Thursday, January 19, 2017

Day in the Life: Winter 2017

Nothing like a DitL to get back into the blogging routine {is something I've likely said for the past 3 DitLs...}. As always, big kudos to Julia for steering this link-up ship!

DitL Winter 2017: Tuesday, January 17

I am less than one month out from 34.
E has 2 weeks until 35.
L will be 5 in 34 days.
B is 2.5.
Boom is 10.5.

6 am - Alarm goes off.  I tap Snooze. I usually take the 6:15 3G Orange Theory class on Tuesdays, but E had a super early flight this morning so I'm holding down the fort.  Semi-recall him getting out of bed about an hour ago.  Mentally fist-bump L's immune system for No Night Terrors last night -- She has horrible seasonal allergies and any medicine we've tried triggers them.  Even without meds, she sometimes gets them as a side effect of her body battling allergens.  Damn you, cedar!  I check my email in bed and respond to a friend whose dinnertime playdate we will attend this evening. Press Play on a MFM episode I started yesterday. I check the weather and it appears as though there might be some scattered showers but the high will be close to 60 degrees.  Mentally prepare myself for a clothing battle with B, who is sure to leave us for Southern California at the first opportunity so that he may wear shorts and t-shirts year-round. I get up, shower, brush teeth, slap on some clothes {I'm really pushing the Leggings as Acceptable Business-Cas Pants envelope lately} and makeup.

 I head downstairs to let Boom out and take the recycle and trash to the curb.  There is a pile of recycling from earlier in the week that accidentally got left out during the past 3 days of rain and it disintegrating behind our fence... I conveniently ignore that since I'm already in work clothes. Maybe it will compost itself by magic. I prep the cold brew coffee, pack lunches for the kids (crackers, turkey pepperoni, cheese cubes, berries, carrots + yogurt) and myself (quinoa, tomatoes, avocado + Tessamae's spicy ranch dressing), and "organize" the dirty dishes in the sink to make myself feel better for neglecting the not-yet-unloaded dishwasher.  I head back upstairs for a quick blow-dry.

7:11 am - B is singing "I've been working on the railroad."  I go in to get him and he immediately asks if he can wear shorts and is none too happy with my insistence on pants.  Negotiations ensue and we settle on pants (which he promptly rolls up to his knee for make-shift shorts) with a tee shirt --> Condition Precedent: No arguments about wearing his hoodie when we leave. L comes out of her room and immediately starts asking questions about Moana (which we saw yesterday). 
L gets dressed and brushes her teeth while B reads us Rudolph that I've failed to put away with the rest of our Christmas books.  We head downstairs; kiddos put their own PJs in the hamper by the washer.  There is drama over B's breakfast (I want waffle! No - can-cakes! No - waffle! NO - CAN-CAKES!) -- He throws a Lego tower in protest of my executive decision to warm up pancakes for him.  Gummy vitamin bribes and threats to put him in a long sleeved shirt result in Lego clean-up and enjoyment of breakfast carbs.
In total, 3 waffles and 8 mini pancakes are consumed by my offspring; I eat coconut yogurt with blackberries and pecans. We listen to Moana and the plot questions continue -- my favorite being "mama, do our hearts look like the Earth goddess' heart?" L shows off her "rainbow pose" from the yoga her class does in Creative Movement (heart eye emoji cue).

8:10 am - The kids do early drop-off on Mondays, and I am hoping there is space for them this morning even though I haven't received a reply from the director of their school.  I get my work bag, purse, and their school bag packed, and everyone finds their own socks and shoes and hoodies.  L wants to take her horse backpack with a bunch of random stuff in it and B wants his yaya in the car. I make an iced coffee for the road in my super trendy ginormous Honey Ham Styrofoam cup that I keep reusing to ease my yuppy-crunchy guilt, crate Boom, and we head out.  The temperature has dropped at least 10 degrees in the last hour, and it's now raining.  The kids climb into the car while I run back in to grab rain jackets. I hear my email ping, and it is the director telling me there is no early drop off this morning.  Fabulous. No way am I unloading everyone again so we drive to school and listen to some more Moana and talk about school buses and the rain and why didn't Mommy know it was going to be so cold today? At 8:50, we hustle in and drop B off at his classroom first.  I make a lame joke about toddler stubbornness while frantically motioning to B's teachers that there is both a hoodie and a rain jacket in his cubby and HA HA HA I SWEAR I TRIED TO GET HIM TO WEAR APPROPRIATE CLOTHING. The registration form for next year is in his cubby and I note that he is only pre-registered for 3 days, so we'll have to get that sorted out today.  I drop L off at her classroom and remind her that I will pick her up after Extended Day this afternoon.  I make it to my car just as the rain really gets going, and listen to a MFM mini-sode as I commute.

