168 Hours Time-Tracking Challenge- Day 5

We are five days in! While it might be tempting to give up tracking over the weekend, there is quite a bit of time between that 6 p.m. Friday beer and 6 a.m. Monday wake-up. I think enjoying one’s time means having a rough sense of where weekend time goes — so you can consciously choose to spend it on enjoyable or meaningful things. You don’t have to track weekends for the rest of your life. But how about for the next two days?

Anyway, last night I worked until 8:45 p.m. My husband took the lead on getting the big kids to bed, and then I said goodbye to him and he left to drop off his car to get repaired and take an Uber to the train station and head down to Washington D.C. (he had an early meeting). I packed up my Nordstrom Trunk and got it ready, read, but took some time away from reading to talk with the 9-year-old about his frustrations with swimming (he’d like to move up to a more competitive group, but it is taking time, and the time it is taking is making him less interested in swimming). I emailed this report to my husband, who then called me from the train to chat about it. I did get some reading in because my 7-year-old had lost a tooth at wrestling (an already loose tooth! It wasn’t knocked out!) and so I had to stay up late enough to make sure the tooth fairy was going to come, if you get my drift. By 11 p.m. all was quiet, so I could go to bed.

I woke up at 5:30 when I heard the toddler, but blessedly, he quieted down. I drifted in and out until 6:30 when he was up for good.

6:30-7:20 – up with toddler/coffee/TV/read

7:20 – 7:40 – woke 9-year-old and convinced him to watch the toddler while I showered. The toddler was not easily dissuaded despite the 9-year-old’s attempts to find a TV show he’d like, or to read stories, so it was not a very private shower.

7:40-8:10 – made kids chocolate chip pancakes

8:10 – 8:20 – Friday nanny came, transition and discussion of day’s schedule.

8:20-8:30 – drove 9-year-old to school for Reading Olympics practice (the school is in fact 5 minutes away. This run takes 10 minutes when there’s no car line. The preschool is only 3 minutes away, so it can take even less time!)

8:30 -8:40 – bus stop with 7-year-old

8:40 – noon – work, to the backdrop of the cleaning service vacuuming the house.

12- 1 – ate my lunch and read. I had taken a break because they were cleaning my office, and then I kind of got into my book. It was the part of Bad Religion when he makes fun of Eat Pray Love.

1 – 1:40 – boys home. Got 9-year-old ready, drove him to his book club.

1:40-1:50 – phone conversation with husband about his car, which needed a lot more repairs than originally thought (sigh). I was supposed to go pick it up, but we decided he’d get it on the way home from work. This meant I couldn’t divvy up the afternoon kid run. I spent a lot of time in the car today.

1:50-2:30 – ready and ran outside. Just a quick run. Ran past a house my husband sent me the real estate listing for, just to check it out.

2:30 – 2:50 – quick change, email check, etc.

2:50-3 – picked up daughter at preschool.

3-3:15 – packed up karate uniforms, sampled cookie dough that nanny and 7-year-old were working on.

3:15-4 – took 5-year-old with me to pick up 9-year-old at book club, and drove to karate.

4-5:20 – read during two karate classes – first the 5-year-old’s, then the 9-year-old’s.

5:20-5:45 – drove home

5:45-6 – nanny left, opened beer, chilled

6-6:30 – made pizza for kids. Husband had picked up sushi for grown-ups. 7-year-old ate most of the edamame. The other children would not touch it. I think of moments like this every time I read earnest personal essays from writers discussing how they have gotten their children to eat vegetables by growing gardens with them, and bringing them to farmers markets, and involving them in the kitchen, and so forth. Sure. I did not raise my 7-year-old any differently from the other kids. Some kids are more into varied foods than others. Full stop.

6:30-6:45 – cleaned up kitchen

6:45-7:30 – sat in chair reading People magazine, getting up to solve various child needs here and there but doing my best to ignore them.

7:30-7:45 – started getting toddler ready for bed. Then husband took over. So I read a little bit then came downstairs and started working on this. It will be an early morning — off to wrestling, hopefully with a short workout for me thrown in. Then there is an afternoon birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese’s, or “Chuck E Jesus” as my 5-year-old thinks it’s called. Wish me luck!

2 thoughts on “168 Hours Time-Tracking Challenge- Day 5

  1. I do wish you luck–I don’t miss Chuck E. Cheese outings at all!

    Even though I haven’t commented since Day 1, I’m still with you tracking time, and will be tracking through the weekend. I deliberately schedule work hours on the weekend (I’m a freelance writer) so that I have time during the week to pursue hobbies during the day instead of at night when I’m tired, and to do routine chores during times when everyone else isn’t out at the same time (like a grocery run, for example). The time tracking is such a good way for me to be mindful of time passing, for me anyway. It’s easy to get caught up in low-value activities and spend too much time on them, and then complain about having not enough time to pursue more worthwhile goals.

  2. I had the daughter home sick for Thursday and Friday, which derailed my plans a little.

    Thursday I worked in between checking on her (she’s 8, and perfectly happy on the sofa with the remote when she’s not well) and got a decent amount done in the morning. I wasn’t feeling great myself, so had planned to curl up on the sofa with her for a movie in the afternoon, but instead I ended up on the phone with two different editors – one about a new proposal and one about last minute edits to the book I had going to print the next day. It started to snow, and I decided to skip my choir rehearsal in favour of a family dinner and an early night!

    Friday I had both kids at home, and the husband working in the home office. The daughter was feeling better enough to be bored, but not well enough to go to school (she still had a temperature). So we did den building, drawing, playing with magnets, stories, films and a million other things. I also got them to sort all my tuppaware, which they enjoyed more than I expected!

    I had some last minute work queries about the book going to print, and a cover reveal that coincided nicely with the toddler’s nap, so I managed to do most of it during that quiet time, and the rest on my phone during odd moments. After, I took the toddler out for an hour to give the daughter a bit of a break…

    Once the husband emerged from his peaceful study, we had dinner, got the kids to bed, and had some time chatting before I flaked out too!

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