Last month I blogged about my "work days" and today I am sharing what my "mama days" look like. I joined Ali Edwards to document A Day in the Life on Tuesday, May 12. First things first, in the past few weeks we swapped daycare days. So now I work MWF and Ellerie is home TTH. It's been a great transition for ALL of us and I'm amazed at how much it's helped my work flow (and mama flow).
We absolutely plan to keep Ellerie in daycare three days a week when the new baby arrives in November. When she turns 2.5 she will transition to more of a "pre-school/daycare" with the same schedule and we are all very excited about that. It's the same daycare branch but it's closer to our home and a bit more school like. I am sure she will thrive. We plan to keep the baby home for as long as makes sense (which in a perfect world will be about 1 year, but we'll see). The biggest difference I notice as I prepare to enter my second kiddo parenting phase is I am no longer naive to the idea that plans change. ;)
Moving on...taking photos on Tuesday was tricky! I have a very active 22 month old who is hard enough to wrangle when I am not trying to take self-timer photos. So you'll have to excuse the lack of images and just trust that our day was full.
My day started at 6:25 when I woke up to my alarm. Paul was already out the door (he leaves at 6) and Ellerie was still asleep. She's still transitioning a bit from Hawaii and sleeping in.
I had a full hour to myself and that meant drinking coffee, eating breakfast (granola), scrolling instagram and furiously reading the book I started the night before (it was wonderful). Around 7:15 I went into Ellerie's room and opened her shades to encourage her to wake up and then I went and sat at my desk to deal with email.
Around 7:30 I went back in to wake Ellerie. For the first time she repeated "morning!" back at me. We diaper changed and went out for breakfast which this morning was banana, apples and pirates booty popcorn (she's obsessed). Then she watched an episode of Daniel Tiger (we watch it free through Amazon Prime) and I finished my coffee while reading a bit more.
Last time I shared our days I lamented about the struggle that is toddler food. Since then we have made great strides ... FIRST, I stopped stressing. But second (and a million times more helpful) we finally got Ellerie off the bottle. (She was drinking a decent amount of milk before bed and her nap out of a bottle.) While she is happy to drink tons of water out of her sippy-cups/straws she isn't that into milk out of these vessels and so instead of drinking her calories, she is EATING ALL THE FOOD. It's amazing.
After breakfast we headed out to Trader Joe's. I am trying to do better about stocking up for the week just once instead of my daily walks to the grocery store. We'll see how it goes.
After that I had the brilliant plan to finish watercoloring her bday invites that I started over the weekend. In my head, this is a 25 minute art project that we love doing together. In real life, after five minutes Ellerie has dumped the water and is splashing in it. Thankfully, I am lightening fast at watercolor and so I let her make a mess while I finish painting. After 10 minutes we are completely cleaned up and on to the next thing. (It's probably 9:30 at this time).
We then had second breakfast. I scramble three eggs with pepper and season salt then add in cooked quinoa, shredded cheddar and a bit of sour cream. It's doesn't look like much but it's protein packed and so good. Ellerie eats about 1/3 and I eat the rest. I've found she does better standing up to eat (?) and so to avoid the TV we sat by the windows and looked for her nemesis, the lizards that live in our backyard.
In all serious, this is the BEST AGE EVER. Ellerie is so sweet and smart and learning something new everyday. But the short attention span is difficult. I feel like we are ALWAYS looking for the next activity and it's exhausting to keep up. In rapid succession we read books/colored/puzzled/dumped toys/went outside/looked at the tomatoes/washed hands/repeat. (This took ten minutes total.)
Somehow that got us through another hour and a half. And then it was lunch time for Ellerie which today was toasted cheese bread (she eagerly watched it cook), backyard tomatoes which she refused to eat (so I won the lottery) and more apple. She watched another Daniel Tiger episode and then we read books and drank water to get ready for her nap.
At 11:30 I laid her down then went into the office to check email for the second time. I trimmed her invites and got those stuffed and addressed. Then made my own lunch (grilled cheese and ham). It was now about 12:15 and I fell to the couch for my favorite part of the day ... book time. The biggest benefit of switching to daycare three days a week is I no longer have to "sneak work in" throughout the day. I get to chill during most of naptime which works wonders for my energy level as a human, wife, mom and business owner.
I read my book then napped (!) until 2. Around 2:15 I checked email again and opened Ellerie's shades. (If she sleeps longer than 3 hours we struggle with bedtime.) Around 2:30 I woke her up and we snacked but I don't remember what on... fruit for sure and maybe a kind bar?
Then the same old ... books/puzzles/coloring/plants/backyard/repeat until about 3:30 when we walked up the hill to buy postage stamps at the grocery store.
We came back around 4:15ish and I got the birthday invites stamped and ready to mail. Paul texted that he'd be home soon. I got started on dinner. We were finishing up some BBQed meat from the weekend along with bell pepper and sour dough dipped in an artichoke dip from TJs. I also cooked up some Brussel sprouts. The current method is olive oil, garlic salt, pepper. Then at the end throw in some cooked quinoa, balsamic and feta. (It's amazing and now that she's eating, Ellerie devours it.)
Paul got home at 5ish and I stuck him in charge of finishing the Brussels and cooking Ellerie's quesadilla while I went to upload the podcast episode. (I hate having work to do at night.) We finished cooking and Ellerie colored all over her self with a marker.
Then it was dinner! We said the prayer and did four or five rounds of Ellerie directed "cheers" and ate which is no longer a tremendous struggle.
After dinner it's the same routine ... all the activities, but this time with the bonus of DADDY to help orchestrate. We hang out mostly in her room on the floor. Paul has a beer. I dream about my return to happy hour. Ellerie swigs water.
Around 7 we start thinking "bedtime?" hopefully. We get her changed in PJs and Paul handles the go down which now that we're done with the bottle involves offering cheerios then brushing teeth and water. Then he reads books for about 15 minutes and I lay on the couch and play Candy Crush. We can usually count on one more time in her room before she's officially out and we alternate taking that (about 70% of the time me singing "the ants go marching..." and about 30% of the time him singing I'm not sure what).
It's now 7:30ish and we clean the kitchen and watch something. This night it was an episode of Scandal. Then usually Paul studies or plays video games and I read (or scroll IG)...usually while walking in circles throughout the house to get my 10k steps in.
We are usually in bed around 9:30 or 10. Whew. Life is good.
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