Sunday, January 20, 2013

Day in the Life, Winter 2013

My last day-in-the-life was more about score settling than anything else.  But I found it really enjoyable, and truly enlightening, and plan to keep doing these.  Navigating the Mothership organizes these a few times a year, and I didn't realize she was doing another round until Friday night.  They need to be posted by Sunday night.  So Saturday it was!

As with last time, I will start with bed time.  Because babies work on a 24 hour clock, and the night time really determines the quality of the day time around here.
10:45 pm:  DH and I returned home from a date night.  I was feeling pretty good, because the girls had slept in until 8 am (!) on Friday morning.  Our "date night" was a work party, put now that I'm starting to know a few of the ladies it is getting more fun.  And since I'm not pregnant, as I was last year, I actually got to imbibe.  Probably responsible for some less than stellar sleep that night.  
11:00 pm:  Greta wakes up.  This wake up has become so routine that it often feels useless to try to go to bed before this.  If I tuck in at 9:30, by the time I'm asleep it's only an hour before I'm up again.  And that's if I'm in bed by 9:30.  As usual, she downs 4 ounces and goes right back to sleep.  Thankfully, although she's been waking a bunch, she usually eats quickly and goes back to sleep.  After she goes to sleep I wash bottles, and see that the baby sitter failed to feed her very much of the food I left.  I expect it to be a long night. I crawl into bed about 11:30.  DH is snoring something fierce so I move to the spare room.
3:45 am: Greta squawks.  Seems to settle.  I never quite get back to sleep, knowing that this means she'll be up soon.
4:30 am: Wakes up.  Nurse her, because I didn't pump before bed.  She keeps falling asleep on me, don't think there's much milk.  Finally give her a bottle.  Don't get her back in her crib until ~5:50. Half doze through all of this.  I duck into DH's room (our room, but since I'm sleeping in the spare room...) to tell him I'm going back to bed and closing the door.  I'll let him take the next wake up so I can get some rest.
9:00 am: Up for the day.  The girls have been up for a while, and I've half dozed but not woken up enough to ask DH to take them somewhere else in the house.  MJ screaming 5 feet from my head bounces me out of bed and I'm grumpy.  Letting me sleep in but then not trying to keep them quiet makes me less thankful than I probably should be.  I Give Greta remainder of bottle he started.  Then 2 more ounces.  Girl is hungry.  DH takes a shower, MJ watches iPad, we all cuddle in bed.  Girls are happy, mom is grumpy.  I think about my goals for the day: Squeeze in a run.  Vacuum.  Look over some rental applications.
The kitchen at the start of the day.
9:20 am: MJ bonks Greta with iPad.  Tries to redeem herself by blowing raspberries on her forehead.  Greta gets over it, followed by cuddling and wrestling in the bed.
9:29 am: My turn for a shower.  Weigh myself. 151.2.  The running is slowly dropping things, but still 9 pounds to go.
9:30 am: Shower while I can, shrieks from the other room, drown it out with the sound of water.  Ponder the rental.
9:38 am: Finished.  Apparently I really do take shorter showers than DH.  Get dressed.  So little fits these days, it's always a crap shoot.
9:40 am:  Hear potty talk from the bathroom, so reappear to scold the potty talk. Everything is "poopoo" and "peepee" these days.  Dad gets ready for work.
9:45 am: Greta still hungry so I try nursing her while MJ and dad go downstairs.
9:47 am:  Try to take a picture of dad in his scrubs but no space on my phone, must find things to delete.  This is such a constant problem.  MJ tries to help by "deleting" things from my phone sometimes.  Oy.
9:54 am:  Greta is asleep on me.  Extract myself to go make coffee.  Fail.  She wakes up, so we go downstairs.
10:00 am:  Start coffee pot.  Change our water filter and unload dishwasher.  Coffee pot seems to not work this morning; it works about 90% of the time, so I can't bring myself to get a new one, but then randomly stops working.  Bad morning for it.  Make French press, which is better coffee, but much more time consuming.
10:10 am:  Dad leaves for work.  He'll be done at 6:00.  He'll be working all weekend, so I steel myself.  The extent of my exhaustion sinks in and I want to cry; am super grumpy to everyone.  Try to keep it together so he doesn't have to leave a total train wreck behind. The run may change to a nap, though realistically neither are likely.
Dad leaving for work.  MJ has decided to wear my vest for the day.
10:15 am: MJ is going "shopping".  She is knee deep into pretend play as I just try to function.  She asks what I want from the store.  I say sleep.  She says they don't have that.  So I ask for cake.  She says they do have cake.
10:20 am: Coffee is nigh.  I don't know how any mother of young children could possibly function without coffee.  It is nearly a disaster in the house if I don't have some.  And we are apparently having a picnic on the kitchen floor.
10:24 am: Coffee. The coffee emboldens me and I decide to make a breakfast sandwich with some leftover bacon we have
10:29 am: Egg is cooked, muffin is toasted, food is done.  Life is looking a bit up.  Join girls on kitchen floor to drink coffee, eat breakfast and play.
So many fruits and veggies!
Morning picnic.
Somehow some play carrots ended up in my fridge after our picnic.
10:37 am:  Renew Craigslist ad for the rental that we can't get rented; Saturday is the best day for finding a renter and I want it at the top of the list.  Continue picnic.
10:45 am: Run downstairs to start cycle 2 of diapers.  Bring laundry upstairs.  Find shell in dryer.  Dream of Florida (which I will post about soon)
10:50 am: Put some clothes away.  Just the ones that are likely to get wrinkled before I get to the rest.
