Thursday, February 11, 2010

A Day In The Life

As Brian and I were talking the other night, we realized that most of our friends and family don't have a clue how our days are organized. As people with non-typical jobs and non-typical hours, we sort of operate a bit differently than most folks we know. For me, this seems totally normal; my mother has had a daycare in her home for 31 years (apparently she started when she was 8 years old...), so my daily schedule is the same one I grew up with.

So, because I thought it might be entertaining, and because Snowpocalypse has kept me from doing anything any more entertaining, it's a Day In The Life. I'm using Tuesday as an example, with bits of Wednesday and Everyday.... This is in no way to say "look how much I do all day. You're a slacker". Rather, I find other peoples' daily routines interesting and thought you might, too.

6:55 smack cell phone snooze button until 7:15

7:15 drag my carcass out of bed, check fertility monitor and perform required actions (pee on a stick! Yay!), get in the shower. Lately, I field calls and texts about who's coming or not, depending on the weather.

7:30 dress, check fertility monitor results, and ask Brian to turn off his alarm clock that has been beeping since 7:25.

7:35 grab a bowl for the baby's cereal and head downstairs to open up the house for daycare.

7:40 straighten up downstairs and shovel any snow that has gotten dumped on the walk. Salt the sidewalk to avoid lawsuits when someone falls.

7:45-8 Baby E arrives. We play for a while.

8-8:30 Big P, Miss A, and Mr. A arrive and begin playing. I organize bags and lunches, put away shoes and coats and anything else lying around.

8:30 feed the baby, and change her diaper.

9 Baby E goes to bed upstairs. I start a load of laundry, depending on which basket is full,and make our bed. I get milk cups for the kids on my way back down.

9:15 change two more diapers and send Miss A to the potty. Fix my breakfast while the kids play (I found organic Pop Tarts! Yay!).

9:45-10:30 Miss M arrives. Chances are Mr. A needs another diaper change. Tuesday we made bags for Valentine's Day. This involved supervising each child, one at a time, as they go nuts with glue, paper hearts, and stickers. While I discussed a cell phone and internet outage with Brian. Most days we also read books, practice counting/ABCs/colors/etc and I make mental note of any developmental stuff we need to work on. I also break up a lot of fights over toys and snarky three year old stuff.

10:45 Baby E is awake. Change her diaper and warm water to heat her bottle. When I go up to get her, I also put the clothes into the dryer.

11:20 big kids clean up, and the baby takes her bottle under much duress and threatening. I micromanage clean up and answer 428,340 questions about what to pick up next.

11:30 kids settle down to watch a little PBS while I pack up lunches to go upstairs and change 3 diapers. Take Miss A to potty and send both big kids (M and P) to potty on their own. Brian leaves for work if he works 12-10:30. I remind him to take lunch, cell phone, and keys. 258 times.

12:00 I pop the baby in the highchair and settle the other kids with blocks in the dining room while I heat up their lunches, get nap spots set up, and start unloading the dishwasher.

12:15 call kids to the table for lunch. I micromanage lunch-eating, fielding a billion comments about who's done with what and who thinks they're full and assuring three year olds that they can't possibly be full after 1/8 cup of corn and yogurt. Eat your chicken. Spoon any food into Mr. A that he can't finger-feed himself. Feed Baby E, moving her fingers out of the bowl every .056 seconds. Unload the dishwasher and begin any dinner prep that can be done ahead of time.

12:45 clean hands and faces, wipe the table, distribute milk cups to kids. Clean off plates and load the dishwasher. Prepare snacks to save time later. Send Mr. P and Miss M to the potty. Change Mr. A and Baby E's diapers. Settle big kids for nap in the living room, Mr. A and Baby E in upstairs bedrooms. Start folding laundry after checking email, Twitter, and facebook via cell phone. Go back into the other room 234 times to flip Baby E over and tell her to go to sleep, and tell Mr. A to be quiet 182 times.

1-3 Finish folding laundry and do any chores that need to be done to keep us on schedule. This is things like cleaning bathrooms (4), dusting, cleaning the kitchen, sweeping, or whatever. On Wednesday it involved making cookie dough to chill and sweeping the snow off the front porch. By 2 or 2:30 I'm usually eating lunch. Some days I sew.

3:00 Send P and M to the potty, wake up the babies. Mr. A walks down the steps himself while I carry Baby M. If need be, I also start a new load of laundry that will get dried overnight. Change three diapers and send Miss A to potty (we're working on it!). Brush everyone's hair so they don't look like ragamuffins.Set everyone to their snacks, and finish dinner prep. Tuesday we had tortellini, so there was no prep. Wednesday was roast beef, green beans, and potatoes. I get it all in the oven and set the automatic oven controls to turn on while I'm teaching. I clean hands and faces, clean off plates, serve milk cups, sweep the floor, and pack up to go downstairs.

3:45 The hoard goes back downstairs to put on shoes and put away their bags before their parents come. When everyone is ready, we play. During this time, I usually field a million calls or texts about lessons if it's Monday through Wednesday, and parents start coming to pick up kids. Baby E takes a bottle around 4, and she fights me. At least one child always melts down when their parents come. Ideally, toys get cleaned up.

5:25 I send the last kiddo out the door. I clean up milk cups and head upstairs to change gears. I usually have enough time to go to the bathroom and get my chair set up and drink refilled before my 5:30 lesson comes.

5:30-8:00 Piano lessons on Monday-Wednesday. On Thursday, I usually clean or do some sewing during this time, unless I have make-up lessons scheduled.

8:00 finish dinner preparations, change into pajamas, remove contacts, manage any laundry that is left in the system. If need be, I sometimes do some cleaning at this point. I eat dinner around 8:30 or 9 most nights.

9 - 10:30 or 11, or 11:30 or whatever: I read or surf the web, or do something crafty like sew, crochet, or embroider. Whatever project I'm working on right now. I watch a little TV or whatever until Brian gets home, if he worked the late shift. We usually head upstairs between 11:30-midnight and go to bed between midnight and 12:30.

Broken down, it looks like this:
cups of milk poured: 11
bowls of baby food shoveled: 3
diapers changed: minimum of 12, more like 20
lessons taught: 5
questions answered, fights settled, judgments doled out: 9,428,750,245

How does a Day In Your Life look?


Samantha said...

and I thought I was busy! That made me exhausted just reading it! Props to you!!!

Andrea said...

I think it's easier with four or five kids running around. When I only have one or two, they get bored and that's when the trouble starts ;)

MadHat76 said...

There is no way I could do what you do. I would be worn out before noon. And now the "women of faith itinerary" totally makes sense ;-)

Gorby family blog said...

At first glance this post looked long and time consuming so I saved it for a few days till I had time to read it just now. I love it! And I could never, never do it! I have piles of laundry that I can't seem to do, a house that never gets cleaned. I admire you!

Andrea said...

Shell, don't you dare bang on my WoF itinerary! ;) You know it kept you on time and on the proper Metro line!

April, oh no! I totally didn't mean this to be a "look what all I do in a day" post! I just think a lot of people have no idea what their friends' do in a day's time. Like I have no clue what Brian's day even looks like, and he tells me about most of it. And you *do* do what I do all day -- with three of your own. Which is harder, because they don't go home and tend to wake you up in the middle of the night ;) I love me some quiet from 8 PM - midnight!!

Who the heck said I don't have pile of laundry lying around? Or (most on my nerves right now) a Take This To Goodwill box in the hallway? Oh, not me....