Friday, October 17, 2014

Day in the Life - Fall 2014

It's been awhile since I did a Day in the Life post, and Laura at Navigating the Mothership puts out a prompt four times a year for a blogger round-up. She's kind of amazing...once a year for the past four or so years she's documented a Week in the Life of her family and turned them into photo books. A lot of people might think that the minutiae of one's daily life is beyond boring and maybe to some people it is. I find it fascinating to read though, and I know from going back to read posts on this blog that there is SO much you forget in the details.

I chose to document Thursday, October 16th. I have to point out that this was NOT a normal day. It was the first day of a week-long business trip for my husband, and the start of a four-day weekend for the kids (statewide meeting for educators known locally as "MEA Weekend"). Very few of our usual routines came into play and I appear rather like a Lady What Lunches. That said, it was a beautiful busy day with my family, so here goes...

10/16/14 - Pacey is a few weeks away from turning eight, Brighton is five-and-a-half and Archer is 15 months.

6:30 - Our daylight-simulating alarm clock wakes me minutes before my phone alarm goes off. I am pleased to note that I hear nothing from the kids. They appear to be learning about the beauty of not having to get up on non-school days. Chris and I discuss briefly his schedule and he starts getting packed for his trip. I love lots of things about my husband but he hates to pack ahead of time and is therefore dashing around in a panic "looking" for things and then asking me to find them in the places he's already "looked." Not the very most fun way to wake up, to be honest.

6:45 - The kids are all awake now and looking to add chaos and noise to the tension of the morning. I herd them downstairs to watch The Avengers and get our morning going so C can pack in peace. Archer gets a bottle of milk, I get my cup of coffee with appropriate message.

8:00 - Chris says his farewells and heads to the office for a few hours before his flight. I make the mistake of reading the news, full of doom and gloom and general fear-mongering. I should really know better, as I spend the next 15 minutes contemplating the number of people C will come into contact with over the next week. Perhaps we will quarantine him for 21 days when he returns.

8:23 - Realize we have speech earlier than usual and therefore need to get in gear. Begin by clearing up the trail of detritus spread by the baby, which includes: three dishtowels, two measuring spoons, two plastic cups, two baby spoons, several pieces of cardboard, a box grater and my kitchen scale. Toddlers are so detrimental to efficiency. Throw some breakfast and clothes down to the big kids and hope that they will actually get themselves ready.

One man wrecking crew who is obsessed with my gloves
9:00 - Shower while baby creates a new trail of detritus in my bedroom. Get dressed for my training session later this morning. Eat a decent breakfast for once so I actually have some energy, while fending off baby who is desperate for a share of my food despite having already eaten two breakfasts himself.

Favorite breakfast: toast with hummus and grape tomatoes.
Also pictured: the chocolate chip cookies I wanted but did
not have.
9:30 - We arrive at speech therapy exactly on time. It is a STUNNING fall day, warm and breezy with a brilliant blue sky. Pacey's good friend S has just finished her session and the two are so happy to see each other. She goes to his school, they share a speech therapist and she is in his basketball league. It's fun to see him developing these friendships. S doesn't have very much verbal language but she uses an iPad to communicate as well as gesturing and some signing. It's nice to see how comfortable Brighton is with her differences.

Natalie, his SLP, has made such a difference for Pacey. 

S, Pacey and Brighton. 

Pacey goes in to do his speech work and I hang with the kids in the cramped waiting area. Another set of clients arrives that we are friendly with and I have another mom to chat with in between chasing down Archer and trying to prevent him from causing too much mayhem. Brighton works on a fall picture and her pesty little brother is bound and determined to scribble on it. I talk her into turning his scribbles into a "swirl of leaves" thereby avoiding drama. She declares that this is "the best day ever."

10:15 - We arrive home and as we are unloading from the car two women stroll up the driveway with kiddos in strollers. It turns out to be someone I met at the library storytime and she happens to live right behind us. Make introductions and chat; she's really friendly and has a daughter around A's age so I'm pleased she stopped over.

10:40 - Fly around the house tidying up for our babysitter. I've hired her to come over for a few hours knowing that I'm going to be on the clock for the next week straight. I need a little time to myself to prepare. She arrives and the kids are thrilled. They set to work making some pumpkin luminaries, I give her instructions and escape.

11:00 - I head to the gym for my final free training session I received with my new gym membership. It's hard, but not as hard as the previous session that I attended while hungover the day after Oktoberfest :/ (note to self: you are not 22 anymore). The trainer's next client is running late so I get some extra time.

12:15 - I head down to a local salon where I have a pedicure booked (again, this is NOT my usual day-to-day!!). My mother-in-law thoughtfully purchased me a gift certificate to a local place I hadn't tried and I have not found time to use it since August. Perfect day for it. I relax and thoroughly enjoy a little pampering in what turns out to be a lovely day spa. Finally, I head next door to the wine shop to stock up on survival supplies.


