5:40am James wakes me so I can move Brigid from our bed to her crib before Teresa gets up and wakes Brigid. I fall back asleep before doing so.
6:00 I wake up to Teresa in our bed. Trying to quietly get up to move Brigid, Brigid wakes and is not happy about it. James takes Teresa to the living room I try to get Brigid back asleep but in vain.
6:15 I bring Brigid out to the living room to join Teresa. I sit in my chair attempting pathetically to pray while Teresa sits on my lap and Brigid crawls around.
6:30 James leaves for work (he has an hour commute). Elizabeth emerges and climbs onto my lap. Brigid finds me and asks me to pick her up. I still try to pray with 3 children on my legs until Teresa kicks off Elizabeth and I get up to avoid bickering. I change Brigid's diaper and nurse her.
6:45 I get Brigid back to bed in her crib so she can finish her "night" sleep. Then I sit down and sort the laundry.
7:00 I wake up Cecilia and Felicity and turn down their bedroom. I get the girls breakfast. While they are eating, I get the laundry washing. Clean up the girls' breakfast, empty the dishwasher and load the dirty dishes. I eat part of a leftover hamburger for breakfast (the breakfast of champions, I know, but I wanted something small, quick, warm and easy) and replace the batteries in a remote control space shuttle for Teresa. I begin making the grocery list and discover pudding-like cucumber leaking in the vegetable drawer and clean it.
8:30 We start school (usually we start by 8 but some mornings I just am not ready by 8 and it can get pushed back a half hour). Felicity does Geography and Cecilia does Vocabulary while Teresa and Elizabeth play.
9:00 Teresa and Elizabeth joins us at the table coloring while Felicity, having finished Geography, does Handwriting. Cecilia finishes Vocabulary and begins Handwriting. Elizabeth begins her Math book practicing her numbers 1-20. I order a few books for school from Amazon and begin this post. :)
Cecilia helps Elizabeth with her math.
9:30 Cecilia takes a break because her hand is hurting from writing so much. Felicity finishes Handwriting and begins Math. Cecilia finishes her Handwriting. (She is practicing script and the increased effort and concentration of making the script letters usually requires a break.)
Cecilia takes a break and gives Teresa a stroll.
10:00 Teresa gets a piggy back ride and comes with me to rotate the laundry. I then have to hunt for her upstairs and find her hiding in my parents bed. Brigid wakes up and I get her dressed and bring her to the living room. Felicity finished 3 pages of math and takes a break, playing with Brigid. Cecilia begins working on math. (Each girl has to do 3 pages of math each day, though they usually finish their weekly assignment in Math by Wednesday. If not, any remainder is finished Thursday.) Elizabeth comes back to the table to color the correct number of objects in her math book and leaves to play, back and forth, repeatedly.
Felicity doing math.
Cecilia procrastinating by showing me the exceptional talent of holding her pencil with her foot.
11:00 Felicity finishes Phonics and practices her poem. Cecilia continues working on Math with ample complaints, whining and attempts to make a deal to get out of doing the 3rd page. I rotate the laundry.
11:30 Lunch. I make the girls PB&J sandwiches with chips. Brigid has an organic apple grain bar. Cecilia finishes Math while eating her sandwich. Elizabeth and Teresa finish lunch and head outside to play. Felicity finishes lunch and helps me clean up.
12:00pm Felicity and Cecilia join Elizabeth and Teresa outside. I take one bite of leftover Orange chicken when Cecilia comes inside and tells me she doesn't know what is wrong but Felicity is crying and screaming for me. I find her hopping on one foot outside sobbing holding her leg. I bring her in and see where she hit it. She clearly whammed it on the stone step outside. It is not bleeding much but is bruising and swelling. I try to move it to make sure nothing is broken but her wailing makes it hard to distinguish anything. Until I offer to let her play on my iPhone. Suddenly, silence. Assuming that means it isn't too bad, I put a cold, wet paper towel on it and finish half of my lunch.
12:30 I take Teresa in for her nap and get her asleep. I then get Brigid asleep for her nap. I finish my lunch and rotate the laundry.
1:00 I sit Felicity, Cecilia and Elizabeth down and read Little House in the Big Woods. 1 chapter. Cecilia becomes distracted by a ladybug in distress inside the house that must be rescued!
1:30 Art. Felicity limps to the table. I pull out the crayola modeling magic Sacred Heart figures we made last week. They cracked drying but we get started painting them. Teresa wanders out from her nap and wants to paint. I give her paper and she gets busy.
Obviously those are Sacred Heart Jesuses!
2:00 All four girls head outside while I clean up. Ladybug is rescued. Felicity runs back inside to tell me I need to let her know when Daddy gets home so she can ask him what she should do about her leg. (Facepalm.) Brigid wakes up. I reply to an email I've been meaning to answer for a week.
