A Day in the Life

Several of the bloggers that I read have done a “Day in the Life” post recently and although it might seem mundane, I have really appreciated the window into how other families live. It is nice to know that pretty much every other parent in America ends up resorting to TV at some point during the day. There is something very comforting knowing that I am not the only mom also stays in bed as long as humanly possible in the morning. I also think this snapshot of my life this will be fun to go back and read in a few years when my daily life is likely to be rather different. This is an account of how our Monday went this week; the good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between.

6:45am – Baby is climbing into my bed asking to nurse. Baby nurses and I doze.

7:15 am – “Baby ahh-wake!” Baby rolls out of bed. I mumble something to her about getting up in a minute and Baby runs off to find the rest of the family who I can hear are already awake. I stay in bed knowing that Husband will take off Baby’s pull-up (She’s usually dry but wears one just in case. She sleeps in my bed part of the time and I do not want to wake up in warm bath if you know what I mean.) and keep half an eye on her while he showers and gets Older ready for school. My bedroom door is open and I will get up if I hear that they need me but I will lie in bed as long as possible.

7:50 am – Husband leaves to take Older to school and then goes on to work. I am alone with the girls and really do have to get up now. I stagger out into the living room and the girls immediately ask/demand to watch a movie. I tell them they can watch something when I take a shower. Middle wants to know when I will be taking a shower. “Later”, I tell her.

8:00 am – I make our bed while Middle grabs Baby and herself each a yogurt and a spoon. I am happy to hear Baby ask Middle to “Open mine yogurt?” and and Middle happily agree. It is so awesome when they can do something cooperatively and independently. I get to finish making our bed. Yea! Making the bed in the morning always makes everything better.

8:10 – Girls are done with their yogurt and want a movie. Nope. I take out a group toys for today from the toy closet: a Melissa and Doug pizza set, a Melissa and Doug birthday cake set, a shape sorter, and Magna Tiles. The girls immediately start playing with the cake set and start singing “Happy Birthday” to each other. I unload and load the dishwasher and then heat up a couple of (homemade last week end and frozen) banana muffins for myself.

8:20 am – I peruse real estate listings for the city we would like to move to (good public schools) on my ipad while eating my muffins. I am horrified by the prices. There are only two three bedroom houses under a million dollars. And they are only slightly under one million. I look up rental listings in the target city: $3700 a month for a three bedroom house. I feel slightly nauseous. This has got to be another housing bubble.

8:25 am – Take laundry out of the dryer, put wet laundry in dryer, put in a load of laundry. Clean cat box. Being a stay-at-home mom stinks – literally.

8:30 am – Get out a couple of floor puzzles for the girls and settle in between them on the floor to help. Turns out, neither of them need much help at all; just a little encouragement. Very pleased with their puzzling skills. Middle’s puzzle shows the four food groups and she and announces that she is starting to eat meat and would like to eat more meat (we’re vegetarian). I say OK (and mean it – I think she’s old enough to make her own decisions on this front). She looks at me as if a bit disappointed by my nonchalant reaction.

8:50 am – I need to take a shower. I tell the girls it’s movie time and they squeal with happiness and run over to park themselves on the couch in a zombie like daze. We go through the offerings on Netflix until they agree on “Angelina Ballerina”. Not my favorite show (she wears her ballet shoes outside – doesn’t she know that’s not allowed!) but their agreement is priceless.

8:55 am – Nice long shower. Nobody bothers me. Get dressed, fix hair, and put on make-up without interruption. My opinion of “Angelina Ballerina” improves.

9:20 am – Get girls dressed and hair done while watching the movie. Middle is so engrossed in the movie that she doesn’t even complain when I brush her hair. I love Angelina Ballerina!

9:30 am – Movie done. Go outside to take laundry down from the line. Girls join me and glom on to our neighbor who is hanging out her laundry who they love and adore (and who thankfully adores them back – they are both flower girls in her wedding next month). I ask girls if they want to arrange some flowers and get out three vases. We cut sea lavender, roses, mint, lavender, lilies, rosemary, and some other things that are in my garden but I don’t know the name of. Middle’s vase looks the prettiest of them all.

10:00 am – Time to go! Need a few things at the grocery store and Middle has a doctor’s appointment. Listen to our current favorites “Mama Mia” and “Hey Mickey” at top volume (Baby likes her music LOUD) in the car.

10:15 – Arrive at Whole Foods. Buy broccoli, peaches (first of the year!!!), strawberries, blueberries, and heavy cream (I have plans to make chocolate mousse in the afternoon). Sadly, Whole Foods no longer carries the chocolate I need for the mousse. Bah – that was the whole point of going to expensive Whole Foods.

10:55 am – Arrive at doctor’s appointment 5 minutes early (I don’t think that has ever happened before). Middle immediately melts into a puddle of goo on the floor of the waiting room, apparently dying from boredom. I am not amused. This is a thing with Middle – she seems to actually be allergic – behavior wise – to being indoors. She cannot handle it. I have brought snacks and books to read to them, but she moans about how wrong that idea was. I ignore her and read to Baby. Baby asks tells me she needs to pee and we go do so. I realize that Baby hasn’t had an accident in a couple of weeks. I think I have a fully potty trained child – before age 2.5! It is awesome.

