Thursday, November 30, 2017

A Day in the Life During Materntiy Leave

2:13 AM: Mira is stirring. I scoop her up into bed and feed her for about 15 minutes until she falls back asleep and I follow her shortly after.

4:29 AM: I wake up one minute before my alarm. I cannot believe that both Ina and Cora slept all night. This was the best night of sleep I have had in weeks. I dream feed Mira in bed for about 10 minutes, grab my gym clothes I laid out the night before, brush my teeth, put on deodorant, change, and pump to make exercising comfortable. I get a few extra ounces every day, which is creating a great stock for when I go back to work.

5:00: I pull into the gym parking lot, right on time. It was leg day and the workout did not disappoint. I am still so weak and my endurance is low, which can be frustrating, but I can't think of another place I would rather be to build those both back up.

6:10: I come home and thank my lucky stars that all three girls are still asleep and take that opportunity to take a shower in peace and quiet. 

6:25: I make myself a cup of coffee and sit down for a little internet time: online Christmas shopping, planning Ina's birthday lunch, planning our meals for the next week, etc. Dan leaves for work.

6:52: Cora starts yelling "Momma" from her crib. We snuggle for a few minutes and read a few books before Ina joins us. We tidy up their rooms and I get Cora dressed. I change my first of 14 diapers for the day. Jealous yet?

7:24: Cora wakes Mira up. I take Mira downstairs to feed her in the recliner while Cora is yelling at the top of the stairs for me to carry her down (she can go down the stairs fine but doesn't like to) and Ina is asking me what she can have for breakfast and arguing with me over what she did with her clothes that I laid out for her only a few minutes before. She can't find them and is blaming me for not knowing where they are, which results is me sending Ina to her room to think about the way she is talking to me. Our relationship is definitely going through a rough spot right as I learn to balance my attention with three children. Ina spends the next 40 minutes resting in her room, which is a good thing.

8:00: I make myself a breakfast smoothie and Cora drinks half of it. 

8:15: I turn on Christian music videos on YouTube while I pack the girls' lunches. Those videos and songs always always help to get us in a better mood. We really like this one.

8:30- I turn on the Disney Channel and scramble around the house trying to pick up all the rogue toys and laundry because our house is getting cleaned and the vacuum doesn't run very well over blocks and Christmas ornaments. During this time Mira does not want to be put down, so I take breaks now and then to hold her and play with her. 

9:30: We are ready to leave just as the cleaners arrive. It is better for everyone if we are out of the house, so we head to the park for a few minutes. I did not plan my outfit appropriately and seriously wished I would have worn socks. 

10:04 We leave the park and head for HyVee to order Ina's birthday treats for her school. After the girls get cookies we grab a few things that we needed. Ina pushed the cart with Mira in it and Cora rode on my shoulders and I got the feeling our craziness was entertaining all the other customers. After grabbing a few balloons we are out the door.

10:42 We park at the library and I feed Mira in the car while Ina and Cora beat eat other with their balloons.

11:00 Story time at the library. Ina sits and participates while Cora wanders around playing with blocks, pulling out books, and occasionally stopping by the circle to hear part of the story or sing a song. I try to corral her, but I also have Mira in the stroller, so I mostly just try to keep us both as quiet as possible. We stay at the library for 30 minutes after story time and read a few books Ina picked out, chat with the librarian, etc.

12:05: Load back in the van. By this time I am ravenous and I inhale a protein bar while Cora eats her lunch on the way to drop Ina off at school.

12:32: We come home after dropping Ina off, walk in the door, and I immediately take Cora upstairs to her crib. She knows it is nap time and isn't happy about it, but after a few minutes of fussing she gets quiet. I come downstairs, grab Mira out of her carseat, and sit down to feed her. This is our only quiet time together all day, and as if she knows it, she prolongs eating and often stops to smile and coo at me. 

1:15: I heat up leftovers for lunch: steak, sweet potato, and roasted vegetables. I play with Mira while I eat and then she acts like she is still hungry, so I feed her until she goes to sleep

2:00: I take Mira upstairs and turn on the baby monitor. I finally have a chance to enjoy some time to myself in a clean house, so I peruse the internet, write the first half of this post, drink some sparkling water, throw dinner in the crockpot and watch Outlander, my maternity leave guilty pleasure. 

2:30: Cora wakes up, yelling, "Momma, I'm a bad girl!" from her crib. Mira wakes up a few minutes later. We hang out in her room for a little bit, reading books and playing.

3:00 Time to get Ina and fill up the van with gas. The van was on empty all morning and I don't want to run out of gas in the preschool pick up line. Once Ina is in the car she tells me that she and one boy in her class are in love, but she will probably marry another boy in her class, but "Don't tell Daddy!" 

3:30: We get home and I hit my typical afternoon energy wall. I feed Mira and finish up dinner prep while the girls watch a few cartoons. I snack on some mixed nuts.

4:55: Dan's home! This is usually the time of day where I get an emotional break from single parenting. However, Ina is in a mood and they immediately get frustrated with each other. I tell Ina to go to her room again and tell Dan to go unwind with a long shower. Afterwards they both "start over" and everyone is in a really good mood for the rest of the night. Somewhere in there I poured myself a glass of wine. 

5:45: We eat dinner - slow cooker buffalo chicken sweet potatoes with mixed vegetables. Mira is an angel baby and lets me eat my whole plate. Cora wanders away from the table after a few minutes, but Ina sits with us and we enjoy some family conversation. I really want dinner to be a time for our family to be together, but I don't want to force it. 

6:10: Dan does dishes and wipes the counters while I feed Mira. We all watch Star Wars as a family - we are trying to watch them all again before we see Episode 8. Mira sleeps on my through the whole movie and Cora is cuddled up right beside me.

7:40: The movie is over and we head upstairs for bed. I give the girls their allergy medicine and their vitamins. Dan and Ina hang out in Cora's room while I wash my face, brush my teeth, etc. I hang out with Ina in her room until she falls asleep.

8:15: I lay down in bed to wait for Dan to come in from Cora's room and immediately fall asleep.

9:06: I wake up on the phone with someone from a dance studio I had called over a week ago. Apparently her phone just showed her she had a message and she wanted to immediately return my call. I am sure I sounded a mess, because she kept on apologizing for calling so late. We talk about Ina's dance class options for a few minutes and I immediately fall asleep as soon as we get off the phone.

11:15: Mira wakes up to eat. She usually doesn't wake up this early, but she fell asleep earlier than normal.

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