How do you moms who work full-time do it? What are your evenings like?

How do you moms who work full-time do it? What are your evenings like?

Joined: September 26th, 2008, 9:06 pm

June 20th, 2012, 4:42 pm #1

I only work 1 1/2 days a week and on my full day I usually (not always but usually) am so knackered that DD vegetates with a video when we get home. I just hope on those days she's been particularly active at her childminder's. (She was today, thank heavens, because now she's on video number 2. She doesn't know TV can be for kids. The videos are at least usually somewhat educational and age-appropriate, though she did watch Grease and loved it and demanded it for a while.)
Today I picked her up, went to the grocery store, got dinner started, and collapsed on the couch beside her. And I don't anticipate much activity in the near future, though I am going to TRY to convince her and DH to go for a walk / balence bike ride around the block after we eat.
I go to sleep with her every night now, usually at 9 or 9:30, and sleep through, so I'm getting enough sleep.
Seriously, do you manage to play in the evenings or is that mostly just on weekends?
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Joined: September 13th, 2008, 5:13 pm

June 20th, 2012, 5:01 pm #2

This is how things have been going since the days have gotten warm. I pick up the kids at day care. We get home and I phone DH from the car. DH helps me get the kids out and I put up my bags. He plays with them outside while I try to get dinner ready for all of us, if possible, or just the kids if I don't have something I can fix pretty quickly for us all.

I bring them water bottles and snacks, if they need them. Otherwise, the boys are likely to come inside demanding snacks (and, worse, milk bottles, but that's another post, oy!) every 5 min. setting dinner further and further back.

DH has a few ploys for keeping them entertained. He has a bunch of old tires from the recumbent tricycles (hear that, kiwis?) he builds and rides (I have one, too, but haven't ridden since pg), and he rolls them down the ramp of the shed where we keep the lawn equipment and bikes. The twins find this tremendously entertaining.

His other strategy is to take them up to the garage, where he lets them push around the dolly he outfitted with padding to hold the bonnet of his Austin Healey Sprite when he needs to detach it. And he also has this rolling shop stool that they like to push around. He also lets them get in the car and futz around with the buttons and levers in a supervised kind of way.

When supper is ready, we gather them inside and pray they haven't snacked so much they won't eat. Or at least that they are interested enough in eating that we might get a few minutes peace before they start preventing us from eating.

After supper they can watch TV, usually the Wiggles or Backyardigans or Sesame Street. If desperate, we sometimes let them watch TV before dinner, but I avoid it as it's hard to get them to the dinner table.

My job is very sedentary and lately the work has been very slow, which is why I am not totally destroyed. But I still sometimes just collapse and fall asleep after they're in bed.

Maggie (in VA)
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Joined: February 6th, 2008, 8:16 pm

June 20th, 2012, 5:43 pm #3

I only work 1 1/2 days a week and on my full day I usually (not always but usually) am so knackered that DD vegetates with a video when we get home. I just hope on those days she's been particularly active at her childminder's. (She was today, thank heavens, because now she's on video number 2. She doesn't know TV can be for kids. The videos are at least usually somewhat educational and age-appropriate, though she did watch Grease and loved it and demanded it for a while.)
Today I picked her up, went to the grocery store, got dinner started, and collapsed on the couch beside her. And I don't anticipate much activity in the near future, though I am going to TRY to convince her and DH to go for a walk / balence bike ride around the block after we eat.
I go to sleep with her every night now, usually at 9 or 9:30, and sleep through, so I'm getting enough sleep.
Seriously, do you manage to play in the evenings or is that mostly just on weekends?
I pick the kid up at 5 and she eats a snack in the car because she is starving. (Usually half a banana and a graham cracker or dried seaweed and apples slices)We talk and sing in the car, I hear the news of the day. Yesterday there was a firealarm and her friend Ava cried because it was too loud.

So then we are at home. We take off our shoes, the kid goes potty and I by that time have a baby on one arm or on the breast and am heating up dinner for her. I don't cook much during the week- I reheat. So she eats leftovers or yogurt with fruit or turkey slices and pickles. Lately she likes dipping cooked cold vegetables in salad dressing and eating them. Then it is bathtime and then 20 minutes of Dora the explorer(TV show)while I lotion her up, comb her hair, clip her nails, etc...then at 7 pm it is bedtime. I put down the babies now- this is times just for me and the kid. We read 2 stories, sing 2 songs, talk about what happened today, what will happen tomorrow and by 7:15-7:20 she is done. Sometimes she goes to sleep right away, sometimes she sings to her dollies and talks to them for a half hour or 45 minutes. There is no time for "playing" but there is silliness and cuddling and giggling all on the way.

