I always enjoy participating in Ali Edwards' Day in the Life. It's a great excuse to pull out my big camera, snap photos with my iPhone, and jot down details of our day in a notebook.
Here's what Tuesday, May 12, 2015 looked like for us.
From there, we put the dogs outside and I made breakfast for Noah and me. Life cereal, 1/2 of a bagel with cream cheese and some blueberries for him; yogurt and Grape-nuts and 1/2 of a bagel for me. (Brian left for work around 6:30 am.)
Conversation at breakfast:
N: "You are growing down, Mommy."
Me: "I am?"
N: "Yes, I’m growing up and you’re growing down and Daddy’s growing down.”
After breakfast, I took my vitamins and allergy meds and gave Noah his allergy medicine. (Just hayfever, luckily.)
Our dog, Lucy, barked to come in, so we opened the front door for her, but our other dog, Rudy, is nowhere in sight. Probably wondering the property like he usually does.
8:30 | The alarm on my iPhone goes off, letting me know that it's time to feed our dogs. I call Rudy in to the house and feed them. Lucy burps and Noah happens to be standing right next to her, so he turns to her and says, "Excuse you, Lucy!" Ha! I give Lucy her insulin shot, and Noah says, "Did it hurt, Lucy? Just a little bit. Oh, good. You're a good girl, Lucy." (It's so cute when he "talks" for Lucy.)
9:00 | Rinse breakfast dishes with Noah's help. There is water everywhere, but he's having fun and the dishes are super duper clean. Lucy is barking--at what I have no idea, which is not unusual--and Noah is covering his ears.
We head back to the master bedroom and I turn on Jake and the Neverland Pirates for Noah. He's holding his milk, his sword, and a random Mother's Day card he grabbed off the entertainment center in the family room. I clip his fingernails while he's distracted.
9:15 | I start the shower, check my email, and enter the Chris Young sweepstakes on my phone while waiting for the water to warm up.
9:30 | After a quick shower, I get dressed, blow dry my hair, and apply my makeup. I can tell I'm a little too in my head this morning and worrying about things that are totally out of my control. So, I turn on an affirmation track from this Belleruth Naparstek CD, which in the past has helped bring calm to my mind. It works, thankfully.
9:45 | Get Noah dressed in a long-sleeved shirt and jeans because it's cloudy and windy outside.
10:00 | Noah and I drive 20 minutes to Music Together. Along the way, we listen to Pirate Pete's Giant Adventure for the 6,392nd time! Noah and I strike a deal: He gets to listen to his book once through, then I get to listen to 2 country songs on the radio, and then he can listen to his book again.
10:30 | Music Together class starts. It's full participation for all, including moms and dads. I rack up a lot of steps in this 45-minute session (woohoo!), and I think I have just as much fun as Noah. I'm definitely in my happy place when I'm singing.
11:15 | Noah and his friend, Alex, play with sticks (ie. swords) and rocks after class while I talk to Alex's mom about adoption stuff. (She and her husband adopted Alex at birth, and she has several friends who are hoping and praying and waiting to adopt.) We chat about how hard it is to wait, especially the first time around, and how discouraging it can be to not be picked by birth mothers.We talk about how important it is to share your feelings with other families who have been there, too. And how you simply must remain hopeful.
11:45 | Off to Target we go for a few items. Noah wants to ride in the super long cart with the two kiddie seats, which means we'll probably hit an end cap or two while I try to successfully maneuver it through the aisles. Watch out, people! Ha!
12:00 | We can't find an eye patch for Noah at Target (he's been asking for one for days), but he seems content with a pirate hat, a lollipop, and a sticker. (Thanks to the two sweet Target employees for showering him with goodies!)
12:30 | On the way home in the car, Noah wears his new pirate hat and sings, "Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s life for me" over and over again. Can't wait to take him back to Disneyland, so he can experience Pirates of the Caribbean.
1:00 | Put away the Target stuff. Make lunch for Noah and me. Leftover sausage and rice for me; pb+j and fruit for him.
2:00 | Bought Chris Young’s new song, I'm Comin' Over, on iTunes.
2:15 | Randomly felt inspired to write a country song. This is a first for me. I stood at the kitchen counter and jotted down lyrics in my notebook. It's really only the outline of a song, and let's be honest, it kind of stinks, but I had fun and I hope to flesh it out later.
2:30 | Play trains with Noah and listen to kids' music on Pandora.
2:45 | Brian sent us a few photos from his day. Noah loves seeing photos of Brian's ladder truck, and having seen them, he now wants to go and visit. (Isn't that a cool shot of the moon below?)
3:00 | Throw a load of sheets into the washer. Pull clean laundry out of the dryer and fold.
3:15 | Head outside. Brush both dogs--they are shedding like crazy right now. Water the grass. Check the step count on my FitBit. I'm only at 5,167 steps, so I make a mental note to walk around as much as I can outside.
