup of coffee. And check through my email account, that I haven't been able to access since the beginning of January...
Finally finished getting through the insane amount of emails in my inbox. In between, I went round all the isolating students making sure they had started their lessons and were doing okay.
End of my first shift of the day, and time to tidy my flat and take a big nap!
Back on shift. Catch up with co-workers about what's been going on, and having a cup of tea. Non-isolating students came back from school, and isolating students could go for their walk, so my co-worker took them out while I did some boring admin rubbish. Had to reconfigure rota due to staffing drama so that took up a big bunch of my time.
Co-worker went for some food while I tidied around the house and did more admin - the students were all in their rooms or outside at dinner so there was nothing fun to do!
Quick break before picking up tonight's dinner for our isolating students - they get meals delivered to their rooms. I live in a house a million miles from the catering hub, and because so many students are isolating I had 2 carts to wheel over, and you cant do them at the same time, so I had to do 2 trips. Then handing out the food is a drama as well, because there's so many of them around the house, it's a solid 15 minute job at best, but luckily my co-worker stayed on duty with me to finish the job.
My manager (a.k.a my boyfriend) comes over to my house to help and to have some dinner with me in the office. We go round every student checking in with them, and giving isolating students their registration card for their covid test tomorrow morning.
All alone for the rest of the night, I start the cycle of going round and checking in with everyone, and reminding them of their routines. I also have to take out the bins of every isolating student, so I prepare my trolley by the lift.
Electronics for my little ones and Toast Time - every House Parent's nightmare. Except I only have 8 kids, so what is usually a raucous occasion filled with toast crumbs and gross boxes of butter turns into an empty common room with another solo dance party for Miss Bailey.
My tiny ones are in bed and I'm super ready for mine... only a few hours to go!
Electronics for Year 7, but all my Year 7 are isolating so I have to collect all their electronics and go back and forward to the cupboard. It's also lights out for my tiny ones, sweet dreams lil bros.
Year 8 and 9 electronics time, and lights out for year 7.
One of my year 10s has to hand in his electronics (I refuse to have him sleeping in his lessons!), and he decides to scare me with this horrible rubber mask he has acquired while I've been away. The lovely little chap has me screaming, most likely waking up the rest of the boarding house and ruining all my hard work from the last hour. Buzzing.
Everyone should now be asleep. But I'm not done. With 1 hour of my shift left, I sort all the paperwork for the next day, write out a plan for the staff member on shift in the morning, and before I know it...it's 10:10PM, I have 50 minutes left of my shift, and I have nothing left to do.
I'm done, but on overnight, so I have the bell ringer and the phone and I am praying no-one wakes me up through the night. I'm done in, shattered, kaput. At least I don't have a long commute - my front door leads onto my office. My head hits the pillow and I am out for the count.
It was a long one no doubt. Days differ, hours differ, and usually there's much more banter, but with all my kids in isolation or knackered from school nobody wants to talk to poor Miss B.
Did this bore you to tears? Or do you have job envy? Let me know in the comments below.