Thursday, August 1, 2013

Day in the Life: Summer 2013

Once again I am taking part in Navigating the Mothership's quarterly Day in the Life.  I chose to document Tuesday, July 30.  What a boring and ordinary day it was -- and therefore very appropriate.

6 a.m. My phone goes off.  I turn it off and promptly fall back asleep.

6:36 a.m. I finally rouse myself when I hear Tim moving around.  I was just having a dream where we got orders to Yuma, AZ.  In reality we are moving next summer but won't actually get orders until spring, probably.  In the dream I was not happy about going to Yuma and was being very whineypants about it.  "It might as well be in Australia," my dream self complained.  "Nobody will come visit us!"  That is not really true.  As Tim and I have figured out, once we're more than a day's drive away from family, it's all the same no matter how far we go -- at least as long as we're still in North America.  If we went to Arizona, our families would still visit us.  Then in my dream I went around this house to say goodbye to each of the bedrooms, which is a lot more dramatic than I will be in real life when the time comes.  I think.  But four years is a nice long time to live somewhere, and I can be pretty sentimental.

6:45 a.m. Normal morning routine.  Teeth-brushing, coffee-pouring, Tim making his lunch..
7 a.m. Kids get up.  Girls go through their bathroom routine and make their beds.
They are so cute first thing in the morning.
7:15 a.m. Kids sit down to breakfast and Tim leaves for work.  This is his second full day back at work at his new job, so we're expecting it to be another long one, but he thinks he can be home by 5 or a little thereafter.  Seems like we just got him back and already he's off working 10 hour days.  We're back to living for weekends.  I make my own breakfast of two eggs over-easy and homemade whole wheat toast.  We got a breadmaker and a fancy-shmancy food processor a few weeks ago, and we make it all ourselves now.  It's really nice!
I break the yolk on one of the two eggs just about every time.
Timmy has more mood swings than a teenage girl lately, and refuses to let me clean up the dishes in peace.  Have you ever tried to clean a kitchen -- or do anything? -- with a cranky toddler fastened to your leg? 
That's a grimace, not a smile.  Or maybe it is a secret smile because he has fun giving me a hard time?
The camera makes him even madder.  I point the camera at him, he shrieks indignantly and stomps off, I put something in the trash or dishwasher, he gets mad because I'm not paying attention to him, he wraps himself around my leg again, and we do this dance for at least another 15 minutes.  Then he finds his "monsa truck" and he's all smiles again.
I finish up doing whatever else it is that I do -- drink more coffee, pack lunch for the pool, make sure the girls are wearing their bathing suits with sundresses over them and pack the pool bag even though the forecast is not looking good.  I give the girls their Zyrtec -- for Annie's recently-diagnosed allergies and Delaney's eczema and allergies.  It's funny that they both have allergies but Tim and I don't.  At a little before 9, we leave for the Y.

9:15 (ish): We arrive.  Delaney can unbuckle herself now that she's in a booster.  Even though Timmy is on my side of the car, I walk around to the other side to unbuckle Annie next.  Only after everybody and everything else is out of the car do I unbuckle Timmy and take him out.  Why?  Because one time I made the mistake of unbuckling him first (since he and Delaney switched sides in the car just a few days ago and she switched to a booster) and then going around to unbuckle Annie.  Guess who wouldn't voluntarily get out of the car when I was running late for my class?  Guess who darted from one part of the car's interior to another as I opened doors and tried to reach in and grab him with my go-go gadget arms that aren't quite long enough?  Guess who almost lost her mind?  Things have to be done in a specific order or else all hell breaks loose.  I can't imagine there will ever come a day when we all just drive somewhere and get in and out of the damn car without it being a production.  

Once we've gaggled our way into the building, I leave Delaney in the big kid room and take Annie and Timmy to the baby room.  Feeling a hundred pounds lighter with only my yoga mat and water bottle, I go to PiYo.  Ah, PiYo, an intense but surprisingly relaxing workout.  I always feel very mellow and cheerful as I leave, if only for a few minutes..  It takes all the tension out of my muscles.  I can't say enough about it.  After I'm done with that, I get the kids and go to the locker room to change for the pool.

