It’s no secret that I keep a busy schedule. We are an active family, and we enjoy getting out in the world and having fun together. I usually try for at least one activity outside of the house each day, even if it’s just an errand or hot chocolate stop, just to break things up and keep the energy flowing. Most people tell me that “they can’t imagine how busy I must be” or they “don’t know how I get it all done,” but I think that people hugely underestimate their own time-management skills and their potential for accomplishment. There is so much you can do in a single day! In that spirit, I thought I’d spend a week taking you through our days- a basic breakdown of what we do each day, and how we do it. Starting with today.
6:30: I usually wake up to something like this- Carolyn, tearing apart my bookshelves. Good morning! I was really off-schedule with running this winter, but as the weather warms up I’ve been trying to get up before the kids and get a run in. It’s tough, because the bulk of my homework is done at night, and it’s not practical to expect myself to be able to stay up late working and then get up early to run every single day. Right now, it’s a process, but I’ve been biking to school and back and all around town, so all is not lost.
7:00- Jack’s awake! Down to the second level to change diapers and get dressed. Down one more floor to eat breakfast. Smoothie to share (banana, greens, raspberries, mango, maca, hempmilk, sunbutter, and green tea), and leftover zucchini bread oatmeal for Jack and Carolyn.
8:00- start to wrap up breakfast. The kids are reeeeeally distracted eaters, and it’s rare for either of them to finish a plate of food in a short amount of time. We talk about what we’ll do with our day and which toys we’ll play with after we eat. At this point Carolyn has combed oatmeal through her hair and has dried chia seeds dotting the front of her shirt. I clean their faces and Jack heads to the sunroom to play while Carolyn and I throw laundry in downstairs. Then it’s back up to lay on the floor and play with Brios.
9:30– Laundry switch, and we’re getting bored with our trains. Usually at this point we’d head out to run an errand or go to the playground, but we had a storm blow in last night and everything was still really wet this morning, so the playground was soaked. We settle on blowing bubbles in the front yard.
10:00- We are so over bubbles. Back inside to change diapers and, today, shirts. The kids both have runny noses and have gotten into the habit of wiping their noses on their sleeves. Gross! I’m trying to do something about it, but in the meantime I just change their shirts about three times a day.
10:15- Play-doh time! We actually limit the amount of actual play-doh they play with because Carolyn (and sometimes Jack) will eat it and then I have to dig out big gobs of gunk from the roofs of their mouths. Today they were totally content to just play with the plastic pieces. I do the dishes while they play.
11:00- Bored! Fortunately, it’s snack time. Boom Chicka POP!
11:07– Jack knocks his water off the counter. Not his fault, but…ARGH. We mop the floor.
11:15- Mom has cut off the popcorn because there’s almost none left. We switch to fresh pears. They also dig in to some leftover white bean, shiitake, and leek casserole from the night before. We decide what we’d like to have for dinner.
11:30- After the kids eat, and are less likely to try to pick at my lunch, I throw something together for myself. I’m at school on Thursdays from 1 to 3, so this is the time to prep some kind of lunch, otherwise it won’t happen and I’ll be stuck until dinner.
11:38- Lunch for Momma!
Leftover brown rice and pintos topped with nori flakes and hempseeds, and a mache and arugula salad topped with shredded carrot, shredded broccoli, leftover seared green beans, sunflower seeds, avocado, and a miso-orange vinaigrette dressing. I ended up sharing the salad with Jack (he’s really into lettuce right now), and Carolyn picked at the broccoli. I rely pretty heavily on leftovers to keep us going during the day, so when I cook dinner I usually make about twice the amount I think I’ll need.
12:00– The kids are starting to wear down. We change diapers and shirts again and hang out in the nursery doing puzzles.
12:45- Ashleigh’s here!
My friend has been helping me out here and there with some babysitting (MUCH appreciated), and she offered to hang with them today. They would both usually go down for their naps right about now, but we are WAY too excited about Ash coming over, so the naps go out the window.
1:00- Bye, guys! I head out. They hardly notice, and that’s just fine.
1:30-2:45- Discuss Sartre’s The Wall in philosophy class.
3:00- Mom’s home! Time to jump around and scream and pull our hair!
3:05– We say goodbye to Ashleigh with hugs and kisses. Upstairs to change diapers and shirts and talk about what they did while I was gone (fed chocolate milk to the toy dinosaur, of course!).
