If someone were to ask me to describe parenthood, I would tell them about a cold cup of coffee.

The early morning sun peeked through the blinds and made long lines on the floor. The house smelled of coffee that had been freshly ground and left steeping in hot water on the kitchen counter in a decorative french press. As I poured a cup for my wife and one for me, I felt something pull at my pant leg. It was my youngest daughter informing me that breakfast was in order.

If someone were to ask me to describe parenthood, I would tell them about a cold cup of coffee.

I abandoned my coffee to grab a bowl and cereal and fruit. She opened the silverware drawer and picked out the perfect spoon -- the princess one that her older sister always picks. The early bird gets the princess spoon, I guess. I poured milk and carried it to the table and sat her down. And I returned to my coffee.

As I went to take a drink, my oldest daughter woke up, so I made her breakfast. After a long debate with my 2-year-old about which princess was the best, I returned to find a cold cup of coffee.

I put it in the microwave.

While I waited, I straightened up the house a little and grabbed the newspaper off the front step. I sat down and talked to my wife for a few minutes, and reignited the princess debate with my little one. Then I retrieved my coffee. It was cold again.

So I put it back in the microwave. Then I moved laundry to the dryer and emptied the dehumidifier in the basement. I noticed I had yet to reorganize my tools after a recent project and did that really quick, too. When I returned, my coffee was cold. I punched 45 seconds into the microwave keypad and hit start. I thought about heating it to the point of evaporation in the hope that I would remember it. I didn't.

Microwaves should have a "parent's coffee" button that when pushed does nothing at all.

While I waited, my girls and I sat in tiny, purple chairs and colored. I got lost in some fine butterfly wing detailing and general crayon organizing that is demanded on a Saturday. The long lines of sunlight moved from the floor to the wall. And I could hear something beeping.

"What is that beeping?" I asked them. "It's driving me crazy."

"I don't hear anything," my 5-year-old said.

Then it stated again.

"There! Did you hear that?" I exclaimed, quickly disappearing to discover the culprit.

It was the microwave letting me know that 90 percent of my electric bill this month was spent on reheating coffee. I opened the microwave to discover my red cup had turned blue.

"That's my coffee," my wife informed me as she walked into the kitchen. "I keep forgetting about it, and it keeps getting cold."

"I know how you feel," I said, returning to the little table with the tiny, purple chairs, confused. My daughter informed me with a giggle that my coffee was sitting right in front of me. It was cold, cold enough that it could be almost be iced coffee. I shrugged my shoulders and drank it.

David Manley is a husband, father and newspaper editor at The Canton Repository. Share your stories with him at david.manley@cantonrep.com or on Twitter: @DaveManley.