A Day in the Life | Fall 2015

Nate and I are both 34, Truman is 5.5, Cecelia is almost 3.5, Porter is almost 15 months. And Henry celebrates the big 1-0 this month!
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Tuesday | October 6, 2015

6:30 am | Porter is up and is half-crying/half-talking in his crib. I lay in bed and try to will myself to be fully awake. This was a night when nobody woke up and I just clocked eight hours of consecutive sleep, which is pure insanity compared to the last six years of my life of severely broken sleep. So this was an excellent, to-be-celebrated occasion....and yet I still feel pretty exhausted when I first wake up to Porter's cry. Must have been in a deep sleep when the baby alarm went off, but I usually snap out of my fogginess fairly quickly these days. I mean, I cannot even begin to say 'I'm tired' when I remember the first year of life for each of my three children. No complaints here, just a little difficult to wake from a deep-drooling-my-face-off sleep even if it's been eight hours of the good stuff. See also: I'm old. 

As I'm laying in bed contemplating the meaning of life/reasoning behind feeling tired after solid sleep, I hear Nate talk to my mom. She is visiting us but will leave today after a wonderful week long trip. She just came up from the basement (mother-in-law suite?) and chats with Nate a bit, and I'm sort of listening as I lay in bed. Then I hear her fall down the stairs, and that gets me out of bed faster than any alarm. I fly down both sets of stairs and find her standing up, walking it off. She says she is fine, just embarrassed, but I want to make sure she didn't break a hip or something. I mean, our basement stairs are all hard wood. I've fallen down our main wooden stairs and it was fairly horrible, and quite frightening. She swears she is fine and isn't limping so I hold off on calling the paramedics just yet. That will start the day off with a jolt!

6:40 am | I go back upstairs to get Porter, who is full-blown screaming now (his favorite way to wake up from sleep lately). Kiss Nate goodbye, Porter says 'biyeeeeee' to his daddy. It's pretty much the most adorable sound in the universe, FYI.  Make a pot of coffee for mom and I, as Nate made himself an Aeropress before he left so I can't just pour a hot cup immediately upon walking into the kitchen today. Life is very hard, right?

Mom comes back upstairs (still swears she is fine!) and takes Porter from me, and they go and play in the sunroom. Next I get cracking on the morning routine, which is admittedly less hectic with my mom here and also on a day I am not working:  I toast three frozen waffles and add peanut butter (annoying, messy, really wish the kids didn't enjoy this breakfast so much). Pour 3 glasses of milk and start making Truman's lunch for school. He gets a PBJ, grapes, pretzels, yogurt, applesauce and a few M&Ms as a special treat. I write him a little note and also pack his whole milk in this thermos that keeps liquids cold for 12 hours. We are still working out the kinks of him eating a full meal during a short lunch time in a big lunch room with lots of other kids---seems to get way too distracted to eat well, which is frustrating for me but I get it.

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I take Henry outside, keeping a close eye on him because there were three coyote attacks to dogs in our area recently. I was recently standing outside WITH him but now I'm feeling brave enough to stare at him through the window; my buddy would be a goner against a coyote! Mom and I put Porter in the high hair and he gets going on his PB waffle (messiest mess of all times, curses to me for even starting this breakfast food). 

I hear the big kids fighting in their bedroom at 7. This is the exact time when their Tot Clock turns yellow, releasing them into the house for the day and apparently it was just too much to hang out in their room nicely until it turned yellow. They have for sure been awake for at least 15 minutes or more, but I do like the idea of them resting/chatting together until it's 7--I know they actually like the consistency of the Tot Clock too, even if they won't admit that.

My mom goes up to check on them, apparently Cecelia is angry because Truman wanted her to get his lovey monkey for him and she didn't want to retrieve it from under their bunk beds. Also, monkey ended up being in Truman's own bed all along so that's awesome. I feed Porter downstairs and the rest of the crew comes down happy. Truman goes back up to his room to get his library books to return at school and Cecelia is super excited for her dance class this morning. 

The kids all eat and chat with us about very random topics. I put the my pork roast in the crockpot, really looking forward to the pulled pork sandwiches I decided to make tonight. Cecelia worries I will 'crack my head open' when she catches me standing on top of the counter to get the crock pot from one of our upper cabinets. Oh, sis, thanks for caring.

