A Look at the Bad Old Days: New Year’s Reflections, Part 1

Happy New Year everyone!  I don’t know about you, but Pat and I partied long and hard last night.  We watched not one but two episodes of Foyle’s War on Netflix.  (By the way, Foyle could kick Sherlock‘s lily-white, smart ass blindfolded with one hand tied behind his back.)  And, we ate some treats that are Perfect Health Diet compliant in the letter if not quite the spirit of the law.

Queso dip: we ate it with Nut Thins

Sugar-free, gluten free German chocolate fudge bites







So, I’ve been thinking a lot about the past year, how my life is now, and what I need to do to get things where I want to be.  To start off, here is a look at the Dark Ages of my life: around late July or early August of last year.    Girl 1 was 3.5.  Girl 2 was about 6 months, not quite mobile yet, and grumpy as hell about it.  One day I decided to journal my day to figure out just what it was I did all day.  I find it kind of amusing in retrospect, and maybe you will too:

6:30:     Nurse G2 in my bed; she tosses and turns for an hour

7:30: Pat takes G2 out

8:20: P brings G2 in, almost asleep.  Nurse her.  G2 now fully awake.

8:30: G1 awake.  I shower.  G2 cries.  P goes to work

9:00: Dress, do hair, change G2’s diaper, wrangle G1 to the bathroom after she has leaked into her pants and run around bottomless.  Make breakfast and coffee.  G2 screams most of the time.  Check Facebook.

10:10: Movie for G1.  Hold G2 for 25 min while she falls asleep.

10:32: Movie over.  Bribe G1 with juice to be quiet while I put G2 in her crib.  G1 gets into a bag of clothes needing to be returned to the store.  Leaves clean new shirt on dirty floor.

10:44: G2 awake!  Put on a second movie for G1.  Sit down with G2 to get her back to sleep.  No luck.

11:00:  G2 nurses, still in my lap.  G1’s movie is over.  She wants to touch G2 as G2 is nursing.  Coax G1 to go downstairs while I still try to get G2 back to sleep.  Hear G1 get into P’s office.  (Someone left his door open!)

11:10: Give up on getting G2 to sleep.  Put G2 down on playmat.  G2 screams.  Find G1 playing with hard drive and screwdriver in P’s office.  Bring her upstairs.

11:20: G1 and G2 play together on playmate.  Whew!

11:30: Pat home for lunch; Laura goes to chiropractor appointment.  Pat takes over journaling.

G2 cranks and won’t sit in exersaucer.  Carry G2 in one arm while putting spaghetti on.  G2 grabs at dry spaghetti.

11:50: G1 is naked.  Tell her to put on underpants.  G2 pukes on my shirt.

11:55: G1 still naked.  Tell her, again, to put on underpants.

12:00: G1 wearing underpants.  Tell her to put on clothes.  G2 starts cranking in my arms.  Pasta boils over, creating puddle on the stove.

12:05: Still holding G2, cajole G1 into putting on a dress.

12:10: Pasta almost ready.  Forgot to defrost meat sauce.  Put G2 on play mat and ask G1 to snuggle with her.  Catch G1 pushing G2’s face into the floor.

12:15: Pasta ready but meat sauce still defrosting in microwave.

12:20: Stir meat sauce and put back in microwave while G2 screams.

12:28: G1 wolfs down spaghetti.  Strip G2 and put her in Bumbo seat.  Feed G2 a bit of baby food pears.  Takes 7 or 8 tries because of G2’s bobbing around in Bumbo.  Use one hand to steady her head.  Set my elbow into container of pears.

12:32: G1 takes herself to the bathroom while G2 keeps trying to grab spoon of pears.  No idea whether G1 washed her hands.

12:45: L home.  P still hasn’t eaten.  L & P eat.  G2 cranks.  P eats while holding her.  G1 throws toys down the stairs.

1:00: P leaves.  L takes over journaling.  Try to nurse G2.  Change G2’s diaper.  G1 is drawing in my note pad.  Put G2 in exersaucer.  G2 screams.  Debate with G1 re merits of wiping off the breakfast (not lunch, breakfast) remaining on her face.

1:15: Both girls quiet.  Start on kitchen.  Sweep floor.  G1 plants herself in middle of kitchen floor.  Debate with G1 re merits of her moving.

1:22: G2 getting testy.  G1 entertains her for a while.

1:37: G1 comes into kitchen.  Opens refrigerator and demands cheese.  G2 crying.  Give G1 cheese.

