A Day in the Life of a Stay-at-Home-Mom

6:15 a.m. Wake up to “Mommy? Mommmmmmy?” Put pillow over head. Prepare to play “Who Can Pretend to be Asleep the Longest?” with spouse.

6:30 a.m. Wake again to “Mommy!!!! You come get me riiight nowww!!” (In stereo.) Spouse kicks ass at this game.

7:00 a.m. Kids beg for pancakes. Make pancakes. Two-year old gets pancake batter on the table, the floor, his hair, and in the VCR (yes, we still have a VCR. We’re retro). Kids refuse to eat pancakes.

7:30 a.m. Two-year old drags kitchen stool over to microwave. Attempts to microwave brother’s fire truck. Four-year retaliates by driving fire truck over his brother’s and, inexplicably, my toes. We all cry.

8:00 a.m. Watch Bob the Builder and eat marshmallows. Breakfast accomplished.

8:30 a.m. How is it possible that it’s only 8:30? Try to convince kids they are ready for an early nap. Fail. Do 18 loads of laundry.

10:00 a.m. Construct six-foot rocket ship out of nothing but cardboard and tinfoil.

10:30 a.m. Conduct brief, heated argument with four-year old about wing placement on rocket-ship, until I remember he is four. And it is his rocket-ship. And it’s made out of tin-foil.

12:00 p.m. Lunch. Two-year old eats a grilled cheese sandwich and eight pieces of watermelon. Four-year old eats a cheez-it.

12:30 p.m. Naptime. ‘Naptime’ is a term that loosely translates as 45 minutes of listening to “Mommy, I’m awake, mommy I’m awake, mommy come get me, mommy I’m awake,” sung to the tune of Farmer in the Dell.

2:30 p.m. Decide to paint rocket-ship. Collect smocks, drop cloth, paints, bowls, brushes, water, paper, wipes, and extra-strength Tylenol.

2:45 p.m. Comfort two-year old who doesn’t like paint on his hands, but loves putting his hands in paint.

3:30 p.m. Wipe floor that is covered in paint despite the drop-cloth, strip off children’s clothes covered in paint despite the smocks. Do 12 more loads of laundry.

3:45 p.m. Run bath. Four-year old refuses to get in bath.

4:00 p.m. Four-year old refuses to get out of bath.

4:30 p.m. Attempt to go to park. Spend half an hour looking for keys. Abandon search for keys. Watch Bob the Builder and eat more marshmallows.

6:00 p.m. Cook dinner. Find keys in microwave. Two-year old eats entire pot of mac and cheese. Four-year old eats a grape.

7:00 p.m. Wrestle kids into pajamas, attempt to brush teeth in little mouths that are somehow simultaneously clamped shut and yet still screaming grievously. Read forty-four books. Sing thirty-seven songs.

8:00 p.m. Quietly close bedroom doors. Exhale.

8:15 pm. Collect starving four-year old from bedroom. Make him waffles.

9:00 p.m. Reflect on the nature of child-rearing, and how it has made me a wiser, stronger…just kidding. Drink extra large glass of wine and go to bed.

Photo Credit: By Catnipstudio

About Peryl Manning

Peryl Manning is somewhat (and pleasantly) surprised to find herself the mother of two almost freakishly dimpled little boys. She isn’t sure she should be the one in charge though; at thirty-something she still manages to somehow end up sitting in her own gum, and last week she found her credit card in the fridge with the leftover pizza. She loves mellow moms and Ayelet Waldman; she hates judgy moms and truffle oil. She juggles kids, contributing to the Seattle Post Intelligencer, Momtastic and Mamazina Magazines, and other parenting publications, with whatever grace she can summon.


  1. The large glass of wine.
    Most vivid and imploring …

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  2. AmyinBC says:

    I remember those days. Mine are teens now and while I do wish they were not so grown up and “wise”, they sure were little ball and chains back in the day!

  3. Holly says:

    Love it! Perfect.

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  4. This was great! My niece has a similar reaction to beach sand on her hands as your son does to paint.

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  5. Ms. A says:

    Hahaha, I remember those days. My kids are grown and now they are getting paybacks. I love it!

  6. Jannicke says:

    Excellent and spot on Peryl! You should write these “in the day of” in various time increments like every 6-12 months! Fun to see how challenges change as kids get older. Great job.

    • Peryl says:

      Jannicke, I should so do one for today – during bathtime Alex looked at me and said “You better recognize that I have to pee.” …? where did he get that attitude from?

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  7. veronica lee says:

    I remember those days well! Ah, but they don’t get any easier! I think dealing with hormonal teenagers are a lot worse!! LOL! Great post as always, Peryl.

    Happy weekending!

  8. I swear, one day they’ll go to school. Unless you homeschool. Then they will never leave!

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  9. Amy says:

    Oh my gosh, you just wrote my life!

  10. Brilliant. And summed up perfectly.

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  11. Imperfectmomma says:

    Lol! That was almost my exact morning!

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  12. stacy says:

    Are you spying on my home? Cuz this is it!

  13. stacy says:

    Are you spying on my home? Cuz this is it!

  14. stacy says:

    Are you spying on my home? Cuz this is it!

  15. I love it. My girls exist on the Cheez it diet as well. THis post is so great because it is so true. Hugs my friend.

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  16. elise says:

    your kids’ll paint for a whole hour?! you’re amazing! ;)

  17. Ben says:

    This is fantastic! My kids must be sharing info with yours.

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  18. Poor Robin says:

    Yep, that would be my house too. Awesome.

  19. “Who hates paint on his hands, but loves to put his hands in paint”. LOLOLOLOL

  20. NLM says:

    Most definitely don’t skip the wine…and here’s one way to make yourself feel absolutely accomplished: http://www.50plusandontherun.com/2011/10/so-much-time-so-little-to-do.html

    Keep aiming low!

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