7am – 8am (sometimes 8:30am): Wake, Dress and eat Breakfast. Breakfast may be oatmeal, cereal, toast & yogurt or eggs & toast. Empty the dishwasher. Put out any food that might need to thaw for dinner. Throw a load of clothes in the washer & fold a load in their bedroom while they are getting dresses for the day. Read aloud to the girls from the series Junie B. Jones around the breakfast table. Typically, I read one chapter. Sometimes more; but I’ve found by the end of the second chapter they get a little ansty. Reading at breakfast curbs most of the behavior problems around the table. The girls are into the story and therefore not getting up & down from their chairs, knocking over juice or generally antagonizing each other.
8am – 9am: Schoolwork for October. Usually a 1/2 hour of math & a 1/2 hour of Reading. We’re using the Math-U-See curriculum and Explode the Code workbooks, Headsprout & easy phonics readers for our reading curriculum. Scarlett & Lavender will usually play in the bedroom for awhile. Scarlett will wander out and join us for schoolwork around the table. She’ll work on her colors, shapes or patterns book for about 15 minutes before she’s off again. Lavender might join us for coloring during this time. October will take a short break and play with Scarlett for awhile as well during this morning time.
9am: Leave the house for the mornings activities.
Mondays: Science class for October at the Family Learning Center. We may get a quick visit to a park in as well or get home for early naps. We may stop by storage to swap out toys.
Tuesdays: Coal Creek YMCA for exercise for me and Childwatch for the girls. On Tuesdays, we also head straight from our morning activity to the Family Learning Center again for a 3-hour Kindergarten class for October that covers an hour of math, an hour of reading and then an hour of art/music/social studies. October has eight kids in her class and has 2-3 different teachers depending on the lessons for the day. It’s a long day for us as we all must be on-campus when October is in classes. Lavender and Scarlett miss their afternoon naps and I’m exhausted after running around after them for 3 hours in a fairly small space. At 3:45pm when we get home, Scarlett & Lavender lay down for a bit, I have a glass of wine and the babysitter shows up at 4:30 when I head to work and the babysitter stays until 6:30pm so Jeff has some extra time at work one day per week.
Wednesdays: Scarlett has dance class. October does her homework while Scarlett is in class. This is also Library day. We walk from dance class to the library, check out books and the kids play on the computers at the library. Some days we’ll add a trip to the playground before walking back to the van and heading home.
Thursdays: Coal Creek YMCA for me to exercise, the kids play in Childwatch and then we have a family swimming time before heading back home. We may also forgo swimming to go play at the park depending on the weather and how we’re doing for time.
Fridays: Field Trip Friday. This may be a visit to a children’s museum, a new park, library story time, nature center, art & craft drop-in, fish hatchery, living history museum, swimming, nature hike or other new place to explore. Some days, field trips last all day and other days it may only be an hour. We also fit in about an hour or so of school work after we return home.
11:30-12:30: Return home for lunch. I make my second meal of the day for the girls. Lunch may be peanut butter & jelly, pita & hummus, crackers & cheese, bean/cheese burritos or grilled cheese sandwiches. I also read aloud from Junie B. Jones again.
1:30pm – 3:30pm: Scarlett & Lavender take naps. Hopefully. October will finish any reading or math schoolwork that wasn’t completed in the morning. This is also when I’ll introduce a new math or reading lesson. We alternate between science and social studies depending on the day. We spend the first half an hour around the kitchen table, the second hour around the fireplace reading about our social studies or science topics, playing math games, reading aloud for pleasure, watching a science DVD or having her read aloud to me. The last half an hour we spend back around the table wrapping up any worksheets for the day, the online reading program or art/science projects. I’ll also throw in another load of washer full of clothes. I may cut up any vegetables or cook chicken in preparations for dinner. Scarlett may awake early from her nap and join us for reading and watching a DVD.
3:30 pm: I make dinner while the girls play together while I run interference from the kitchen, usually unsuccessfully. At some point, Lavender and Scarlett will stop getting along and Lavender will get into her highchair for a snack while I work on dinner. Monday’s we also get Scarlett and Lavender up from naps early for October to make it to gymnastics class at 3pm. This is the third meal of the day I will have made. And since we are working to save money and stick to a strict budget, I have not ordered take-out or pizza delivery in over a month.
4:15pm: Dinner is on the table. Jeff comes home and we try to have a somewhat peaceful meal before I head out the door for work at 4:40pm. I work 5pm – 9pm, Monday – Thursday’s and Saturday mornings.
Jeff spends the evenings with the girls. Mostly this is play time, bath time and then getting ready for bed. Lavender heads to bed about 7pm. Scarlett around 7:30pm and October shortly after. I’ll get home from work at 9:15pm and organize the next day’s school work on the table. I might also run to the grocery store after work. Jeff and I will finally get some time together. I’ve got my show, Parenthood on Tuesday nights but we may also play a quick game of Wii, read, talk or just watch the other fall into an exhausted sleep.