In the spirit of things, I wanted to document this snippet of time because in about three months our lives are about to be rocked again by baby girl, and our routines will definitely be changing. There are certainly days now when I feel like I'm surviving in the trenches...days where Ben has lots of tantrums, wants to be held constantly, I never pee without a toddler and a dog staring at me, and nothing gets accomplished other than meeting the needs of other people. Days where being a stay at home mom is really boring and the hours drag on like the never ending story. Afternoons where I count down the minutes until my husband gets home (single parents...shout out and fist bump to you!) There are seasons of motherhood where my hormones, Ben's emotions, our highs and lows oscillate and change hugely...two months ago was rough, but now we are going through a really fun time. I feel like the toddler years are really my jam, and while Ben was an adorable infant, I'm happy to see him growing into a young boy. No matter the day, I like to feel joyful, and overall, we are thriving and happy, and feel like every day just gets more and more fun with our boy. I miss working, but I'm still thankful every single day I get to be here with him...through all of the amazing, the boring, the exhausting, the fun, the lonely, the overwhelming, the joyful, and the confusing moments.
Most of our weekdays are somewhat the same. I try and do 3-4 social activities with him a week, and at least 1-2 days at home in a relaxed environment. Weekends are of course a whole different ballgame, since daddy is home and we are usually out doing fun activities or the guys are doing guy stuff together. Like most mamas, I often worry I'm not doing 'enough' or the 'right things'...I let other people get in my head about why he isn't in preschool, daycare, a co-op, or starting homeschool activities. My thoughts on this are that he is only two years old, and for US, being home with his mama at this point in his life is right where he needs to be. We do a lot of learning activities together, we read a lot of books, and we go outside to explore the world. I know I needn't worry because Ben is super smart, and loving, and even though he is a shy child, he is growing in his social nature. This time with my baby(s) is so sacred and special to me and I'm soaking it up before life changes again.
We are not huge clock-watchers, but toddlers do thrive on consistency/routine and we aim for the same general times each day with variation for flexibility. This was just a random Tuesday in October.
Butt Crack of Dawn: My husband wakes up, and I get up with him today (this does NOT happen every day...trust me), and I make him a breakfast shake before sending him on his way. I go back to bed and read for a little bit and doze off and on before my alarm goes off, but baby girl is rolling and jabbing me and sleep was minimal.
7:00: I wake up to get showered and dressed (yoga pants and a hoodie), and then make the bed. I go let the dog out and wait forever for him to find the perfect place to do his business (thinking about how great it will be to finally have that fence built so I can just let his wandering heart out free). I feed him and leave him in the laundry room so he doesn't drive me nuts.
9:30: Today is our weekly playdate with friends, and it's our day to host. Our friends arrive, but since it's raining and Lena has her newborn, we stayed inside and chatted on the couch while the kids played. Ben and his friend Gabe both love trains and spent time driving trains on the track, and doing puzzles on the floor. Our boys love love love muffins and it's almost a thing we do now at playdates (plus a nursing mom and a pregnant mom love muffins too!) :) I love play time with friends because it really helps the morning go by faster and I get quality friend/adult interaction (oh and it's good for Ben too). Days when we don't have playdates Ben and I usually run errands, try library story time, or stay home and do play-doh, read books, practice colors and counting, build things, play outside, etc (fill that toddler tank!)
11:45: We eat lunch at the table together. He's really into putting "Peppa, not salt," on all of his food right now. When he's done, I let him know he has about 30 minutes of playtime before night night/nap. I sit at the computer and finish my lunch and read a few blogs.
12:00-12:20: I clean up the kitchen while Ben plays and poops before nap (he's a predictable pooper, that kid...well, except for this morning).
12:25: Ben helps clean up toys and then runs to his room to read books and get ready for nap. I change him, close his blinds, he grabs his "Bebe" (stinky blue guy) from his crib and we read one book together.
12:30: Ben climbs up to his crib, I put him in and he gives me a kiss. He says 'night night,' 'no crying, mama!' I tell him I love him and leave the room after turning on his sound machine. He jabbers and talks (it's hard to understand him through the monitor, but I think he's talking about his daddy) for about 15 minutes before falling asleep.
2:55 Ben wakes up and I get him a snack of hummus and apple slices, and a cup of milk. He does puzzles next to me on the couch (have you noticed he really loves puzzles right now?) Ben asks to do a puzzle probably 20 times a day. I'm not exaggerating. He's GOOD at it too. He doesn't need much help and he loves to do it on his own, saying "Not quite!" when a piece doesn't fit, telling himself "Good job Ben!" when he finishes, and then dumps it out to start again. After snack and puzzle, he then runs off to find my chap stick and spends about 20 minutes applying some generous doses of that to his lips (and to my cheeks as well). He plays with his tractor on the floor for a while, and I decide since it isn't raining we need to get our outdoor time in and get him ready for that.
5:00: I get up to start dinner while the boys go downstairs to the daylight basement to run around and play.
5:45: We sit down to eat dinner together. Ben gets in trouble once because he puts a bunch of pepper in his water and deliberately dumps it on his dinner. He mostly finishes eating it anyway and then is excused. Justin starts to clean up the kitchen while I make his lunch for tomorrow and set up the Vitamix for him to make his breakfast shake when he gets up. I give Ben some magnets and a cookie sheet to play with and this occupies him for quite some time.
7:30: Ben comes to say 'night night' and give me kisses. I change into workout clothes and go downstairs and do a 30 minute Total Body Cardio workout video (21DayFix) and then 35 minutes of spin on the bike. Plus, I want to finish watching the latest Vampire Diaries (don't judge me), and I always feel less guilty if I do this while exercising. Justin joins me around 7:45 after putting Ben to bed (bless that man...every night he does bedtime) and he lifts some weights and jogs for 30 minutes.
9:00: We take quick showers and climb in bed together to watch our favorite show, Castle. We don't have hulu+ or cable, so we are always a week behind on shows we enjoy and have to wait the next day after a new one airs to watch the one from the week before. It's almost sad how much I look forward to Tuesday nights.
Just another beautiful, ordinary day in the Laughery household. Thankful for our blessings and health everyday.