A Day in the Life

 

I sometimes feel like I exist in this strange place of straddling two different “seasons” of life at the same time.   Most of my friends are living in one season or the other – either doing the toddler/baby thing or working through parenting older kids and teens.  It feels like it’s hard to connect with my Toddler Mom friends because we are dealing with a house full of teens and then on the other hand, it can feel difficult to connect with my Older Kid/Teen Mom friends because I’m managing toddlers too.  Each season has its own set of joys, frustrations and issues but because I’m dealing with both, sometimes I end up feeling like I can’t connect easily with my friends – either literally connect and physically get together or figuratively connect in terms of shared experience.

I guess this blog post is my attempt at giving friends a better picture of what our life is like.  Our busyness comes from the sheer number of people in our household and not from being over-committed (at least that’s what I truly believe).  We keep our kids limited to one activity each and Alex & I don’t have much on our dance cards beyond work and home life.  But I often feel like I let my friends down because I just can’t do as much, meet as often, or connect like they can.  I end up missing & rescheduling play dates with my Toddler Mom friends and I can’t do the ladies night out stuff – leaving the littles behind – that my Teen Mom friends can do.  And it’s a bummer.  And sometimes I feel badly about it.  And sometimes it’s a bit lonely. 

I have a few moms in my life who understand all of this.  But they are few and far between.  Our culture just doesn’t often have families with toddlers & teens co-existing.  And that’s ok, it just makes things more interesting for those of us who are out there.  There are parts of this that only another mama in a similar situation can understand.  I hope none of this sounds like complaining, because I’m absolutely not.  I love my life, I love my kids and I chose this.  But that doesn’t mean there aren’t ups AND downs to it all.

So anyway…..point of this blog post.  A day in the life (this past Tuesday, to be exact):

  • Monday night – I put about 8 pounds of beans out to soak in anticipation of what I’m going to do on Tuesday.
  • Tuesday 6am – get up with the baby.  make coffee.  work hard to make my eyes open.
  • 7:30am – I put beans in 3 pots on the stove to boil.
  • 8am – Alex wakes up and gets dressed & ready for work, he comes out & “tags” me so I can go get dressed.
  • 9am – I run up to the highschool because Olivia had a problem with her 2nd semester schedule and I needed to meet w/the guidance counselor to sort it out.
  • After I get back (it takes about 30 minutes,) we spend the morning eating breakfast, feeding the toddlers.  Hope & Duncan get some direction with their school work (they are both homeschooling right now – 9th & 7th grade respectively).
  • 10:30am – our pastor comes over to meet with us about the home church that we lead, he plans to be here for about an hour, it goes for about 1.5 hours instead.
  • noon – Alex leaves for work, he takes Hope and drops her off @ her meeting with her homeschool advisor.
  • I spend the afternoon feeding the boys lunch and wrangling them down for naps (which Tru fights and ultimately doesn’t take!).  Duncan gets some direction w/school work.  I make 2 or 3 phone calls for appointments, insurance, etc.  Maybe I eat lunch???  (there are a lot of days that I honestly don’t remember!)
  • 2:30 – I start chopping onions, celery, garlic for the burritoes I’m making with the beans.  Get the beans drained and everything ready for when I get back.  I’m also getting dinner ready at the same time – so soup is cooking on the stove.
  • 3:45 – I leave to take Duncan to the Kitsap Transit Bus Stop so he can take the bus into Poulsbo.  We are hoping this will be a workable way to get him into Poulsbo for his 2x/week  KCMT play practice.
  • 4pm – I come home and start mashing beans and making burritoes.  I finish the soup so it’s ready for dinner and I make 40+ burritoes to put in the freezer for after-school snacks and Alex’s lunches.
  • 5:15pm – my mom gets home and pours a glass of wine…..WOW!  It sounds great, but I’ve still got more driving to do!  The soup didn’t turn out so great for some reason, so I am working on a back up plan for dinner – adding toasted cheese sammies to make sure everyone is full & satisfied.
  • 6:15pm – the big boys call, they are done with wrestling and ready to be picked up.  I throw out my dinner instructions to everyone and then leave about 10 minutes later.
  • 6:30pm – Grab the big boys from KHS, run them home and drop them off.  I stay in the van and immediately leave again to drive into Poulsbo to pick up Duncan.
  • 7:30pm – I get home, start working the bedtime routine with the little boys.  Get them to bed and then talk to the big kids about big kid stuff, check in about homework, sports, wrestling, etc.
  • 9pm – The house is pretty quiet, the baby is nursed to sleep.  Big kids are in their rooms.  I eat something for dinner.
  • I spend the evening running laundry and folding/stuffing diapers.  I prop my lap top up so I can see it while I’m doing the laundry.
  • 11:30pm – off to bed I go!

