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Posted by on Feb 26, 2014 in Motherhood | 15 comments

A Day in the Life…

On this particular morning, I wake up at 6:15  to the sound of the alarm on my phone. I spend the next 15 minutes willing my eyes to open, listening for any sounds coming from the crib at the foot of our bed, petting Ob who is nestled next to me (we still share a pillow) and reminding myself that I’ll feel better after I run.

I’m out the door by 6:45 and rather than making the short walk to Central Park I immediately begin running the second I step out of our building because it is too cold to walk. I also know I don’t have a lot of time, so the sooner I start running the more miles I will be able to squeeze in.

Image 13

4.5 miles later I’m back home. I do not take the time to cool down or stretch (I know, I know), but rather run up the flights of stairs leading to our apartment to leash up Ob & Marley, put Ob’s coat on (Marley hates wearing a coat so I don’t bother with his), grab their bag of treats, change into rain boots and head back out the door to let them play at the park.

We are only outside for about 30 minutes on this particular morning as opposed to the hour we normally shoot for because it is wet, cold and just plain nasty outside. Ob is a priss pot who hates to get wet so she’s ready to go back inside as soon as she’s done doing her business. Marley makes it his goal to step in every muddy puddle we come across. Once we arrive back home, I get a wet towel and clean the dogs off because their paws are filthy. I give them some treats, pet their heads, put some drops in Ob’s eye (she’s got an eye infection) and head into the bedroom where I hear Atlas talking to his stuffed animals. Since he seems content, I decide to take advantage of the situation and use the time to feed the dogs, make the bed and and fold laundry that was hanging up to dry from the night before…all while peeping in his crib every 2 minutes to make silly faces and hear him giggle. With those few tasks complete, I scoop up my baby boy, change his diaper and we kiss Dave goodbye before he leaves for work.

It is now around 8:30 & I sit down in our rocking chair to feed Atlas. I use my phone to check a few e-mails (2 to be exact, neither of which I have time to respond to) before Atlas looks up at me with his big eyes enticing me to play with him. I put my phone down (something I’m trying to be conscious about doing more these days) and we spend the next 30 minutes reading books, talking about our day (he’s not the best conversationalist, but we’re working on it) and making funny faces.

storytime

…and quickly moving past what may be the most horrifying selfie I’ve ever posted on CnC…

Once he’s done with the books and ready for his next activity, we head into the living room to play on his play mat. I set him down and go take my Juice Plus gummies because they taste like candy and also because I’m starting to get hungry but I don’t have time to make anything just yet. Atlas and I spend about 15 minutes playing with his toys and practicing rolling over before he informs me he’s over all that. As I go to pick him up, he spits up everywhere and then offers me a smile as if that makes it all better…and surprisingly, it does.

playtimeI’m a sucker for that grin. I clean him up, wipe up the floor, ignore forget about the spit up left on my shirt and take him to his exersaucer to have his morning chat with the birds. Kid is obsessed with those birds.

DSC_1272By 9:45 he’s pretty fussy so I change him, nurse him and rock him back to sleep.

10am is party time! Some also refer to this as shower time. I rinse off, wash my face, brush my teeth (let’s breeze past the fact that this doesn’t happen until 4 hours after I wake up) and bathe in lotion. Winter sucks…literally. It is sucking the moisture out of my skin.

Feeling rejuvenated from my shower, I head into the kitchen to make breakfast (eggs with buffalo sauce and ketchup with a side of avocado), put dishes away and prep the kitchen for making Atlas’ baby food. As I sit down to eat my breakfast I pull out my Bible and prayer journal, but am quickly distracted by Ob who is sitting next to me anxiously awaiting table scraps. I remember I’m supposed to put more drops in her eye, so I scarf down breakfast and then proceed to doctor Ob up. Next, I launch into pureeing the sweet potatoes and butternut squash for Atlas before washing all the dishes because I’m too OCD to let them sit in the sink for 15 minutes. I finally make it back to my Bible and journal where I spend time reading, reflecting and pouring my heart out in prayer and on paper.

DSC_1426This may seem like a silly way to spend my limited time, but it has the most significant impact on my mood and patience so it is often times more noticeable to my family when I skip this part of my day as opposed to skipping the laundry. Typically, the days I need this quiet time the most are the days when I feel I have the least amount of time to devote to it. When I feel too busy and too overwhelmed to sit and pray then that’s usually a good sign I need to drop whatever I’m doing and sit and pray.

After shutting my Bible and prayer journal, I open up my laptop to respond to your awesome blog comments, blog e-mails and personal e-mails. I respond to 3 e-mails for CnC before clicking over to my personal e-mail. I read 1 e-mail in my personal account before I hear my baby boy calling for me. Breaks over.

I change him and set him on the bed in his boppy so he can watch me dry my hair. Shockingly, this doesn’t interest him so he protest this activity and he does so loudly to be sure he’s heard over the sound of the blowdryer. I get my hair dry enough where it isn’t bothering me (I really hate wet hair on my neck) and scoop him up to play, frizzy hair and all.

