Hi everyone! I thought I’d take you along with me for a typical work day. Please note: this is just what I do, I’m not saying that all mums should wake up at 5:30 if they don’t want to!
However if this blog post gets you thinking about things that you would like to do around looking after your children (or your job etc etc) but are struggling to make time for, then check out my free guide to making time for what is important to you!
This post is part of the into motherhood series. You can find the other posts here:
- Big update on a little project;
- Pregnancy update + what not to say to a pregnant person;
- Welcome to the world Baby J! – Our first few weeks as parents;
- Self-care as a new mum (three months into motherhood).
(Note: this post contains affiliate links. If you buy something that I recommend, I may earn a commission at no cost to you. Thank you for supporting my blog!)
5:30 – Good morning! My phone is currently hmm dead right now so I’m relying on my activity tracker to wake me up. Generally our baby likes to have a wriggle around 5 so, as a light sleeper, that also wakes me up.
I make sure he’s okay, then I go put some water on my face to properly wake up. I grab my notebook and pens and head downstairs to make coffee for the man and me. I’ve recently been putting coconut oil in my coffee, kind of inspired by the “bulletproof coffee” concept (note: I’m not endorsing it, but you can read more about it here). I’m not sure it has any actual physical benefits, but believing it gives me more energy is good enough for me!
I settle under a blanket and do some journaling. I always start with a five minute thought download, which is just dumping my thoughts out on paper. I’ve been taking part in challenges which have a journaling component as part of the Perfectionists Getting Shit Done community, so that follows the “brain dump”. I decide at that time what my most important task for the day is and write it down. I talk more about journaling and various ways of doing it here.
After journaling, it’s exercise time! I head back upstairs, put my workout clothes on and grab what I need. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays I do a strength training workout as part of the SWEAT Post-Pregnancy program by Kayla Itsines (try a week of it or another at-home workout program for free here!). Mondays is lower body and core, Wednesdays is upper body and core and Friday is full body. I definitely recommend it as a way of easing back into exercise after having a baby!
On Tuesdays and Thursdays (and Saturdays) I go running. I’m currently doing a beginner 5K program from the No Meat Athlete book. There are probably hundreds of 5K plans out there, but hey I love No Meat Athlete so I went with theirs. This plan involves alternating running with a bit of walking, building back up to running 5km in one go. I’ll be on this plan until early May and then I’ll move onto a more challenging seven week 5K plan. The plan is that I’ll be parkrun-ready when social gatherings are allowed again!
After exercising I hop in the shower and get dressed for the day.
Breakfast & revenue generation
8:00 is the official handover time when The Man gets ready to head out to work on our house and I look after our baby. I’m very grateful for all the time beforehand to clear my mind and move my body.
Baby J will generally go back to sleep earlier than his “on paper” 9:00 nap time. I’ll then make myself breakfast. Most of the time this looks like frozen berries (microwaved for a minute), sugar-free vegan yogurt, ground flaxseed and muesli in a bowl. I sometimes have toast or make a smoothie, but I like to keep things simple, because this time block I also…
… Work on revenue generation! As I confessed in my previous post, I have yet to make much money in my online business, but I am consistently showing up every workday to build the foundations of future revenue. Between 9:00 and 10:00 I work on my Etsy shop or my upcoming online course. I add items to the shop or edit what’s already there. For instance, I had to edit the prices recently because some countries in Europe are now charging much higher taxes.
As far as the course is concerned, it isn’t out yet, but is temporarily called “Sane Mama” and it’s about being happy, healthy and yourself when you have a baby. If you’re thinking about having a baby, are currently pregnant or had a baby in the past couple years, I would be super grateful if you filled out this quick survey! I’m following Teachable’s walkthrough on creating a course and that’s where it will be hosted. Watch this space!
Around 10:00 Baby J wakes up on his own or I wake him up. I change his nappy and feed him, often while listening to a podcast. He also seems to really enjoy me singing to him so we often do that too.
This time is generally just open for non-computer things I need to do, like cutting his nails (why do they grow so fast??), or want to do, like reading. He’ll often get grizzly or fall asleep before 12:00, so I’ll also sneak a bit of work in there. Pro tip I got from another mum: if you’re baby’s yawning, it’s now nap time, get him to bed! Similarly if Baby J has been fed and changed but is grizzly, it’s very probably nap time.
