If you know nothing about me, you need to know that I have three children (ages 3, 6, and 9) and that I work part-time from home for a behavioral economics firm in the Midwest (I live in Alaska… if that wasn’t abundantly clear). I am privileged to be able to be a stay-at-home mom for my kids, but also earn some income doing something I love. That does not mean my days are easy. Today, I’m going to give you a typical “day in the life of Maggie.” I bet you can’t wait!
The Life of a SAHM (stay-at-home-mom) and WAHM (work-at-home-mom):
5:45 AM – Get up, brush hair, throw on a sweater and set up my computer at the table for a 6AM work meeting. I keep my pajama pants on and have a heated blanket in my lap because the heat in the house doesn’t turn on until 7AM.
6:00 AM – Skype with a group in the conference room at the company’s office. (Until last week, I could just phone in to meetings and stay in my bed for them… but unfortunately, they just got Skype working and now I have to pretend I’m put together).
7:00 AM – Meeting ends. I’ve got a big list of to-dos that came out of it, but I have to switch gears… The heat turns on and I have to wake the kiddos up. Mr. T heads to work. I cook the oatmeal, pack the lunches, and make sure everyone has everything. We eat together.
8:20 AM – The kids and I pack in the car and start our daily morning commute. The girls are supposed to be at school by 9, but they attend different schools (Penny is across town). Snow and moose can often slow the journey.
9:00 AM – Some mornings, this is when I head to a Piyo class with some friends (we have the benefit of having an official Piyo instructor that likes to practice). We exercise while the kids run around. Other mornings, this is the time for Lui and I. We play trains, read stories, put puzzles together, play “go to sleep” (so hard to stay awake!), etc.
11:00 AM – I turn on PBS Kids and take a shower. I’ve gotten several work e-mails in the past 4 hours. I put out any fires that need to be dealt with.
12:00 PM – Lui pulls a mandarin orange out of the fridge and declares it’s lunchtime. Most days I make him a PB & honey sandwich, though I often make waffles or pancakes (because I can! Also, I love breakfast food. A lot.).
12:30 PM – After lunch is story time. Lui says: “You read me one, two, three, four stories on couch!” I comply.
1:00 PM – Lui goes down for a nap. It’s finally time to work. I get all set up, take care of the most pressing stuff first, and then start to fade. I’ve been going non-stop since 5:45! If I can push through, I get two hours of work in at this point. If not, I end up with a 30 minute nap somewhere in this time period. Also, if we ran errands in the morning or I didn’t have time to make myself lunch before now, I also have to fit in a shower and some lunch.
3:00 PM – I have to wake Lui up and we get all dressed up to go out in the snow (yay for down skirts!). We walk a few blocks to Florin’s school. Luckily, my friend gave me a fabulous jogging stroller her kids had outgrown. I was so tired of trying to push my umbrella stroller through the snowy sidewalks (and too cheap to buy a new stroller). Again, snow or moose can slow the journey.
3:25 PM – Florin gets out of school. We walk home together (me pushing Lui in the stroller and her climbing every snow hill she sees all the way home).
3:50 PM – We get back home. I help Florin unload her backpack and go through all of her school papers. She reads me her story for homework, then she rinses out her lunch box and sets it on the counter for me to refill in the morning.
4:15 PM – Penny gets home from school on the bus. I talk to her about her day and go through her homework.
4:30 PM – At this point, the three kids will start
terrorizing playing with each other. I sneak into my bedroom and dash to get more work done. I get a few emails sent off with what I was able to accomplish for the day (I am a master at getting the stuff needed done in very little time… too bad I get paid hourly!).
5:00 PM – Mr. T gets home from work. If I’m still frantically working, he makes dinner. If not, I start dinner. The rest of the evening is spent eating dinner as a family, maybe sneaking a board game in before the kids go to bed, and getting everyone in bed. After the kids go to sleep, I’m too exhausted to think straight, so I pull out my contraband chocolate and Mr. T and I watch The Crown on Netflix.
Random Related Thoughts:
- I’ve taken one of those “when are you most productive” quizzes. It turns out, my best times are 10 AM-12 PM and 3-5 PM with a nap in between. Definitely not 6-7 AM and 1-3 PM.
- How do you people work in an office all day without being able to take a nap or work in your bed?
- I love being able to make anything I want for lunch because I’m home and I can. I eat waffles/pancakes at least once a week.
- Kids are the worst (and the best)
- Skype is the worst. Now I have to pretend I’m engaged. I used to just make oatmeal and pack lunches while participating on the call.
- All the people that say: “If you traded TV for a side hustle, you’d be a millionaire in a year” need to spend a day with their children AND try to be productive. You’ll hear no shaming from me when you need to kick back with your sugar and watch Netflix.
- Often, around 4pm, when I pick work back up, I’m shocked at how little anyone that spent all day in the office accomplished. I often come through with way more in the 2+ hours I work.
- I love that I get to hear all of Lui’s awesome jokes (Why did the chicken cross the road? To get to Bill Nye the Science Guy!)
- Now you don’t have to ask: “What do you do all day?”