Truman and Cecelia fight over which seat they eat sit in for breakfast, and I chose the wrong cup for Cecelia's milk apparently. Sigh. I run the dishwasher. Mom makes herself oatmeal and I make myself eggs. We eat as the kids finish up their breakfasts. Truman spills all of his milk over the table and floor and just sort of stares at it instead of rushing to clean it up. Apparently going without lids on our milk cups is really challenging, but I think it's time we ditch the sippy cups for the big kids. I realize the price I pay for this push for independence is spilled milk and extra messes, so whatever.

Pork isn't the prettiest picture, but the glory of coffee sure is! Eggs with breakfast sausage don't photograph so well either, but the girls make up for it.
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Truman gets dressed and brushes his teeth, then he plays 'solo 
cup bowling'. His siblings are excellent at interfering with his little game. I decide to do my Day in the Life at this point and really dread it, but I'm going for it anyway. 
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7:40 am | I get the littles dressed. Everyone is now fighting over the cup game, so I declare it is over. Cecelia is in her leotard and tights, Porter is in one of the Truman outfits I discovered in attic. Truman loves his Oregon tee shirt but deciding on short versus long sleeves is always our issue before school. He would wear shorts and short sleeves with no jacket if I didn't intervene with my mom powers, so compromising with long pants and short sleeves is a win.

7:50 am | I get in the shower while the kids play in Truman and Cecelia's room with mom. If she weren't here I would have probably taken this shower before they got up or much much later in the day. Check weather, see it's going to be 70 today?! Awesome. Hustle, it's getting really close to school drop off time. Still love the crap out of our updated bathroom, make a mental note to get some pictures with the beautiful tile in the background. Text with friends Kerry and Ali. 
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8:00 am | Hop out of the shower and quickly throw on clothes, will have to wait on hair and makeup. Yell for the crew to start getting their shoes on so we aren't late. 
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8:06 am | We all leave the house and head across the street to school. Very glad to live so close, takes approximately 2 minutes to walk from our door to the playground! Truman gets a huge hug from a little girl in his class, she seems to be quite smitten with my boy. Porter and Cecelia just sort of hang around and Truman isn't too into playing on the playground this morning before the bell rings, either. He lines up with his class and waits for the teacher to come and get him, also saying 'goodbye' to my mom since he won't see her before she flies home. Porter is really into the 'biyeeeee' again and Truman hands out hugs to each of us, multiple times.

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8:20 am | Mom, Cecelia, Porter and I walk home. I call Tony and plan for him to come to our house at 11, so that I can take mom to the airport without the kids in tow. I also have to go to the office for our annual training, so I'm extra thankful that Tony is now retired and can help out during the week. My village is fierce! Yellow pages are on the front porch when we get back. Make remarks about modern day phone number usage and the lack of paper, seems like a waste of trees to me. 

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I keep getting ready once we are inside, announcing we have about 45 minutes before we leave for dance. I let the kids watch PBS for a bit. Porter wants to eat Cecelia's tiny beads she found somewhere. Text friend Katie. Mom packs up and gets ready for the day. Cecelia discovered lost chap sticks and is very happy. Daniel Tiger is on TV which also amps up her joy. Mom brings laundry up from downstairs and it's a giant load. Is shimmering eye shadow too young for someone like myself? I am also wearing saggy crotch jeans, for some reason the waist band is really big but everything else fits fine. I need elastic added to my waist band, just like my mom did for the kids' pants;) Upstairs to do hair. Note: I love having Mom here!

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Note the shimmer? And the attic, which I swear is perfectly organized (at least I know where most things are located)
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8:50 am | I'm done primping (side note: saw a print for the bathroom that said 'primping ain't easy' and kind of want it). Go to attic to get a bag for baby Tessa's gift. My neighbor Ali just had her third baby and I get to meet the new kid on the block today! Feel a strong urge to finally get rid of the plethora of baby stuff in attic, not one ounce sad about it at the moment. This needs to be a large Fall project, I think.

