Day 2 in my week... I don't think I can keep this up! Might skip tomorrow, will have to see!
11:00 p.m. I finally lay down to go to sleep. It could be said that I have some poor sleep habits. My most awake time of the day is the time from about 7 or 8 until about 11. I thought this would change with having kids, but it has not. Even when I'm exhausted I can rarely go to sleep. I lay down and decide to read for a bit, but find myself going down the rabbit hole of Ebola new articles. I feel slight panic when I think about it, so not a great bedtime topic. At midnight I finally turn off the light and go to sleep. I'm not sure why I let myself stay up so late.
2:20 a.m. I hear Teddy squawking. I go in to give him a bottle and he quickly finishes 6 ounces.
5:55 a.m. I hear husband up, getting ready for the day. I feel bad that he will have such a long day, but five minutes later Teddy lets out a few cries. Greta opens the door and barrels into the room. Looks like my day will be long, too. Greta is upset that dad is leaving, but Dad calms her down and she climbs jn bed and cuddles with me. Teddy has quieted down, I get about 10 more minutes of rest before he insists on assistance (messy diaper). The day has begun. I get him dressed and head downstairs for breakfast.
|Morning Mom. We're ready.|
|An open stair case is an invitation. When I try to grab him he crawls away as fast as he can, then laughs hysterically.|
|The cleanest he'll be all day.|
6:30 a.m. Everyone's hungry, mom is not moving fast enough. I hear MJ 10 minutes later, but it takes her 20 minutes longer to wander downstairs. Independence is a glorious thing. She comes downstairs wearing a too short dress and gets upset when I tell her she has to go put on pants if she wants to wear it. A constant problem. Greta spilled food on her Pajamas and freaks out about it. I tell her to go upstairs and ask sis for help picking out clothes and getting dressed.
|For once, she's looking into the camera. I explained to her that I'm trying to capture a whole week, she decided she's on board.|
7:00 a.m. MJ is finally downstairs for good. I give her the leftover oatmeal that Greta and Teddy didn’t finish. I have little baggies of it put together to make it easy every morning. I keep Teddy in the highchair, against his will, until I'm done putting the dishes away because he won't leave the dishwasher alone. Greta decides she has to go potty and goes and sits on the potty for a good 20 minutes. She doesn't succeed but I'm still impressed for how long she'll sit there. I start tying MJ's bats to the chandelier that she's been working on. It's a Target craft project that required putting stickers on 25 bats. It took a very long time to finish. Teddy chews on the end of a laptop cord that husband has left plugged into the wall and starts crying. I send a passive aggressive text to hubs.
|Cooperative play. I feel like it's going to be a good day.|
7:40 a.m. I change Greta but she's missing pants. I go upstairs and get dressed myself. Teddy immediately starts crying downstairs, and the girls keep screaming “Teddy’s crying!!!!”, which is entirely unhelpful. I go downstairs to give him a bottle but he's mainly just tired.
|Greta would rather try to shoot something than put pants on.|
|Helpful big sis, zipping up G's coat.|
|Photo credit goes to MJ. Let's see how many embarrassing photos I can put in this post.|
At 8 o'clock we start getting ready to go. I scramble to get the diaper bag ready, as well as a bag for Greta because she'll be going to her “school: this morning. It’s really just a “Mom’s morning out” program at a nearby church, but we wanted the opportunity for her to socialize regularly. We are out the door by 8:15. We take MJ to her classroom and then I pick up some soup spoons in the teachers lounge; last week the PTO made soup with veggies from the school garden. I look forward to the time that I can help with things like this, but right now all I can manage is loaning some spoons.
|Ready to walk to G's "school". This is the diaper bag I leave with her, and she loves being in charge of it.|
We are back home by 8:30, and I pile everyone in the stroller to walk to Greta’s school. It's about a three-quarter mile walk, but her school doesn't start till nine and it’s a beautiful morning. The first couple weeks the drop off was tough, but now she loves it and looks forward to it.
|A couple of the beautiful houses on my walk to school.|
|Greta's "school". I've always loved this church.|
We arrive by 8:50 and the doors are open so we march right in. She happily goes to her classroom, drops her bag and coat and starts playing. She doesn't even care when I leave. I ask what songs they've been singing, because she comes home singing songs I can't recognize. Turns out she has been singing the Itsy-Bitsy Spider, but the Greta version is tough to decipher.
