Sunday, October 16, 2011

Day of Rest?

Ahh Sunday.  So we meet again.

Sundays start out with that promise of sacred time.  I'm not talking in the religious sense; it always starts out feeling like stolen time for you and your kids.  You may get to sleep in a bit.  Breakfast will be involved.  Coffee will be savoured.  Fun things will be planned for the afternoon. These things rarely come to fruition however as the illusion of Sunday morning is usually shattered by 10:30.  By crying.  Sometimes it's actually the kids doing that. 

I'm often asked questions like "how do you manage" or "where do you find the time?".  Other than my usual stunned look, I often answer with "I don't know" or "when I figure it out, I'll tell you?".  The truth is, time is pretty finite in the waking hours.  When I am off (and not actually sleeping after my night shifts), I have a limited amount of time to get everything [read: anything] done.  Period.

Our 'day of rest' usually goes something like this:

Assuming one of us isn't already up by 6, Quinn gets up around 7-7:30 ish.  There is usually quiet cereal and TV.  The babies wake up somewhere around 8:30 or nine and the feeding commences.  Two babies get their bums changed, two babies get dressed and brought downstairs for some floor time (they spend a lot of time on the floor to build their muscles).  There is a "Medela moment".  We are now somewhere around 10:00 or 11:00.

Lunch is discussed and then abandoned as a topic as we are inevitably interrupted by one of/all of the kids or in a forgetful stupor one of us decides to wander away to try and complete at least one simple task (ie, throw in a load of laundry, unload and reload the dishwasher, fold a load of laundry, what have you).  We usually opt for brunch at this point as quiet cereal and TV were some time ago.  We haven't eaten yet (or Sean has eaten lightly) and Quinn is now ravenous and screechy.  Sean either makes something lovely or "quick and dirty".  I wolf my food in between separating/rescuing/soothing/cleaning/redirecting at least one baby.  Quinn has resorted to making "crafts" out of everything in sight.  Small bits of paper are removed from Zoe's hand/gaze/throat.  Wyatt is either asleep on his tummy or quietly watching everything.  They usually start shouting around now and it is time to feed them again.  Which we do, including real food.  Babies are changed again as we have to hose them both and the kitchen down.  There is another Medela moment.

Then it is nap time.

Naps are a real bone of contention around here.  I'm all for them.  I am pro-nap.  I would rather we all have a little siesta in the afternoon and go to bed a little bit later then have the alternative which involves a lot of screaming, crying and general carry-on.  Quinn napped right up until last year when his daycare provider "helpfully broke him of the habit" [translation:  felt it was stupid and since she drove around all afternoon ferrying various children hither and yon, it was an easier for her].  If anyone needs a nap around here in the afternoon (other than me, of course) it is him.  If he doesn't sleep, he is an absolute terror by suppertime and most of that time will be spent on the stairs in "time out".  A nap for Wyatt and Zoe will be attempted.  They both may nap for a few moments initially, but that will end.  Especially if Quinn is actually asleep as we can only have two out of the three napping at the same time.  One will wake up, (usually Zoe) and be screechy.  Assuming she won't go back to sleep after her soother is found and replaced and hasn't woken up her twin, she'll be brought down to the living room to play.  Where she will until she passes out an hour later, at which time Wyatt wakes up hollering.  If Wyatt wakes up first I can bring him down and plunk him in the swing and he will sleep, but this only happens if Quinn is awake.  Confused yet?  All of this boils down to NO NAP FOR MOMMY.  None.  Dee-nied.

Now it is somewhere around 3 or 3:30.  My eyes are closing now whether I like them to or not.  I hit the Tassimo.  It is short lived as I seem to be able to metabolize caffeine very fast.  I am even more tired 45 mins later. Sean may stumble off to have a nap or have one downstairs as he is entertaining Quinn.  Babies are changed post-nap and put on the floor again.  I may scatter toys around and let Indiana Zoe discover them or lay on the floor and play with them.  One of them will have a "problem" (fussy) so as one parent goes off to do whatever project they had to do for the day, the other entertains kids (usually me). Now there is talk of dinner.  Sean goes off to make that/set up the baby food as I start feeding the babies.  More highchair time.  More hosing.  More diaper changes.  Another Medela moment. 

Dinner is prepared and scarfed down in record time as there is usually at least one member of the family crying or having an issue.  Dishes are attempted, but usually abandoned in the sink.  Issues are addressed and babies are played with as Quinn putters around us, interacting with some or all of us.  It is somehow around 8 now (I am surprised each and every time).  Babies are taken upstairs and if it is a bath night, that ritual is begun.  One of us (we alternate when I am home) is in charge of undressing, un-diapering, towel wrapping, towel unwrapping, drying off, diapering and jam-ifying.  The other is in charge of bathing.  We started out each washing a baby with two tubs but we found that an assembly line type operation works better.  One of us nips off to make up their bedtime "top up bottle" (of EBM) and then its more feeding.  One of us each gives a bottle (we alternate), snuggles and then they are put to bed.  It is now somewhere between 8:30 and 9:30.  Quinn's needs are now met (he bathes opposite to the babies... it was a compromise that makes our evenings not drag on forever) and he is put to bed, usually by Sean as I am having another Medela moment.

Depending on what Monday morning will bring, we either have a few moments to ourselves or one of us is doing laundry or escaping for some alone time.  Or collapsing in a heap in front of the TV.   If I'm working the next day, I'm off to bed.  G'bye Sunday, we hardly knew ye.

So, to answer the question "How do you find time to do it all", the answer really is "I don't".  I also don't even try any more.  "Fires" are put out and we do the bare minimum.  Larger cleaning projects are tackled just like that:  as a large project that takes up a block of time.  Despite all the multitasking and my ability to do just about anything while holding a baby (including write this) , it doesn't get done.  Oh well.  It used to drive me nuts, but I've come to terms with it.  It will all get done... eventually.

Our "day of rest", like any other parents, is a joke.  We have to do two loads of baby laundry a day to keep up with them.  I still wouldn't trade it for the world. Quinn, when not being "Dynamo:  The Kid Dramatic" is really freaking funny and his younger siblings are completely edibly adorable.  I know I have said this before, but Sean and I are incredibly lucky to have each other.  It works.  It gets done.  I don't know how, but it does.  Much like this blog entry, which has taken a ridiculous amount of time to write (and is probably poorly edited).

Happy Sunday.  Enjoy your day of "rest", whatever form it may take.

Added to the 'Define Normal' Blog Hop! Find out more @ Just Bring the Chocolate


  1. Wow that sounds busy. I thought I was snowed under, but your post has made me feel all light and airy, so thank you! Sorry that doesn't really help you though :( I'm with you on the napping though - I like to do as much as possible ;0 over from the blog hop, love your blog x

  2. Ah Jen, glad it's not just me. When I tackle a big project, if I get interrupted (which I inevitably do) the big project sits there half done for days, weeks, months even until I find the energy and time to try again. It's very depressing looking around my house at the testiments to all the snatches of time that just weren't enough!

    1. Project piles... ahh, that is a post for another day! :S One day, luv, one day...

  3. Love it, as usual, and it makes my house sound calm and organised in comparison, which is a result!


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