1:46: Put G2 in crib.  She falls asleep.  Miracle! Sort mail while G1 eats her cheese.

1:50: Sweep floor (again!) which is now covered with cheese.  Watch Winnie the Pooh with G1.  Continue sorting a week’s worth of mail.  Do back exercises.  Read to G1.

3:00: G2 awake.  Play with G1.  Debate with G1 re: merits of her taking a nap.  G2 is happy on the floor for a while but begins to fuss.

3:15: Try not to think about chocolate.

3:25: G1 in bed, not asleep.   Nurse G2.  Cajole G2 to sleep in crib.  G1 talking in her bed.

3:53: Sit in bed with newspaper then try to nap.  G1 asleep.  G2 wakes twice; coax her back to sleep.  Forget about my nap.

4:45: G1 still asleep.  Spend time on computer; make meal plan; write grocery list; make dinner.

5:30: G2 wakes.  Nurse her.  Finish grocery list.  Waste time on the internet.  Eat dinner.  Feed G2.

6:30: G1 awake.  Feed G1 her dinner.  Pat home!  Begin countdown to bed time!


Well, things are a bit better nowadays, and I’ll write about that in my next post.


17 thoughts on “A Look at the Bad Old Days: New Year’s Reflections, Part 1

  1. Gosh. I remember Rocky feeding every half hour to forty-five minutes. And only my right breast “worked” for some reason (maybe my body was starting to break down even then?). Hence, I couldn’t do anything with my right arm while nursing – even eat. However, I had two “only” children, so – I didn’t have to contend with the second draw for my attention – which was good. I remember trying to get Rocky to sleep for a nap and trying to “Ferberize” the whole thing. It took him 7 minutes to stop crying – which felt like 7 hours. And it didn’t always work.
    Mothering doesn’t come with a handbook (Martha). You make your own rules. But as an older mom with some perspective (and I know you’ve heard it before) it really, really, really goes by fast. I cannot believe you three girls are married and having babies. I was George’s age now when I rolled into Pensacola and moved onto Casa Maria Lane. It feels like yesterday. (And I am now the age Meme was when I moved in!

    • They say the days go by slow but the years go by fast . . . .

      And I was basically just nursing on the right side with G2, also. The left side never really got going again after I got mastitis. Yeah, it just makes the whole thing harder. And then she started teething. Ei yi yi.

  2. Thanks for mentioning Foyle’s War. Have been meaning to add that to my queue. Saw a random episode once and enjoyed it. So you’re not a big fan of Sherlock? Do tell. I’ve really enjoyed it. I think it’s smart, stylish, and satisfyingly laced with literary (Conan Doyle) references. Love to hear your thoughts. I do think the first series was superior to the second. Hound of the Baskervilles was rather disappointing. I am dying to see how they resolve The Reichenbach Fall, though! I think Cumberbatch is one of the finest British actors out there. You see the character with him, not the actor, always. I’ve never seen him give a bad performance. So pleased to see he’s the new Star Trek villain — he’s deserving of some Hollywood attention. Lesser actors have gotten far more. Did you see Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy? A superb film with a superb ensemble. Highly recommend. Someone described it as a “grown-up film,” which I thought was an excellent description. No cheap thrills. Highly satisfying. Moving away from Cumberbatch and back to British detective series, are you a Wallander fan?

    • Hi MK! I have enjoyed Sherlock, actually. I just think Foyle’s character is a lot more enjoyable than Sherlock’s character. More likable, though it’s not just that. Sherlock prattles on and on and on. He’s supposed to be obnoxious, and it works. So much so that, as entertaining as the show is otherwise, I almost can’t stand to listen to him for the full 50 minutes or whatever it is. Foyle says so little but conveys a lot with just a glance or a raised eyebrow. Just what I think an English gentleman would be (not that I’ve met one). 😉 Also, the editing on Sherlock is a little too flashy in an MTv way. Makes me dizzy. (Man, do I sound old or what??) I’d only give Foyle maybe a C+ for storyline though. Sometimes the solutions to the mysteries seem really contrived.

      I’ve heard of TTSP. I have the book on my to-read list, and I’ll put the movie in my queue too. No, I’ve never heard of Wallander, but I’m going to look it up right now.

      Oh, and I saw Cumberbatch in Amazing Grace. He was great as William Pitt but I haven’t seen him in anything else.

