March 13, 2013

a day in the life - justine

I'm a little behind on getting it up, but today Justine has written about a day in her life.  Enjoy!


Hello! My name is Justine and I'm a first-time mom to Henry, who is 8 1/2 months old. I became a stay-at-home-mom two months ag0 (my dream come true) and my husband, Ryan, works from home. We currently live in downtown Chicago with our dog, Beck. I blog over at You're So Martha, which started as a way to share my love for interior design, diy, crafting and cooking/baking, but has admittedly has become more of a photo dump for Henry recently.

Here's a look into a fairly typical day (last Tuesday), with my iPhone camera along for the ride (apologies for the low-res/grainy pics! My big girl camera doesn't get out as much anymore).

7:00 am: Henry's awake and now so am I. The last few weeks he's been waking up around 6:30ish (used to be 7:30ish), which is much too early for me, so I'm glad he slept in a little later. Diaper change & a snot suck (he has a bad cold) for Henry - and he hates both. Then it's play time for a bit (I'm hoping he'll start waking up later again if he doesn't nurse right away).

(yes, we are still rockin' the santa pajamas in march. hey, if they still fit...)
7:30 am: Nurse

7:45 am: We have a couple minutes of cuddle time (my fave) and Henry plays while I get our breakfast ready. He doesn't last too long playing by himself until he comes to find me.

finding mom

8:00 am: Breakfast - today's it's cereal for me and cheerios, yogurt and 1/2 a banana (Henry's favorite) for him. Henry gobbles it up and then I clean up.


8:30 am: We get bundled up and walk a couple blocks to the grocery store for ingredients for dinner. It's so convenient living so close to a grocery store, we're there all the time. We'll miss it when we move to the suburbs (we're house hunting now). It's beginning to snow pretty hard.


9:05 am: We're home and I put the groceries away and then get Henry ready for his nap. He gets his sleep sack on, the shade goes down, his white noise machine on, and I sing him a couple songs.

9:20 am: Henry's asleep after only five minutes (that's not always the case unfortunately). While he's sleeping I shower, put in a load of laundry, check emails and Facebook, and look at a baby registry online to choose what I want to buy before we head to the store later.

10:20 am: Henry's awake, after a full hour - that's good for him. He usually only naps for 45 minutes on average. He gets another diaper change and snot suck. He hates life at this point ;)

10:30 am: Nurse

10:50 am: Henry has a couple minutes of 'naked time', then I get him dressed. While I'm getting dressed he plays with Beck on my bed.

naked time
henry & beck

11:15 am: We head to Bed, Bath & Beyond for a quick return, then to Buy Buy Baby for a baby shower gift (of course I don't stick to what I planned on buying - too much fun stuff - and spend too long making decisions) and finally stop at the bank.


(picking something out from the registry)

12:30 pm: We're back a bit later than planned, and Henry is hungry. He snacks on some freeze dried fruit while I make lunch. We eat - a wrap, chips and blueberries for me; blueberries, 1/2 banana, previously steamed cauliflower and some homemade veggie puree (previously made and frozen) for Henry - and then I clean up.

do i have food on my face

1:15 pm: Play time!

play time

1:30 pm: Another diaper change, and Henry nurses. While nursing he falls asleep - which I always try to avoid because he thinks that counts as his nap and doesn't usually stay asleep if I transfer him to his crib or fall back asleep.

2:00 pm: I transfer Henry to his crib in hopes he'll stay asleep. He does wake up and cry, but only for a minute and falls back asleep. Unfortunately only for about 5 minutes then wakes up again, crying. I let him cry hoping he'll fall back asleep (for us, crying it out is the only method that works. For the most part now there isn't much crying unless he's being stubborn and doesn't nap.)

2:35 pm: He is back to sleep again, phew. I realize I haven't put the laundry in the dryer and do that (why I hate laundry: never ending, and I always forget about it). While he sleeps I watch some recorded Fashion Police, review the recipe I'm making for dinner to scale it down and make changes and manage to read a couple blog posts.