2:30 Teresa comes in and colors. Elizabeth comes in and starts doing her math book some more. Felicity asks for a puzzle book (Highlights). Brigid begs to be nursed. Elizabeth goes back outside. Cecilia works on her nature journal outside. I nurse Brigid while helping Felicity with her puzzle book.
Cecilia's Nature Journal: Big red berry bush (real) and Snail shell (real) small! Spelling edited. She gets her spelling gift from me.
Cecilia's Nature Journal: Spider web!
3:00 I rotate the laundry again. Teresa begs for, and I cave to, a VeggieTales. Elizabeth and Teresa watch The Lord of the Beans while Cecilia and Felicity work on puzzle books and Brigid explores the playroom. I make myself tea, courtesy of Carmelite monks (my first and only caffeine of the day; usually it is around this time I start to lose steam). I work on this blog post.
3:30 James gets home from work and grocery shopping. I put away the groceries. (All of James' classes are in the mornings this semester but they are 5 days a week and due to office hours, meetings, etc., he gets home a different time just about every day but he is usually home between 1 and 4 every day.) I work some more on this post.
4:00 Got the last of the laundry. Put away James', Brigid's and my laundry. Girls begin cleaning playroom. (We let them get away without really cleaning it for a few days, so it was pretty messy.)
4:30 I straighten up living room and dining room. Girls continue cleaning playroom. I put on Here Come the 1, 2, 3s for Teresa (an awesome DVD of songs about numbers by They Might Be Giants. She loves it and I love it. It is simple enough for my 2 year old to learn her numbers but also has concepts I still refer to when doing math with Cecilia and Felicity) because it is the only way to keep her from making more messes while the girls clean because dumping the bins your sisters just filled is just too. much. FUN!
5:00 Cecilia continues cleaning playroom while Felicity and Elizabeth work on putting away the laundry of the four oldest girls. I put Brigid down for another nap.
5:30 I work on making laminate labels for the bags of my new laundry sorter I got as an early birthday present yesterday. (Cecilia made the labels yesterday she was so excited over my new present. But tape doesn't do much and simple paper would never survive Teresa, so laminated and safety pinned her labels.) Felicity and Elizabeth finish the laundry. Cecilia, Felicity and Elizabeth finish cleaning the playroom. James puts away the girls' bikes. James and I begin getting dinner, which, conveniently, is leftovers.
6:00 Dinner. The perk of leftovers is that there is no prep and most can be reheated quickly in a microwave or toaster oven. The downside is everyone eats something different. Teresa has wagon wheel pasta with tomato sauce. Felicity had beef with broccoli (the only vegetable besides cucumber I can get in her... unless you expand the category to include french fries and popcorn) and fried rice, Elizabeth had jasmine rice with beef gravy, Cecilia had baked beans and jasmine rice, I had chili with Fritos (Marylanders have not yet discovered the glory of a Texas Frito Pie), James had beef, chicken and fried rice and, after she got up, Brigid had Felicity's leftovers. Quite the buffet, but the fridge has a lot more room in it!
6:30 Clean up dinner. Brigid gets up.
7:00 Feed Brigid dinner. Catch up on a tiny bit of blog reading. (I was 3 days behind.) Clean up Brigid, high chair, etc. Have oldest 4 girls get dressed for bed. Get Teresa's teeth brushed.
7:30 James takes Teresa to bed. I nurse Brigid while reading more blogs. (Now only 2 days behind! Yay!) Cecilia and Felicity take turns reading books to Elizabeth. I tape a page of a book Felicity accidentally ripped while turning it.
8:00 Get the oldest three brushing their teeth and flossing. Get Brigid prepped for bed. Take Cecilia, Felicity and Elizabeth to bed.
8:30 Shower!!! Almost finish catching up on blogs (1 to go!) Put Brigid to bed.
9:00 Watch DVRed Once Upon A Time while reading last blog post. All caught up on blogs! Yeah!
10:00 Head to bed while using phone to chat with friend via Facebook. Catch up on Facebook.
I would say this day was a little bit busier than most but not by much. Most days are pretty busy. I really don't mind when people say I have my hands full, because I do. But everyone does. It is just a question of what we fill them with. My days are definitely busy but they are busy teaching and caring for the five most amazing people I've ever known and, while it isn't easy, the benefits far exceed the effort.
I do sometimes get asked by people how I "do it all" though I've no idea what "it all" is. I don't do everything. No one does. You notice we didn't go out this day. My husband did the grocery shopping. I didn't dust anything. I always have a "to-do" list a mile long and my day has the same number of hours as anyone else. I try to use each day well, but everyone gets the same day. What we do with it is up to us.
I hope you enjoyed this detailed glimpse into one of our days. God Bless :)