Since I’m alone with the boys 24/7 most days, I try to have some kind of routine to our days that allows me to get the necessary house chores done, engage meaningfully with the boys, enjoy some me-time, and stay sane. Haha! Each day has its own special flavour, and this is what our typical Wednesday looks like.
My phone alarm goes off, the start of our day. The hubs is normally up about 10 minutes before, since his company bus comes at 7am. If we’re lucky, the boys will have slept until 6:30am, but more likely than not, both are already in our bed by that time. Which is fine with us most of the time (the not-fun part being when we get kicked in the stomach or whacked in the face :b)
I wash up and change quickly, while the hubs puts the water to boil.
Time for the boys to wake up, if they’re not already up! The hubby helps them brush their teeth and wash their face while I fix our breakfast. Breakfast is typically slices of homemade bread served plain for the boys. I have my usual cup of Old Town Hazelnut 3-in-1, my all-time favourite instant coffee fix! The hubs and I normally have jam or honey with our toast. Hubs quickly gulps down his Milo and bread and is out the door by 7AM, while I encourage/nag/coax the boys into finishing their breakfast with minimal mess. If we’re lucky, we make it through without any milk being spilt…
The boys have their baths. Since we bath twice a day, they don’t wash their hair in the morning, so I try to let David bathe himself. (He needs help with washing hair) If we’re short of time, I bathe the boys together – I suppose that’s one of the benefits of having kids of the same gender! Once they’re dressed, I leave them to their own devices while I scurry around the house. In the space of 15 minutes, I have to do a list of things (check on our rabbit’s feed bowl and water bottle, fill David’s water bottle, stuff clothes in the washing machine if the laundry basket is full, pick up as much of the errant toys as I can), and of course not everything gets done some mornings…
Getting both boys out of the house on time takes, erm, some yelling and ultimatums of “Bye, I’m going now”…
I pack both boys in the car and drive to David’s school, just a short 8min ride away. These days there’s a whole lot of road works being done in the area, so sometimes we are held up and arrive a little late. I’m thankful that I’ve gotten much better at my driving this past one year plus.
After dropping David at school, Daryl and I head off somewhere for our little date. Wednesday mornings are our “date” time, and I try to bring my littlest man someplace fun or interesting. Most Wednesdays, we check out a playground. Daryl is a super active chap and loves all kinds of playgrounds (as most kids also do, I’m sure). Sometimes I bring him to the fish farms in Pasir Ris, where we feed the fishes, or to check out interesting shops like the traditional bakery at Whampoa. Once in a while, I bring him to the airport to play at Canopy (Terminal 1) or watch planes (Terminal 2/3).
If we’ve travelled farther from home, I normally head back to David’s school about 10, so that I won’t be late for pick-up. Daryl normally snoozes along the way, tired out from his date. If we’re near to home, we go back home to catch our breaths and read a book or two before heading out again.
We pick up a normally-exuberant David from school and head back home. The boys watch some TV or a DVD while I prepare our lunch and hang up the laundry, normally about 30-40min. Our lunches are simple affairs – chicken noodles, one-pot pasta and baked rice are our staples. Whenever I can, I cook our dinners in larger quantities, and save the leftovers for lunch the next day. Saves time and energy!
Lunch is served! Mealtimes can range anywhere from a delightful chit-chat as we eat to stormy sessions of “Why are you playing with your food?”, “Eat up your carrots NOW” and “Sit down, Daryl, sit down!” Haha… that said, I’m thankful Daryl eats very heartily, and David is more open to eating his vegetables these days.
The boys read or play on their own while I wash up the pots, plates and cutlery. Of course it’s not all peaceful and fun – most days they do squabble, and sometimes push each other. I’m still finding that balance of when to step in and referee the situation, and when to let them fight/talk it out on their own.
If they’re happy playing on their own when my washing is done, I log in to Facebook and my email and catch up on the days’ events. If not, I join them in whatever they are playing, which frequently involves dinosaurs, parties, fire-fighting and fishing.
The house is a big fat mess by this time.