|Ready to start her day!|
|A far cry from the wailing child I left a few weeks ago. I questioned whether I was making the right decision; turns out I was!|
We're back home by 9:10 a.m. and I put Teddy in the car to run some errands. I thought he might fall sleep in the stroller, but instead he falls asleep in the car. He sleeps for about half an hour and then I go into T.J. Maxx. I have to return a necklace I bought last week which instantly broke. I pick up a sweater for myself and a pair of pajamas for Teddy while I'm there. Then I head over to Target. I need a number of grocery items, but I get distracted by the Home Decor section and the “$15 off $75” offer. I'm such a sucker for their coupons. I end up putting a bunch of sofa pillows in the cart, that I probably don't need, and realize it's already 10:30. I rush through the rest of the store and get the other things I need, and then go to the checkout line. The checker takes forever. I've gotten fairly skilled at being able to tell which are the fast checkers, but sometimes they all appear to be slow. That was the situation today. It takes 15 minutes just to get through the checkout line. Teddy is restless the entire time because I forgot to bring his bottle. Furthermore, I'm running against the clock because I need to go pick up Madeline. I do my best to subtly rush the cashier but she doesn't take the hint. When she's finally done I rush to the car, pile everything in and drive to get MJ.
I drive up to her school at 11:10, just enough time. I usually walk there with the stroller, so MJ doesn't quite know where to look for me. I put her in the car seat and drive to pick up Greta. I would usually walk but for some reason don't feel like it right now. Partly because I expect Teddy to meltdown at any moment and I don't want to get stuck on a long walk if he does. We wait for quite a while at the door to get her, and I chat with some other women I know from a local moms group. We discuss the photo session, because it was set up through the moms group. It somehow makes me feel better to hear that other people's kids were as crazy as ours.
|There's construction happening over there. It was torture that he couldn't crawl closer.|
|Every surface must be crawled on.|
We get home a little before noon but I have a hard time convincing everyone to get out of the car. Greta frequently stays in the car, buckling the buckles on all the car seats when we stop. I give Teddy a bottle on the front porch while Greta plays in the van for a bit. I finally drag everybody inside, mostly against their will, and start giving them lunch.
|All the kids are fascinated by the motion activated owl. Though this guy is a bit hesitant.|
Teddy gets the quiche from yesterday, and I make grilled cheese sandwiches for the girls. I tide Greta over with a banana until they're ready. Meanwhile, since Teddy is in the highchair, I can get the groceries from the car and bring them into the house without Teddy trying to dive down the front stairs. MJ helps me drag things inside. I work on getting everything into the kitchen and try to remember not to burn the grilled cheese sandwiches. I focus on getting the refrigerated and frozen stuff put away, because I know I don't have time to finish everything right now.
I finally sit down and eat a sandwich and some soup with the girls. Teddy finishes and insists on getting out of the highchair, so I know that my time putting things away has grown short. Everyone is done eating by about 12:30. Greta plays with a puzzle, MJ works on her homework, and Teddy keeps trying to get into the dog bowl. I continue to try to put things away, and also pause to vacuum, which I didn't finish yesterday. I keep seeing Teddy put gross things from the floor into his mouth.
|G eats very little, and instead pokes holes in her sandwich and shoves peas in them. If the photo distribution in this post was representative, at least half of them would be of the kids eating.|
|MJ helps me put groceries away, but must pause to check out the Halloween candy selection.|
|This girl loves puzzles. One of her top three activities right now.|
|The water bowl!!! Yes!!!|
|G is totally going to be one of those people that blinks in all the photos.|
|Baby plumber butt is still so cute. I love when G imitates Teddy. Is this her trying to play with him?|
|Oh gosh. And I thought it was bad before, now he found the food. Time for bed.|
1:00 PM. Time for a nap. I grab a bottle and convince everyone to go upstairs. We read a couple stories in the girls room, one about Spot, of course and one about Madeline, of course. I tuck in Greta and MJ goes into the guest room to lay down, and then I take Teddy into his room to give him a bottle. While I give it to him I look at my phone and see a free piano listed on Facebook. I text husband with my brilliant idea. I lay Teddy down in his crib but he isn't settled. I go tuck MJ in while he fusses a bit. It takes him a while to settle down but finally succeeds. While I’m tucking in MJ, husband calls to inform me the piano idea is not a good one. I asked him how firmly he feels about this, and he assures me his feelings are quite firm. I know deep down he is right, but of course I argue anyway. That is the kind of relationship we have.