10:40 a.m.: The girls are already in their bathing suits so they're easy.  I wrestle Timmy into his, as he's being very uncooperative.  I reach in the bag for my own and I discover that I've packed only two tops for myself.  Oops.  Mama will not be getting in the pool today.
"Mama, mama, mamamama.."  Somebody's not happy again.
He has a rough life.
The girls do some swimming until a heavy rainfall prompts the lifeguards (who don't like getting wet, I guess) to call a "time out."  We eat all our snacks and the kids play in the rain while I sit on my perch under shelter.
After a little while the rain lets up, the kids swim a little more, and when the whistle blows for adult swim at 10 of 12, we leave.  The kids are all freezing after swimming in the rain so I promise them hot chocolate with marshmallows when we get home.  It always helps to give them something to look forward to before they have to go all soggy and wet back into the locker room to change.  I swing by the UPS store to send Tim's rejected shoes back to Zappos, and we get home around 12:20.  Timmy conks out as usual.  The girls wake him up and we go inside.
Who drinks hot chocolate in July?  We do!
12:45 p.m. Once I get the kids down for naps I eat lunch.  It's hummus and cheese on toast, leftover quinoa pilaf, and a sliced up remnant of a green pepper from the other day with more hummus.  Not much of a lunch, but I did have a lot of snacks at the pool.
After I'm done eating I doze off on my bed for about a half hour, make a cup of green tea, check Facebook and read for a little while.  Soon enough nap time/ quiet time is over, at least for the girls.
Snack time - fruit salad and no-bake energy bites
2:40 p.m.  I take some clothes out of the dryer and find that a lot of them have stains that look something like this:
The girls go through the pile of stained clothes.  A couple of Tim's favorite t-shirts are in there, as well as my nice new (as of Xmas) running shorts, and Timmy's new striped shirt.  Crap.
A red crayon made its way into the dryer.  And I feel like this is the second time I've taken them out of the dryer looking like this.  I think I already made a second attempt at washing them, but I'm not sure.  If I did indeed put them in the dryer for a second time with crayon melted on, then it's going to be even harder to get the stains out.  I turn to the Internets for help, and follow WikiHow's 5-step plan for getting crayon out of clothes.  

Step 1 is to lay the clothes on the floor and spray them with stain remover.  The girls are happy to help me with this task.  Then we leave them there for 20 minutes.
Then the girls paint and I put away some laundry and do a little bit of prep for dinner tonight.  Timmy's taking a nice long nap today, and that's good since he's been such a pain in the butt when he's awake.
Ever had summer squash chips?  Delish!
3:45 to 5:30 p.m.  There are no pictures for this time period because that's where it gets a little hectic. Timmy wakes up cranky and clingy, I do step 2 of the crayon stain removal (a soak in laundry detergent and Dawn), I get a text from Tim saying he's going to be later than he thought and I need to get the chicken ready for the grill.  Then he texts to say he'll be even later, and I will need to start the chicken on the grill myself.  The grill stresses me out with that propane tank and those open flames, smoke billowing all around, and the heat in my face.  Other people grill.  I do not grill.  I do the stove and the oven and the microwave but I do NOT grill.  I say this out loud at least a few times to nobody in particular.  I was really counting on Tim to be home to help me out when I put grilled chicken on the menu.  I make a note to self that grilled dinners will not be on weeknights until further notice.  But I get through it without any explosions or out-of-control fires.  Oh, and Timmy poops, and I have the rice and veggies to cook too, and I'm not good at multitasking.  At least the girls go outside and stay out of my hair.  At around 5:30 he gets home.
Whenever Tim sees Timmy with his thumb in his mouth he tries to grab it and put it in his mouth.  He says, "Gimme that thumb, I'm gonna eat it!"  Timmy laughs and says, "Nooo!"
5:30 to 6 p.m. Timmy is back to hugging my legs and moaning "Mamamamamama.." as we finish getting dinner ready.  Whenever Timmy behaves like this, Tim smirkingly says things like, "You created this monster."  "He's a mama's boy."  "He's a big baby."  He says something to that effect now.  A big baby is exactly what he is -- he's 2!  Tim thinks Timmy is the worst toddler of the three, but I say he's no worse than Annie was.  Now I recall Tim wasn't around when Annie was this age, so he's just comparing him to Delaney.  That does make Timmy look bad.

At around 6 we eat, and I am so starved.  I don't know how I'm going to convince my body that 6 or later is the new dinnertime.  My belly is ready for dinner around 5, and 5:30 is stretching it.  We all devour the meal in 10 minutes or less.  Well, everybody but me.  I'm left alone at the table eating after they are all done, and that's typical.  I'm a slow eater, always have been.  It takes me around 20 minutes and for me that is quick.  As I bring my plate to the counter I say, "I ate that so fast I barely tasted it."

