ETA: Turns out that even when I think I'm being uber clever, I am merely plagiarizing my friends. Dang, I guess now I can never be President.
For a long time I thought that I was just being inefficient with my time, and THAT was why I never had time to knit\read\watch TV\call my friends. That if I just wrote out my schedule, cleaned out the extraneous time-wasters, and got myself a good, clean schedule, I could start to have a bit more of my old life back. So, a schedule. I can do that.
5:30 am - Wake up
5:30-6:00 am (6:15 if we're feeling lazy) - Nurse/Cuddle with WB
6:00-7:00 am - Pass WB to Dad to clothe, clean, feed and drop off at daycare; Get ready for work.
7:00 am - Catch bus ( please, please, please let my new scooter get here soon. please.)
7:45 am - 4:30 pm - Workity, workity, workity. Crazy, flippin', too much work for a four-day work week. 100 miles an hour from the moment I arrive 'til the moment I slip out the back door to catch my train before someone can find another reason to talk to me.
5:30 pm - Pickup WB from daycare & walk home.
5:45 - 6:00 pm - Nurse\Cuddle\Chat with WB. Reconnection and giggles. Tis good. Often the best part of the day.
6:00 - 6:30(6:45) pm - Make something approaching fast, simple, and edible for dinner while defending the grapes in the bottom drawer of the fridge, trying to convince him to just let me cook already, and fielding whiney cries of "Up, Mama"...."Down, Mama"...."Up, Mama"..." 'ood, Mama?"......"That? That? THAT? (while pointing at whatever I happen to be touching at that moment....hot pan...sharp knife....juicy apple...whatever.) Oh, for the days when he would just happily hang out in the Ergo on my back, contented to simply watch the kitchen circus. Not so much anymore, but he still wants to be right in the thick of things. Frustrating as hell, but also too cute to discourage.
6:30 - 7:15 pm - Dinner/Modern performance art involving multi-colored foodstuffs and an enthusiastic toddler with a joy of smearing. I'm still unclear why we don't just feed him naked. Oh wait. Because he knows how to undo his diapers now. Right. That's a bad skill combo waiting to happen.
7:15 - 8:00 pm (if we're lucky) - Abandon dirty dinner plates and leftovers where they sit and head upstairs for Bath\Stories\Bedtime. The Going to Bed Book, for those who might wonder.
8:00 (ish) - 9:00 (9:30) pm - Unload diswasher, clean up dinner dishes, swab down dining table and floor, quick kitchen clean up, put away the EXPLOSION of toys, misc chores; laundry (one load a day keeps the mountain away), sweeping, dusting, etc. So that a) we don't die of botulism, or worse, and b) weekends can be...weekends, and fun, not all workity, workity. Fun like this:
9:15 - 930 ish - Collapse into a chair and stare dumbly at work email trying to decide which emails can be ignored (most of them) until morning, and which Need.To.Be.Answered.Right.Now. which is far more than I'd like. Kind of hate people a little bit at this point.
9:30-9:45 ish(If I'm lucky in the email wars.) - Figure out which mindless thing to knit on while relaxing, think fondly about catching up with blogs. Open Bloglines. (OMG! HOW many unread posts? Holy crap!) Pick one at random. Spend 10 mins trying to read while knitting on a plain, unadorned, stockinette sock, drop a stitch, figure it out two rows later. Mutter some expletives. Stop reading. Fix dropped stitch. Try to go back to reading. Fail miserably at forming some sort of coherent comments to all the really cool and interesting things all my imaginary friends are doing and making and.... Drop stitch. Again. On a plain sock. Put sock away. Too annoyed to cuss. Close computer.
10:00 - 10:15 ish pm - Brush teeth, wash face. Go to bed.
10:30 pm - Wonder briefly if child will ever get all his teeth\not be sick so that he can reliably sleep through the night. Decide it's best not to think about it. Go to sleep.
3:30 am - ?
Hmmmm......OK, I give. What's the secret? I am certainly not the first person in the world to have a kid and face life balance issues. Others do it, and many of you do it quite gracefully - without losing touch with friends & family, without missing birthdays, without a lot of drama. I want to be one of you. How do you hold it all together and keep up with house, family, blog, work, hobbies, sleep - without going insane? Do you save more time for yourself in the weekday evenings and just sacrifice some of the weekend hours for cleaning? How do you manage that and still get good family time? Just set a time that's inviolate? Always? No matter what kind of fun might otherwise be had b/c you need to clean the house? Pick one weeknight to stay up late to do chores and just let that be that? Stuff cottonballs in your ears & ignore the waking child? I'm kidding. Mostly.
But seriously. How DO you do it? What are your favorite coping mechanisms? Tips? Tricks? Routines? I'm all ears.