Then I eat, feed a baby, change diapers/babyclothes, talk to my parents, put away clothes, set out what the kid needs for the next day, set out my clothes, shower, watch TV, look at internet until 10 when the boys and I go to bed. We get up at 6, the kid around 6:30 and then I get the kid dressed, pottied, combed and she gets her vitamins and then we go to daycare by 7:45. Busy busy weekdays.

Weekends we play, go to the parks, she rides her bike, blows bubbles, goes to the children's museum, plays with playdoh at home, colors, and read books and sing songs.So we have full but pretty fun week ends too. Usually about half the weekend is play and half is grocery shopping, cooking, putting away, cleaning, visiting with friends, etc...

During the week I have a Mother's Helper who does vacuuming, mopping, laundry, dusting and cleaning as well as looking after the twins 6 hours a day. She is amazing. I could not do it without her. My parents also help enormously with babysitting, shopping and being another set of arms.

During my lunch hour I go to the bank, pick up some groceries, get my haircut, go to the post office, etc..
It is a crazy busy life.

So your mileage may vary but my observation is that women who have 1 kid or 4 kids are all busy and it doesn't matter what kid of mom you are (Stay at home or Work parttime/fulltime or work at home or single or married, etc...)people are all busy and pressed for time and feel overwhelmed. Everybody feels they have to leave certain activities out of their daily life because there is just no time. But they still have time for what is important to them (Church, Gym, family dinners, etc...)

Tell us how you get on.
Aufrecht
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Joined: September 26th, 2008, 9:06 pm

June 20th, 2012, 5:49 pm #4

This is how things have been going since the days have gotten warm. I pick up the kids at day care. We get home and I phone DH from the car. DH helps me get the kids out and I put up my bags. He plays with them outside while I try to get dinner ready for all of us, if possible, or just the kids if I don't have something I can fix pretty quickly for us all.

I bring them water bottles and snacks, if they need them. Otherwise, the boys are likely to come inside demanding snacks (and, worse, milk bottles, but that's another post, oy!) every 5 min. setting dinner further and further back.

DH has a few ploys for keeping them entertained. He has a bunch of old tires from the recumbent tricycles (hear that, kiwis?) he builds and rides (I have one, too, but haven't ridden since pg), and he rolls them down the ramp of the shed where we keep the lawn equipment and bikes. The twins find this tremendously entertaining.

His other strategy is to take them up to the garage, where he lets them push around the dolly he outfitted with padding to hold the bonnet of his Austin Healey Sprite when he needs to detach it. And he also has this rolling shop stool that they like to push around. He also lets them get in the car and futz around with the buttons and levers in a supervised kind of way.

When supper is ready, we gather them inside and pray they haven't snacked so much they won't eat. Or at least that they are interested enough in eating that we might get a few minutes peace before they start preventing us from eating.

After supper they can watch TV, usually the Wiggles or Backyardigans or Sesame Street. If desperate, we sometimes let them watch TV before dinner, but I avoid it as it's hard to get them to the dinner table.

My job is very sedentary and lately the work has been very slow, which is why I am not totally destroyed. But I still sometimes just collapse and fall asleep after they're in bed.

Maggie (in VA)
And that DH is excellent at keeping them amused. It does help that summer is here, doesn't it? Thanks for the look into your day!
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Joined: September 26th, 2008, 9:06 pm

June 20th, 2012, 5:58 pm #5

I pick the kid up at 5 and she eats a snack in the car because she is starving. (Usually half a banana and a graham cracker or dried seaweed and apples slices)We talk and sing in the car, I hear the news of the day. Yesterday there was a firealarm and her friend Ava cried because it was too loud.