Hello, you beauties

2:00 - I arrive home to find the kids all playing outside with the babysitter. Archer has napped for two solid hours (hooray!) and they are all happy to be outside. It's gloriously warm and we decide to stay out for a bit and play in the leaves. We take turns raking up piles of leaves to jump in and I take about 400 pictures. At one point B asks if I will pay her for raking some leaves and I suggest payment in the form of cookies.

Sister, you missed a leaf!
Making leaf angels
Child labor
2:30 - After a cookie break we leave late for Pacey's orthodontist appointment. He was already having some major overcrowding and so had four teeth pulled this spring. Happily, she says his mouth is looking great for now and we can just wait another six months for new x-rays. It seems crazy that we are already thinking about orthodontics but overcrowding is a major problem for many kids with Down syndrome due to the smaller jaw size. We are hoping that by managing the fit of his adult teeth as they come in, there will be less to do with actual orthodontic devices later.
See you later, temps in the 70s. See you next
A model patient
3:30 - Since the weather is so nice, I decide we should head back to the farmer's market on the way home. We have a nice stroll through the market and then head down the block to pick up a book I have on hold at the library. The kids are all in silly moods and it's just so nice to be out and about. Everyone has the sense that it's probably our last warm day of the season so the mood in town is very festive.
Random graffiti that makes me smile every time

Sidewalk art sale

Checking out Halloween decorations


Given their age gaps, these three play really
nicely together. Sometimes. 
4:34 - I've made the ill-advised decision to stop at the supermarket on our way home. It's been a busy day for everyone and my patience is nearly bottomed out. The boys screech at each other in the cart and B sits up on the handle yapping incessantly in my ear. I am the epitome of snappy-yelly-grouchy mom and I wish I'd thought harder about putting the trip off. I did buy some ice cream though, to make it worth it.

Perfect fundraising strategy for someone who appreciates
round numbers/even amounts. Yes please. 

5:30 - Home and the usual whirlwind of unpacking groceries, letting the dog out, feeding the dog, feeding the kids, etc. After dinner I send the big kids down to play while I do bath and bedtime routine with Archer. I am so happy to have reached the place where I just snuggle him with some milk, then plop him in his crib and say goodnight. I'm pretty wiped at this point and grateful I don't have to coax an infant to sleep.

Nearing the finish line!

7:00 - Eat a quick dinner while the kids play and then hustle them through a quick evening routine. We read a couple of stories all together and Pacey goes to bed, then Brighton and I read a chapter of Ramona the Brave. He doesn't have the attention span for it yet and also gets up earlier than anyone else so is ready for bed sooner. Reading chapter books with B has become one of my favorite times of day. She's actually quiet and still for once, and she is so enjoying the books I loved myself as a kid.

7:45 - Lights are out and I head downstairs to clean up the kitchen and yet more trails of detritus. I think about having a glass of wine but decide I'm too tired and have some ice cream instead. I start my new book (One Plus One by Jojo Moyes) and read til I'm drifting off. More than an hour of uninterrupted reading feels like such a luxury.

10:00 - Exchange a quick text with C and I am out for the night. Archer wakes briefly at 2:00 but settles back to sleep before I have to go in. I don't hear a peep from anyone else until 7:20 am and I therefore decide to buy them each a pony.

The End!


Elsha said...

I love these kind of posts!

Heather said...

Oh..let me know what your thoughts are on "One Plus One." Can't wait to hear your thoughts!

Hope you survived your solo weekend! If the Hubs handled my trip, I'm sure you did just fine.

Navigating the Mothership said...

Such a lady of leisure! ;)

This sounds like a nice fall day and I can absolutely relate to some parts (although luckily Lily is not mobile yet - haha!)

And yes - also wanting to hear your book review!

Heather said...

Clicking over from the DITL link-up ... Isn't the Minnesota fall we've had just amazing?! It was so awesome to rack up a pile of leaves for the kids to jump in and not actually want to cry from the cold. Glad you and your kids were able to get out and enjoy the day! And, yes, a book review! That one's on my list of books to read this year.

Thanks for sharing your day!

Danielle Lyn said...

I think a little pampering is perfect at the start of a solo parenting stretch!

I love how easily kids declare days the "best day ever!" My girls will declare that at the most surprising times. It's a good reminder that most of our days are pretty great!

Jo said...

I like your breakfast. I never seem to think of eating stuff like that for breakfast – like it’s off limits or something because it isn’t waffles, cereal or eggs.

I also can’t resist the ‘round up’ options at stores. It’s like when I fill my car with gas I have to round up – I can’t just leave it where it stopped.

Rachael said...

Every single time I think I'm just going to swing by the grocery store, one last thing, it will only take a minute, it's right on the way.. NEVER goes well with 3 kids. But do I ever learn?

I really enjoyed your DITL!