sometimes my single friends ("single" meaning without children. that's what single means to me now) will ask "what do you do all day?" and this is how i answer: i have no idea. i do stuff that fills the time between 6am and 10pm and somehow i still feel like i don't get anything done. i always take offense at people who say "i could never just sit around at home all day with my kids" because i think "who's sitting around?". i remember the first time i talked to nate after traci went back to work and he started taking care of their monkey full-time and nate said "i could never have imagined it would be this much work" and i think that just about sums it up. so, in case you're wondering, this is what i do.
there's lots of feeding going on. ella eats breakkie, morning snack, lunch, afternoon snack and dinner. the preparation, actual feeding & clean-up totals about 30 minutes so right there is a lot of time spent in the kitchen. there is, of course, diaper duty which thankfully lessened from those first few months of 15 changes a day. now we're down to only 5 or 6 but "wrangling" has been added to the mix as ella is almost too long for the changing table and having to lay down when one is not sleeping is TORTURE. so you have that. there's the funess of staying home with your child - playing. there's blocks to be built and demolished. there's cars and soccer balls to be rolled across the kitchen floor (we're a non-gender discriminating toy household). there's books to be read. there's a new playset outside to be climbed on. there's the dog to bug. and there's mama to bug. some of the day is spent with both of us whining. ella whining to be picked up and me whining at ella to stop whining. the whining happens when she doesn't take a morning nap (which are slowly disappearing) or doesn't take a long enough afternoon nap. but i'm thankful that the days are full of naps at all. then there's housework and at the risk of sounding like a cross between erma bombeck and jerry seinfeld - what's the deal with housework? i hate it but i hate a dirty house even more. why is my house so dirty? why is it dustier than a damned egyptian tomb in here? how do you keep your baseboards clean? between the dog's hair and craig trekking in crap from outside and ella spilling goldfish crackers on the floor, i sweep and vacuum everyday. and don't forget dishes and laundry and toy pick-up. there's errands to be run - groceries, post office, bank, library (several times a week). there's playdates and shopping expeditions (a recent expedition was finding sneakers for ella and we logged about 6 hours over the course of two weeks in shoes stores. THAT was torture). we meet up with nate and adam about once a week for playground time or swim time or parental martini time (ha ha). there's sesame street and jimmy neutron and between the lions to be watched here and there. i stroller ella, walk mattie and power walk myself 45 minutes a day which is how i keep my toddler perch in check (the toddler perch is the area just above the hip where a toddler's butt convenintly perches. i coined that phrase so don't use it without permission, dawg). i'm also online doing emails, checking up on celebs at perez hilton (adina is to blame for that one), reading my fav-o blogs and watching my checking account dwindle. i also do some work for my brother jim's home building company and he's the most demanding boss i ever had. but he pays me in money AND chic-fil-a minis so i'm a happy employee. after ella goes to bed i read and water my plants outside and actually have a conversation with my husband. we'll even watch a movie!
ahhh, the old work days of 9 to 5 look pretty good from here!