We turn on Whitney Houston on Pandora (you know you love it) and play for a while before I nurse him around 12:30. After he’s full we go back to playing – we basically just play with a toy until he gets frustrated with it and then we move onto the next toy. At some point during this play time, I set him in his mamaroo with a toy and a Winnie the Pooh movie so I can go whip up a Juice Plus Shake (vanilla almond milk + JP shake mix) for lunch.

DSC_1455I skip the blender and choose to just mix the powder with some milk because I’m too lazy (busy?) to wash the blender. I drink my shake while he watches Winnie the Pooh and I try to respond to an e-mail. I don’t actually get to respond though because Atlas decides Winnie the Pooh is stupid and he would rather be held anyways than sit in his fancy mamaroo.

This is usually the point in the day where I start to get a bit antsy and I want to get outside. Sometimes we walk the dogs. Sometimes we peruse one of the stores on our block. I don’t typically care what we do – I just want out of our apartment. On this day, it is too cold though. And it is snowy and rainy. Blah. So we opt for the next best thing: laundry.

I strap Atlas in the Tula and gather up our towels and head downstairs to the laundry room in our building. It is quite the load, but at least it is a change of scenery for us both. We stop in the lobby on our way back upstairs and chat with 1 of our favorite doorman (he always makes Atlas giggle). Since we don’t have a lot of time before we have to switch the laundry to the dryer, I leave Atlas in the Tula and run the vacuum and take out the trash. After we get the towels in the dryer we take the stairs up to our apartment. Good exercise, right?.

Once we get upstairs there are more diaper changes, more play time and more giggles before going back down to grab our towels. With those folded and put away, I try and fail to put Atlas down for his second nap of the day. I think I’m successful because I lay him in his crib when his eyes are clearly shut, but much to my dismay I hear him let out a frustrated grunt seconds after walking out of the room. I decide to try and let him cry it out. 5 minutes later and he’s quiet again so I exhale, thank the Lord and decide to make a quick phone call. 10 minutes into my phone conversation, I hear him though and I sigh under my breath – he faked me out. Stinker. I spend the next 20 minutes trying to be engaged in a phone conversation while keeping Atlas happy, which is a skill I have yet to master.

I finally come to the realization that his afternoon nap isn’t going to happen so we basically repeat our morning routine all over again. Reading + play time + funny faces + trying to check e-mails + failing at checking e-mails +Winnie the Pooh movies. You get the picture.

About 5pm I strip him down (less mess to clean)  and serve him some oatmeal and sweet potatoes while blaring Michael Buble’ over our Bose speaker. Side note: Christmas music is totally acceptable in February when it is snowing.

DSC_1418We laugh, fight off Ob and Marley and make the world’s biggest mess despite my best efforts to keep the process clean. I try to drag this part of the night out because Atlas seems to enjoy it, so this isn’t a 10 minute thang…it is more like a 45 minute ordeal.

Once I get that whole mess cleaned up, next on the agenda is bath time…or as we like to call it “play time with Mr. Whale.” I know – the coolness is killing you.

Bath time is also one of his favorite parts of the day, so again I try to drag this part out. I sit on the bathroom floor and make funny faces at him (I’m not even sure I remember how to make a normal facial expression at this point) while he kicks and splashes in his baby bath tub. Dave arrives home a little after 6:30, which is exciting because this is fairly early for him. Since I didn’t get to let the dogs out in the afternoon, he quickly kisses me and Atlas before changing and taking the dogs out for a walk. At this point in the day, I’m extra thankful for him and his love for our dogs.

While Dave walks the dogs, I get Atlas out of the bath and start his bedtime routine. I give him a baby massage, rub his feet with oil (thanks for the recommendation, Annette) and put him in his pjs while distracting him with his light up seahorse toy (kid hates getting dressed so I have to be sneaky, sneaky about it). Then I turn on all his sound machines (we’ve got enough white noise to compete with the jet engines at Laguardia), turn off all the lights & nurse him to sleep in our rocker. I usually pray over him & rock him for a while after he goes to sleep just because I love the extra snuggle time.

Once he’s down, I quickly rinse off, change into some sexy pajamas (read: an XL YMCA t shirt & shorts) & make dinner. On this particular night we have salad & veggie burgers. I’m not starving because I ate a million chocolate covered pretzels earlier in the afternoon. Did I forget to mention that part of the day? But I clean my plate anyway while chatting away with Dave.

dinnerThen we clean up the kitchen together before finally returning to the couch to relax. At this point it is 9pm and although I should respond to that dang e-mail, I decide cuddling with Dave, Ob & Marley and watching 4 episodes of Modern Family while eating the best ice cream on the planet is a better idea.