9:30 am -- Even in the rain, it only takes me about 25 minutes to get to work.  3 of my 4 colleagues are already in the office; there are 4 of us who work part time on different schedules so some days it's really quiet and some days we're all around at the same time. I put my lunch away, reorganize some notebooks, statutes, and handouts into my new magazine files from IKEA, and log into my computer.  I read the WaPo headlines and get last week's time entered in 2 of the 3 places required (saving the big-daddy for later). I email the school's director abut B's days for next year and reply to E's good morning email.  I check the callback list on our case management system and we are at 37 today with 25 new clients up for grabs.  I actually have some drafting to do before tackling the call backs.  I review an order for one client and call him back with a few questions; leave him a VM to call me back before I can start his demand kit. I review another client's order and pull up her child's ISD schedule to create a custody calendar for her demand kit.  Per usual, it's about 62 degrees in my office and I whip out the micro-puffer jacket over the vest with the scarf. ITPitB that, baby.

Break for lunch at noon.  I read today's Lenny Letter; get pumped up about the Women's March being just around the corner. Call my case manager at Be The Match back; the blood work I did last week was missing a component and I have to go back to get more blood drawn.  Slightly annoyed since they drew 14 vials last week, but at least I can go to a lab nearby instead of the one in Round Rock. Plus, it's pretty hard to be miffed with a minor inconvenience in the grand scheme of this entire, incredible process -- I continue to feel humbled to be a part of it all. Start back in on my demand kit at 12:17 pm.  I finish the calendar, draft demand letters, and put it all together for the client with instructions on how he needs to proceed in order to build a potential Enforcement case. I finish his packet and take it downstairs to our main offices to the mail room. I pick up my mail and the physical mail for our team and check for custody orders; none today. I spend the rest of my work hours entering my incremental time; I am way behind on this and getting caught up feels good! I head out to pick up the kiddos at 2:40.
I pull into the school parking lot right at 3:00 pm. I gather lunch boxes and art from the kids' cubbies and collect them from the gym.  Usually they are outside on the playground, but it's still raining.  B is a little manic -- Extended Day on Tuesdays is always a little rough for him since he doesn't get a nap.  He is pretty adamant about changing his clothes when we get home; this is a new phenomenon that I usually discourage, but since the temperature never climbed above 50 and his leggings are wet from climbing into my car, I throw him a bone.  It is B's turn to pick the TV show and he selects Chuggington.  The tidbits settle in for some traintastic fun + fruit snacks and popcorn.  I add today's art to the playroom display {interestingly, all of L's contributions are tropical in nature and all of B's are snowy} and pull together the components of a New Baby Meal I prepped on Sunday evening {oven baked chicken fajitas + Trader Joe's Way More Chocolate Chips cookies + 14 Hands Hot to Trot vino} as well as a salad for the playdate we are headed to. 
4:00 pm - Chuggington is over and we are headed out once again to drop off the meal and go play. The new mama {twin girls!} is a neighbor I've actually haven't met yet, and she is so sweet. Her son and L share a birthday but he is B's year in school.  Turns out she was actually on the invite list to the playdate we're headed to and she's decided to come along so I am excited to see her in a few minutes and get to know her better.  We drive the 5 minutes to my friend M's house and some buddies are already running amok. M invited B's entire playgroup + siblings and likely didn't anticipate that pretty much every single person would enthusiastically respond in the affirmative... Over the course of two hours, there are 25+ crazy meatloaves commandeering chaos and eating pizza while the moms chatted, wine-d, and attempted to avoid bodily injury. It was essentially the best, loudest playdate of all time, and I'm pretty sure we all owe M a spa gift certificate with a Xanax chaser. Our neighborhood really is my favorite.

6:00 pm - E texts me that he's home from the airport and pre-heating the oven for our veggie fajita supper just about the same time B begins to turn into a pumpkin {a very emo, screechy pumpkin} so we say our goodbyes. It is pouring outside and I have no umbrella and B is quite literally stripping down to his diaper in FOMO protest of leaving the rager so that was a super fun departure.  We are home again, home again lickety-split and all very happy to see E.  I am even happier that he has unloaded that pesky dishwasher and poured two glasses of wine.  The minis tell him all about their big day, and I cut up some more fruit to counter-balance the pounds of pizza they've consumed. E lets me know he has early morning conference calls and can't take the chicklets to school tomorrow.  This doesn't bode well for my schedule as I'd planned to exercise at 5 am and head straight to work from OrangeTheory to knock out some hours.  Jay to the rescue!  I call my mom, and she is on board for school drop off; we are so so so hashtag-blessed to have her and my dad so close by. E herds them upstairs for a bath while I pop the fajitas in the oven and make lunches for tomorrow.  Soundtrack: Rent.