10:55 am: Vacuum.  MJ sets out to help me; she "vacuums" in the kitchen while I vacuum in the living room.  Greta is in the "circle of neglect" aka exersaucer.
11:10 am:  Success!  Feeling accomplished. Realize I need to start getting ready for 12:00 showing.  
11:14 am: Poopy diaper.
11:18 am:  Thaw milk for bottle.  Thankful for my large freezer stash so Greta still gets a bottle of frozen milk a day, despite my declining milk supply.  MJ continues helping clean by wiping down the table and floors with a paper towel and cleaning the living room.  She is actually being truly helpful.  It's pretty awesome.
11:22 am: Get MJ moving.  Socks, shoes, etc.  Winter makes getting out of the house such a chore.  Explain to MJ why she can't wear crocs (snow gets in the holes).
11:27 am:  Add "bath for Greta" to mental to-do list.  Grime in her neck folds is gross.
11:28 am: MJ starts packing backpack.  I get socks on.
11:34 am:  We're ready!  Now have 10 minutes to kill.  35 degrees out!  So don't need to start car. Enough time for one more cup of coffee.
11:48 am:  In the car.  While driving to rental, pep talk for MJ that she must be silent at the rental.  She is not allowed to ask the prospective tenant a million questions or be a disturbance.  
11:55 am: Arrive.  Unload. Greta thankfully fell asleep.
MJ explores the pantry.
Realize I haven't yet taken a self portrait.  Would you rent from this lady?
12:00 pm:  No one here.  Will be super annoyed if I get stood up.  Decide to color with MJ while waiting.
12:06 pm:  Call to ask where the prospective tenant is.  They got "caught up" and ask to reschedule.  I say don't bother.  I'm only mildly annoyed despite the inconvenience.  MJ, however, is super upset by this.  Weird.
MJ is super annoyed by the no-show.  Maybe she should be the muscle in this operation.
12:10 pm:  Back in the car.  MJ tries to convince me to go out to lunch.  I laugh at her attempts at persuasion, she's pretty convincing.
12:20 pm: Another rental call.  Try to tactfully explain it's in the ghetto without dissuading a potential renter. These folks live in Shakopee,  I settle on the descriptor "urban".
12:26 pm: Back home.  No plans to leave for the rest of the day, which is such a glorious feeling.  Especially in the winter.
12:30 pm: Greta is awake.  Set her down with a toy and get 5 minutes of calm to go to the bathroom.
12:36 pm:  PB&J for MJ. Heat up Mac and cheese.  My lunch consists of the food MJ doesn't eat.
12:43 pm:  Nurse Greta. MJ finishes lunch and continues wiping down the floor.  Kind of weird, but she's into it.
12:55 pm:  Read Cinderella while nursing.  Lots of Cinderella love in the house these days.  Change descriptors while reading so as not to suggest that good people are pretty and bad people are ugly; someday she will be able to read and I will no longer have this freedom.
1:05 pm: Finish and tuck MJ in for a nap.  Swaddle Greta and get a bottle in hopes she'll fall asleep
Swaddled, but obviously not asleep.
1:15 pm:  Girlfriend still hungry.  Give a little more, she seems starving today.
1:25 pm:  It is clear she is not sleeping.  Although there are some eye rubs and yawns, an awful lot of smiles.  I was hoping she would nap while MJ does so I could run on the treadmill downstairs.  I decide to get creative and get my running clothes on.  I take her downstairs, with a bunch of toys in a cradle and hope she'll be entertained by watching me.
Hoping this will work....
1:32 pm: On the treadmill, warming up.  It seems like this just might work...
My biggest fan, apparently.  And with less commentary than MJ insists on providing when I run. 
2:03 pm: Done! 2.42 miles!  Week 5 of C25K completed!  Thought she might fall asleep but she didn't.  She did play a bit and just was happy cooing away.   I'm not sure if she could see the iPad or not.  Rest. Play with Greta
2:08 pm:  Messy diaper.  Two in one day is a rarity for her, so it must be bath time.
2:18 pm: Bath done.  Play!  Get dressed.
Look at those adorable thighs!
2:24 pm:  Return rental calls.  Play with Greta's toes by the fireplace.  Practice rolling.  She seems like she'll start crawling before she really starts rolling; she's only done it a few times and it is just not happening.
2:42 pm:  She's fussy.  Nurse her in hopes of getting her to fall asleep.  It works instantly and i play on my phone for a few minutes.
2:54 pm: Put her down in her crib.
2:57 pm:  Some friends will be coming over later so I order pizza.
3:03 pm: Ordered.  Time to pick up some more around the house.
3:12 pm: Finally finish picking up kitchen, which I had been trying to finish since the morning.  The kitchen is usually a good metaphor for my life.  Girls sill sleeping so I sweep and swiffer.
A bit better.
3:24 pm: Done.  Greta starts squawking.  MJ's door opens upstairs.  Still rousing so I hang up Christmas cards that I never did anything with.
3:35 pm: Bottle for greta. Post-nap bathroom break for MJ.
3:39 pm: I ask MJ to pick up baby choking hazards, since we will have several crawlers visiting.
3:44 pm: Greta finishes bottle.  Continue picking up and do some laundry.  The amount I've gotten done today is astounding to me.
3:58 pm:  Tantrum for no discernible reason.  No idea what sparked it, but she ends up getting sent to her room until she can calm down.
4:25 pm:  Make some steamed sweet potatoes for Greta.  Feed her squash and green beans.  MJ is still wiping the floors.
Seriously, she can't enough of wiping down the floors.  Weird!
4:36 pm:  Friends Maggie and crew arrive.
4:50 pm:  Everyone has arrived.  4 preschoolers, 4 babies (2 crawling, 1 newborn).   Oddly quiet at first.  Takes them a good long while to actually get hyper.
5:00 pm:  Pizza arrives.  Children strangely quiet.  Chaos eventually descends.
6:00 pm: DH gets home.  Joins the festivities.
Our adorable big kids, who stole the iPad when we weren't looking and snuck upstairs with it.

