Tracking the weekend

Thanks to everyone who stuck with the time tracking challenge this week (and if you didn’t get the emails…I’m sorry for the Mailchimp snafu. They should come this week if you would still like to track. You can actually sign up for them to come any week if you’d like.)

I track my time on weekly spreadsheets on my laptop. This means that tracking weekends requires a slightly different approach than tracking weekdays. If I plan to be off line a while, which I do try to be over the weekend, I either write down notes on paper or just check in once a day. After almost six years of tracking I can reconstruct 24 hours fairly well. It’s not perfect, but it doesn’t have to be. How you spend any given half hour isn’t that important — it’s about getting an overall picture.

On Saturday morning, my husband gave me the baby (in the guest room) at 6:15. I fed him, and then managed to get back to sleep for a while. We didn’t get out of bed until 8:30, at which point I needed to get the homemade cinnamon rolls that everyone  had been promised in the oven. So I didn’t get my planned run in before the 5-year-old needed to go to soccer. I didn’t do much of anything (kind of a mess of kids/hangout on the log) until G (nanny) came at 3. She gave us a few hours of weekend childcare as a Christmas present and so we happily took advantage of that.

My husband and I got timed tickets for the Barnes Museum in downtown Philadelphia. They had just re-opened and had a very strict system for controlling how many people were in each gallery. We scanned in and out of various zones. The Barnes is a really fantastic museum in that it’s small, but each gallery would be a highlight in most other art museums. Dr. Barnes collected huge quantities of paintings from Renoir, Cezanne, Matisse, Van Gogh, etc., juxtaposed with a lot of random decorative objects. I see something new every time I’m there.

We did the usual kid bedtime routine and I crashed at 10 p.m., only to wake up at midnight with the baby. He was then up again at 5:45 a.m. and I never got him back down. So I did my “long” run starting around 7:45 a.m. I ran to the new house, looped the yard and ran home. I say long because it’s only a little over 4 miles, but still.

After, I put the baby down for his first nap, and there was much hustling to get the 5-year-old ready for (masked and fairly distanced) rock climbing class and the big kids in their snow gear. My husband took them tubing/skiing at a place a little over an hour north of us. I got about 45 minutes of work done during the nap, then we picked up the 5-year-old, and did a lot of outdoor scootering, playground time, and general hanging out until nap #2 (3:30) and the older kids coming home. Eventually I cooked dinner, and had a dragged out battle with the 5-year-old about trying everything. He is stubborn, but I am more stubborn. He took tiny bites of an apple, a strawberry, an avocado, and a single kernel of corn. I wish this was not a victory, but it was.

Not much more to report other than the general baths/showers and such. My daughter helpfully reminded us to order lunch for the middle schooler, whose hybrid schedule is 2 longer days in school. The elementary schoolers go for half days and eat lunch at home. The 13-year-old recorded me talking about an old copy of Nancy Drew that my mother gave us. The inscription says she got it for Christmas in 1954! He has to write about a family object from before 1980, and that was what we had. Now I’m writing this and want to be in bed by 10:00 again.

I will try to post some time analysis later this week. I am also hoping to run some Reader Case Studies on the blog, so if you tracked your time and have a specific issue you’d like feedback on, please let me know. I enjoy reading the case studies over at The Frugalwoods blog, and while we probably won’t be quite so detailed about time as they are with money, I know readers would have a lot of suggestions.

11 thoughts on “Tracking the weekend

  1. I am amazed that you run when you have these nights with the baby. I love exercise and I know i feel better when I get it, but if I don’t get good sleep I just can’t make myself do it. I’m really trying to be more consistent w my running schedule and have stuck to it better over the last 6-7 months than ever before, so maybe once you get in good enough shape it’s easier to do? Anyway you’re inspiring in many ways, thank you for sharing!

    1. @Amanda – thank you, but yes, I definitely have those mornings too – it’s more for me that I know that getting outside to go for a run is a time I can escape the house on weekends and be by myself, so that is more motivational, and then once I’m in my exercise clothes and out I may as well do what I can.

      1. @Connie and Anna – no pressure, but I do find it interesting! More as a record of my life right now than anything else. And since I knew I was sharing my logs this week I felt more motivated to do a few out-of-the-ordinary things.

  2. I just wanted to drop a note to say how much I have enjoyed reading these posts! I love hearing how other people spend their time. It gives me ideas of ways I could be using my time but also reminds me that although the details are different, we aren’t all that different in the rhythms of our day (wake, sleep eat etc)

    1. @Lori C- there are a lot of similarities in people’s general rhythms, which makes some “time makeover” advice pretty easy to give. For most people with jobs and families, exercise fits better in the early morning (if a lunch break workout isn’t possible) and most people have some leisure after the kids are in bed, which makes it a good time to try hobbies and reading if screen time is the usual default.

  3. Love the glimpse into your days over the past week.

    No pressure at all, but @kids.eat.in.color on Instagram is a really fantastic resources for helping picky eaters make progress with new foods. My 4yo is incredibly picky as well, and her tips have helped us.

    Thanks again for sharing your week with us!

    1. @Amy – thanks for the tip, I just followed her. I’m always looking for tips, but I have to say a lot of the “picky eating” tips I read places seem to assume a level of openness to foods that does not exist. Like “your kid will love these great sandwich ideas!” when my kid won’t even eat sandwiches.

      1. You might want to check out @autism.nutritionist too. Her tips are very doable. We’ve tried them with both our kids and seen a difference over time.

        Case studies sound awesome! I’m time tracking this week and I’m sure I will have some issues, haha!

  4. Hi Laura! I did the time tracking this past week – it was amazing! On a high level view, I found out transition times are taking a lot longer than I would like them too. If I wanted to get some feedback from you, can I email?

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