Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Not enough hours in the day

My blogging has grown intermittent as of late, I know. About two months ago I started a new job and I am absolutely loving it. Great, right? The problem is that the quality and quantity of hours I'm putting in has increased dramatically leaving me a mushy brained woman at the end of the day and barely able to keep up with Cameron until her bedtime.

My morning routine starts at 6 AM. I usually sleep pretty well so I rarely need a full snooze to get my ass out of bed. While I'm showering, doing my hair (hot rollers if I shower the night before), putting on my suit and make up, DH gets up around 6:20 to get Cameron ready. We meet up in the kitchen around 6:35 and I start the car to get it warmed up while Cameron has a few muffins (she has been eating muffins for the past 4 months every single morning. OCD much?). Ideally we are in the car at 6:45 so I can drop Cameron off and get to my desk by 7:30. I am like a Swiss watch when it comes to the morning routine. I get stressed out when we are even 5 minutes late.

I work through lunch and have very little downtime for procrastinating which means I have to save things like online shopping, looking up stuff for personal reasons, etc., for the evening. Which basically means it doesn't get done which is why I haven't booked my tickets to Portland, ME for our 2 week summer vacation. Which is totally stressing me out because there are only two flight times and they don't work with a toddler sleep schedule.

I typically leave work around 4/4:30. I prefer 4 if I can do it because that gives me the option to get a run in before DH brings Cameron home from school. If I don't run then I have to pack my breakfast, lunch and snack for the next day. Preparing that much food takes time but keeps me on track with my weight. I also pick out my work outfit and hang it on the bathroom door. I have been doing that for years and it really saves time! Cameron is home by 5:30 and we usually play outside for 30-45 minutes before the rest of the evening activities occur.

Cameron's bedtime has been creeping towards 7:15 and I have a feeling that soon we will have a 7:30 bedtime for her. We still don't have family dinners so that means DH and I aren't eating until 8 or even 8:30 sometimes. But we haven't figured out how to prepare a family dinner and still get in quality playtime with Cameron before her bath/dinner/bedtime routine. Any advice from been there, done that parents?

Finally, my DVR is mocking me with the number of TV shows it has recorded for us to watch. We usually get one show in and then it's time for bed for this old lady...I like to be in bed by 9:30 with lights out at 10. 8 hours of sleep is a minimum requirement for me!

I feel bad sometimes because Cameron also has a long day at school - 7 AM to 5 PM. But I figure she gets a nap and is basically playing all day so how hard can that 10 hour day be?

I realize that my schedule isn't that arduous from a work perspective. I rarely have to work in the evenings or weekends and typically keep it to 45 hours a week. How the heck do parents who have to work longer hours do it? I'm tired all the time and I'm in the best shape of my life! How do other parents handle it?


Drew said...

When are you coming to Maine? We will have to schedule some play time for the kiddies! Sounds like you have a very busy day. I would not feel bad about the time Cameron is at school. Joel loves school and we think it is better that he be there, supervised, entertained, learning, playing and running rather than at home where we would inevitably be forced to turn the TV on or something to occupy him while we needed to get stuff done. I have no helpful comments but look forward to reading others. I plan on going back to work, maybe even full time once Deuce is at least 6 months, so I need to start taking notes! But in other news, I like couples quiet dinner after Joel Andrew has gone to bed. One parent does the bedtime routine and one makes dinner. This will of course all change with 2, but for now it works and we are eating dinner at exactly 7:30. I can't imagine every night struggling through my dinner and dealing with kiddo. I guess that would help with weight loss?

Nicole S. said...

I have no good advice but can commiserate on the dinner thing, even though I stay at home. The nights DH is here for dinner - (most) Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, I still usually cook dinner at the normal time - 430ish, to be on the table by or before 530. I eat with the kids and eat again later with him. The exception is if I have something more adult planned (like clams cooked in their shells - NOT toddler friendly) and I will cook that while he puts the kids down so as soon as bedtime is done, dinner is ready for us to eat.

My point is, its a crap shoot no matter what. Unless you have a live-in cook. We can dream.

Donna said...

Do you have any slow cookers? I try and cook some meals during the weekend so that I have family dinners basically complete and I just have to warm up during the week. I am jealous - my boys are just maniacs and will not sleep until at least 8:30. Last night DS1was not sleeping until nearly 10 pm. I don't get to bed until at least 11 pm and am up by 5:45 am. I think you have a great routine and more power to you, you take time to take care of yourself. Something I wish I did.

Stephanie said...

Our schedules sound very similar, Stacy. I do feel bad sometimes that the little guy is in daycare so long, but he truly loves his teachers and the other kids. He gets to play outside several times a day, do arts & crafts and just generally have a good time.

In the evenings, we're getting home around 5:15/5:30 and we do dinner right away. During the week, it's usually something easy like tacos or grilled chicken, fresh veggies, etc.

I don't really focus on quality playtime, but rather, make our "snuggle" time/reading time the time we spend together, just the two of us. We read as many books as he wants and then snuggle for a bit.

His "official" bedtime is 7PM, but he rarely is ready to fall asleep by then, so we just gate his room, let him play in the dark for a bit, with his nighttime music playing and he'll fall asleep within 30 min or so.

I try to do some fun stuff, like park visits, outside playtime, on weekends and it seems to work for us.

T. said...

It was great to read this Stacey, because it seems like we have similar schedules. Dinner is definitely the hardest part, because we would love to have "family dinner", especially now that C is able to eat real food, but the timing will just never, ever work - at least not with a 7pm bedtime. So I am finding that I am falling back on "kiddie food" like meatballs and cheese and stuff like that - which bums me out because I want her to eat what we eat. I'd like to try cooking meals on weekends, but seriously, I need need at least five more hours in every day to get everything done. I am still impressed that you pick out your clothes, plan your meals, and also find time to run - so don't be too hard on yourself!