Thursday, February 17, 2011

Need advice

I've been pretty much sucking at the whole work/life balance/flow/equilibrium/survival thing. I've been snappy with Eli, impatient with Sydney, and slacking with my clients. I'm doing my first load of laundry of the week tonight, and really it's only because I'm out of underwear. I haven't cooked a real dinner all week. My house is a wreck, and though I feel it's impact I can't bring myself to do anything about it. I'm frustrated because Sydney still isn't sleeping in her bed or through the night. Eli has been a terror, I'm sure because he's hungry for attention, but I feel totally strapped to my rocker, nursing from the time I get home until I drag both of us to bed. At work I've been forgetful, impatient, and annoyed. In short, I feel tapped.

I think one of the things that needs to happen is that I need to develop a more structured nighttime routine. I need predictability and downtime and I think the kids do too. I used to have it down pretty good with Eli, but with the addition of Syd I've lost my groove. So here's my thought.

Right now our routine is like this:
4:30 Home from work/daycare
6:00 (who are we kidding? It's usually 6:30/6:45) Dinner
7:00 Start getting Eli ready for bed.
7:30/8:00 Eli goes to bed (usually after being yelled at.)
8:00-10:00 Nurse Syd. Try to put her down. Crying. Repeat.

What I would like looks more like this:
4:30 Home from work/daycare
5:30 Dinner
7:00 Syd gets jammies and bottle/nurse. Bed.
7:30 Eli gets jammies/stories. Bed.
8:00 Mama gets some actual time to sit/fold laundry/Facebook/TV.

Due to C's schedule this has got to work as a one-woman show, though if he's home he often takes on Eli's bedtime routine. I'm worried about the Home/Dinner window, but I'm sure I'll figure something out. Other than that, it looks good, at least to my sleep deprived eyes.

Does this seem reasonable? Anyone with two+ want to chime in?


  1. Given I'm childless I don't know how useful my thoughts will be; maybe the psych. background will save me. ;) It sounds like the most important thing is the earlier dinner both for you and E. I'm sure the poor kid needs to blow off some steam and see mama before bed, just like mom does (the steam part). Might I suggest a port for quick/easy dinner idea suggestions? How to plan/maximize/prepare dinner in 30 minutes or less? Would that help?

  2. 30 minute dinner ideas would be great! I agree that that part will be crucial.

  3. And just so you know, even childless I struggle with the both-working-full-time-make-dinner-relax-sleep-repeat issue. The grind can be awfully grueling and doing it alone with two kids makes you a WINNER already. Seriously

  4. Yes, I agree that quick dinners are the best idea. Go shopping once a week and you will be set. I also do something that I call the "rule of 5" Instead of walking by the same dishwasher needing to be loaded/pile of laundry to be folded/mail to be sorted over and over again and being "triggered" with stress everytime I see it what I do is tackle 5 (and only 5) items each time I pass it (i.e. put five things in the dishwasher - silverware counts as one a piece!) Instead of waiting to take everything on full force it is a lot easier to do it a piece at a time :)

  5. I'm a litle late to the party commmenting on this one. Would it work to get both jammied-up and do stories with the both at the same time or would it be herding cats, possibly? Then E could get some one-on-one mama time after?