3:05 pm: Henry is awake and unhappy, since his nap was not sound or long. We have more snuggles and watch cars and the snow come down until he's in a better mood, then read a couple books and play. We would normally take Beck on a walk with Ryan, but only Ryan takes him today since it's cold and snowing hard.

play time

4:30 pm: Henry nurses

4:50 pm: Henry plays with Ryan while I make him some potatoes for dinner. I also start making the turkey meatloaf that Ryan and I will eat. Ryan has to get back to work, so Henry joins me in the kitchen making noise, but then starts to fuss so I finish what I'm doing with him on one hip.

wrapped up

5:45 pm: Henry eats his dinner of potatoes, homemade meatballs (previously made and frozen) and butternut squash puree (previously made and frozen). After he finishes his dinner, I give him a mum-mum (lifesaver when I need him occupied for 10 minutes) while I finish the meatloaf (please note that me actually cooking dinner is an accomplishment lately. I'm lucky that Ryan is a good cook!).

6:20 pm: Henry plays in his room while I clean the mess in the kitchen, put in the meatloaf and run his bath.

6:35 pm: Bath time! Henry loves it, until he is told he can't stand up. Then it's lotion, pjs, saying goodnight to dad and book time.


6:55 pm: Henry nurses and falls asleep so I transfer him to his crib (bedtime transfers are usually not an issue).

7:20 pm: While dinner is still cooking I check emails and edit Henry's 8 month photo for a blog post.

8:00 pm: Dinner is finally ready (turkey meatloaf, roasted potatoes and salad). Our oven sucks. It was the first time I made the recipe and it was delicious, so at least it was good after all that waiting.

8:25 pm: Dinner is cleaned up, and after I remember to get the laundry out of the dryer (I will fold tomorrow) I'm on the couch with ice cream, finishing Henry's 8 month post while watching the last available episode of Dexter with Ryan. We've been obsessed with Dexter, watching at least an episode a night of the last seven seasons, and can't believe we now have to wait until June for another one and see what happens.

at last

9:15 pm: Henry wakes up. This is unusual; he's been sleeping through the night for months apart from the occasional night. It's probably because of his cold. I let him cry for a while to see if he'll fall back asleep but he doesn't. I go in there and cuddle him, then nurse him since that usually does the trick. It does, but he wakes up when I put him in his crib. Fortunately he falls back asleep for the night after only five minutes.

10:10 pm: I'm in bed, a little later than usual because of Henry waking up. Ryan and I watch some TV that I fall asleep to, by 11 pm.


What is the most surprising thing to you about being a mom?
Hard question! I don't think I can pick just one. -How immediate and intense the love is. I knew I would obviously love him, but could not even imagine how it would feel to love with every cell of my body, how all encompassing it is. The love is so different than love for your husband, parent, etc. -How much I would like breastfeeding. I always though it was...weird (for lack of a better word), but it worked for me and I'm still going strong eight months later. But it's not without it's hardships. -How hard it is. It's the most important job - raising a human being for goodness sakes - and I don't want to mess it up.There is no manual, and no clear right way, it's constant second guessing.

What advice would you give to new or soon-to-be mamas?
While it is the most important job, try not to take it too seriously and beat yourself up over everything -- they're going to be ok. Even if they drink formula or eat non-organic or skip a nap or cry themselves to sleep -- they're going to be ok. And when you're beating yourself up (even though I just told you not to), think of do I say this...not too bright,with a kid, and think "i mean, if they can do it, I can too" ;) (I still have to learn to take my advice sometimes)

What are your top three baby products?
This changes as he grows, but overall I would say:
-Boppy pillow: I used this every time I nursed for several months. And it works well for a resting spot for the baby, tummy time and behind them when learning to sit.
-Video monitor: I watch him sleep all. the. time. It's comforting to be able to see them and so cute to see all their positions. And helpful to see if he's on the verge of falling asleep, going back to sleep, or not-gonna-happen-sleep.
-BOB stroller: Living in the city we walk a ton, so having a good stroller was essential. This stroller takes the bad sidewalks of Chicago like a boss and is so easy to push.

Thank you, Ashley, for having me!


Thank you for sharing with us Justine!

1 comment:

Kim @ NewlyWoodwards said...

I love reading this, Justine. And I'm exhausted just reading about your day. Actually, I'm just tired period. Our little Henry's are so much alike.