3:20- We head outside with a trash bag and a mission: TO CLEAN THE CAR.
It was beginning to get reeeeally bad- like, trash-and-foodstuffs-all-over-the-floor bad. I knew I wouldn’t have time to tackle it over the weekend, and I wanted it cleaned for tomorrow when we’ll be out more during the day, so I figured it was now or next week (unacceptable). Fortunately, the kids were great helpers, and stayed out of the way (mostly). At one point Carolyn got sick of rolling around in the cozy coupe and tried to crawl inside the car. I quickly vacuumed out the (empty) back seat and popped her in, where she stayed while I finished the front.
I get really frustrated when my car is a mess, mostly because I am obsessed with it and I want to take the very best care of it, so it felt really good to clean it all out.
Ahhhhh 🙂 Right on time, Carolyn started to lose it just as I was tossing the floor mats back in.
5:00- We clean up the cleaning supplies and go back inside. I can’t believe how late it is! Change diapers again and start to throw dinner together.
This is where the pictures stopped. 5 pm to 7 pm is the most hectic time of the day, just because the kids are getting work out but still manage to be absolutely wild, and I’m usually trying to get something cooked for dinner while monitoring them. I wanted some BBQ tempeh, but was out of BBQ sauce, so….I made my own! Crushed tomatoes, molasses, vinegar, onions, garlic, and liquid smoke all simmering on the stove for an hour, making my house smell like a barbecue. I also threw a cup of dry polenta and four cups of shredded broccoli into three cups of water and two of almond milk.
5:35- Pick up Dada from work! At this point I am beginning to run out of steam, and am grateful for a bit of relief.
6:00- We are home, changed, and in our PJ’s! Dinner is almost ready, and Hugo is ready to go on Netflix. Carolyn has been crying since we got home because she is so overwhelmed with exhaustion.
6:15- Jack eats dinner. Carolyn is still screaming, and Luis and I alternate holding her while Jack watches Hugo and slurps down polenta.
6:45- I nurse Carolyn long enough to get her to calm down. We’re working on weaning, but she’s not ready yet and when she’s upset she still turns to nursing for comfort. It’s a slow process, but we’re getting over it.
7:00- Jack finishes eating, Carolyn starts on her own bowl of polenta. Jack and I say our goodnights and head upstairs to brush teeth and read some books.
7:10– I read three books to Jack and tuck him in. We hold hands for a while as he falls asleep, and he tells me over and over, “the answer is blowing in the wind!”
7:25– Jack is asleep. I go downstairs to fold all of the laundry that was washed and dried during the day. Luis is feeding Carolyn while eating his own dinner, and I dish a plate up for myself.
This was so good– I actually preferred the TJ’s BBQ sauce to my own, but the polenta was outrageous. It’s actually all gone!
8:00- Laundry folded, diapers lined and stacked for tomorrow, dishes done, dinner eaten. I know that Glee is on at 9, and at this point I am beginning to get excited about actually watching it as it runs. I do a bit of reading and last-minute summer shopping in the meantime. I also photocopy the story we read in Philosophy class and pack it into an envelop to send to R.S., because I’m convinced he’d love it. Luis takes Carolyn up to her bed and puts her to sleep.
8:50- Toss a handful of chocolate chips into a teacup and grab my water bottle. Plant myself on the couch and get comfy.
9:00- GLEE! I haven’t actually watched an episode of Glee on TV since last season because I’m never able to catch it, so it was special to sit down tonight and watch. That is, until it turned out to be about (SPOILER ALERT!) school shootings! I was shamelessly glued to the TV for the entire hour O.o I feel like a zombie momma.
10:00- Start typing up this post! Flip back and forth from the computer to Prince Ombra, to try to give my eyes a break from all the screen-time.
11:16- Hit publish, pack up and head upstairs to bed. Thursday is our least exciting day in terms of activities, because we have fewer regularly-scheduled things going on. I’m trying to find an activity or group that meets on Thursday mornings, because it is such an open slot for us and I think the kids would enjoy getting out in the morning. So far, no luck.
So that’s that! Nothing too crazy, just another Thursday in the Austin house. We’ve got a lot more going on tomorrow, including a fun smoothie date with Madrinaaaaa! Wahoo! Side note: we are totally addicted to Greenstraw smoothies and wheatgrass shots. Yikes! Here’s to tomorrow.