Tuesday 28 June 2016

Our every day life - our current routine and making more time for family and ourselves

We're a close family, us three bears, and we spend many weekends with it being just the three of us. During the week, it's nearly always just us and we have a nice routine going.

Ethan's over three now and becoming so grown up that he's involved, or aware of, most things we do and it's nice to have the company and also a small pair of hands that can help out here and there if we're sorting laundry or putting toys away - if he's in the right mood, of course!

We're pretty set in our routine, especially during the working week. A typical day looks something like this:

6am - alarm goes off. One press of the snooze button, and I'm up (ok, maybe two snooze buttons. Three, tops).

I plod downstairs in search of tea and feed the cats, check my phone (which I now leave downstairs overnight to avoid distractions before bed) then head up to the bathroom.

6.30am I then settle myself at my dressing table, put the lamp on, and get myself ready, doing my make up whilst watching my iPad, followed by drying my hair and getting dressed. At some point during this, hubs emerges and starts his morning routine, which often includes ironing something for me (he's a sweetheart like that).

7.10am Once ready (if I'm on time) I go downstairs and let our dog Watson out and fill his bowl with fresh food, pack our lunch bags for the day. I'm really keen to start making a smoothie or green juice again in the mornings. I need to set that alarm earlier...

I then head up to wake Ethan and get him ready. It's hit and miss as to whether he complies. Some days, he's in a great mood and we get all the way through the routine without a hitch. Other times, he falls at the last hurdle (having his teeth cleaned). And sometimes, there's a full on breakdown because I've picked out the wrong pair of shorts.

7.30am (if we're lucky... or 7.45am if I'm honest) We all scramble into the car and head to preschool. Most days, Ethan's fine and goes and helps himself to breakfast. Some mornings, he doesn't want to let me go.

We sometimes grab a soggy piece of complimentary toast before we head off to the city to go to work.

8.20am I drop hubs off in town - as close to work as the traffic allows. I then drive a further five to 10 minutes to where I work to start my working day. A few emails, a few calls, some meetings, some writing - no two days are ever really the same.

1pm On my lunch hour, I try to get away from my desk, so I go for a walk, go to the shops or run any other errands that I wouldn't get to do until Saturday otherwise. Either that or I eat my sandwich / salad / leftovers from the night before with one hand whilst typing with the other.

4.50pm Home time! I jump in my car, putting my laptop and handbag in the bag, then head into the city rush hour traffic, picking hubs up en route back to the nursery. Everyone is even more impatient on the return journey.

5.50pm We finally get to Ethan's nursery, with 10-15 minutes left before they close. We go through to his room and peek around the corner to see where he is and what he's doing. I've always done this, as I love trying to get a glimpse of my son when I'm not around and he has his friends to play with and talk to. I just love watching him. He soon spots me, shouting 'Mummy!', dropping whatever is in his hands and running to us, arms outstretched.

The nursery worker then talks us through Ethan's day; what he's done, what he's eaten, how long he slept for. We say goodbye and Ethan tells us to hurry up because we have to go home now and watch Paw Patrol - either that or we have to go to the shops to see the toys. t

6pm After chatting in the car, we get home, let the dog out and let Ethan take control of the lounge. Picking out his toy of choice, we leave Ethan to get settled whilst hubs and I feed the pets, get dressed into our comfy's / PJ's, then I start dinner and hubs goes to play with Ethan.

7pm I pass dinner over the safety gate to hubs then go and get my own. Ethan immediately charges over to my seat on the sofa and I spend the time trying to eat a mouthful of food whilst at the same time, Ethan tries to put his fingers in my food. 'Mummy, can I try it?'.

7.20pm We then play for a while, Ethan pulling out all his mini figures or his sticker albums, whilst ignoring Cbeebies for the most part, until that is we go to turn the TV off...

