a day in the life: 5 month edition

September 13, 2012
disclaimer:  not every day looks like the one below!  some days — like today — i end up eating a freezer-burned bagel for dinner and skipping my workout.  but this is my general blueprint of what things are like lately.  

anywhere from 5:45 – 7:00 [but usually around 6:00] — annabel wakes up.  she is my alarm clock most days!  this is a pretty major change from 2 months ago when i would get up at 5:00 or earlier, either to feed a hungry baby or to attempt to pump/work out before she emerged from dreamland.  why the change?  it got frustrating trying to pump/start running, only to have her wake up moments later.  the evening became a much more predictable time.  and well — i got tired.

she eats [nurses] as soon as she wakes up [meal #1], and then we head to the kitchen where i prepare my breakfast.  she is still content to hang out in her bouncer while i eat, as long as i talk to her and provide some sort of entertainment.  if she’s up on the early side, we sneak in some playtime before i have to get down to morning routine business.

from this AM.  today was an early one . . .

7:15 pump #1 — and then i have to start thinking about prep to get out the door.  i shower [if i hadn’t the night before], grab pump parts/lunch, and prep a’s bottles.  if there’s time, i even unload the dishwasher so i don’t have to later.  now that i’m used to this routine, it doesn’t take quite as long as it did a couple of months ago.  but it’s still tedious!

8:15 [earlier on clinic days, sometimes a little later on lab days] we’re out the door.  if she ate super early, i give her a 5-10 minute ‘top-off’ nursing session before we leave.

8:25 day care drop off.  this process is also streamlined compared to in the past — i’m a day care mommy veteran now.  thankfully, i still love the caregivers in a’s room and have been really happy with her experience there thus far.  the only thing that bothers me is that i wish she’d nap better there, but that’s a story for a different day.

side note: though this is about my day, i’ll note that annabel takes 3 x 5 oz bottles in day care — usually spaced every three hours, so around 9:30, 12:30, and 3:30, for meals #2, #3, and #4.  her naps are all over the place, and some days are really lame [20 minutes — does that even count!?].

around 9:00 [earlier on clinic days] i arrive at work.  this part hasn’t changed much, although it was quite a busy august/september in terms of running experiments.  october i’ll be back on the wards, which will be another experience altogether.

12:00 pump #2 + lunch.  as i write this, i wish i could space this closer to pump #1.  but this is generally how things work out.

12:45 back to work . . .

4:00 pump #3.  then back to work, but just usually to wrap things up/prep for the next day

5:00 head to daycare.  i’m usually suffering from a significant case of annabel withdrawal by this point and i have to stop myself from speeding too much down the durham freeway [seriously] to get to her.

5:20 happy moment!  we are reunited.  we drive home [5 minutes].  this often happens:

day care is tiring.
[she usually wakes up within a few minutes of getting in the door]

5:45 playtime — until she becomes too fussy to stand it any longer.  sadly, this often happens very quickly.

6:00 dinner!

it is absolutely amazing to me how good she is at taking food with a spoon after just a week’s practice. honestly, sometimes it’s hard to give her enough fast enough to please her, and she isn’t even that messy somehow!  so far, she’s had:

— rice cereal [with breastmilk]
— sweet potatoes [from a jar]
— butternut squash purée [that i made, thinned with a little bmilk]

6:15 bathtime.  she continues to love this ritual, and therefore so do i.  followed by pajamas/sleep sack, lotion and a book [if she’ll tolerate it — which usually she won’t]

6:30 nurse to sleep [meal #5, not counting her solids].  she typically stirs a bit when i transfer her to the crib, but then passes out

i actually just tiptoed into her room and took this shot.  
blurry but i wasn’t going to risk waking her up with the flash again!

7:00 the baby-free portion of the evening begins.  lately, i’ve been going straight to my planned workout to just get it done [except for tonight, because i’m tired and slacking, as i mentioned above].  afterwards, i shower and start to load the dishwasher with the bottles/pump parts that accumulated in my bags from the day.

and then — it’s time to make or heat up dinner.  i’ve been trying to plan dinners so that on nights that i run, i don’t have much to do — lots of leftovers and frozen pizzas and the like.  on rest days [or quick shred workout days], i’ll throw together something pretty easy, in the 20 minute range.  if josh is home, he will often help with this while i’m finishing running [or afterwards with me].  oh, and lately i’ve been enjoying some wine or beer while i cook.  it’s sort of a bribe to get me to do it, but whatever works, right?  and after going nearly a year without [i was too paranoid to drink much those first few months when i never knew when a would eat], it feels kind of nice and special.

last week.  long run on monday was labor day — not my usual pattern.

[more on workout/meal/week planning on another post.  i have more to say here!]

8:30ish dinner and clean up.

9:00 crash on couch time — or i’ll blog!  often josh and i find something to watch together, but pickings have been slim lately.  i’m psyched for the return of glee and modern family.

9:45 pump #4.

10:15ish to bed.  but really i need to start expediting things a bit in the evening and getting there earlier.

1:00 [or midnight, or 2:00] whimpering — never all out crying.  i go to nurse her [meal #6] and she is typically up for 20 minutes, max.  she eats and then i put her back down with her paci, and she is very good about falling asleep.

so there you have it — the above is a pretty IDEAL day.  a is definitely more predictable than she was a few months ago, but there are still nights when she wakes up twice.  last night, for example, she was up at 12:30 and again at 5:15 and really never made it back to sleep again, which is probably why i feel pretty much like a mess right now.

still my all?
yes.  i may not sound as glowingly ecstatic about things as i did two months ago when i was just thrilled that i could SURVIVE back at work, but .  . . i still really like the current balance.  i really enjoy my time with a, who is getting more fun by the day — and i also like working.  it makes our weekends so special and i have to say that picking her up is always a highlight of my day!

if anything could be better [though i know it could be MUUUUUCH worse!], i do long for sleep a little.  i don’t think i’ve had one completely uninterrupted night of slumber yet, and i get jealous when i hear about babies who go from 7 – 7 on a regular basis.  still, i think there’s hope, especially as a’s intake of solid foods increases.

oh, and though i really like breastfeeding, i could do without the (*$&@# pump.  but things are looking good for my goal of exclusive breast milk until 6 months, and after that i’ll reassess and see where things are.

all right, considering eating an ice cream sandwich and heading to bed with happier at home [though i’ll still have to pump at 9 or so.  harumph.]  good night!