5 on a Friday

August 2, 2019

1- Our nanny has been out 8 days (and she had a week of vacation just prior to all that!). Her friend has been subbing and it has been fine, but not the same.

To those of you who regularly come home and have to make dinner with multiple kids (including a toddler) around and no partner to support – well, hats off to you. Because I find it INCREDIBLY stressful and difficult.

mainly because of this, but the others aren’t at their best at 5:45 pm either

I am sure that part of that is just not being used to it, but wow. The toddler part is the hardest, because G is so clingy when i get home, but she’s way past the infant stage where I could just put her in a carrier & cook!

Our cuisine this week:

Monday (which is totally cheating to report, because both Josh and I were off!) – salmon, sweet potatoes, green beans.

Tuesday – Greek salad with rotisserie chicken, pita (had prepped this on my day off)

Wednesday – leftover Greek salad & Amy’s frozen pizza

Thursday – eggs, leftover rice, avocado, frozen veggies

Today – probably takeout because I am spent

I mean, it could have been worse. But even the above easy meals were hard. I tried to get myself to make (easy) black bean soup last night to have for today and just. couldn’t. do it.

this was from over the weekend, but you get the idea

2- I’m trying to finalize the kids’ activity schedules but have a bottleneck! I feel like there’s always one institution that doesn’t put out their schedule and you need that to decide on everything else, you know? That’s where I am right now. I was told it would be out by the end of the week and this morning . . .not there. Maybe by the end of the day!?

3- Blog reader Anne suggested a consistent bedtime throughout the year for the big kids. Honestly, Cameron probably needs this in particular. He’s been so overtired (read: wound up / hyper is how he expresses this) this summer. At the same time, I feel like if they had a super early bedtime I’d miss out on quality time with them (and I really can’t focus on them in the evenings until G is in bed).

What I do know is that we NEEEEEED to shift things around in preparation for school. They have to leave the house essentially at 7:30 (with me, Josh, or our nanny) to be on time and right now that’s when they are waking up. Agh.

4- I decided to revive my planner insta! Well, at least for now. Speaking of insta: I have been much less addicted since cleaning up my feeds. Who knew? I am still checking in, but less often.

yesterday’s post

5- I am trying EveryDollar in lieu of YNAB! (The free version). So far I like it — I am happy that you can access it online (YNAB 4 you could not – just on the app and on the software) and there is no “Middleman” for your data (YNAB used Dropbox). Otherwise, it seems quite similar.

Just one Friday link for you — one of my favorite podcasts By the Book featured one of my favorite books – Getting Things Done! I didn’t necessarily agree with how they reviewed it, but it did seem like they were thriving under David Allen’s influence!


  • Reply Katherine Bunting August 2, 2019 at 6:07 am

    Hi Sarah, I assume you post your blog items fairly first thing in the morning in Florida, which is brilliant for me here in the UK as they ping into my inbox at about 11.00 in the morning, which is just perfect to read with a coffee and a break, especially on a Friday with your Five on a Friday post, so thank you! Good luck with all your schedule changes, bedtimes etc and hope things work out well once school starts again for you very soon.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger August 2, 2019 at 7:38 am

      Yep 🙂 morning ritual over here! So glad the timing works for you!

  • Reply Sarah K August 2, 2019 at 7:38 am

    You must have been using an old version of YNAB? I can definitely access it online.
    Anyway – I hope you find a system that works for you!
    Your weekly menu looks a lot like mine every week – I start out strong with things prepped and leftovers from the weekend, and by the end of the week I’m like – how does cheese and crackers for dinner sound?

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger August 2, 2019 at 8:23 am

      Yep- we use the old version (software that had a one time fee). We didn’t want to start paying for the “new” version! We use old YNAB 4

  • Reply Laura Vanderkam August 2, 2019 at 8:17 am

    Can I just say how cute G is? Toddler girl dresses!!

  • Reply Beth @ Parent Lightly August 2, 2019 at 10:13 am

    Oh cool! Glad you like EveryDollar so far!

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns August 2, 2019 at 11:34 am

    G is so darn cute! Making dinner with a clingy toddler is so hard. We only have one child but even when my husband is home it’s hard to make dinner because he wants to be with me instead of dad (huge mama’s boy).

    I hear you on the struggle of the early bedtime and how little you will see your kids as a result. That is something that we struggle with as our son goes to bed at 6:30pm. We get home from work around 5 so we don’t get much quality time with him. I tell myself that we make up for this on the weekend when I am with him for very long stretches of time. So maybe remind yourself of all the time you get with Cameron on the weekend when G is napping (seems like she’s a good napper?) to help you justify giving him an earlier bedtime?

  • Reply Amanda August 2, 2019 at 3:13 pm

    It sounds like you are making the best of a challenging situation & I always love your perspective! I agree with you on the reason it seems most difficult is because it is new. I think of the challenges all parents face with young kids each day where we eventually just adapt.

    I choose to make dinner for my kids (including a toddler) 4 nights each week when I do not have support. I think this is where most of the messaging on working parenthood being difficult comes from, such as the Lean Out post that went viral on FB. It does seem to be a constant juggle, and the average family cannot afford the support/help they need for both work and family.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger August 3, 2019 at 6:51 am

      Very true. I do know that if we did not have the resources we have, my top priority would be to try to arrange work schedules so both parents can be home most nights by dinner. Bc it really is so hard! But I know that isn’t always possible.

  • Reply Omdg August 3, 2019 at 1:33 pm

    I remember making dinner for Dylan after bringing her home from daycare when she was about 14 months old, and it was so hard! I didn’t want her in the kitchen, but if she wasn’t in there I could watch her and cook at the same time. I honestly don’t remember how I did it, and it seems like it would be even more difficult with three of them. I don’t cook much currently, and when I make meals for Dylan even now, they tend to be pretty spare, like some pasta or chicken and cut up tomatoes or something. I’m pretty impressed by what you’re able to throw together in spite of it all!! I hope things get easier for you! I think this too shall pass and you will get through it just fine. 🙂

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