7.45pm Bath time! I go up and run him a bath then when it's the right temperature, hubs brings him in. He demands his bath toys and then plays for a good half hour. We don't bathe him every night, as he has sensitive skin, but he enjoys it when he's in the tub.

8pm Shrivelled like a prune, we get Ethan into his PJ's, comb his hair then one of us hugs him goodnight.

It's then potty, a quick brush of the teeth and a sticker for being good before bed.

Hubs and I have been taking turns at bedtimes since he was around 18 months old. Whoever is on duty sits on the chair in his nursery, reads as story of his choosing, plays music and does their best to get him to settle down.

Most nights, he's very good. Some nights, he asks me to lie on the bed next to him. Others, he takes ages to settle and there's no real reason why. The other night, when it was my turn, I tried leaving him to do his own thing, with the door pulled but not closed, and he actually got off to sleep himself without calling me. Maybe this is a new phase? We'll be trying again to see if this is so...

If it's hubs' turn, I come downstairs, tidy away those jigsaw pieces and trains, make myself a cup of tea then settle down to do something for me; be it watch something I can't around Ethan (Orange Is The New Black, at present) or read a book, catch up on blogs, put the laundry on to dry - whatever needs doing.

If I'm being good, I'll prepare our lunches for the next day (who am I kidding? I've done this once in about three months).

10pm Snoozeville, or at the very least, I go up to bed. It won't take me long to drift off to sleep. Minutes really.

And Ethan will sleep through (touch wood, a mid-night wake up hasn't happened for a while now).

Then it's 'BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP' and it's time to do it all again.


We're starting a new routine though, this week. 

We're keen to do more and break with our usual habits. Some days, I'm tired and too lazy to make the meals I really want to make or to do anything more than watch Netflix. Hubs and I both want to be more active - for our physical and mental wellbeing, to make time for ourselves as well as together, as a couple and a family, and to set a good example for Ethan.

Now he's that bit older, we can do more during the week if we really want to. And we do.

So, we've joined our local David Lloyd. We never knew we had a health and fitness centre so nice and so close to us; it's midway between our house and Ethan's nursery and it's really nice inside, with plenty of facilities, a nice feel to it, a club house, a soft play area and even an indoor and outdoor pool.

We discovered it when taking Ethan to a party there a couple of weeks' ago and popped back to take a look around.

There's plenty for Ethan to do, from mini football to creative classes and of course, swimming, and classes are timed so we can drop him at something then head to a class of our own, or just to the jacuzzi / steam room / pool / gym.

For us, it's not about just joining a gym. It's about giving us some freedom and enhancing our lifestyle. Genuinely, it may sound corny, but it is. It's a nice place for us to go and spend time together, or separate. I'm going to do yoga again. Ste is going to focus on weight training. Ethan's going to have a kick around. 

It's going to give us some new, good for us habits. 

My plan is to do one class, one swim and one gym session a week. That's a lot, going from nothing, and some weeks, we may go even more. There's always something on and I like the flexibility of planning what works with the rest of our schedule. When it's our night off bedtime duty, that gives us some personal time, and at weekends, we can all head down.

A new routine is born.



  1. You have such a fab, stable routine going on. Have you always been able to have such a good routine even when Ethan was a baby? I applaud you lovely lady :) and good luck with the fitness activities, I'd love to be able to swim haha!

    Many Loves, Claire xx

  2. You have such a fab, stable routine going on. Have you always been able to have such a good routine even when Ethan was a baby? I applaud you lovely lady :) and good luck with the fitness activities, I'd love to be able to swim haha!

    Many Loves, Claire xx

    1. Thank you Claire! It is a pretty stable routine and we have been lucky that Ethan goes along with things - although every other morning, there is a meltdown when it comes to brushing his teeth! When he was younger, we managed to get to a point where he wouldn't wake up until I went to get him ready and I'm really lucky that he stays asleep or in his room at least until I've finished getting ready.

      Thank you for the good luck vibes too. Doing well so far - gotta going :)


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