So then we are at home. We take off our shoes, the kid goes potty and I by that time have a baby on one arm or on the breast and am heating up dinner for her. I don't cook much during the week- I reheat. So she eats leftovers or yogurt with fruit or turkey slices and pickles. Lately she likes dipping cooked cold vegetables in salad dressing and eating them. Then it is bathtime and then 20 minutes of Dora the explorer(TV show)while I lotion her up, comb her hair, clip her nails, etc...then at 7 pm it is bedtime. I put down the babies now- this is times just for me and the kid. We read 2 stories, sing 2 songs, talk about what happened today, what will happen tomorrow and by 7:15-7:20 she is done. Sometimes she goes to sleep right away, sometimes she sings to her dollies and talks to them for a half hour or 45 minutes. There is no time for "playing" but there is silliness and cuddling and giggling all on the way.

Then I eat, feed a baby, change diapers/babyclothes, talk to my parents, put away clothes, set out what the kid needs for the next day, set out my clothes, shower, watch TV, look at internet until 10 when the boys and I go to bed. We get up at 6, the kid around 6:30 and then I get the kid dressed, pottied, combed and she gets her vitamins and then we go to daycare by 7:45. Busy busy weekdays.

Weekends we play, go to the parks, she rides her bike, blows bubbles, goes to the children's museum, plays with playdoh at home, colors, and read books and sing songs.So we have full but pretty fun week ends too. Usually about half the weekend is play and half is grocery shopping, cooking, putting away, cleaning, visiting with friends, etc...

During the week I have a Mother's Helper who does vacuuming, mopping, laundry, dusting and cleaning as well as looking after the twins 6 hours a day. She is amazing. I could not do it without her. My parents also help enormously with babysitting, shopping and being another set of arms.

During my lunch hour I go to the bank, pick up some groceries, get my haircut, go to the post office, etc..
It is a crazy busy life.

So your mileage may vary but my observation is that women who have 1 kid or 4 kids are all busy and it doesn't matter what kid of mom you are (Stay at home or Work parttime/fulltime or work at home or single or married, etc...)people are all busy and pressed for time and feel overwhelmed. Everybody feels they have to leave certain activities out of their daily life because there is just no time. But they still have time for what is important to them (Church, Gym, family dinners, etc...)

Tell us how you get on.
Aufrecht
This is what I think of as a very busy schedule! No way am I busy like that! I do always have SOMETHING in the morning and something in the afternoon, but I certainly don't have to get a haircut on my lunchbreak! I am, as always, in awe of you, Aufrecht.

We didn't manage our bike ride / walk because it was sprinkling when we went out. DH said, oh, this would be great time to put the sprinklers on and get the yard good and soaked after such a hot day. DD was VERY interested and ended up going to check out the sprinkler,to our great mirth.

Ended up with her naked and running around and around the sprinkler. She convinced DH to run around with her. I sat on the porch holding towels and laughing. And it was great. (She TRIED to tell him he wouldn't be so cold if he got naked but he wouldn't listen to reason.)

When she starts Kindergarten in the fall, I'll know she's getting a lot of that socialization and physical activity that I try to make a part of every morning and afternoon. And I think the timing is good. She'll be well settled there when the baby arrives.
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Joined: September 13th, 2008, 5:13 pm

June 20th, 2012, 6:04 pm #6

And that DH is excellent at keeping them amused. It does help that summer is here, doesn't it? Thanks for the look into your day!
That's the evening working optimally. Sometimes they are so ravenous they pester me for snacks and have dirty diapers and whatnot so that I almost can't get dinner finished. Have considered giving snacks in the car (we're five minutes from the day care) as Aufrecht does. If it's raining, then having them inside almost guarantees more disruption for me.

And, yeah, as Aufrecht says, little "cooking" going on. Have been too tired to cook ahead much; we're subsisting on defrostables from Costco and Trader Joe's mainly. I got a lot of good input from my local MoMs' list when I posted about my difficulty getting dinner ready for all of us. I just don't try to every night, but then I'm doing two rounds of cooking and clean-up, and you know I don't get anything else done those nights.

I had to move to a half-hour lunch to accommodate nanny's working hours and then day care, and was just dying not being able to do anything. A shopping center with a grocery store, branch of my bank, and chain drugstore opened closer to my office and now I can run out for a few items, especially as it's slow and no one's watching the clock.