6:45 pm - Early bedtime for B since he's a bit of a skipped-nap mess. He picks out his PJs {"Frankenstein!"} and makes it through two Richard Scarry nursery rhymes before he starts body slamming L, and I take him to his room for books {The Little Engine That Could; I Want My Hat Back} and songs {"the car song" - which I have to freestyle; "the monster song" - more freestyling; and "You Are My Sunshine"}.  I remember to put some lavender in his diffuser hoping it will help him settle down a bit more.  Our new "goodnights" are my favorite as he shouts "no, I love YOU!" and "no, YOU'RE the best" as I leave his room.  He jumps up and down in his crib as if it is a trampoline for about 3 minutes and then conks the heck out. 
E and L have already picked out her clothes for tomorrow and read a bunch of nursery rhymes.  I show her the invitations I have bookmarked on my phone for her super hero party next month, and she selects one {which happens to be my favorite as well!}.  We read a chapter of Charlotte's Web, sing 4 songs {Mary Had a Little Lamb, Itsy-Bitsy Spider, Twinkle Twinkle, and Miss Mary Mack}, rub some diluted peppermint oil on her chest and feet, and switch on her diffuser {peppermint + lemon + lavender for allergies} before loads of goodnight kisses.  It's an early lights-out for sister, too.
7:20 pm - Our veggies are ready so we test out some new almond flour tortillas for fajita assembly.  Verdict: Pretty good, especially considering the nutritional content, but definitely not for any dish you don't plan to eat immediately. After dining together {standing up huddled over the island like true romantics}, we switch on the first episode of The New Pope. It's fine; I keep expecting Jude Law to suddenly stab someone in the jugular -- he's a shifty character. Thoroughly enjoy this article about the mail Obama received these past 8 years and the shifting roll of the White House mailroom. In a super rare weekday move, E and I actually head upstairs to bed together since he didn't bring any work home. 

I perform my vanity-worshipping nighttime ritual and pack my gym bag to take to OTF tomorrow.  That 4:30 am alarm comes earrrrrrrrrrly.  I read a little bit of Catastrophic Happiness {which is way less cheesy than it appears... the author is the advice columnist for Real Simple and I love love love her} before falling asleep around 9:45.

10:27 pm: NIGHT TERROR.

11:40 pm: NIGHT TERROR.

11:47 pm: Adjust thermostat after realizing we turned off the Heat.

12:14 am: NIGHT TERROR.

4:30 am: ALARM. No one should willingly be awake at this hour.


  1. Huzzah for stem cell donor matching!!! I have to admit, I got the part where you talked about contacting your NMDP manager and pretty much zoomed right down to the comments. My mom received a stem cell transplant from an unrelated donor (she was in the US and her donor was German; all the worldwide registries are aligned so matches could be anywhere), and now I work as a donor coordinator for Anthony Nolan (UK registry; we were actually the first unrelated donor registry in the world)--my background is in medical social work but I needed a career change for awhile. I just want to say that even if you end up not being matched for donation, what you're doing is an amazing thing. On a real-life note, you'd be amazed (or maybe not...) at the donors who DO end up voicing their miffed-ness about inconveniences :)

  2. What a cool and (I'm sure) fulfilling career you must have! Everyone Ive worked with at BTM has been incredible. This little arena of medical magic seems particularly filled with wonderful humans. And I am so happy your mom was matched with a donor!

    I actually have been matched this round -- I will donate domestically to a 59 year old man with leukemia in 3 weeks! We were initially matched in June but he put treatment on hold. BTM contacted me in December and said he was ready to roll. I am just really thankful I can be of use for someone else's recovery.

    1. Ah, that is fantastic that you have been matched and the donation is scheduled! I had mistakenly assumed that you were at the verification stage :)

      Career-wise, I have to admit that I've struggled with guilt about leaving social work, but am very much enjoying the change in personal stress levels! And knowing that I'm still helping to achieve such an important outcome keeps me going and allays a fair bit of the guilt.

      (I also think this is the first time I've ever commented on your blog, which makes me feel like a bit of a creeper, as I've been reading since pre-L and back in the ITPITB days! I love your eloquence in expressing so much of what I feel I cannot regarding politics and the world in general.)

    2. Not a creeper at all! Thank you for commenting :)

  3. I laughed over your trek to RR since that is south of me in Georgetown haha. Sounds like a pretty typical day with 2 small children and makes me feel so normal as a parent!

  4. Oh, those night terrors...My oldest had them as well, but I never connected them with his allergies (of which he has plenty) or asthma. Maybe there is a connection there like you mentioned. I will say that he is almost 7 and has almost totally grown out of the night terrors, but started sleep walking. Always around the same time of night as the NT and just as creepy. I just want him to sleep like a normal little creature! Good luck at your house, hopefully they will end soon!

    1. I have heard they can be a precursor to sleep walking! I am sorry you are dealing with that!

  5. Will there be a book review coming?

    1. Yes! I'm obviously way behind, but that is one of my favorite posts to write every year!

  6. Late on this, but my middle child gets night terrors and talks A LOT in his sleep. And lucky me, my husband talks in his sleep and sleep walks quite a bit. He'll sometimes think he's a work and will come up to me asking me if camera dept has already completed their wrap. Each day it's a different department or issue he asks about. When he was a server in college he would walk to the kitchen and start taking glasses out and filling them up with waters. I've learned to just tell him to go back to bed and he usually follows directions. Hopefully L doesn't do that! I have 2 in my house!


happy little comments!