Image 11At 10:30, I can barely hold my eyes open so I go get Atlas to ‘dream feed’ him 1 last time before calling it a night while Dave takes the dogs out 1 last time. Dave and I lay in bed and chat for a little longer before I fall asleep. And that’s it. That’s my day. Or at least this day. Tomorrow will be totally different. Atlas may have 2 great naps…or he may boycott both naps. We may get to walk the dogs…or go to Trader Joes…or we may venture to the YMCA so I can workout and Atlas can see Dave…or I may do a Nike Training workout at home if Atlas decides to take a quality nap…I may listen to one of these sermons while cleaning rather than actually sitting and reading my Bible…I may have a glass of wine with dinner instead of ice cream…or I may have wine & skip the glass (you know, same concept as the blender – less dishes to wash)….you get the picture. Some nights I must forgo relaxing on the couch in the evening and spending time with Dave in order to write some blog posts and respond to e-mails. The point is, no day is ever the same.

So, to the reader who emailed & asked what a typical day is like for me, I hope this post answered your question. I also hope this post shed some light on why it took me 6 days to respond to your email (sorry about that).

I would ask what your day was like, but if you made it to the end of this post then I assume reading this most likely took up your entire day. Longest.post.ever.

15 Comments

  1. This post made me smile because it reminded me of my few SAHM days when I was on maternity leave with Luke. I loved each and every day even though it was the hardest job I have ever done!
    Katie @ running4cupcakes recently posted..Weekend Update: 2/23/14My Profile

    • Katie, I often think of you when I get overwhelmed and I think of all you juggle (your medical practice, teaching group exercise, being a mom, being a wife, working on the new house, fitness, blogging, etc) and how you seem to do it all with the BEST attitude. You’re an encouragement to me! I know you work so hard during the day and then you come home and do everything I do in the evenings too (dinner, laundry, bath time, bedtime routine, etc) and then you somehow manage to write a blog post…its truly amazing! 🙂

      • you are just so sweet – thanks for the kind words. .. I will think of them the next time I am struggling to hold it all together. Some days are good, and some days not so good. .. heck – this week was so busy, I posted my weekend update on Wednesday, but that’s ok by me – life comes first, right? And I think you are amazing too – taking care of your sweet boy, husband and 2 dogs – all while living in NYC away from family. You rock Ashley!! HUGS!!

        • Life absolutely comes first!! 😉

          Hugs to you!

  2. I’m a new reader and just wanted to you know I loved this post! I am a new SAHM to my 4 month old girl and I never realized how busy the days would be and how little would get done during limited nap time but I wouldn’t trade it for anything 🙂

    • Thank you so much, Hilary! I’m so glad you found CnC and you enjoyed this post! And you said it best…I wouldn’t trade this time for anything…but really, who knew such a tiny human could create so much havoc on our daily routine?!? 🙂

  3. I love everything about this post! Especially when you mentioned me! hahaha just kidding. But for reals, the oils on her feet does wonders–I’ll have to get you the exact recipe of oils we use & take a picture of the roll on bottle we use, but girlfriend loves it.

    I love how real you are! And this day is so awesome–plus by the way, I too make some killer crazy faces. Face off soon?! hehe.

    I love bath time too–Jared and I just sit and watch her giggle & splash and be a goof. It’s so fun! I cherish all moments I cuddle with her, except for when she won’t finish off her naps……. hah.

    Way to get that run in, btw!
    Annette@FitnessPerks recently posted..WIAW-I Love Me Some Bagels!My Profile

    • laughing out loud at this, Annette! I’ll totally take you on in a face off. Seriously – does your face ever hurt at the end of the day from making such exaggerated expressions at the baby? Sometimes I sit down at night and I think, I want a face massage. lol

      And I always think the sound of Atlas talking and babbling in his crib is the cutest thing in the world…unless he should be napping…in which case the sound makes my stomach hurt because I know another nap has been missed! HAHA

  4. I got to school about 7:15, taught sixty kids about the human body systems (digestive and excretory system), finally left there about 6:15. I thought my day was long and hectic but your post reminded me what busy really is. It is exhausting being a mom but it is so rewarding. You are an amazing mom. Miss you all.

    • Thank you, Mom. We miss you. And I think your day was pretty busy – you run circles around me! Being a mom is just a ‘different’ kind of busy than the rest of the working force.

  5. THAT is a description of a day absolutely full of significance! You will NEVER regret these days with Atlas (& neither will he)!! I’m so proud of you!

    • Thank you! These are busy, yet ‘unproductive’ days but they are so incredibly special. 🙂 I am so thankful I get this time to watch him grow and develop and meet all his needs.

  6. So fun to have an inside look into your day-to-day life 🙂 You are definitely an amazing mom! My sister is a SAHM to my nephews and I am constantly in awe of her selflessness and the way in which she and my brother-in-law are raising their boys. I love that you make the time to read your Bible – something I need to do more of!
    Kate @ Quarter Century Southern Living recently posted..Cocktails and a New Card GameMy Profile

    • Thanks so much for the sweet words, Kate! You will make an amazing mom one day – you’re already getting great practice with Nola! 😉 And I think it is safe to say you will also have gorgeous babies – you and Dan are such a beautiful couple.

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