11:15 am – See the doctor (ENT specialist). I really like this doctor’s office. They’ve never gotten Middle’s name wrong and actually knew what transgender meant when I told them. Middle had a series of ear infections earlier this year and even though the infection has been gone for a couple of months she still has a lot of fluid build-up and complains of pain nearly daily. She is also suffering from some hearing loss in one ear. ENT says it is time to consider tubes. I agree. He is going to submit an authorization for surgery and we can decide if we want to do it soon or wait until the end of the summer so we don’t have to deal with summer swimming and earplugs (required if you have ear tubes). I sign consent forms and worry how Middle will handle general anesthesia.

11:35 am – In the car on the way home. The doctor was quicker than I expected so I decide to chance swinging by Williams-Sonoma because I think they carry the chocolate I am looking for (Guittard bittersweet wafers). Find a free street parking spot. Parallel park like a boss. They have the chocolate and cookie samples for the girls. Everyone is happy. The universe wants me to make chocolate mousse.

12:15 pm – Arrive home. Break up bickering between Baby and Middle over who got the better stickers at the doctors office. Wish that doctors offices wouldn’t give out things at all. The last thing we need is more crap in our house and more things to fight over.

12:20 pm – Start to make lunch; sliced strawberries and cold tortellini pasta salad (left over from last night’s dinner). Baby bursts into tears. Not “hun-gee”, “want na-na (nursing)”. Baby now sobbing. Guess that Baby is now too upset to eat (even though I am sure she is hungry). Decide to nurse her to sleep a bit early. Do not trust Middle with food, without supervision. Put on Netflix again (sigh) – this time a Mickey Mouse Christmas special while I put baby to sleep.

12:25 pm – Nurse baby, while running through physiology flashcards on phone.

1:05 pm – Baby asleep! Put her down in our bed.

1:10 pm – I heat up a frozen Trader Joes meal for lunch and eat in it in about five minutes. Tell Middle it is time to make chocolate mousse. She asks for a second helping of lunch and eats it while I get all the ingredients out for the mousse. Make chocolate mousse. Middle does an excellent job weighing and stirring. Middle, as the only child awake, gleefully gets to lick the bowl, spoon, and beater. Middle sets down beater and wanders out to dining room while I am cleaning up. She sees her down comforter (which I washed over the weekend and lay out on the dining room table to stuff back into her duvet cover) and decides to use the pristine white comforter to wipe her face. WHAT THE THE HELL CHILD?!? (I don’t say that but I do let her know that was a bad choice.) Tell her that I can’t play with her now because I need to do laundry.

1:45 pm – Middle plays in the den (Hex Bugs?) while I deal with the laundry. Clean half-bath and laundry room floors. Remember that I meant to remove the diaper pail (for cloth diapers) from the kids’ room (no more diapers!). Do that and re-purpose pail into a bin for empty bottles and cans. Husband has taken up drinking Pepsi and I want to collect the cans for the 5 cent return for each one because I am a frugal stay at home mom now.

2:10 – Middle wants to do a phonics workbook with me. She has been very enamored of the idea of “getting ready for kindergarten” the past few weeks and has pulled out all of Older’s old workbooks to work on. I help her (by reading the instructions – she can do the exercises herself) and tidy the den.

2:18 pm – Baby awake. Middle tells Baby that she is doing a “Balsamic workbook”. I don’t correct her. I hope she always pronounces it this way!

2:25 pm – Baby is singing “Under the Sea” from The Little Mermaid and asks me to play the song. Spend $1.29 to buy it from itunes.

2:30 pm – Jam out to “Under the Sea” and other tunes. Get out the musical instruments. It’s all fun in games until Middle jabs Baby with a drumstick (intentionally). Make Middle sit out for a few minutes.

2:45 pm – Baby is ready for something new and moves on to the Magna Tiles in the living room. Middle continues to dance and sing.

3:05 pm – Time to get Older from school. The drive to school in the warm sun makes me unbearably tired.

3:15 pm – I am falling asleep in the pick-up line for school. Contemplate taking an Excedrin when we get home just for the caffeine. Notice Middle is awfully quiet. She is asleep. Damn. Now who knows when she will fall asleep tonight.

3:25 pm – Older in the car telling us excitedly about his day. Seems completely oblivious to his sister sleeping next to him.

3:35 pm – Home. Older and Baby get out of the car. I park the car in the shade, open all the doors and let Middle snooze a bit. At least she will be in a good mood this afternoon, now that she’s had a nap. Older is hungry, of course. Go inside and put together snack of cheese, pretzels, and fruit.

3:50 pm – Wake up Middle, carry her into the house, and plop her down in front of her snack. Chop broccoli for Smitten Kitchen’s broccoli slaw for dinner. Kids finish their snack and run off to play. Take advantage of the sibling happiness to make the broccoli slaw. Sneak bites of it when I am done. So good.