Afterward I clean up the kitchen while Tim supervises the kids cleaning the playroom.

7 p.m. I give the kids a bath.

7:30 p.m. Storytime and bedtime prayers.
He looks like he could really fall asleep there.  I'm feeling the same way.  
8 to 10 p.m. The kids are in bed, and we finally have time to ourselves even if we're almost too tired to enjoy it.  I tape the pages that were falling out of the Madeline book that I read at storytime.  
We each do some stuff around the house and then plop down on the couch to watch another episode of Mad Men.  I've been saving this newest season on the DVR for when Tim came home.  I have only been a regular watcher of Mad Men since the beginning of the season before, so maybe I just don't know the characters the way my husband or any other fan of the show does.  But wow, I have to say this season has the most reckless, self-destructive, unscrupulous, and hypocritical Don Draper that I have ever seen.  His horrible choices (and all that alcohol) seem to all be catching up to him in this episode, his behavior is more and more erratic, and I think he's about to have a nervous breakdown.  I say to Tim at the end, "I liked Don Draper better when he wasn't a stark-raving lunatic."  Tim says, "He was always a stark-raving lunatic."  I say, "Well, he hid it better!"  "It's the point of the show," Tim says.  I'd like to watch the show all the way from season 1 episode 1.

10:00 p.m.  Bedtime for us.  I go right to sleep.  Another day in paradise.:)


  1. I am always amazed when I read your posts - you do so much on our own, it's incredible. I complain about having 1-2 days of only me and you do it all the time, wow! I am going to look up the recipe for zucchini chips as my counter is overflowing with them!!

    1. You make me feel so good about myself.:) Here's the recipe I use. It's not a hit with the kids, but as I still have a lot of zucchini and squash, tonight I'm trying garlic-roasted zucchini and squash.

    2. Those look fantastic - totally going to try them.

  2. Wow what a busy day, Timmy sounds like my oldest at two loved having to do the toddler strapped to leg shuffle NOT!

  3. Thanks for the recipe! Jake surprisingly loves zucchini, Allie - not so much, but I keep trying :)

  4. Wow, this is totally my life in a couple of years! They say it gets easier....true??? Apparently I shouldn't look forward to things going more smoothly getting into and out of the car, lol!

    1. It's easier in some ways now that my youngest isn't a baby and isn't quite so needy from one second to the next. At the same time, it's challenging because he wants to be more independent now and can be quite the handful. Just toting him around was easier. But one thing that made my life 100% easier was when he started sleeping through the night consistently at 8 months. I can handle anything they throw at me when I'm getting enough sleep.

      I'll let you know when getting in and out of the car gets easy.:) Maybe when he's 3 he will be better at listening and following instructions, and I won't have to have a hand on him at all times.

  5. So glad your husband's home! I bet you're breathing so much easier, even if he is at work 10 hours/day.

    My little girl is about Timmy's age and she does the car seat scramble, too. I have to quickly grab her and pull her out of the car or I'll be chasing her over the seats forever it seems. So annoying!

  6. So glad to read a Day in the Life when your husband is in the same country as the rest of the fam! We are also in the "teenage girl mood swing" stage with the 3 year old. Holy smokes how one can go from one extreme to the next and back again is beyond me!

    Since you're recipe sharing - what recipe do you use for making bread? That is my next thing I really want to tackle. I'll be making those zucchnni chips too. We plant one of those suckers in the garden & get about a million zucs and I feel guilty wasting them...ugh.

    1. We use the recipe that came with our breadmaker, for basic honey wheat bread. Do you have a breadmaker? If not, get one! You can make zucchini bread with it too.

      I only recently discovered my love for zucchini and squash (I wish I could say I grew it in my garden -- so jealous!). The chips have worked out well, at least for my husband and me. I have the world's pickiest kids, and it's hard to get them to eat any vegetables at all. Another thing I've tried is zucchini pizza bites, using this recipe: I think they're delicious, but the kids just pick the cheese off. They are completely hopeless. I also like to munch on them raw. Is that weird? We also like to serve them up at dinner in a quinoa pilaf. I just slice them up and put them in with the water and quinoa from the beginning.

      (Sigh) One day it is my dream to have my own vegetable garden, but we're moving next summer so it doesn't seem worth it to invest the effort into making one now. Maybe I could just put a basil plant in a pot to make myself feel better.