  3. I can see how you could find the prattling on obnoxious. What do you think of Watson? You should definitely check out Wallander — it’s excellent. Cumberbatch and Branagh went head to head at the BAFTAs, Sherlock against Wallander. Wallander won. I think I’d have chosen Sherlock, but such a tough choice, as Branagh is excellent. Let me know your thoughts if you end up watching it. Have you seen the Inspector Lynley mysteries? Great pairing of Lynley (proper upper-crust British gentleman) and Havers (working class, chip-on-the-shoulder). Far, far less frenetic editing than Sherlock. Solid, interesting, well-developed storylines. Speaking of proper British gentlemen, are you a Downton fan?

    • Hi Mk. I saw one episode of Lynley a while ago. I wasn’t hooked but I plan to give it another try. Downton, hmm, my thoughts on Downton are so so complex. I was drawn in like everyone else. Stayed up way too late watching episode after episode on Netflix. But now . . . it really is just a soap opera, isn’t it? I’ll watch the second and third seasons, probably, when they get on Netflix streaming. I think BBC has so much better to offer. In fact, one of these days I want to do a series of reviews of all the wonders BBC has to offer that are better than Downton. Want to do some guest posting??

      Oh, and don’t you think the actor who plays Watson would be a perfect Peter Wimsey?? He obviously is typecast as sidekick/straight man/ Hobbit right now but I think he could play an aristocrat, and he looks the part.

  4. In-ter-esting. Very interesting. I had never in a million years thought of Martin Freeman as Wimsey, but I see what you mean. I could totally see him doing the low-keyness/smokescreen charming blather, etc. And I think he’d have the right understated delivery when Peter is serious. I’m not sure if I see him totally physically, though. Peter was just of average height, but Freeman I think is on the short side for a man — 5’6″ or 5’7″. Also, Peter has an aristocratic, horsey face. I don’t think Freeman has a very aristocratic face. I think of Peter as being sort of willowy, too, which is not exactly how I’d describe Freeman, although he is slim. Of course, I’ve never seen Freeman costumed/made up as an aristocrat, so that could make a difference. I don’t know why I’m so specific about what I’d want for Peter. Usually I’m quite open to variations on screen from the original novel or play, as long as the actor is believable in the role, physically and acting-wise. Maybe it’s because Peter’s physical presence is a bit unusual, requires an unusual type? Or because I’m hopelessly devoted to Peter? I can scarcely think of an actor nowadays whom I think suitable for Peter. But Freeman is a VERY intriguing suggestion. I think I would love to see him give it a try.

  5. Always a matter of personal taste of course, but since you do like British detective series, I think Lynley is worth trying again. Lynley is worth doing in order, too. While the mysteries stand alone, the characters’ personal stories and relationship, while not usually a focus of the mysteries, do develop, so I think watching them in order adds something. A Great Deliverance is the first one. It’s longer than the others — around three hours. Rest are around 85 minutes. What other British detective series do you like? Have you watched Second Sight? Prime Suspect? Wire in the Blood?

  6. Oh, and Downton! Yes, I do think it’s a soap opera, but then most of these extended series that follow a series of characters and their relationships are. I remember my mom used to laughingly call Upstairs, Downstairs (speaking of the original one, here) an “Edwardian soap opera.” Which it was. But a great show, too, with unforgettable characters, most especially Hudson and Rose. (Have you ever seen the original Upstairs, Downstairs? If not, I do recommend it. More uniformly solid artistically than Downton, and like Downton, some superb characters.) Artistically, I think Downton Series 1 was very solid. Series 2, not as much. It tried to encompass far too much, and thus lurched from drama to drama without the rich development that characterized Series 1. I think Fellows rushed to put a script together when it became clear that a second series would be desired, and it certainly showed. Nevertheless, I think Series 2 was rescued by the characters, although they had a harder time given the choppiness and rushed quality of the script. The characters are the show’s greatest strength, I think, and why people are so hooked. The acting is uniformly excellent, and the characters are interesting, complex, appealing, human. So, yes, I do agree that it’s a soap opera, but I love it nonetheless, while noting my artistic quarrels with Series 2. I am REALLY hoping that Series 3 will return to the pacing of the original series. Oh, and if you do ever want a guest post on non-Downton wonderfulness from the BBC (or ITV), I’d be happy to oblige. 🙂

    P.S. I don’t know if you have Amazon Prime, but if you do, Downton Series 2 is available on streaming for free for Prime members. I know it’s also on Hulu Plus, because my brother and two sisters bought a month of that so they could catch up before the new series started last night.

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