Clean up time! Everyone has to help pick up cushions, books and toys strewn around the house, until the rooms are back in some basic order. We read some books before nap time – I normally let the boys choose two each, and they normally bargain for three.
I sit with the boys until they nap. Sometimes David will have some story from school to share with me, and it’s kind of precious to have these pillow talks with him.
The boys fall asleep fairly quickly because they are tired out by now. Most days, they will sleep for about 2 hours (Hurray!). Sometimes, one or both will wake up at the 1.5 hour mark and I will try to make them sleep a little longer.
These two hours are my much-needed me-time, and I normally spend it blogging, writing articles, scrap-booking or reading a book. Most days, I spend some quiet time with God too, and right now I’m re-reading an oldie but a goodie – My Utmost For His Highest. So many precious gems! Some days call for a chocolate treat while I read…
The boys are up and ready for their Yakult. It’s nap-wake-up-tradition, and they will head straight for the fridge once they are up! After Yakult, they have a light tea – normally some biscuits or cheese.
On Wednesdays, I do some writing exercises with David. (We do this on Mondays and Wednesdays, while Tuesdays and Fridays are for revising his Berries work) I’m glad he still enjoys these sessions, and appreciate how the books we have make it a fun activity with colouring, stickers and matching games. Meanwhile, Daryl potters around with his flash cards or plays with their animal toys.
David normally goes straight from writing into drawing. He LOVES to draw. The only catch is that sometimes he wants me to draw WITH him, but then Daryl will feel left out and try to get my attention. In the end, I normally end up sitting in the middle of them, occasionally drawing for David, while reading Daryl a book on the other side.
Some days, we do painting. David has a beautiful set of water colours which he is very proud of, and a proper water colour paper pad. For Daryl, he’s still very much in the pre-representational stage when it comes to his drawing, so I always have lots of drawing block on hand for him to scribble/paint on. He recently took over their previously-shared Ikea paint set, and he’s very happy to have full control over it now.
Other days, if I’m feeling more energetic, we take a leisurely walk to the nearby reservoir and the boys have fun playing with the sand in the playground there.
It’s TV time for the boys. Again, they have to clean up their messes before I switch on the telly. Most days, they watch Okto (we don’t have cable), but once in a while, we watch a short movie. During this time, I either do some baking or wipe the tables and shelves. Sometimes, I join them on the couch to watch the show 🙂
Daddy is home! We bathe the boys and pack their pyjamas, and then it’s off to my parents for dinner. Tuesdays are dinner with my in-laws and Wednesdays are dinner with my own parents.
Dinner with Grandpa and Grandma, followed by playtime with their Uncle Dillon. Meanwhile, the hubs and I, er, vegetate and catch up on the sofa.
We give the boys a wipe and change them into their pyjamas, all ready for bed. We take about 15 minutes to get them out of the house. “Five more minutes,” they plead. Or somebody falls down, or needs to go to pee, or needs a drink of water, or can’t wear his shoes… After goodbyes, Daryl will typically fall asleep on the car ride home. David normally stays awake, but when we get home, he goes straight to bed. Either the hubs or I will pray with him and sit by his side until he falls asleep. Sometimes, I just sit there for a while watching them after they have fallen asleep. I’ve found it to be quite therapeutic!
I have my bath. If hubs doesn’t have any work calls to attend to, we might catch up for a bit or discuss stuff. If not, I spend some time surfing the Net, blogging, editing my grandma’s story and/or answering emails. If I have some craft I want to do with the boys the next day, this is the time for me to prepare the materials too.
I know it’s the strangest of timings, but this is when I normally tackle the ironing basket! Trust me when I say it is always overflowing… and mid-week seems to be the time when I feel most motivated to get the ironing done.
Before bed, the hubs and I have a quick prayer together. He normally stays up till about 1AM, either busy with work or playing his games, but I find it hard to stay up that late anymore, so it’s an earlier lights out for me.
Tomorrow is Justina’s turn to share about her day. Jus is blessed with three little boys, and blogs about her family and homeschooling adventures at Mum in the Making (http://makingmum.blogspot.com). She has itchy fingers and loves to craft, and survives on chocolate and coffee.
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