The baby is still breastfeeding, so my typical day includes 3-4 breaks throughout the day when I sit down to nurse him.  That’s usually when I check email & Facebook.  The schedule also includes the normal diaper changes, toddler play time, fielding calls from teens looking for rides because they missed the bus (not happenin’, hope they wore walking shoes!), calls from my hubby and other misc. stuff.  I end up either leaving the 2 littles more than I like so that I can get stuff done more quickly or I have to take them with me and sacrifice naptimes and their good humor.  It’s always a toss up!

This is a fairly typical day.  Obviously it varies.  On Wednesday night, my day was slightly less hectic  and I wasn’t making a gazillion burritoes, but I had a meeting in Poulsbo from 7:30 to 9:30 and I came home and stayed up until midnight laundering Alex’s work clothes and ironing them as he was all out of slacks and clean shirts.

Today didn’t have meetings, but it did have a grand total of SIX round trips from the house to either Poulsbo or Kingston.  I am sooooo tired of being in the van.  And a teenager just walked into the room to let me know that she we have to leave the house at 6:40 tomorrow morning so that she can be at school for Jazz rehearsal.  *sheesh!*

I posted this thinking maybe some of you are curious.  And I posted it hoping that it explains to some of my friends why I don’t return emails or texts or why I totally space that we were supposed to get together.  Or why I just can’t drag my littles out of the house one more time.

Aaaah, the life of a big family!  I wouldn’t trade it for anything!  (but I would love to hire a personal taxi service!!)

Advertisements

5 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Enjoyed reading your blog…how old are all the kids and all the names? I got Hope, Duncan, Rean, Olivia,…Tru…

  2. 2

    Diana said,

    I think you are doing really amazing. I empathize and feel similarly to you many times. Granted I have 2 littles and 1…..medium(6th grade)? haha. But I too feel like I am torn between the two groups of mommy friends. The ones with babies have no idea what it’s like trying to meet the needs of a 12 year old boy and schooling him. The ones with 6th graders are usually way past the point of a 14 month old keeping them up at night. It’s tough. I’m learning slowly but surely to scale back and that many, if not all, of my wants and ‘needs’ in terms of how I spend my time have to be shelved for a while. We’ll soon be juggling Little League on top of everything else too and I feel in my heart that we want more babies fairly soon. People say, “how do you find time for it?” when it comes to my tu tu’s or couponing or schooling Jake or taking care of Craig’s family and it’s like well, I’m up late nearly every night (varies from 11 to 3am) and I’m tired pretty much every day.
    But yet, would I want to be kid-less again and back to my pre-kid life? Never.
    I think of you often and find a little comfort in the fact you ‘get it’ (BEYOND get it!) how hard it is juggling it all. AND keeping a marriage going to boot!
    I admire you and think you’re awesome 🙂

  3. 3

    You have the most outstanding familly pictures, who takes them because all the kids are in them? Thanks for the post, puts things into perspective for those whoonly wranngle two kids.

  4. 4

    shelleasley said,

    You have to do what is right for your family before you can worry about friends and if that means missing get togethers and re-scheduling play dates so be it! You have your priorities in line and you are doing great. When I think about you I will try harder to remember to throw out a prayer for perseverance, joy and opportunities to connect and feel known. I love you friend and your family is precious!

  5. 5

    joemamathewineo said,

    I love how your mom just comes home and pours a glass of wine….hmmmm!


Comment RSS · TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: