Life with three has been, how should I say this … FREAKING INSANE. I mean, I knew it was going to be a little more crazy, but I wasn’t prepared for this level of insanity. It might explain why it has taken me two weeks to get this post typed up. All I keep thinking is that one of the kids doesn’t do anything except sleep, eat, and poo at this point. I thought it would be appropriate to document the early days as a family of 5. I hope that I look back at this one day and laugh at myself. I’m also hoping that I will have figured things out at that point. On the day of this post Anna is 4.5, Luke is 19 days away from turning 3, and Abby is exactly 2 weeks.
Thursday, November 6, 2014:
1:40 – Abby wakes up and wants to eat. Alex changes her diaper and gives her a bottle of pumped milk. I pump and go in and out of sleep. It’s amazing how soothing, yet maddening, a breastpump can be. Anna wakes up, comes into our bed, and quickly falls asleep. I finish pumping, store the milk, and clean everything. I have a hard time falling asleep, so I do what every warm blooded person does and browse Facebook. I end up taking a stupid quiz about what our couple sleep style says about us. I don’t even remember what the result was.
5:15 – Abby is up again. I get up and change her diaper and put her back in her Wombie swaddle. She reminds me of the sucker fish that clings to the side of the tank while she’s eating in that thing. I attempt to nurse her. She refuses (being a preemie, she doesn’t have enough energy to get all of her feeding from nursing, so I have to pump and give supplemented milk or formula. Getting it from a bottle is much easier than from the boob, so she has been refusing to nurse.). I feed her a bottle of pumped milk. I had gotten all set up to feed her and realized that I forgot my phone by the bed. Boo.
5:45 – abby is fed and back asleep. I’m back on the hooter hoses. Alex’s alarm goes off, he gets up to get ready for work. Anna wakes up. I look up to see Luke walking into my room. The older two run around while I finish and Alex gets ready. I change Luke’s diaper.
6:20 – Anna, Luke, and Alex head downstairs with the dogs. Alex fixes them breakfast and feeds the dogs. I grow an extra arm and bring the dirty bottles, cooler, breastmilk, clean bottles and Abby down. Abby goes in the Mamaroo. Anyone who is looking into swings – buy a Mamaroo. That thing is AH-MAZING. I rinse the bottles and put the milk in the fridge. I make a soda (caffeine is a must these days) and a bowl of cereal. I let Ethel in because she is small enough to squeeze through the fence and runs into our neighbors house through their dog door. Lucy stays outside (even though she barks) because she eats the kids food from the table. Sorry neighbors.
6:45 – The kids are done so I wipe them down and try to choke down the rest of my breakfast. Luke let’s Lucy in. She immediately tries to eat off the table and then notices that the powder room door is open (all you can eat buffet in the trash can). I chase both dogs around to get the diaper and paper that they have found before it becomes a bigger mess. I swear they purposely try to do things to make me crazy. The dogs are on my last nerve lately. I turn on some cartoons.
6:50 – Luke decides that he needs to go pee in the potty, so he goes into the powder room and takes his diaper off. Nothing comes out. He leaves the powder room with the door open when he leaves. The dogs attempt to eat trash again. I finish my breakfast and clean up all the dishes. The kids are in the living room playing and looking at Abby. Abby is sound asleep. I told you, the Mamaroo is magical.
7:00 – I try to look through a pile of mail. Bills needs to be paid (I’ll be putting that off for later). Luke asks for a cup of water. I fix it and go back to looking at the mail. Anna requests a glass of water. I stop what I’m doing and fix it. She decides she really isn’t thirsty after all. Instead they get into a fight over a Spiderman doll. I attempt to use the potty and end up with two kids, a dog, and the Spiderman doll in there with me.
7:15 – Out of my better judgement, I decide that I’m going to attempt some pictures of all three kids. Abby is quickly leaving the ‘newborn window’ that’s best for getting those early pictures so I’ve been trying to squeeze in all the shots that I wanted to get. It’s always a miserable experience because the kids of photographers are the worst to take pictures of. Plus, my patience is majorly lacking as of late. I get everything arranged in the studio and after multiple attempts of getting the kids to sit still and calm down, I eventually get enough images that I think I can composite one good image together. I then lose all sense of reasoning and decide to do another pose on my bed. My plan was to recreate our announcement picture that was on our bed with our dogs. So, I tote everything and Abby upstairs and get it all set up. I pose the older kids and dogs.
8:30 – Everyone is ready and as I put Abby into place, she gets hungry. The dogs scatter. I nurse on right side while Anna and Luke play ‘Chuck E Cheese’ with a coin in my bathroom. Why do we even buy them toys?
9:15 – Abby seems content for a bit, so I get everyone posed on the bed again. I snap a few shots. I’m not super happy with them or the lighting, but it’s going to have to work. The kids lose it and I’m at my breaking point. Anna and Luke are sent to their rooms to cool off which isn’t really a punishment because their rooms are filled with toys. I take the opportunity to give Abby a quick bath.
9:30 – Abby is cleaned, lotioned, and dressed. I go downstairs to give her a bottle. The older kids are allowed out of their rooms and they both apologize (I question their sincerity). Anna is wearing a bikini and Luke has a pair of undies over his diaper. Abby finishes eating and is passed out in the Mamaroo again.
10:00 – Time to pump. I feel like my boobs are constantly out right now. Anna and Luke run around and play on the 1st floor with one another. It’s only a matter of time before it turns into fighting. I try to decide if I’m going to take them somewhere to play since they haven’t been listening all morning. Not leaving the house means they will be horrible this evening (and therefore punishing me), but leaving is rewarding them for their bad behavior. I really need Nanny 911 on speed dial.
10:10 – Anna and Luke are in time out.
10:20 – I’m done with the boob tubes. I store the milk and clean everything. Luke decides he needs to use the potty again (he wants the jellybean reward more than he actually wants to be potty trained). He gets 4 jelly beans if he poops on the potty, so he attempts to squeeze one out in hopes of a bigger bounty. He poops all over the potty seat and himself. Poop is smeared everywhere. I clean all of that up and wash everyone’s hands. The older kids want a snack. Anna eats an apple. Luke eats a banana. He throws a monster fit when I pull a piece of the banana out of the peel. He likes to eat it from the peel. I put ice packs on my boobs and eat some chips in hiding. Over my dead body am I sharing right now. Time feels like it’s going in reverse today.
10:45 – Anna is finished with her apple. She throws the core away but keeps one seed because she wants to grow an apple tree in our garden. We don’t have a garden, so I tell her that we will talk about it in the Spring. She wants to wash it first and she accidentally drops the seed goes down the drain. She makes me promise that I will wash the next seed so it doesn’t get lost.
10:45 – They decide it’s time to color so I set them up at the table. I use the time to do the dishes since my secret chips are gone.
11:10 – Anna asks me to color with her. So, I use it as an excuse to stop cleaning and color with her and Luke. They are thrilled. Anna has been really into coloring and drawing lately.
11:20 – Luke is using the crayons as darts instead of actually coloring. I give him a warning. He continues to throw the crayons so I take them away and tell him to go play something else. He throws himself on the ground into a monster fit. God, I love this age. It’s the best…
11:45 – I finish my picture (it might be my best work to date) so I tell Anna that I have to get a few things done. I head upstairs and pick up my bedroom and Abby’s room. Anna and Luke make their way upstairs and ‘help ‘ with Abby’s room. I upload the pictures I took this morning to my harddrives. The last thing I want is to lose the files after putting all that work into them.
12:00 – It’s time for lunch. I make PB&J for Anna and Luke with oranges and string cheese. I throw together some nachos with leftovers for myself. Both of them steal some of mine. Luke eats his entire PB&J and half of Anna’s. He asks for another cup of milk after I get everything wiped up and the dishes in the dishwasher. I swear the kid has a tapeworm sometimes. Anna eats a few bites and declares that she is full. Her piggy does a bit better, however.
12:30 – It’s been three hours since Abby has eaten. She’s still sleeping, so I have to wake her up to eat. Preemies tend to sleep through feedings, so it’s important that we wake her to make sure she gets enough calories in a day. I change her diaper while Luke gives her a check up with his stethoscope. Abby shoots poo all over the couch mid diaper change. Thank the Lord for leather couches. I wipe it down. Abby nurses on the left side. Luke’s milk cup spills all over the place. Anna sneaks upstairs and gets a bottle of lotion. The older two rub lotion all over themselves (including their hair). They look like greased pigs. Part of me thinks it’s funny. Part of me is upset because I know that I need to give them baths now.
1 – Abby is burped and switched to right side. Anna has disappeared upstairs. I yell up to her to see what she is doing. She claims that she is cleaning up her room. I have my doubts, but can’t investigate at that point. Luke rolls around on the activity mat before heading upstairs to ‘clean’ with Anna.
1:25 – Abby is done nursing but still takes 2 ounces by bottle.
1:35 – I hear screaming and tears from upstairs. From their exchanges, I can tell that Anna hit Luke. He comes to tattle and has a bow in his hair. I’m still feeding Abby, so I can’t help at that point. He fearlessly goes back up.
1:45 – Abby is all done, burped, and passed out from being milk drunk. I hear a loud crash from Anna’s room. I go up to find them in her bathroom playing with a big cup of water. There’s water everywhere. I’m not happy about it because we are constantly telling Anna to not play with water in her room. Abby goes in the Rock N Play in my room. I take Luke to his room and change his diaper because he’s pooped. I put him in his bed for a nap. Anna is told to stay in her room for a while to rest with explicit instructions to not play with the water in her bathroom. I have to freaking pump again. Anna keeps popping into my room as if nothing has happened. I keep telling her to go to hers. I’m ready to lose my mind at this point.
2:30 – Milk machine is done and parts are cleaned. I’ve showered, dressed, and finally brushed my teeth. The fact that I was able to shower is a small miracle in itself. It occurs to me that Anna and Luke haven’t brushed their teeth today. I’m exhausted. I check on Anna (it’s been a bit since she tried to weasel her way into my room) and find her in her bathroom, you guessed it, playing in the freaking water. She knows she was caught, but doesn’t seem to care. I inform her that she has lost afternoon TV time (it’s extremely rare that she will nap these days, so she typically hangs out downstairs while Luke naps). She is to remain in her room. I lay in my bed and attempt to somewhat rest with Abby in the Rock N Play next to me. Is it 5pm yet?
4:00 – Abby wakes up and is hungry. Anna fell asleep (apparently not listening to your mom is exhausting) and Luke is still down. Maybe the rest will help their attitude?!? I napped for about an hour and feel like a brand new person. Maybe I will make it through this day after all! I change Abby’s diaper and attempt to nurse in the chair in her room – look at me mixing things up. She refuses to latch so I give her a bottle of pumped milk. Whe she’s done, we cuddle for a while since the older two are still sleeping.
4:40 – Abby decides she’s still hungry and starts rooting again. I try nurse and she actually latches. It’s a small victory.
4:45- Everyone is up and Luke is mad. They take turns sitting on my lap as I continue to nurse Abby. Luke drinks some water and seems to calm down. Alex calls and says he’s on his way home. Praise the lord!
5:00 – Abby is done nursing and seems satisfied for at least a little while. Alex is home to rescue my sanity. Anna is complaining about the backs of her legs itching. I put some cream on them and notice that she has a little rash. No clue where that came from. Anna asks about going to the spaghetti place (which is Pasta House for those of you that don’t speak 4 year old). We cave because neither if us feel like cooking. Alex changes clothes and we get Anna and Luke dressed in something other than underwear and swimsuits. Alex and Luke feed the dogs and let them outside. I get Abby and the diaper bag ready to go.
5:45 – We arrive at Pasta House. It’s the first time eating out as a family of five. After the day we’ve had, the kids did amazing at dinner! It was so refreshing.
6:45 – We are back home. Alex goes upstairs to change into PJs. He gets the older kids into PJs while I jump back on the hooter hoses. Anna and Luke get a piece of candy for eating a good dinner. Those two can put down some spaghetti.
7:15 – I’m done pumping so I store the milk and clean the parts. Ice packs go back on the ole boobies. Kids are watching Bubble Guppies. Luke is on a sugar bender from the candy. I check the mail and see that my new phone case has arrived. My phone went missing after an unfortunate shoe shopping trip. I accidentally left it on a bench and some asshole stole it. So, I had to get a new phone (thank god for insurance) and a new Otterbox for it. I open the case and am confused by the color. I didn’t think it was what I had ordered. Knowing that I was on Amazon half asleep ordering the case a few days ago, I checked the order in my email. Turns out I did order that color, but didn’t realize it at the time. I guess grey and lime green aren’t all that bad.
7:30 – Alex takes Anna and Luke to bed. He brushes their teeth for the first time that day. Their teeth won’t rot from missing one brushing, right? At least they have another set that will come in. The baby set is just a practice set… It’s time for Abby to eat. I wake her up and change her diaper. Alex feeds a bottle to her and Abby falls asleep on his chest once she’s done. I go into my studio and edit a few pictures. I really need to edit vacation pictures and the rest of Abby’s newborn pictures.
8:45 – Alex and I relax on the couch. We watch the latest Criminal Minds while I browse Christmas cards and birth announcements online. Decisions, decisions. I heat my boob packs and apply. Oh, my aching nips.
10 – Abby is hungry. I change her diaper and nurse each side. Alex assembles the bottles for the night and carries them, the pump supplies, and a cooler with pumped milk upstairs.
10:30 – Abby is done nursing, so Alex takes her upstairs to swaddle (welcome back, suckerfish) and feeds her bottle. I check on the older kids (how old are they when you stop checking to make sure they are still breathing) and then pump. Abby is topped off and is grunting and groaning like a little piglet in the Rock N Play. Alex gets himself ready for bed and lays down. I listen to my pump talk to me. Anyone who has pumped before knows what I’m talking about. Mine keeps saying ‘you’re a star’. Affirmations from the milk machine.
11:10 – I’m all done, milk is stored, parts are clean, and I’m in bed. I should go straight to sleep, but I screw around on Facebook and Google random things. I’m mentally going over my plans for the next day and trying to figure out how to handle three kids without constantly yelling. Trying to sort through some major mom guilt for yelling at the kids quite a bit. My eyes start to get heavy and I start doing long blinks. Abby is still fussing a little bit. I think her tummy is too full. She eventually calms down and goes to sleep.
11:30 – I plug my phone in and close my eyes. I’m asleep as soon as my eyes close.
2 – Abby is crying. Time to feed her and start the day again.