I thought I would lay out for you, my loyal readers, how a week usually goes in our home. I feel a bit like this could be a companion piece to my recent post The World Is Not Set Up For Two Working Parents. This will be a current, usual week, without any dentist appointments, or trying to go on a field trip with the school, or even take a trip to the mall for shopping (as I will have to do with the Holidays starting to loom!) With no further ado, here is our weekly routine:
Let’s start with a Monday.
Mondays are good days for me. I start work at the later shift time of 9:30. This allows me lots of time to get the kids onto the bus at 7:45 and then get myself ready to go as well. I also spend some time on blog stuff on a Monday – I link up to Monday Morning Blog Club, and Eat Sleep Blog RT (if I didn’t remember to do it on Sunday night.) This means I have to spend some time reading and commenting or sharing other’s posts. Usually I fit it all in in the morning, but sometimes I have to do a bit more reading Monday nights as well.
So then I work until 6pm. Again, easy peasy for me – and after work I go to dance class. My adult ballet class runs from 7 until 8:30 and then I go home and usually eat something, cool down and go to bed.
For hubby and the kids Monday nights are a bit more hectic. The girls have swimming lessons at 6pm (currently.) We managed to schedule them both in the same time slot but I have a feeling we won’t be that lucky forever! Anyway, Patrick picks the girls up at school from the after school care program, sometimes he takes them home first, but they have to eat and then head off to lessons. Oh, and homework happens in there somewhere too – maybe after lessons, I’m not sure. Usually they’re home by 7, or shortly after, which is okay because that’s Rose’s bedtime.
And now Tuesday.
On a Tuesday I have to be at work for 8:30. My commute, when its not “rush minute” as I call it here in Kingston, takes less than 10 minutes. In “rush minute” it can take 20 or 25 minutes. Of course “rush minute” occurs between 8 and 8:10, exactly when I leave the house on my early shift days. So on Tuesdays Patrick takes the girls to the bus, but I try to fit in a shower (because I’m usually too lazy to do one after dance class on Mondays) amongst my other morning tasks. I’m rarely late for work, but I often just squeak in on time.
Quitting time on Tuesday is 5pm. Then I have to walk back to the car (8 minute walk or so, both ways) then drive up to the school to get the girls. I’m often there between 5:15 and 5:20. I’m not really sure when after school care closes down for the day, but luckily it’s not 5pm!
Then we go home. Tuesday is the only night (except Friday) that we don’t go anywhere. So I jam in homework, dinner, tv time, and whatever else I need to do (dishes, laundry, lunch pail clean outs) between 5:40 and 7pm. Then it’s Rose’s bedtime and Emma can’t work productively after 7pm very often.
If Patrick has to work late it’s often on a Tuesday. This is my usual mom and kids night, plus I take some time for my blog after the kids are in bed. If I’m lucky I’ll be done all I want to do by 9:30 and I’ll head to bed early. But let’s be honest, that rarely happens.
Now we’re mid-week (Wednesday)!
Wednesday I don’t go to work. I was going to say “I don’t work on Wednesday” but that’s not entirely accurate. I get the kids on the school bus, I go do groceries if needed, I wash a bunch of clothes (or towels, or bedding, or all of the above), and by 2pm I have to be ready to leave the house. But I also try hard to do some blog work on a Wednesday. If I’m having a good week I can get two posts written (especially if I finished a book – book reviews are quick for me to write up) and maybe brainstorm a few more topics.
I have to pick up Emma at school, right when the school bell rings, on a Wednesday. We have about 20 minutes to get back to the car (after she’s gathered all her gear from the day), and drive over to her Occupational Therapy sessions. We haven’t been late yet, but there’s always a first time!
Emma and I spend an hour at Make Way For Me (3-4pm) and then, if Patrick is available, Emma and I go home. Patrick will collect Rose later on (around 5) and bring her home and then we’ll all eat and Pat will take Emma to dance class for 7pm. So in the in between Emma and I do her homework, and get dinner started.
If Patrick is not available, Emma and I go back to the school, collect Rose, and then go home. It’s a bit more tough to get Emma to focus on homework when Rose is home, but it’s not impossible. Also I’m less motivated to make a real dinner if my husband isn’t home to eat with us. I can, though, squeeze in a few more blog minutes between 7pm, when Rose goes to bed, and 8:15, when Pat gets home with Emma. So that’s a bonus!
And here’s the Thursday routine.
Another late shift day – so I escort kids to the bus, then spend a few minutes with blog stuff and then head to work. Work til 6, go home, and wait for the others to get home.
Pat picks up the girls around 4 (which means he has to clock out of work early) to get them fed and to dance for 5pm. Emma dances for 2 hours, Rose just from 6 until 7. Depending on how the day went Emma may still have to do her homework when she gets home. This can be a struggle – she’s now tired and uncooperative. But Rose is ready to just fall into bed.
After the kids are in bed Pat and I try to decide what to eat and fail miserably – leading to pizza pockets, or a bag of chips. Not too healthy.
And hallelujah, now it’s Friday!
Fridays are great. I work early, Pat walks the kids to the bus, and we all get to work on time. (“Rush minute” is not as bad on a Friday for some reason.) I work until 5, collect the girls at school and go home. There isn’t usually much homework for the weekend, although there has been some. Our evening is more relaxed, we have been known to have popcorn, carrot sticks and cucumbers for dinner. Sometimes a side of cheese or applesauce, and always a big glass of milk. Often we’ll watch a movie, but still get the kids to bed close to their normal bedtimes. (Unless, of course, we go out and do something.)
And finally the weekend.
Sometimes we jam a lot of stuff into the weekends, but I’m just going to outline an average, no big events, weekend. Saturday mornings Rose dances at 9:45. That’s a nice late-ish dance time. Everyone is up by 7am so there’s lots of time to get ready for dance. (And yes, if you’re thinking we spend a lot of time at dance, you are right on – someone is there 4 times a week!) We’re out of there by 10:30 and we’ll do whatever errands (Costco, groceries etc) before lunch. Then that’s it for “planned” events on a Saturday. My favourite weekends consist of us going home, doing some work around (or outside) the house, and the kids playing and having a friend over.
Then on Sundays my mother-in-law picks the girls up for church at about 8:30am and we don’t see them again until dinner. I love that the kids get to spend time with their Nanny. Sometimes they go out, in the summer there’s a lot of swimming in her pool, the girls get time with their younger cousins, and then we all (those who live in Kingston, and sometimes others) get together for Sunday dinner. That gives Patrick and I time to get stuff done, or just relax in the quiet, kid-free, house. We usually cram a bunch of stuff into our day (like if we need to go clothes or shoes shopping for ourselves!) rather than relax, but the day is relaxing just because we don’t have to cater to the kids.
Now imagine, if you will, this weekly routine when I (we) have to add things, or something unplanned happens. Recently Patrick went away for a full week, Sunday evening to late Friday night. That required some extra help for me. Thank goodness I have family that I could call on when I need to. That week actually went pretty well, if I do say so myself. I big thank you shout out to my mother-in-law who picked up all the Patrick slack. I couldn’t have done it without her!
How does your weekly schedule measure up? Do you run around like a crazy family, the way I feel we do sometimes? Share with me, please. I love to connect with others through our shared
misery busyness and working parent life!