It’s 6 am and my house is silent. My alarm went off 15 minutes ago not because I intended to get up but because I like a 15 minute warning that it’s almost time to get up. The 45 minutes or so that I have before my family wakes up is time that I have all to myself and it’s a beautiful thing. Sometimes our dog gets up with me and other days, he stays in bed until everyone else gets up. Today, he decides to sleep in. I tiptoe into the bathroom and take a long, hot shower. I take my time because this is probably the most relaxing time of my day.
I usually make lunches in my robe and slippers after my shower so that I don’t have to try to scramble around to get this done once the girls are up. Other days, I wake up my husband and ask for help with the lunches but because I am a little bit controlling when it comes to what is packed, how it is packed, etc., it’s usually just easier and more pleasant for everyone if I make the lunches myself. Today, I take care of this chore myself and pack the girls ham and cheese sandwiches with fresh fruit and a few snacks. I don’t have enough bread to make myself a sandwich.
At 6:55 am, the madness begins. “Addison, time to wake up,” I say in my sweet mommy voice. My three year old rolls over in her bed and grumbles “no.” After some coaxing, she lets me carry her (along with her blanket, pillow, Bowser the stuffed dog and her current favorite book – Pip in the Grand Hotel) to my bed to sit and watch Little Bear. She watches the show while I finish getting ready and then wake up her little sister Paityn, and get her dressed. My one year old is pretty easy to handle. She’s always ecstatic to see me in the morning and there are no issues with getting her dressed. She wears what I pick out and I no longer take this for granted. Getting Addison ready on the other hand can be more of a challenge, depending on her mood. Knock on wood but lately, she has been pretty good about wearing the clothes that I pick out for her. On this particular day, she slips into her comfy pants and sweatshirt without issue. Nice!
It’s now 7:30 am. Time to brush teeth and wash up before heading downstairs for breakfast. By this time, my husband is showered, dressed and and helping me out however he can (or at least trying to). Love you Adam! We sit the girls at the table and give them their breakfast. Today, it’s blueberry waffles. As they are eating, I do my best to comb their hair and pull it out of their cute little faces. My husband starts the cars and begins to load up the daily assortment of toddler and working mom cargo, including backpacks, lunches, my work bag, and any other supplies needed for the day. We try to be out of the house by 8 am but this doesn’t always happen and on rough mornings, it can be as late as 8:20 before we leave.
I typically drop the girls off at the Clubhouse (our wonderful daycare) between 8:15 and 8:30 am. First, we get Paityn situated in the one year old room. We blow kisses and wave bye bye and then we head upstairs to Addison’s preschool class. Addison’s friends are excited to see her and want to say hi but she needs her space when we first get there and has been known to meltdown if anyone gets too close before she has had time to settle in. Today, Addison’s drop off goes well and she sits at the table to play blocks with a friend. She waves good bye and gives me a big smile. Precious. Some days, however, there are tears, clinging and lots of whining.
I leave the Clubhouse and begin my 45 minute commute to the office. I enjoy a coffee and listen to the news, either CNN or 1080. By 9 am or so, (usually a little after 9), I arrive at my desk and begin my work day.
I check some emails, return a few phone calls to insurance adjusters, and meet with the other workers’ compensation attorneys to decide upon coverage for next week’s hearings. I review two files in preparation for tomorrow’s hearings and before I know it, it’s lunch time. No hearings for me today so I have some time to catch up on desk work, which is nice. I step out to grab lunch around 12:15 because I didn’t pack anything for myself. I woof down my salad with grilled chicken and bread at my desk and then get back to work.
I spend my afternoon reviewing medical reports to figure out the doctors’ opinions on whether a claimant was injured at work. I write a letter to a doctor requesting clarification because his report is unclear. I review medical records relating to another person’s work injury. I write up a few reports to clients. More phone calls. More emails. I try to leave work around 3:30 pm or so but if I am in the middle of something, I will finish up and leave when I can. Today, I leave by 4. I stop and pick up a few things at the grocery before heading back to the Clubhouse to pick up the little ladies.
The girls are glad to see me but they don’t really want to leave. I am happy that they enjoy their time at the Clubhouse but it can be a little annoying that I have to spend the next 10-15 minutes chasing them around trying to gather their things and get them into their coats so we can go home.
We are usually home by 5:15 pm at the latest and the girls play, have a snack and/or watch a show while I unload the lunch boxes, do the dishes and get dinner together. We try to eat around 6 pm and sometimes my husband is home, but lately I have been setting him aside a plate because he has been working late. Tonight, it’s burgers and garlic caesar salad.
This is going to sound really bad but we usually watch TV while we eat. Once our dining room is back in order (we are renovating), I plan to change this but for now, the TV usually stays on throughout dinner. Tonight, Aladdin continues to play. Addison gets up out of her chair to dance at least 3 times while we are eating and she has to go potty at least once. This happens every night. My husband gets home as we are finishing up and joins us at the table.
Depending on how much of their dinner the girls eat, I let them have a treat such as a cookie or ice cream before heading upstairs for baths. Tonight, it’s oreos. We start our bath and bedtime routine at 7:30 pm. Baths are followed by playtime in Addison’s room, which usually consists of her dressing up in princess garb and pretending to be either the teacher or the dentist. This is always entertaining. If you’re wondering what a princess dentist looks like, here she is checking her bear’s chompers:
Paityn heads into her room for her nighttime bottle and a story with either myself or my husband while the other one stays with Addison to read her a story or two. Paityn blows kisses and waves bye bye. One last trip to the potty for Addison and then I turn on her Laurie Berkner CD and say good night. “I love you,” I say. “I love you too,” she says. Priceless.
It’s 8:30 pm and I’m exhausted. I head downstairs to finish cleaning up dinner and feed the dog if I haven’t done it yet (poor Scooby!)
By 9 pm or so, the dishes are done and I am free. I usually check my Facebook, play around on Pinterest and spend some time on the computer but tonight, I had to work on Addison’s thank you notes for her birthday gifts so I didn’t have time for that. It’s been more than a month since her party and I need to send them out.
Somewhere around 9:30pm, my husband and I check the DVR and watch something together. Tonight, it’s the Bachelor (don’t laugh). It’s mindless but for some reason, I like it. However, apparently I don’t like it enough to stay awake for the entire 2 hours. I doze off on the couch but eventually wake up and head upstairs to bed around 11 pm. Other nights, it’s American Idol, Criminal Minds or my new favorite, Revenge.
Before I jump in bed, I peak in on the girls and make sure they are covered up. I smile because they look so adorable while they sleep. They truly are my sleeping beauties.
This is my life. It’s busy and exhausting but when I look back years from now, I am willing to bet that what I will remember will not be how tired I am, but how precious my babies looked while they were sleeping.