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9:00 am | I put together the gift and card for the baby. Have Cecelia try on the jeggings mom adjusted to make tighter at her waist and then she melts down because refuses to ask me nicely to remove the pants. Screaming 'take them off' is not acceptable to me, and saying 'please' would suffice but things spiral out of control with her and she is sobbing and being crazy stubborn. Battle of wills for the first (or maybe fourth?) time this morning. Eventually I take Cecelia up to her room to calm down and get her demons out with some time away from everyone. 
After a few minutes I go back upstairs and we hug it out and discuss how to use kind words when she asks mommy to do something, etc etc etc. Head down with her so we can pack up for dance class.

Life as a three year old:
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Laundry doesn't play around lately.
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9:17 am | Leave for dance, give the kids some animal crackers in the car because we recently found out that snacks in the waiting area during dance are outlawed. Oops. CC tells us that she ate a hump off her camel and we all marvel over the color on the trees all of a sudden. Colorado has mountains and Aspens but we have maples and oaks---close call on who has better Autumn weather;) Mom misses the old trees we have here though, so she is happy to see all of this color before returning back home to her mountains (and her husband).

9:27 am | We are here and Cecelia lines up happily with her buddy Natalie to walk into ballet class together. I am bummed this isn't a class parents get to watch but I know it can be distracting, so I will just look forward to the recital that is in March. 
Porter plays with a tiny football I brought along while mom and I chat with Chris (Natalie's dad, baby Tessa's dad, Ali's husband). Porter does fair during the class but we do have to walk around the halls of the school a few times. This is where the local Montessori school happens and it seems ultra clean and well-kept, so I try to keep Porter from shredding all of the craft papers and eating crayons.  
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Interesting sign.
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10:00 am | The girls are done and come running to us with giant smiles on their faces. They immediately request suckers from us. Hmmm. Distract them with empty promises. We head home and say goodbye to Chris and Natalie, I'm planning to stop over to their house soon. We say 'Hi' as we pass Lori's house and then we hit the motherlode of all Cecelia favorites: spotted at least 20 geese in a small grassy area off a main road. She was delighted and her emotional roller coaster is way way up at this point, from dance and now the geese. 

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Got a sucker!
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10:15 am | Home. I pack for Ali's house, bringing the chicken salsa casserole I put together for them to be a freezer meal or used right away, plus sour cream, avocado, cheese, green onions, the paper recipe, baby's gift, and a six pack of beer. I guess I should drive up the street with all of this stuff!

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10:30 am | Meet baby Tessa, she is perfection!! Ali is doing great too and I cannot get over how small newborns are. Surprisingly I don't feel like I need to birth another one of my own after holding her so that's big progress and something Nate will be happy to read.  She is ridiculously sweet but my ovaries aren't screaming at me, thankfully.
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10:55 am | Back home. Porter seems pretty fussy so I start feeding him some yogurt and an apple. CC and mom are hanging out, too. Tony comes over a little bit after 11 o'clock and I give them the lowdown on how I really want the kids to both eat lunch and take naps while I'm gone. This seems like a fairly large feat because I know Tony just likes to play with the kids and get outside with them when he is here, so it's a bummer to have to enforce a meal and naps. We'll see how it goes. Cecelia and Porter kiss GoGo goodbye, I'm glad to have Tony there with them to keep the kiddos distracted.

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Me and mom!
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11:15 am | Mom and I leave for the airport after saying goodbye to everyone. We take a selfie in the car specifically because of Day in the Life and since we haven't been in a picture together yet. On our way to the airport we discuss how wonderful our visit has been, how we didn't get our nails done and then we discussed our fingernails for way too long because we like to talk about first world problems. We also decided that our next visit will be at Christmas when mom, dad and hopefully my brother all come to visit us. Christmas seems like a long ways off but I guess it's really not.

11:30 am | I drop mom off at the airport, give big hugs and kisses and thank her for such an amazing visit. I take her picture as she's walking to the door and she seems kind of confused by that. I then head up to the office which is not even remotely close to the airport.  Since I have enlisted Tony's help today I might as well get the most of out of it and get this annual training over with. I told him I'll be home by two and hope it's sooner. Eat an apple and some trail mix, starved. 