The girls.  MJ has known Mia since 4 weeks of age, and Annie since birth.  Turns out they still like each other!

7:00 pm: Put Greta to sleep.  Considering she was rubbing her eyes at 5:30 and usually is in bed by 6, can't believe how long she lasted.  Everyone departs shortly thereafter.  Start cleaning.
7:25 pm: Pump, since Greta hadn't nursed in a while.  
7:35 pm: Back downstairs.  Pick up.  DH takes MJ upstairs and I get peaceful time cleaning with a glass of wine.  An enjoyable end to the evening.
7:45 pm:  DH's co-worker drops by to borrow his otoscope to check her daughter's ear.  I forgot this visit was happening and at first was annoyed that I couldn't sink into bed with my laptop, but quickly remember how much I like chatting with her.  MJ and Eddie, her 4 year old, raise a ruckus.  We talk about schools, we have both fallen in love with the same much-too-expensive private school.  MJ ends up staying up much past her bedtime.
8:45 pm: They depart, we make vague plans of dinner soon and I hope it happens.  DH puts MJ to bed so I can do some work.  I have to look into some tenants that have applied for our place and form an LLC.
11:00 pm: Greta wakes up, downs a bottle and goes back to sleep.

So it all started much like it began, with some baby cuddles and a bottle.  Despite being exhausted, I actually got everything done that I set out to do, which always feels good.  I'm so often going on autopilot most of the day, because it takes so much to tend to the girls, that I don't often think about what is happening or when or how long it takes.  It's interesting to see that these little nagging things I always aim to get done (like hanging up Christmas cards) take so very little time.  It's also interesting to see how much time I spend just sitting on the rug playing with Greta.  I always think I don't get to do much of that, but I did a lot more than I realized.  As tiring as this phase is, I know I will miss it so much.  I love playing with the girls all day.  I love getting drug into MJ's imagination.  I love being fully absorbed by motherhood, even when life is crazy and DH is working and I'm trying to get some other stuff done. 


  1. Coffee is a godsend. It's amazing the things it does to my mood. You were very productive, impressive! Thanks for having us over :)

  2. 1. “circle of neglect” had me laughing out loud for some reason.

    2. No-show potential renters is one of my biggest pet peeves. Have some respect people! I hope you get it rented soon – it’s such a challenging time of year to rent.

    3. Love the pretend play, but sorry the store didn’t have more sleep for you!

    4. I totally get why you change the Cinderella story. We have some Dr. Seuss books that use the word ‘stupid’ and I always change those too, but know that Riley will one day be able to call me out on it and know what it really says.

    5. When MJ is done with your floors feel free to send her over to our house. :)

  3. Playing "store" is one of my favorite games. That, and "restaurant." Kids are so frank as they respond to our pretend requests and it's always too, too cute.

    Also feel ya on the rental thing. We have a few properties and they are such a pain in the a#$. People are not respectful, nor do the care about property the way we (the owners) do. Such a drag.

  4. So of my core group of girlfriends, there are 8 of us, there are only two of us who actually drink coffee, and I think the amount I consume frightens the others. But I don't even understand how these other women (moms) function?! It is like life-juice for me.

  5. Your girls are beautiful! I would be SO ANNOYED that I got the kids bundled up and out the door, only to get stood up. You are much more graceful about it than I would have been!

  6. Such cute kids. You are awesome to squeeze in the run-I'm off the exercise train once again. Blegh.

    Rental properties bane of my existence for sure.