Sunday, February 24, 2008

Our daily grind

Dear friend Deepali has been reminding me for the last few weeks to do a post about our routine. Me thinks its great to have a written record for posterity, as also a good way to write about our usual day and activities.

Everything is +/- 30 minutes, more often than not its +

Anywhere between 4:30-6:30 Jiya wakes up for a feed.

7:00 am -7:15 am - I and Ashwini wake up. Prepare tea for Ash, make roti/chawal, cut salad and pack lunch; (sabzi has been made the previous evening); warm milk; prepare breakfast for kids (I and Ashwini usually have a banana and milk)

7:30 am - Kids wake up. Vansh has his milk and throws in a few giggles and/or shouts a few No's at being hugged and kissed. Jiya scoots around in the kitchen after playing with her toys for a bit. I continue with the above.

(this is on days we are home till about 11:00)

8:00 - 9:00 am - massage Jiya, brush teeth, give both kids a bath - for the last few days they have been taking a bath together and love it. While Vansh used to run away when I called him for a bath, now he enthusiastically takes off his clothes on his own and jumps right in. Jiya too squeals away in delight.

9:00 am - Feed both kids breakfast and have my own.

9:30 am - Sneak in a few moments to check e-mail/news/new blog posts if the house is in not a HUGE mess. Smaller messes I am adept at handling now by ignoring them. Once Vansh starts climbing on to me is signal for shutting it down for later.

10:00 am - Take Jiya for a snooze. Then I start cleaning the house and try to fit in a bath before Jiya wakes up. If not in a mood right away, then chat a bit with my parents. Vansh, in the meantime, helps me around the house, chits and chats - the who's and the what's float around (he still hasn't gotten to the why's)

11:00 am - Usually Jiya wakes up at this time.

Once or twice a week depending on how many days I have the car with me, we go out for ECFE and some other activity in the library or a playdate at this time.

When we are home and under the rare circumstances that house work is already complete, its my and kids time for about an hour. Otherwise, NOW the kids play with each other. Yay!! On good days, Vansh is such a darling and is quick to make sure that Jiya has a ball and she in turn keeps encouraging him with squeals and giggles. On others, Vansh wants to do his own thing and wouldn't let her come within a foot of any of the toys. And Jiya, so used to having him around on those good days, is not good at all playing by herself and whines for attention. So then she has to be propped in that swing for some time till I get my hands free from what I am doing at that time. On good days, a bath fits in right here if I haven't had it before and on normal days it has to wait a bit longer. Somewhere in between, the kids have a snack.

(On Monday, when we have to get out of the house by latest 9:30 to meet friends for playgroup, one of us - either me or the kids have to skip the bath and of course the cleaning has to wait for later.)

12:15 pm - I start getting ready for lunch.

12:30 pm - We eat lunch, I and Jiya, that is. Vansh is threatened to eat lest the fire truck uncle/police uncle/maintenance uncle grab him away and/or asked to tell stories about his friends/Caillou/ Curious George to distract him enough to feed him. He eats some and he leaves some pronouncing "You save it! I'll eat after waking up."

1:00 pm - We clean up all the toys and the kids go to sleep. Now is the time for about and hour and a half of solitude where I catch up on e-mails/blogging and the like. Once again, unless the house is in a HUGE mess, I like to have this time for myself.

3:00 pm - Kids start waking up. I change and feed Jiya. If Vansh wakes up before Jiya, then we enjoy some time together by looking at some old pictures/videos together on the laptop. This is a BIG hit with him. If Jiya is already up, we usually go out for a stroll in the apartment building itself having our own little workout by climbing up and down 3 floors and walking in the corridors, playing hide and seek inside the house itself or dancing to some music.

4:00 pm - Vansh has his milk after he finishes the left over lunch. I start cleaning up the kitchen and preparing for dinner and lunch the next day. Earlier I used to be done by about 5:30-6:00, it takes longer than the normal time because I have to keep entertaining the kids in between. These days, at times Jiya is being quite clingy starting about 5'0 clock. Earlier she used to take a nap at about 5:30. From last week she doesn't. So at times, I just be with the kids till Ashwini returns by about 5:30-6:00 and then proceed to finish off cooking the remaining meals. He has tea if the dinner is still some time away. Otherwise all of us have dinner together. Its gotten easier this month because now Jiya also has a lot of what we eat. She's able to have small pieces of chapati with yogurt or rice with yogurt and small pieces of whatever sabzi I have made. If I feel the sabzi is still not suitable for her then I cut up small pieces of peach or apple or carrot, steam them and give it to her with the chapati/rice and yogurt. On days when we have pizza/burger/tacos (home made) I take out a couple cubes of previously cooked and frozen sweet potato/carrot-peas and give those to her.

7:00 pm - Now is fun time because most of the day is done. On good days I have been able to clean the kitchen also by now. Otherwise I leave it for later after the kids sleep. We play games, read books, watch TV. Jiya loves to roll and scoot around the room and devour magazines, in the literal sense :) She pulls out a few from under the table and loves to tear and hear the sound of crumpling paper. At times, we go out, if we hadn't earlier for that walk and climbing stairs. This is also the time we go out for groceries if we were not able to do that on the weekend.

8:00 pm - Vansh finishes his dinner if he had me save it for later. Otherwise he has a snack - I try to make it a fruit but its not easy. Depending on his hunger level, he decides whether he can get away without having to eat anything. If not, he proceeds to eat it. Off late, he has started enjoying oranges though. Grapes used to be the favorites once but now no more.

8:30 pm - I take Jiya in to feed and change her and to put her to sleep for the night.

9:00 pm - Vansh has his milk and starts getting ready for bed.

9:30 pm - After another game of Cherry-O/Candyland or a couple of books, saying our prayers, he goes to sleep.

By 10:00 I finish cleaning the kitchen and then read a book/spend some time surfing the internet and have dessert/fruit.

11:00 - 11:30 - We go off to sleep ourselves.


noon said...

OMG Neera - I have wondered how you manage...we are both in the same boat but our schedules and what we do is so different. And how do you manage to make rice/chapati and salad all in 15 min! It takes me so long to make rotis - and the cleaning involved! All you Delhi/Pune folks - used to eating rotis all the time - you guys make it in no time...I am now making parathas - it's faster somehow!
I only cook in the evenings - period.
Sandwich for lunch and B eats out for lunch. Too bad! Your schedule is so perfect - I can't even believe it!
You are ammazing!!!

My Memories said...

great neera...the best part i like is that u manage to wind up ur kitchen by 7 and give the rest of the time to kids and hubby...its a real good practice. i too want to follow this but get lazy at times...u again have proved to inspire me.

@noon...neera starts cooking at around 7 am and kids wake up at 7:30 and she continues with her cooking till about 8...not even mary poppins can make the meal in 15 minutes...and once u get the hang of it, roti/parantha is not a big deal, we get so used to of it that we cant be without them if we had eaten rice or sandwiches twice in a row.

dipali said...

Sounds like a busy, happy routine:)

Neera said...

noon: Sorry for the confusion. Yesterday after reading ur comment, I realized there was a confusion there, so edited it.
Thanks for the complement ..let me accept that in no humble terms ..ahem ;) On many days, I too end up cooking only the evening meal and then do a quick fix like an omelette or vegetable pulao (a very simple version) in the mornings for lunch. Parathas are a great idea too.

deepali: I know I like that part too. Earlier when we had dinner at 8:00 or so, I used to feel I am racing against time to wind everything up and get the kids to bed in time.
There was some discrepancy in the post when noon read it.

dipali: I feel belittled when moms with 4 kids so much as even read this *blush*. U must be thinking 'much ado about nothing'