Thursday, July 14, 2011

Building Bridges Makin Memories (Working Mommy Post)


Hi everyone! My name is Sara Bridges and my blog is Building Bridges Makin Memories. I am mom to Bryce (20 months) and wife to Sam.
I have been thinking all week about what to write for this post. There is so much I want to say, but I don't think a novel length post is good for anyone. This still may be a little on the long side so please hang in there with me. I 'll save a couple of pictures for the end as a little reward for sticking around. Ha!

First off, let me say, when I found out I was pregnant I knew that I would be a working Mom. Staying home was and still is not an option so I started thinking about things to make it easier for me. Twenty months later I am still learning and changing my plans to what works best, but I feel I have come a long way!

The biggest help for me was finding the right child care for Bryce. The daycare he goes to was highly recommended by several people and it is a perfect fit for me and Bryce. They have always listened to what I wanted done for Bryce and that helps me greatly. They were very supportive and encouraging when I came in everyday to see him the first couple of months. They even have a separate room where you can go to feed your child when you come in to see them. Please understand, I have had a few times where a conversation was needed, but it is never over anything too serious, just some things I wanted them to know. The reality is, you will never find the perfect place, so find one that will take care of and respect what is most important to you. Of course, Bryce LOVES it there, which makes it that much easier! Oh, and I forgot to mention, it is literally about two minutes from my work, so I can be there quick if needed.

Another item related to Bryce's care was his pediatrician. We use a local group that open late each week night until 8:00 and on Saturday from 8:00-12:00. This is so nice and very convenient!

Now that general child care is done, I have to say the next biggest thing for me is the partnership in parenting I share with my husband. He is very involved in Bryce's upbringing, and since we both work, there are times when one of us may have to work late. We have been blessed to have schedules that only have one of us working late at a time. It takes some planning, but we make it work. We share in the parenting responsibilities and that makes it that much easier. I realize there are several single working Moms, and I commend you! Believe me, I am thankful everyday to have a partner and helper.

The next big thing for me is organization and cleanliness. I work hard at this one because I find that I function better and feel much less stress when I am organized at work and home. We pick up every night and clean the house every weekend. I do a deep clean once a month and wash everything, so the other weekends I am just straightening and doing a "light" clean. I am back and forth on getting someone to come and and do the deep clean for me, but have just not done it yet. Any advice on this would be appreciated! I try to keep up with the laundry during the week. This is somewhat easier because Sam will start a load if laundry and I will finish it up. However, this is one if my weaker areas and I find myself folding about ten loads of laundry some Sundays. I balance our check book every week and scan in our documents. Obviously,these items take up my time, but I try to do most of it when Bryce is napping or in bed.
 
I work at a family friendly company with some amazing working moms that have been so supportive! I love my job and enjoy seeing these people everyday. They have been so supportive and helpful to me since the moment I came back to work from maternity leave. I remember the first late night I had when Bryce was around three months old...I did not get home before he went to bed and I cried and cried. It was sooo hard, and I just knew Bryce would forget me by the next day. ha! This is crazy I know, but at the time, it was how I felt. I have switched jobs twice since coming back from leave and have finally found a position that I truly enjoy that is less overtime. I still have late nights, but it allows me more opportunities to come home and finish working after Bryce has gone to bed. I would have to say if you don't have a great support system at work, it makes for long days.

One of my weakest areas is around cooking and preparing meals. I. Need. Help!!!! Bryce usually eats a Gerber Graduates meal, grilled cheese, hot dog, etc. He likes to eat at around 5:30 because he used to go to bed at 6:30 and we had to feed him then so he would still drink his milk before bed. He now stays up later, so we have tried to push it back but he is so hungry by then, he is very cranky until we feed him. We usually do not even cook a dinner and if we do it is not very involved. If we have left overs we will feed Bryce some the next day. I really want to start cooking meals for my family again! I have thought about doing once a month cooking, even once a week. Also, I have thought about cooking a meal each night to eat the next evening. Any help would be appreciated!

Our family time is each evening and the weekends. We love this time together and try to make sure we maximize our time. It is truly the best part of my days and weeks!

I will end this post with a look at a usual day for me....

5:00 - 6:00 - I get up somewhere in this time frame. I get up earlier if I get on the treadmill, and a little later if I don't. I did find that working out outside the home did not work for me, so I purchased a treadmill. It has been great...I just get up and work out before Bryce gets up.

6:00 - shower

6:30 - Bryce is up, so I go and get him ready, get him a cereal bar for breakfast and some milk.

6:30-7:00 - finish getting ready, while Bryce plays. He is usually right by me playing with something in the bathroom, and he loves when I dry my hair. He likes me to put the hair dryer up to him, and he laughs soooo loud. I love this time every morning!

7:00-7:15 - Eat some breakfast, if time, and play with Bryce.

7:15 - out the door and to daycare to drop off Bryce

7:30 - drop off Bryce

7:45 - at my desk, starting my day

8:00-11:30 work, work, work,

11:30-12:30 - lunch....I either eat at the office since we have a cafeteria, or I head out to run errands. I try to run all my errands during the week at lunch, so I don't have to worry about it on the weekends.

12:30-5:00 - work, work, work

5:15 - home most nights at this time

5:30 - feed Bryce, change clothes

6:00 - bath for Bryce

6:30 - 7:30 - play time for Bryce. We sometimes go outside for a walk or a bike ride during this time which he loves!

7:30 - Bryce is off to bed. He usually talks or cries for a little bit, but is asleep by 8:00

8:00 - 9:30 - this is my time to fold the laundry, clean up, and work on my photography items. If I still had work to finish, this is when I would finish it. Some nights I do just sit on the couch and watch tv because I am so exhausted by this time.

9:30-10:00 - off to bed

Please feel free to email me at sara.bridges@cox.net or leave me a comment if you have any questions, advice, etc. I would love to connect with some other working moms at other places. There is always so much to learn and gain!

Thanks again for sticking with me on this post, so here are the pictures I promised....
Thanks Sara for sharing a day in the life and pictures of your sweet family!
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