November 22, 2016

rhythms and things

it's easy to get stuck with writer's block when thinking of things to blog about, especially if you stay home most of the time like i do. i'm tempted to think that posts need to be about something out of the ordinary or exciting, but that's not what my normal life is like. those are the times i have to just look around at what i actually do all day for inspiration, because writing this stuff down is good for me and might also be interesting to five people somewhere. one thing that is becoming consistent day in and day out is the framework i've built for our daily rhythm. first of all, i just want to say that i'm a very type-a personality so this kind of thing is necessary for keeping my sanity intact. i also happen to be married to someone who is type-a, so our household runs like a well oiled machine most of the time (downsides include fear of spontaneity and messes) during my manic pre-baby internet research i found lots of parents singing the praises of a predictable routine in a child's life, and how it helps them feel calmer because the have an idea of what's to come. that naturally spoke directly to my organized (e.g. anal) side and we've been working at developing a flexible rhythm for gabe since he was born. flexible is the key word here because he's, you know, an infant so we tried to first just observe what he did by himself and work around that in the beginning. now that gabe is seven months old his day is usually pretty routine and i think i can safely write down what it looks like (while simultaneously praying that i don't jinx the whole thing).

our day usually starts at 8 am, when gabe wakes up and i hear him on the baby monitor. daniel is already at work by then, so for the first hour or so i just focus on getting gabe and myself fed and dressed. as much as i try to discourage associating screen time with eating, we almost always watch the daily show together while i drink my coffee and gabe sits in his high chair. (he has a mini whisk that he adores playing with right now) maybe when he starts actually eating it'll change, but for now it's something i look forward to every morning. gabe takes his first nap around 10. developing a good nap time routine was not easy, especially from months 3-5 when he was in a constant growth spurt, but i think i would have devolved into a manic potato by now if i didn't stick it out! i usually change gabe's diaper beforehand in his darkened room and then sit in the rocker and read a story before i sing him to sleep. then comes the complex yoga mastery of transferring a sleeping baby to his crib, which mostly works but sometimes is a disaster. gabe is getting so heavy now that i've started just singing him to sleep right in the crib to prevent my arms from falling off. after the baby transfer is complete i try to start some laundry or get a chore done. making our bed is non-negotiable because if i leave it unmade i don't get anything else done that day! 12 is lunch, first for the hungry baby and then for me. thankfully i've been blessed by a pretty easy going child, after lunch he's content to play on the floor with his toys while i do housework or check my phone. sometimes he'll have an off day and won't want to be alone, that's when i thank the lord above that baby carriers were invented. he can easily chill for two hours on my back while i run around the house, and it has the added benefit of tiring him out afterward. around 2 gabe will have his second nap, but he's not nearly in such a jolly mood upon waking from this one. that's usually the time we go on a walk. fresh air must be the best baby soother out there, and gabe gets into this weird zone-out state once he's in the stroller. since he goes to bed at 7 on the dot we try not to let him sleep after 5 in the evening. this can be tricky because he's awake for a long period of time between his afternoon nap and bedtime, so sometimes grumpiness ensues, but overall i think he understands how evenings work. daniel gets home at 6, then we have dinner together (gabe in his high chair again with that whisk). we give him a bath every other night now because it seems to help keep his cradle cap under control. lately gabe has been waking up frequently in the early evening after he goes to bed, but it seems to be getting better now that his two bottom teeth have popped out. because he's still almost exclusively breastfed he still wants to eat 2-3 times in the night. sometimes it's more, sometimes it's less, but we're hoping that starting solid food will help keep him fuller. thankfully he really only wants to eat, and then can go right back to sleep (and even stays asleep through a diaper change, whew!) so we're managing so far...

i'm planning a few future posts about bedtime, bath time, etc. that are more detailed, and obviously this above routine will be evolving as gabe gets older. for now that's an overview of a day in the life of a stay at home mama! xoxo

(p.s. this is our very favorite book, it's the sweetest thing i've ever read)

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