3:30 | Sail in Noah's pirate ship. Peer through the spyglass. Turn the wheel. Fire the cannon. Say "Oh, coconuts!" and "Ahoy, matey!" and "Pirate Island straight ahead!" in my best pirate accent.
4:00 | Check out Brian's fishing boat. After I take a picture of Noah near the boat, he asks if he can take a picture with my camera and I oblige. I keep the camera around my neck and Noah slips in front of me. I show him how to press the shutter release button. He shoots away. Like rapid gunfire. I show him how to gently touch it, so he only takes 1-2 pictures at a time instead of say, 54.
We view the pictures together, and I tell him they are fuzzy because there is one more step to taking a picture with my camera. I push the * button on the back of my camera (which enables back button focus), and then he presses the shutter release button. He views his photos and he's really excited.
He says, "Mommy, let's take a picture of the trees Daddy cut down!" And off we go on a photo walk of sorts.
He's clearly hooked.
And I'm loving it.
4:15 | Noah takes a photo of this fawn walking down to the creek. (I helped him zoom in.) From there, he shoots the canal, the picnic bench, the creek and some dandelions--which he simply calls "lions." Then, he asks to wade into the creek and I say okay, provided we push his pants down into his boots. (To be honest, that didn't really help; he was covered in mud, pretty much from his waist down by the time he was done playing. That happens when you sit down in the creek, silly boy.) While Noah was traipsing through the creek, I shot photos of the flowers and the plants, in and around the water.
Noah joined me near these flowers for a minute, picking one and bringing it over to me. (That's the shot at the very top of this post.)
4:45 | Time to take a break from shooting and go inside, so I can start dinner. I strip off all of Noah’s clothes in the garage, and then make a quick trip to the laundry room where I spray his clothes with Oxiclean and throw them in the washing machine.
5:00| Noah watches one more episode of Jake and the Neverland Pirates on the DVR while I make dinner.
5:30| We say grace and then eat chicken, rice and broccoli for dinner. Surprisingly, Noah is a big fan of broccoli, especially when we roast it in the oven.
6:00 | I rinse the dishes, load the dishwasher and clean off the counters. I'm listening to I'm Comin' Over on repeat. Noah is back playing trains at the train table.
6:15 | I pull the sheets out of the dryer and make my bed.
6:30 | Bathtime. Early, I know, but when Noah doesn't take a nap, he's usually ready for bed by 7:00 pm. While Noah was playing with his ship in the bath, I snapped the shot below.
This photo requires some explanation. I took it because it documents growth--both literally and figuratively. It's embarrasing to admit it, but I've been a nail biter for years. I know, I know: Nail biting is a disgusting habit; I've tried to stop several times, but have never been able to go more than a few days without starting up again.
In late April, I decided I really wanted to kick the habit for good. I bought a bottle of Bite It and painted it on my nails. (I've included the Amazon link, but it's super expensive there, so you'd be better off buying it from your local drugstore instead. I bought it at CVS for $6.) Later that day, I made the mistake of accidentally biting one of my nails and I was thoroughly disgusted by the taste. Which is, of course, exactly what it's designed to do.
When I snapped this photo on May 12, I had gone 14 days without biting my nails. That's a record, folks!
7:00 | We read two stories (Pirate Pete, followed by The Itty Bitty Kitty Rescue), and then we said a quick prayer and turn out the lights. Noah is asleep in just a few minutes and I tiptoe out of his room.
7:15 | I change into workout clothes, but because I feel like I'm coming down with a cold, I opt to walk on the treadmill instead of run. I watch the Top 20 Countdown from last Friday while I walk. My FitBit vibrates halfway through letting me know that I've hit my daily goal of 10,000 steps. Smile.
7:45 | I head into my office, check my email, Facebook and Instagram, and then start writing a Father's Day gift guide for Improve Photography. I've found that when I write on my desktop computer, I MUST close up my email, so it doesn't distract me each time a new message comes in. Same with my iPhone.
8:30 | The alarm goes off on my iPhone, reminding me to feed the dogs and give Lucy her insulin. I send a few text messages while I'm waiting for Lucy to eat her food.
9:00 | Talk to Brian on the phone. He went on a fire this morning and had a drill this afternoon. He sounds tired.
9:15 | Back to my desk to continue writing my article.
10:00 | Upload photos from my big camera. Edit photos on my iPhone. Send the photos from my phone to my email account.
10:30 | Head upstairs earlier than normal because I'm not feeling great. Best to get some extra rest. Take the dogs out one last time and gaze up at the stars. That's one thing I love about living in the country: there are so many stars visible in the night sky. It's pretty magical.
10:45 | Read for 15 minutes and then it's lights out.
All square photos were taken with my iPhone 5S and edited using PicTapGo.
All rectangular photos were taken with my Canon 5D Mark III and 24-70mm f/2.8 lens.