Friday, June 25, 2010

pie chart of my day

I'm reading Just Let Me Lie Down: Necessary Terms for the Half-Insane Working Mom on my lunch breaks these days. One of the terms is "Pie Chart of You" in which she describes the following phenomenon:

As a kid, we have all the time in the world. Time moves so slowly. We have nothing but time, and it seems we'll never grow up. In our mid-twenties we realize that time is limited, and we don't actually have all the time in the world. She says, "you still don't really know what your adulthood looks like, but you have begun to realize that time is not infinite." Then you become a mother and have no time to think about such things.

Her main point in this definition is all about sacrifice. In order to do this you often must sacrifice that. What she sacrifices is her gardening.

I've been wanting to start some sort of exercise regimen to do away with this lingering baby weight (or at least the loose belly). And also, it's healthy or something. I decided to make a pie chart of my typical weekday to see if there is, in fact, time somewhere that could otherwise be spent exercising. In other words, what must I sacrifice from my day to do this? Here it is:

The 8 hour chunk called sleeping would be more aptly called "bedtime to get-up time" because Nate often disrupts the sleeping part.

I work 8 hours a day.

Including dropping Nate at daycare and picking him up, my commute is more or less 2 hours, roundtrip.

Time with Nate is roughly 1:45 each day. This is my most unsatisfactory slice of pie. This includes feeding him, playing with him, getting him ready for bed, and sometimes dressing him in the morning (but Rodgers usually does that part).

Time spent on chores and cooking varies day to day. I prepare as much for dinner ahead of time as I think to do, so that we can eat sooner in the evenings. Rodgers usually does dishes, so I don't do a lot of the cleanup part. Then we do our chore from the chore calendar for that day, and prepare certain things for the following morning. Total is about 1:45.

I usually do something else while I'm eating, to be more efficient. I spend 15 minutes in the mornings eating breakfast and reading my Bible or a short devotion. I read for leisure on my lunch break (except for today, when I blogged instead). I take 30 minutes. Then 30 minutes for dinner with Rodgers, which is one of our key quality times every day.

Hygiene includes getting ready in the morning, getting dressed, putting on makeup, and showering and getting ready for bed. About 45 minutes per day, sometimes more.

My down time is from about 9 - 9:30 p.m., after the chores are done, my lunch is ready to be thrown in my lunch box in the morning, and the coffee pot is set to brew at 5:45, but before I drag myself to the shower. This time is usually spent playing on the computer, laying in my chair talking about how tired I am, planning a weekend trip, or paying bills (but I try to do that only one night a month).

So when do I exercise? If I use my down time, will I have to go to bed later so that I can unwind? Do I say "to heck with cooking" and order in every night? I'm very seriously considering getting a postnatal pilates DVD, which incorporates the baby, and doing that during Nate's and my playtime. Generally they seem to be 20ish minutes, which I think I can handle. I'm not sure how much of it Nate will tolerate, though. We will see.


  1. You know I enjoy reading your stuff. You're the most creative person I know. So here is an idea: redeem some of your creative time by getting voice recognition software. That way you can exercise with Nate while you dictate your blog to the computer. Of course, you'll have to change one of the wedges in your pie chart. Who knows? Maybe you could even record some of the things you say in your sleep. That would be real interesting to read. Do you figure your subconscious is as random as your conscious thoughts? Hmm.

  2. It is always so hard to fit enough hours into a day. But, still, I am glad you still manage to get in some "down time." You need a good refreshing moment after such a busy day!

  3. I do need dictation software! I have great ideas for blogs all the time, but by the time I sit down to write, I've forgotten 90% of them and am just left with the memory of having had an awesome idea. It's a great sense of loss.