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12:00 pm | I'm 
at the office, not too bad with a 30 minute drive from the airport. Mom texts and is at her gate. I check TimeHop and do not like seeing my unread emails mocking me on my phone. Go inside and talk to my boss for a bit (mostly about non-work stuff). I make it into the office maybe 5 times per year so it's always fun to see everyone in person. I complete our 'Safety Fair' which is basically a quiz based off policies we all have to remember. I get my flu shot, saw a coworker I haven't seen in ages, and remember that we have personal mailboxes to check.  Mine is jam packed and I discovered my CPR certification card from 2013. Looks like it's about due again, so good thing I remembered to check my mailbox (also had birthday candy in there, wonder if it's gone bad since April?).

My only full marathon was seven years ago. No desire to do another full, much like I have no desire to birth another baby (both are very similar).
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Sneaky pictures at work:
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1:15 pm | Done with the training and office visit. Sit in car and consider doing some paperwork for tomorrow. Check my work voice mail and return a call, then decide I'm way too famished to do actual work. I can do it tomorrow before first patient at 10. Will maybe have better focus when I'm not nearly starving to death and anxious to get home to see if the kids are napping. Head home jamming out to the radio by myself in my van on a sunny day of perfection. Take a picture of a bunch of geese for Cecelia. 'I can't feel my face when I'm with you, but I love it.' Did anyone see Tom Cruise on Jimmy Fallon singing this song? It is the only thing I think about when I hear it now, love it.

1:40 pm | Home. Talk to Tony, kids both down at 1:00 after playing outside and going for a walk. Nice! Tony is into the old door hardware from upstairs, wants us to keep it as it's very valuable. Only his mechanical mind would think this is such an amazing device. He takes Henry for walk. Mom texts and is in Chicago. Say bye to Tony, make and eat my lunch. Notable: check IG for first time today at 2:00! Instagram one of my own pictures about mom. Then I email HER mom to report she's off to Colorado. The insane blessing of having both my mom and grandma alive, well, and incredibly involved in our lives is not taken for granted, trust me.

The lock // my lunch // meal plans
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2:30 pm | I go through pics on phone from the day, then somehow check my work email and do a quick email back to CEO of the company. Then I get sucked into doing paperwork even though I swore I wouldn't deal with it today.

2:40 pm | Porter is crying. Crap. He is laying down with eyes open. Sleep a little more, baby!! Unload dishwasher. Need to shred my pork too but almost time to pick up Truman. Tony washed a few things by hand, the stinker. 

3:00 pm | I get Porter and he is royally pissed at life. Make a mental note to mention his molars, he is cutting so many freaking teeth lately, which must be the cause of the scream-to-wake phenomenon. When I walk into his bedroom he pops up and flashes a huge grin at me with tear-stained cheeks. My boy melts me.
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We go and wake Cecelia too, hate to cut her nap short but really two hours is more than enough for my 3.5 year old these days. Whoo boy, both kids are not very happy with me right now, but I carry them both downstairs and try to get them to turn those frowns upside down. Get them all packed up and ready to go over to school by bringing dried blueberries, animal crackers, and water. These two are obviously very awake and thrilled with Kindergarten pick up time.

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3:12 pm | We walk to school and I know I'm super annoying (maybe 'basic'??) but seriously this weather!! Chat with some mom friends, give my big boy a hug when he comes out and then he immediately needs to play kick ball with his friends. Snacks for all as our blueberries and animal crackers are big hits. Porter thinks he is a big kid and wants to play catch with everyone. Ali comes with baby Tessa and it's humorous to see the crowds swarm the new baby with appropriate 'oooohs' and 'aahhhhhhs'. No major injuries on the post-school playground time today, Truman does take the kick ball right to his nose but fights off tears better than I would. CC also falls down at least one time and requests a bandaid, and Porter is just trying to eat small rocks from the playground. Par for the course!

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4:15 pm | We walk home. Unload various bags and paraphernalia from school and our jam packed double BOB. Shred pork. Nate texts and is coming home!!! I want to go for a run and he texts that he will handle the children for a bit so I can get my endorphins. YES. So I change clothes and make our bed finally. Play with Porter on our bed and then down in the sunroom. He is happier now that he got some sunshine and ball tossing out of his system.