1:40 p.m. I lay down and hope to get a nap. I read some blogs for a bit, including one that I feel compelled to comment on, even though I know I should be sleeping.
2:15 p.m. Teddy wakes up. I guess he was still hungry when he fell asleep. I give him 4 oz and then rock him to sleep. He’s a crappy napper.
2:35 p.m. Up again! This makes me feel a bit better than I couldn’t be asleep if I tried. This time he puts himself to sleep quickly. I finally close my eyes, not sure if I'll fall asleep, but quickly feel myself start sinking. I wake up about 3:50 to the sound of Greta yelling at the door. Teddy starts crying shortly there after, and then MJ comes out of her room. Everyone is up, everyone piles on mama, everyone is hungry. But for the first time all day, I feel totally rested. This daily nap, for all of us, has become a ritual for me. I rely on it. I never used to be a napper, but for some reason now my body needs them. I think, in part, because the end of the day is the hardest part of the day. It’s when the kids are at their worst, and I therefore need to be at my best. It also gives me the energy to get things done after the kids go to bed, so I don’t actually accomplish any less. These are the things I tell myself to make myself feel better. :)
We head downstairs. Everyone gets pears, Greta gets yogurt, and Teddy gets cheese. While they're eating I continue to try to clean up the kitchen, which I don't seem to be able to get ahead of. I make some chicken meatballs for dinner and stick them in the oven. Everyone finishes eating and we head out back for a bit to enjoy the nice weather. I spend my entire time keeping rocks out of Teddy's mouth. For a while I let it go to see what happens, and he sucks on them a bit, then spits them out. I notice that one of the legs on Greta's baby doll is about to come off. It has looked like it's about to come off for a couple months now, but it is now hanging on by just threads. I try to explain to her that it will fall off soon. She starts crying, apparently understanding what this means. I'm curious to see how she will feel with a legless baby doll, as there is no real way to reattach them.
|She loves to take the leaves from the Day Lilies and "weave" things.|
|"Slide down my cellar door..."|
|My other beautiful girl.|
|This is her feelings on baby potentially losing a leg (or 2).|
|Sometimes G likes to lay in my lap and pretend she's a baby. I'm just thankful I have at least one cuddly child.|
|Her weaving, complete. See also: I preferred when she didn't know how to pose. The fake smile kills me.|
|MJ's arrangement of my frivolous pillow purchase. I like them but don't think the color works. There is some blue in the room, but nowhere else. What say you internet?|
At 6:45 Teddy goes to bed. He is squirmy and wants to play, even though he's exhausted and fussy. I sing to him to try to calm him down, which works until I stop. He fusses but finally goes to sleep. Meanwhile, the girls are angelically quiet downstairs. This has been a work in progress, but they finally understand the sanctity of putting babies to bed.
I clean up the kitchen. We go outside and light up the Jack O' Lanterns for Dad to see when he gets home, and meet some neighbors a block away out for a walk. We've been discussing proper things to say to strangers, and how "Where are you going?" can be rude and nosy. A better thing would be "How's your day going?". So of course, MJ asks the neighbors this, making her sound like she's about 75 years old. I'm used to over the top verbal eloquence, but it still catches me off guard some times.
|I took an obscene number of these pictures. Can you believe this is the best shot?|
|I will never understand why Vito's dog food is such a source of fascination.|
The girls play out back, in the dark, while I put stuff away inside. We have piles of produce on the counter. I don't know where to put it all. If I put it in a cabinet I will forget about it and it will rot.
I send G upstairs to put on pajamas at 8:00, and she melts down. I finally calm her down, read her a couple stories, and by the end of them she is pushing me out of her bed so she can go to sleep. Husband gets home at 8:45, chats with MJ, eats some dinner, then him and MJ go to bed. And here I sit, in my quiet house, loving the silence and the peace that comes after a long day with little children.