Maggie (in VA)
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Joined: September 26th, 2008, 9:06 pm

June 20th, 2012, 6:14 pm #7

It just all sounded like clockwork.
I can certainly see that cooking isn't possible on workdays if you want to have any time to talk to your kids. I usually don't cook anything time-consuming on the days I work but did today, because I wanted DD to get a bit of fiber, as she's having some digestion problems lately. That's probably what pushed me over the edge this evening.
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Joined: November 10th, 2004, 4:12 am

June 20th, 2012, 6:31 pm #8

I only work 1 1/2 days a week and on my full day I usually (not always but usually) am so knackered that DD vegetates with a video when we get home. I just hope on those days she's been particularly active at her childminder's. (She was today, thank heavens, because now she's on video number 2. She doesn't know TV can be for kids. The videos are at least usually somewhat educational and age-appropriate, though she did watch Grease and loved it and demanded it for a while.)
Today I picked her up, went to the grocery store, got dinner started, and collapsed on the couch beside her. And I don't anticipate much activity in the near future, though I am going to TRY to convince her and DH to go for a walk / balence bike ride around the block after we eat.
I go to sleep with her every night now, usually at 9 or 9:30, and sleep through, so I'm getting enough sleep.
Seriously, do you manage to play in the evenings or is that mostly just on weekends?
I probably work 50-80 hours a week. Of late I have not had to work weekends any more (except at home). My hope is that once one of my contract assignments ends (in 2 months) we can spend all sorts of quality time together as I will cut back to 20-30 hours p/w through the end of the year. For now it's mostly weekends to spend with LO.

First DH is SAH which is a BLESSING. I never thought in a zillion years when his company shut down (when I was 5 m pregnant) that it would turn out to be a "good" thing! He does some work from home (I don't know how and I probably don't want to know -- I'm sure dvds are involved, albeit baby babble and other such "educational" tapes). He usually only works 2-4 days a week for about 2-4 hours per day and much of that in the evening when I'm home.

My schedule is flexible in that although I have a lot of work I don't HAVE to always be anywhere at specific times. Because of that I can take a morning and work til midnight or go in early and leave mid afternoon or even do things from home (although I've found I don't have the discipline for that with LO around -- one little smile or giggle from him and mama leaves what she's doing to read or play ).

After a long day, I'll be frank, I collapse. Not so much from the work but from the drive. Usually 1 to 1.5 hours each way. However, once I rest for a bit and get some dinner I'm ready to play and read, etc. But, some days, it's just straight to bed. After much controversy and arguing, DH and I have settled that during the week, my "job" as to LO is to read and have fun, NOT to completely take over all care and house duties. It was a hard-fought battle. DH has TRULY stepped up to the plate with cleaning, laundry, dishes, shopping...there literally is not much to do when I get home so I can have a couple hours of quality time w/ LO. For meals, I usually spend about 3 hours on the weekend preparing different meals to eat throughout the week for all 3 of us. DH just is never going to be able to cook anything approaching a healthy, balanced meal.

We rely on weekends for family time-- usually on Sunday as Saturday is my time (sans DH) with LO. DH gets a break and I get to have fun.

So...there you have it....no structure whatsoever. I've tried to fit what we do into a "routine" but other than specific meal, snack, grooming, reading, bed times for LO we take it day-by-day. We have 42 acres that is overgrown and horses with knotted tails but...frankly, I've learned to pick my battles on all that. As long as all are healthy & happy I'm content to let our property revert to the wild until we have time to work on it together as a family (hopefully later this year). And, for the first time in my life, I DON'T worry what others think about how overgrown/run-down it looks -- really doesn't faze me any longer.

So, I'm sure my "routine" will be the least helpful of all!

sas
Last edited by sangelas on June 21st, 2012, 8:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: December 6th, 2006, 8:35 pm

June 20th, 2012, 6:58 pm #9

I only work 1 1/2 days a week and on my full day I usually (not always but usually) am so knackered that DD vegetates with a video when we get home. I just hope on those days she's been particularly active at her childminder's. (She was today, thank heavens, because now she's on video number 2. She doesn't know TV can be for kids. The videos are at least usually somewhat educational and age-appropriate, though she did watch Grease and loved it and demanded it for a while.)
Today I picked her up, went to the grocery store, got dinner started, and collapsed on the couch beside her. And I don't anticipate much activity in the near future, though I am going to TRY to convince her and DH to go for a walk / balence bike ride around the block after we eat.
I go to sleep with her every night now, usually at 9 or 9:30, and sleep through, so I'm getting enough sleep.
Seriously, do you manage to play in the evenings or is that mostly just on weekends?
If DH is home, he will try to entertain them in the backyard while I fix dinner (or vice versa). Dinner around 5:30, then baths, then a little play time--puzzles, books, tv, etc--then 7:00 bedtime for the twins. DD #1 gets to stay up a little later. that is our one on one with her. We read books, play games, etc. 8:00 is winding down time for her.