Henry is tortured by the smell of pork, he cannot deal.
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4:30 pm |  Nate is home, LOVE his two early evenings so much. Show him the lock his dad is obsessed with. He got beer from a patient today, hope we can bust them out tonight. Briefly talk about Tessa, dance class, school, etc.. Get packed for my run and P is the opposite of happy when he realizes I'm leaving. Give him the rest of his sucker from earlier---this must have been when I caved and gave them each a sucker in the car on the way home from dance. Works like a charm and he stops screaming my name as I walk out the door. #Bribery

Ah, Porter.
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4:45 pm | Leave for my run alone, no stroller which is a rarity. Ahhhh.  Lots of tree pics along the way, note many families out and about on this beautiful time of year. I think maybe we are extra ape sh** over Fall in Wisconsin because we know what season comes next. So we better enjoy the heck out of life right now before the snow and ridic temps suck away our will to live. I run a little faster just thinking about running on a treadmill in the winter. 
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If I had my real camera this would have been amazing.
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5:20 pm | Home after an easy 3-ish miles. C and P are outside with Nate. I go in and find Truman coming outside, and he immediately informs me that Porter fell off our bed while I was gone. Nate is busted! Nate said Porter and he were playing on the bed and P suddenly flopped back and onto my pillow that was on the ground. Thank goodness I only made our bed halfway today, protected his noggin!
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Kids want chocolate milk, we say absolutely not, and then we start getting dinner together after putting away clean dishes. CC slips on her tights, we finally removed them. She keeps her leotard on though, of course. 
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5:45 pm | Dinner is served. Porter is not very happy and is eating nothing I provided for him, needs to be on my lap apparently. Big kids start scattering by 6 but do pretty good before then. We all talk about kickball rules, about Truman getting hit in face with the ball, and about the school librarian. Truman tells me that every teacher has a 'Mrs.' in front of their names. There is only one 'mister' at school, and then he tells me that Mrs. Chybowski's husband's name is 'Mr. Chybowski.' His mind is kind of blown about this.

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Cecelia is eating broccoli out of our salads. Porter is eating my feta and sunflower seeds. Truman is eating his own meal. Then the little ones are playing nicely in the sunroom while Truman tries to convince us all to play kickball with him 'really fast, before bed'. This does not sound fun to me at all right now.

6:15 pm | Done with dinner. We put the dishes into dish washer, Truman has a Blow Pop for his dessert and it's super annoying because both of the other kids want a sucker, too. But no, they each had one earlier and also didn't finish their dinner like Truman did. I take Ports upstairs for a bath and the big kids go play kick ball with (fun) daddy. Porter keeps saying 'thank you' and 'cheese' in the bath while splashing like a fool. He seriously cracks me up even when he is throwing water all over our bathroom.

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6:40 pm | I get him out and the big kids come in from outside. CC announces she is 'sweaty' and Truman decides he cannot deal with a bath or a shower tonight, and I let it slide since he did just bathe yesterday. Cecelia gets a bath to herself. I cut Porter's finger nails (he hates) and dress him in jams. Cecelia gets out and I help with her jams. Truman is already dressed and is super tired and kind of whiny, which just means he is even more tired than usual. When I see the state of their bedroom covered in sand from GoGo crafts, I tell Cecelia that mommy is not as fun as GoGo because sand on the floor makes me twitch. She replies, "I'm not twitching," because she loves messes! I snap pictures of the bones pajamas, and I think Nate is putting away laundry during this time. I run down to get a cup of milk for all three kids and their loveys while Nate starts reading books to Tru and CC in our bed. Porter toddles into them and then randomly starts asking, 'mama?' over and over again. Gah. He slays me. I pick out their clothes for tomorrow and put away laundry. 

Heart eyes:
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7:05 pm | I read to Porter and note his gut is hanging out of his skeleton jams. His hand is on my leg and he is pointing to his favorite '100 First Words' book. Cecelia runs in for one final kiss and Truman is close behind, as we all can't get enough of our baby.

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7:10 pm | We all leave Porter's room and wish him a good night. I put away more laundry while Nate sings and does teeth for the bigs. Ah, bedtime routines, I really try to savor you and not rush through it all but sometimes it's hard!

