Schedules and cabin fever

It has taken me 7 months, but I finally have a case of…cabin fever. I thought I’d be “bored” long before this, but I honestly haven’t had the time to even think about being bored. I assume it’s like this for all parents but 0-3 months are a complete BLUR. I never could have imagined what “blur” meant and used to think, “There’s no way I’ll forget this” but I seriously couldn’t even think straight. It’s a good thing I wasn’t driving much. I felt like I was sleep walking half the time and just – surviving. Loving it, but surviving. Living in 3 hour loops 24/7. And then 3-5 months are much more doable, my head cleared up, I started taking pictures and seeing little personalities develop. But I still felt like we couldn’t leave the house much, we couldn’t do..much at all. And now months 5-7 are really much easier. Not only do I have the ability to “enjoy every moment” when I didn’t feel that way in the beginning, I can even stray from the plan, because I know now what will happen afterwards and can prepare for it.

So today, for the first time ever, I took both babies out to a store, alone. We went to Target.

I loaded up the double stroller, packed the diaper bag, waited until babies had napped and ate, diapers changed and clothes on, and then stuffed them into carseats and we all made it out the door. Then, in the parking lot, I undid the stroller, took the car seats out, locked the car seats into the stroller, threw the diaper bag on one handle, made my way indoors. By the way, B is like 23/24 pounds. Plus the car seat. One heavy boy. I felt like I was driving a boat. I threw a shopping basket on the other handle of the stroller. Of course, I bought more than could fit in the basket so I stacked them on top of C. Luckily she didn’t mind. Who can push a stroller and a shopping cart? Not even going to try. Navigating the aisles of Target – well it’s a good thing it was a weekday, where the majority of other shoppers were moms with young kids. When I used to grocery shop, I’d park the cart at the end of an aisle so I could just run down the aisle and get what I wanted rather than push the cart down there. That’s what I felt like doing today..but don’t worry, I didn’t. I drove the boat in the aisles. The babies were awake, alert, and silent, staring all around them. I took them out of the quiet, same-old house and threw them in the noisy world. It’s good for them. But really, I didn’t do it for them. I did it for me.

Those “centers” I’ve been rotating through every single day are getting dull, and even the babies get fussy doing them faster than they used to. It’s the same old stuff – I can’t fool them. Yesterday I took them upstairs into their nursery to play on some plush carpet, and opened some new toys. That was better, but still not enough. So today, we needed cereal. What better food product to use as an excuse to go shopping? So we went. And it passed the time.

And then they took a 10 minute power nap in the car on the way home, an hour before their normal nap time – and then they refused to take their second real nap until it was super late, because the power nap held them off. SO our naps were off today. And that would be a reason not to go shopping EVERY day, but…some days, it just has to be done.

Like Robin said, you make the schedule in order to be able to break it once in a while, and then can easily go back to it.

The schedule has always been evolving, since Day 1. In fact, at first there was no schedule that I created, I just went by what the babies wanted. But they usually “wanted” in 3 hour loops. Then we finally had a “bedtime” about 2 months in. We created a routine for that. Then we were down to 4 naps a day, and then 3, and now (mostly) 2. Feedings used to be every 2.5 hours, and then 3, and then 3.5, and now 4. There’s always a schedule, and it is very useful in helping me feel in control of our day. I can’t just “wing” it (in any aspect of my life :-p) but especially not with the babies. But it’s still good to stray from it every now and then.

Here’s some fun the babies had in exploring the floor of their nursery:

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Now if only it would warm up and the snow would melt – I need to get outside!!