When DH is not home (every 3rd night), I am solo and things are just hectic until I collapse at bedtime. We get home around 4:30; they get snacks and the TV goes on hoping they get distracted by it (they never do); i attempt to clean the mess left from the morning, unpack lunches, and start preparing dinner. I never cook when I am home alone with them. It is fast, easy things on those nights. After dinner I keep to the same schedule above except it is me doing it all so I literally never stop until DD#1 goes to bed. It is on these days that I totally admire single mothers.

I would say most of our "fun" play time is on the weekends.



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Joined: August 7th, 2007, 10:01 pm

June 20th, 2012, 7:57 pm #10

I only work 1 1/2 days a week and on my full day I usually (not always but usually) am so knackered that DD vegetates with a video when we get home. I just hope on those days she's been particularly active at her childminder's. (She was today, thank heavens, because now she's on video number 2. She doesn't know TV can be for kids. The videos are at least usually somewhat educational and age-appropriate, though she did watch Grease and loved it and demanded it for a while.)
Today I picked her up, went to the grocery store, got dinner started, and collapsed on the couch beside her. And I don't anticipate much activity in the near future, though I am going to TRY to convince her and DH to go for a walk / balence bike ride around the block after we eat.
I go to sleep with her every night now, usually at 9 or 9:30, and sleep through, so I'm getting enough sleep.
Seriously, do you manage to play in the evenings or is that mostly just on weekends?
Being prego makes you tired anyway. So remember that. As You know I work FT the typical USA hours of 8hr a day 5x a week. I dream of a 6hr 3x a week lifestyle - hello govt and bosses of the world! haha

Caveates...DH gets home at 3pm and is already home with the kids when the nanny leaves at that time 3x a week. Kids are at daycare until 6pm 2x a week. I get home by 4:30 daily....so here goes

Home at 4:30 kids either playing with DH or at daycare
Unwind, maybe change clothes, maybe start a load of laundry
5pm get dinner going so it is ready around 5:45/6pm.
6pm dinner for everyone!
DH does the dishes and I get solo time with the kids playing outside/inside etc
6:30/6:45 or so during the summer we go for a walk / play with neighbor kids etc
7:30 bath / jammies then a cartoon for the kids
7:50 brush teeth and B goes to bed, twins get a personal story from DH in bed, I then sing with them for a few minutes and they get books in bed. We have a 30min dimmer timer on their light so it gets gradual dark so after the 10 min or so with DH and I tehy can read books and be quiet
8:30 DH and I have alone time for about 2 hours, sometimes I get dinner ready for the crock pot the next day or finish that laundry or read or watch tv etc.

random other things

once a week we go to a park and play and have a picnic! Something fun midweek, means no cooking for me, no dishes for DH and the kitchen stays clean!

I do most of my grocery shopping Sat morning at like 8am. So by 10am I am done with errands and we can have fun or whatever. I hit the farmers markets on Wed or Sun depending what time of year. We do have a housekeeper once every 3 weeks, between that DH does a lot of the spot cleaning on the 2x a week he is home at 3pm but kids at daycare until he gets them at 5:30! He also mows lawn/gardens those 2 days. On Sundays I cut up all sorts of veg/fruit for most of the week...grapes, melon, berries, cucumber slices, bell pepper, carrot sticks, celery sticks, etc

preplanning my meals/shopping etc using pepperplate.com or the app REALLY helps. I do a crock dinner once a week, picnic/sandwiches once a week, leftovers once a week, so really only 4 nights a week do I really cook which is usually 2 nights during the work week and the weekends. Example...M I made curry, carrots and rice, T we had pork chops in the crock, corn and fruit salad, Tonight is crock pot chix marsala, caprese salad and beans, Thur is park/sandwiches, Fri is leftovers, Sat bbq with friends and Sun will be teriyaki chix and asian coleslaw. My kids eat anythign like your sweet Babyboat so I am thankful for that! I make lots of extras for lunches and for that fun leftover night (sometimes DH just has cereal as he isnt a fan of leftover meats)
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