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7:15 pm | Come downstairs to put away the left over pork. Go back up to do my bedtime stories and take the kids to the potty. They always fight about who goes pee first and tonight is no different. I tell them a made up story about the day and 'soft tickle' their backs. Truman's eyes are basically shut at this point and as I tuck him into his bed, I ask, 'Wasn't the trip with GoGo so much fun?' Bad move on my part, my tired boy starts crying and says he misses his GoGo. He pulls it together when I say Christmas will be here soon and that I miss her, too. Cecelia lightens to mood by telling me that I stink, and the specifies that I smell like fruits and vegetables. I get about three real hugs from sister and three kisses on the mouth---the girl really likes to solidify bedtime with loving. Truman also musters up a little bit of a hug and kiss for me and I tell them 'good night' as I go back downstairs.

7:30 pm | I'm downstairs. Check work emails again, still lots going on about this one patient and it has me all worked up. Nate went to buy decaf coffee beans, says it sounds really good (?) but I disagree.

7:55 pm | Must get away from work computer, can't do much this time of night anyway (brain dead). Text mom and she is back in Colorado. Delete pictures from my phone that I don't want to keep from today. Start working on this post. Talk to Nate about whether decaf has caffeine (I guess we will find out soon) and being PTs within big companies. Type some of this post, watch The Voice, get distracted by other social media outlets. This time of night is not my most productive, ever.

9:20 pm | Yawning, losing steam, can't focus on this post anymore and I'm only through 8 am. Yikes. Notable: did not consume an alcoholic beverage this day, perhaps a first for a DiTL (while not pregnant at least).? Mom texts and is back home, yay.

9:30 pm | Go upstairs, proud of myself for calling it this early. Note there are two empty milk cups sitting on the bathroom sink, meant to take those down earlier. Oops. Wash face, brush teeth, check the kids on the monitor. Set my alarm for 6:30 tomorrow since it's a work day and if I didn't set my alarm, I'm sure Porter would manage to sleep past 6:30 for the first time ever. Since I do set my alarm, of course I won't need it anyway.

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Sleep all night until Porter wakes a little before 6 am. That's a solid 11 hours for him so I cannot complain but he does wake up really scream-y again. I hope his teeth are really to blame (and not something else...who knows what?). 

So that is what I do all day, that is what our days look like right now in this ever-changing season of life. 


  1. It's exhausting to read your day, and I know mine are the same haha on the days I'm home with my kids. And I only have 2 (but hopefully another one soon-ish)... I'm going to do my day tomorrow because we have some fun stuff planned.

  2. I know these are a ton of work, but I really enjoy them! It's just kind of nice to see examples of other people in the same stage of life. On another note ... I pinned your royal icing posts a while back and finally made them. THANK YOU for all the details. Mine didn't turn out great but I know exactly the mistakes I made thanks to your post. Super helpful!

  3. I haven't done a DITL since last November, trying to motivate myself to do one while I'm still on maternity leave. You'd think that'd be the best time to do one..... but..... well you know.

  4. I love these posts so much. Thinking about doing one this go 'round myself, but we'll see. We are dealing so many of the same issues with my fifteen-month-old--screaming at wake ups (gaaah teeth!), messy peanut butter toast. Oy. They are a wonderful handful. Also, where did you get your cute sweater?

  5. Whew! Great day! And awesome to have such a fierce village. :) Glad your mom got home safely! And sleeping all night? Heaven! God I love the rare occasion when that happens!!

  6. I love how detailed your ditl posts are, all the pictures you post, and the tantrums, is not just my kids lol. It def is a lot of work but so worth being back on it just months later. I'm bummed to have I missed my day for the round up (new phone upgrades = missed reminders) but plan on still doing it next weekend, after all is the memory that counts right :)

  7. I love your DITL posts! In that first "solo cup bowling" picture Porter is a dead ringer for Truman!!

    Also, something I'd love to hear your perspective on - and I'm not sure if you've done a post on this - is how you handle feeding your kids. What is your philosophy on what they eat? Are they picky? What are your go to meals? How do you manage meals as a working mom?

  8. Love the kids in the skeleton pajamas! I'm jealous that you got to fit in a run as well- something that I should have done this weekend.

  9. Such a full day! Every time I see Porter's room I think how great it is, but don't think I've ever mentioned it - so now I am. It's awesome. And while we're at it, the bathroom looks great too!

  10. That pulled pork has me all hungry even though I'm trying to go meat-free over here. So jealous of your weather, man. You guys are in jackets already. We're still in the high 80's over here. Glad your mom was okay after that fall. What a scary thing to wake up to!


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