Lunch & content creation
12:00 is lunch time. This is Baby J’s long nap, and he’s fortunately quite predictable now, so I’m pretty safe heading downstairs to make myself a salad. If you want more info on the kind of things I eat in a day, and how I don’t get bored of salad (!), check out this post. FYI we use this baby monitor to be sure Baby J’s okay during his naps – it does everything you need without everything you don’t need, ha!
I often take my lunch upstairs and watch a YouTube video while eating (bad I know!). Then I’ll work on content creation.
Under that umbrella I’ve grouped: drafting, writing and editing blog posts (like this one), editing my photos and scheduling out my social media posts. If you see a photo I’ve shared on Instagram at 22:00, I’m probably not awake, I just planned it in advance! The two tools I use are Planoly (for Instagram and Pinterest) and Buffer (for Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn).
I go through the photos on my phone (about to get the Fairphone 3!) and edit them on the Lightroom app so that they look coherent. What I mean by that is when you look at my feed the photos all have a similar look: a kind of slightly over-exposed, cool and rosy colour (no photoshopping waistlines or “imperfections” here!).
At 14:15 I’ll wake Baby J up, if he’s not already awake, and change and feed him. I sometimes give him his bottle in the garden. We’re currently staying at The Man’s parents’ house while he renovates ours and their garden receives a nice amount of light in the afternoon in spring.
If I’ve ticked all the things off on my to-do list, I’ll probably take him for a walk in his pushchair. Side note: next month I’m thinking of doing a roundup of the baby things we use, subscribe if that’s something you’d be interested in!
Second side note: I’ve recently been limiting my daily to-do list to six items. This is a bit of a difficult thing to do when you’re someone like me (a recovering perfectionist) and actually feels weird the first few times you’re “done for the day”. But it feels better having six things on my to-do list and getting them all done, rather than having 28 things on there, getting six done and still having the 22 remaining ones staring at me, waiting to be rescheduled every evening. Or being tempted to stay up late to do it all. Anyhoo, you get the idea: less is more in my case!
Tying things up
Sometime around 16:00 Baby J will have his third and often shortest nap of the day. This is when I’ll do anything left on my to-do list, check email, or do any smaller tasks that I’ve added to my Todoist inbox during the day, rather than letting myself get distracted by them. By the way, I now have an official email address for this blog: firstname.lastname@example.org, so please get in touch if you have any questions or comments!
Baby J will wake up around 17:00 and have another nappy change and bottle.
Bath & dinner
The Man then comes home and we give our little man a bath around 18:00. He doesn’t hate the bath, but he doesn’t find it super fun yet either. I generally let The Man get our baby dressed in his pyjamas and give him his dinner bottle, while I do a few things on my computer, help with dinner or relax.
The Man’s mum (my future mother-in-law) is the one who most often makes dinner, which I am very grateful for. Now that we have our little man into a routine, we all sit down at the dinner table at 19:00 with our little boy in his bouncer. We eat our dinner and I take him upstairs to bed when he gets a bit grizzly.
I used to then do more things on my computer (like play video games…), but I recently downloaded the first book in the Pretty Little Liars series onto my Kindle. I really enjoyed the TV series (possibly my favourite series ever!) and the book is very easy to get into.
So now I’ll probably head upstairs with our baby, put him in his bed, wash my face (more on my cruelty-free and vegan products in a future post!), brush my teeth, write about my day, read him a book, then read my book.
Because I get up so early, I try to do lights out at 21:30. I set my sunrise / sunset lamp to make the room darker accordingly. I could keep reading on my Kindle all night (well as long as the battery would allow!) but the room getting darker is a good reminder to put it down. I must confess that I quite enjoy the light show that our baby monitor projects onto the ceiling!
I’ll wake up a few times in the night when our baby moves as I’m a light sleeper, but then it’s time to start all over again at 5:30! Or 6:00 on a weekend, but that’s a different story!
This of course is what happens most days. But sometimes, I wake up late or decide to play video games and the plan goes out the window a bit (hence why this post is out late)… But hey that’s life!
I hope you found this interesting, whether you’re a mum, a blogger or neither of the two (tell me in the comments below!). If you want to grab my guide to making time for what’s important, you can find it here. If you want to help me with my Sane Mama course, please fill in my quick survey here.
Keep safe and have a joyful & productive day!