4:30 pm – Remind Older to get dressed for karate and that getting dressed includes shoes and putting his school uniform in the laundry. If I don’t remind him he will walk out of the house barefoot and his school uniform will be scattered all over the house. He is a space cadet when it comes to the minutiae of daily life. Baby is asking to nurse and we settle into the couch for a relatively quick nursing session.

4:40 pm – Husband is home. He is pathetic. Says he has a bad headache and looks pained. I ask him if he wants to take Older to karate. He tells me that I can go but that he will probably let the girls watch TV. I am not happy about all the TV but I need the quiet time to study.

5:00 pm – At karate. Study more physiology flashcards. I have a final exam on Thursday. The kidneys are freaking complicated. Happily I’ve done so well that I only have to get about a 55% on the final exam to keep my “A” in the class. Not worried. Take breaks from studying to watch karate. Older is not the most coordinated and karate does not come naturally for him, but he works hard. The sensi compliments him on his technique and speed in doing pancakes. Older beams. I give him a thumbs up to show him that I see his good work too.

6:10 pm – Home from karate. I am hangry (hungry + angry). Need food STAT. Husband still feeling rotten. Not a lot of help. Low blood sugar for me = a lack of sympathy for Husband. The oven is already preheated. I put the bean burger patties (prepared on Sunday) into the oven and set the timer.

6:30 pm – Add cheese to burger patties, set table and dish out applesauce. Older sees me put out the broccoli slaw and asks if he can put it on his list. I tell him fine. (I allow him five foods on a list that I won’t make him eat. He had one spot left. Apparently broccoli slaw is so horrific it gets to go on the list.) Call kids to wash their hands. Jockeying and bickering for best sink position ensues.

6:40 pm – We all sit down to dinner. Older states that he is going to eat his bean burger happily and is very excited for dinner (I think Middle must have told them there is chocolate mousse for dessert and he knows that he has to eat all his dinner to earn dessert.) Older and Baby eat well although, damn, kids why can’t you sit in your seat still for more than 30 seconds at a time. Middle is supremely whiny. Doesn’t want to eat her burger. Doesn’t want to try the broccoli slaw. We do dinnertime math. We each go around the table and tell our favorite part of day (something we do every night). My favorite and Middle’s are the same; making chocolate mousse together. Middle whines continuously and eats everything but her burger patty. We reminder he many times no burger = no dessert. She moans. She groans. Husband is losing his patience. We set a timer for 7 minutes and tell her she has to finish by then. She doesn’t, but she is eating, albeit S-L-O-W-L-Y so we let her keep going not wanting to deal with the meltdown that taking away the chocolate mousse will cause. Baby wanders away from the table and I let her. I make Older stay and start his homework while we wait for Middle to finish.

7:45 pm – She’s done. That was painful. Distribute chocolate mouse for everyone. Baby comes back to the table. Husband doesn’t finish his mousse. He must really be sick.

8:00 pm – It is late. Quick bath for the girls. We deem Older clean enough to skip a shower. Husband supervises the girls while I clean up dinner. Older finishes homework, changes into jammies, and practices piano. He is working on “Let it Go” and it is sounding pretty good. I think it is a pretty difficult song for him.

8:20 pm – Everyone out of the bath. Jammies on girls. I read Shel Silverstein poems on the couch for bedtime stories. Much laughter from all the children even though Baby doesn’t exactly understand the humor.

8:40 pm – Big kids in bed and allowed to journal or read until 9:00 pm. I take Baby into the rocking chair in our bedroom and nurse her. She tells me she is “not sleepy”. We listen to “Lean on Me” on my phone while she nurses. She hums along and taps her feet to the beat as she nurses. Cute, but unfortunately means that she is not going to fall asleep for me.

9:15 pm – Baby has been done nursing for awhile and we are done snuggling. Daddy’s turn. Husband takes over the rocking of Baby. I settle down on the living room couch for more studying. Middle appears and tells me she isn’t sleepy. I walk her back to bed, tuck her in, and give her a kiss. Older is sound asleep; at least one of my children is sleeping.

9:25 pm – Back to my couch for studying. Have now lost my motivation and peruse the internet reading about trans kids; worries about Middle plaguing my mind.

9:45 pm – I really need to study. Back to work. This time studying gas exchange in the respiratory system.

10:15 pm – Husband texts me that Baby is finally asleep and asks me to open our bedroom door and the kids’ bedroom door so he can put Baby down in her bed.

10:20 pm – I study. Husband continues clean up and packs the big kids’ lunches for school the next day (Middle goes to full-day preschool three times a week). I take breaks from studying and help with clean-up. Husband watches Gladiator on TV while I study. I glance up from time to time but it seems overly violent and geared very much towards guys – which I am not – so it doesn’t distract me from my work.

12:30 am – So tired. Wash up and put on my jammies. Fall into bed with my ipad and charts on the digestive system.

12:45 am – Can no longer focus on what I am reading. Time to go to sleep. Turn out the light. Sigh and swear that tomorrow I will go to be earlier (not likely).

The End.


One thought on “A Day in the Life

  1. Hugs, mama. I love this post. What you’re doing is HARD work, and I can’t believe you’re also going to school. I couldn’t handle taking a class and working full time with NO kids. (Hence my brief dream of a second B.S. in Computer Science went poof!)

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