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June 03, 2006

Our New Daily Routine

So apparently some people other than my parents do read this blog (hi Tom! hi Liz!), so I guess I should post more than pictures and videos. So let me describe the Guids' new daily routine, or at least the part of it that I know.

Guido wakes up anywhere between 6:00 and 7:00 am. As I'm a morning person and Mariah doesn't function in the morning, the morning shift is mine. So, when he wakes up I go and get him (he sleeps in the crib in his room) and basically attach it to Mariah for feeding (she's half asleep the whole time). I get my last 5-10 minutes of sleep while he has his breakfast, and get up when he's almost done. I get dressed quickly, brush my teeth and get him. Mariah goes back to being 100% asleep at this point.

This is our usual morning routine (say, 6:30 to 8:30): we play a little in the living room while he digests, then I change his diaper (you don't want to do it right away or he'll barf on the changing table). As I'm changing him, I also change him in day-time clothes: socks, pants, shirt, bib. Then I put my shoes and my hoodie on, and put a hat and a hoodie on him, stuff a couple of little toys in my pocket, grab a magazine or a book for me and we're off.

We get the stroller from the garage, I tether the toys to it, and we go to the coffee shop. Depending on how hungry I am we either go straight there or take the long way around the park so that the Guids can check out some bau-baus and some cheep-cheeps.

The coffee shop ("Bean There") is basically Guido's (and mine's) second home. He's been there almost every day since he was 3 weeks old, so everyone knows him and he definitely recognizes Ornella and the other people who work there. Double-latte and a pastry for me, tethered toys for Guido. He's pretty good at letting me have my breakfast in peace. Now that the weather is nice we sit outside and he looks at the dogs (big smiles) and the flowers and the cars, which is nice for me. If we're lucky some of his little friends are there too (other local kids, usually there with one parent, just like us). Somehow if other people are there Guido lasts a lot longer without getting antsy, which is nice.

Anyways, after the coffee shop we go back to the park and if I have the energy we also stop at the playground for a little swinging session. We're usually the only people there at 7:30, I wonder why... ;)

Then we go back home. He plays in his play-pen or on the living room rug or in the exersaucer, then, if they are online, it's Skype-time with one of my parents in Italy. He's been having video-conferences with them regularely since he was very young, and now is totally comfortable with the concept...my mom sings him songs and plays peek-a-boo with him...he smiles and laughs and pays attention. Makes you wonder about his generation...if video-conferencing and VOIP are some of the first concepts they learn, what kind of views towards technology and geography and the world will they grow up with? Man, I remember having a black-and-white TV when I was a kid!

Anyways, back on track. After a good 20 minutes on skype, we play some more, read a book or two, play ball (he's getting better and better a throwing it back in my general direction, which makes it easier on me). Towards 8:30ish he starts getting tired, so I have recently started another time-killer: Signing Times DVD #1! He really enjoys it: paritally because we don't let him watch TV or DVDs other than this one, partially because of the content. He's just recently starting to sign back...he signs "milk" when he wants cheerios...still, he's signing! :) I'll have more on that in a future post I'm sure.

After 5-10 minutes of signing time, it's 8:45, time for his second feeding. We wake up Mom, she feeds him and puts him down for his 9:00am nap. We started really enforcing the 9:00am nap, even for when he wakes up at 7:30. Having a nap schedule is something that we only started a couple of weeks ago, but I think everyone is happier with it. It gives the day some structure, and most of the mommy-and-me activities around town are at 10:30-11:00, so having Guido Jack be all rested for those is a good thing.

Once The Guids is asleep, and go to work (sometimes I make Mariah breakfast before I do). I get there at 9:15ish, and I'm still the first one there most of the time...ah, programmers...

Now I'm not so sure about what happens while I'm at work, Mariah can talk about this in more details. Anyways, his morning nap lasts anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes. I know that he eats two more times (he's been on the 5 feedings a day schedule for a while: 6:00am, 9:00am, noon, 3:00pm and 6:00pm). His afternoon nap is at 1:00 (again, anywhere from half an hour to two hours sometimes). Mariah and Guido always have some activity planned (or at least that's the goal): either a mom-group, or the mom-movies on tuesday mornings, or lunch with a friend, or a museum, or a walk in the park, or a lap-sit at the library, or the "dancing and prancing" thing at the community center on fridays...you can never have enogh activities planned, and we're always looking for more. The day passes faster if there's something planned, and everyone's happier at the end of the day.

Ok, so by 5:00pm Mariah is understandably exhausted and I get the call: "are you coming home now?". Luckily work has been manageable lately, so I usually answer "yes".
When I get home on my vespa 8 minutes later I usually see Guido and Mariah looking out the window waiting for me. Guido always greets me with a big smile and some arm-flapping (we call them his "chicken wings"), which is a big gift.

I go upstairs doing our family whistle, put down my stuff, wash my hands and take him, much to the relief of Mariah. ;) We have some active play time (we wrestle on the bed mostly), then we eat solids in his new awesome $20 IKEA high-chair (we're adding a new kind of food every few days...so far he loves everything, like a good italian boy). Sometimes if it's early we hit the playground, which is packed at this time of day.

A little more play-time, a little "street patrol" (sitting on his stool by his window looking at the cars and the trains and the dogs in the park), until he gives us a signal that it's time for bed (usually he'll stop playing, raise his arms and whine a little). This usually happens anywhere from 6:30 to 7:30pm.

So it's "night-time-routine" time: I take him to the bathroom, brush his 4 little teeth with his little toothbrush (Guido knows what's going on by now and usually cooperates), then back to his room: turn on the night-light, roll down the shade, prepare his pajamas in his crib, and put him on the changing table. I change his diaper into a disposable, I give him a little leg-massage, take his shirt off, make him laugh by kissing him all over, then I pick him up to bring him to Mariah for a quick look at the semi-naked baby, which is a treat for any mom. ;) Then back to the crib, I put on his jammies and read him a book (usually Todo Los Besos or Goodnight Moon, which I translated in Italian. Sometimes we read The Going To Bed Book or Goodnight, Gorilla instead, but it's rare).

After the book, I take him to Mariah, who is waiting on the couch to feed him. She feeds him, he usually falls asleep on the second boob, she clips his nails (not every night, but often), and puts him in his crib. While she's feeding him I either cook dinner or order it or go pick it up somewhere near.

Once the bug is down we have our dinner and catch-up on the daily events. Then we either watch a movie or I read while Mariah watches TV or I do some computering while watching TV...all very glamorous I know.

I'm usually in bed by 10:30pm, and I love it.

Then we start over the next day. And the next. And the next. And the next.

As you might have noticed, not a whole lot of personal time for either Mariah or me. We're working on that...for instance, on Monday mornings I go to the coffee shop ALONE with a book, which is heaven. Mariah is going out with her girlfriends tonight...plus we're looking for a baby-sitter for one day a week, at least until we go to Italy this summer (5 weeks from today, yes we're counting the days...).

Posted by patata at June 3, 2006 09:07 AM


I’m impressed – Mariah sleeps in, stays at home, gets breakfast made for her, and doesn’t do the bath/bed routine or cook dinner?

And 3-4 hours of evening TV watching seems like an awful lot of “personal” time to me.

Posted by: Sandra at July 12, 2006 01:33 PM