I wrote about our morning routine before Tristan was born last summer. It was fun to go back and read. We have a new morning routine that I equally love that I will record for you soon.
But it’s the evening routine I’ve been thinking about lately. It’s a workout. Between the hours of 5 pm and 7 pm I sweat. I remember the days when I had “mother’s helpers” to hold a very fussy Tristan while I fed and bathed Elise. It’s not necessary now but, boy, do I sure miss them sometimes.
The earliest Nolan is usually home is 6:30 or 7 pm, just in time to see the kids and read books before bed. When he’s closing a deal (lawyer speak), he’s home at 10 pm or midnight or 2 am. That’s our life and yes, I’ve accepted it but I don’t have to like it.
I feel pretty good about juggling two kids — ages 2 years and 8 months — on my own every night, so I recorded the “minutes” tonight.
During their afternoon nap – I washed the breakfast and lunch dishes and prepped for dinner. (Usually this means chopping or marinating.) I already know what I’m making because we meal plan and shop accordingly. Whatever I make for us, the kids eat. No exceptions. I’m strict like that and we’ve only had a few nights in which the 2-year-old has flat out refused to eat. The 8 month old EATS EVERYTHING. A boy thing?
4:44 pm — An apple pie goes in the oven.
4:45 pm — I start dinner. The kids are crawling around the kitchen, toys scattered everywhere.
5:13 pm — Both kids go in their high chairs and dinner is served. Tonight it’s salmon, roasted asparagus and quinoa with wilted spinach and parmesan cheese.
A few other meals I’ve cooked lately:
5:30 pm — I make the mistake of looking at the floor. Food everywhere. Tristan must be getting too much attention because Elise asks me to spoon feed her. I humor her.
5:31 pm — The apple pie comes out and I start clearing dishes. I leave the kids in their high chairs (we love this brand because the kids sit at the table with us) as long as I can. Tristan is crawling everywhere now and I can’t leave them alone together for more than a minute.
Oh, and our favorite bibs are these by Baby Bjorn. Easy to wash, adjustable strap and they catch a lot of food. Seriously, once my younger brother, unmarried and childless, said that the bib was so cool he would consider having a child just to use it.
5:40 pm — I wipe each kid down and let them play for a few minutes before running the bath.
5:50 pm — Bath time. Luckily the kids’ tub is on the first floor about 10 feet from the dining room. I fill up the tub, strip E and put her in first. Then T goes in. After washing I let them play for quite a while. Bath time is always a lot of fun.
6:10 pm – This is where it gets tricky. Even though we have a changing table on the first floor, I’m a little nervous about leaving E in the tub unattended so I get T dressed on my lap in our very small bathroom so I can be within arm’s reach of E. Then I let T play in the living room while I get E dressed. (We keep bath towels, pajamas, diapers and other supplies on the first floor or I gather them before bath time begins.)
6:23 pm — We all head upstairs and I nurse T in his rocking chair while E plays with toys and books between his room and hers.
6:35 pm — T is in his sleep sack, the sound machine is on and we say goodnight to our sweet little guy. It’s Elise’s job to close his door. And yes, 6:30 pm is his bed time….early, right? But he insists.
6:30 – 7 pm – E is crazy about books so we usually spend close to a half hour reading every night in her room. When Dada is home, like tonight, we’ll let her play downstairs for a bit while the adults catch up.
7:15 pm — Dada takes E up, reads books and she’s down by 7:45 pm. She gets in her sleep sack, sound machine on, her turtle nightlight turned to blue (this is VERY important) and we say goodnight.
At this point, I’m exhausted. I do the dishes, clean up toys, take a shower and
waste hours on Twitter catch up on a few foreign policy journals before hitting bed. Exciting, huh?
P.S. I should address the apple pie thing, right? I do love to bake but I rarely make an apple pie from scratch. Elise helped today and we enjoyed a slice after the baby was in bed. I was inspired by this really sweet book that we’ve been reading to E lately.