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24 HOURS WITH JODI KENDALL


Jodi and Townes at the Air & Space Museum in Washington, DC

There is something so fascinating to me about peeking into a day in someone's life. We usually only see snippets and as a total voyeur, I love to see all of the uncensored bits. So happy to have one of my best friends to kick things off as my first guest poster for the 24 hours series. Jodi is a talented writer who is living the dream in Manhattan with her husband Bobby and adorable son, Townes. We always joke about the different challenges we face: suburbs vs the big city. She is one of the most lovely and hard-working people I know and such an inspiration to budding authors. You can read more about Jodi's impressive body of work here and check out her blog right here. - Lesley


6:30am – Townes is awake, and wants his bottle of milk R-I-G-H-T N-O-W. He lays in bed with us for awhile, and I convince my husband to let me sleep a bit longer (yay!) so he takes the dog out and feeds our son his breakfast.

8:30am – I play with Townes in his room while my husband gets ready for work. Breakfast is an Isagenix shake – I quit drinking coffee months ago. He'll be working late tonight, so it's going to be another long parenting day. Laundry needs to be done (we have one clean towel) but I can't bring myself to lug everything down to the laundry room in the basement. I also haven't unpacked from our weekend traveling, so there's a suitcase full of clothes at the foot of my bed. I'll get to it when I can.

9:30am – My husband leaves for work. I give Townes a light morning snack. He's getting a little fussy, so we go for a nice walk outside before lunchtime. I catch my reflection in a store window – I look like a disaster. Showering is overrated.

11:15am – We share an organic cobb salad for lunch. Townes pretty much just eats all the avocado, cucumber, egg, and some of the chicken, and eventually starts throwing his food at me. It's about that time of day when our apartment has transformed into a massive mess of toys, shoes, and other miscellaneous things, and it feels like the walls are closing in on me. I remind myself that we love living here. Living in a small space is just one of those things we have to deal with. I vow to clean everything up when the baby falls asleep.

11:45am – After twenty minutes of fussing, Townes finally goes down for his nap. I shower, get ready for the day, and sit down at my desk to write. I've already lost 30 minutes of working time. Usually I'm juggling a bunch of random projects (info on that here), but today I'm focusing on my creative work – revising a young adult novel – to meet an aggressive deadline. I get in a solid hour of writing before my
inbox sucks me into the black hole of reading and responding to emails. I update my calendar with some important upcoming events, like flight information for an upcoming work trip, the start date for my monday mom's group, and deadlines for a writing blog I recently joined. I try to clean up the apartment a bit – being as quiet as I can so as not to wake up the baby – but I don't get much accomplished.

1:45pm – Like clockwork, Townes wakes up from his regular two-hour daily nap. He has a snack of mandarin oranges while I unload the dishwasher. I pack up the stroller & changing bag & get the dog on his leash for our afternoon walk. I have to finagle everything – the dog, stroller, gear – out our awkward, pre-war apartment floor plan, into and down the elevator, through the basement, and up the building side ramp to get to the street. Luckily, I don't have to share the elevator with anyone. Also happy I don't run into my neighbor who frequently comments on my son's "impressive vocal chords."


2:15pm – We stroll Riverside Drive for about thirty minutes. It's sweltering out. I try to follow the shady routes as much as possible. There's lots of scaffolding on buildings this time of year, so it's not too hard. I stop frequently to offer Townes water. We head into the park to see the blooming flowers at the 91st Street Garden (you might recognize this spot from the final scene in You've Got Mail.) The sunflowers skyrocketed while we were away! It's the small things.

3:00pm – We drop Moose off at the grooming salon. It's been way too long since he's had a bath. Townes really likes guinea pigs, so we stop by to say hello to them. His little giggle is infectious.

3:15pm – Since we're early for an appointment, I cut west several avenues to Central Park. By now I've walked about three miles today, but Townes has been in the stroller most of the time, so he's getting antsy. At the park, we meet two toddlers his age and they chase each other around for an hour. Townes tries to steal a kid's frisbee and melts down when I stop him.


4:15pm – Toddler tumbling class! Townes is adventurous and wants to try everything – the obstacle course, low balance beam, rings, kiddie trampoline. Good thing everything in the room is padded because he is ALL OVER THE PLACE. Townes wants to learn how to bounce on the trampoline, but ends up marching excitedly in place. I try to help him out, but Townes runs and jumps into the cheese pit. We sing songs and play with a parachute before class time is up. I smile so hard that my cheeks hurt.

5:30pm – Townes is ravished. We have a mommy-son dinner on the way home, opting for in-season vegetable dosas at a local, stroller-friendly spot on the Upper West Side.

6:00pm – Moose is clean and ready! We head over to the pick him up – about twelve blocks from our dinner spot. On the way, I pick up blueberries and raspberries for breakfast tomorrow and swing by the ATM. Grateful I can walk all my errands.

6:15pm – We pick up Moose, which requires squeezing into an elevator, retrieving a receipt from the second floor, going down the elevator to pay for the services, then going back up to grooming to get my dog. Moose is so happy to see us – especially the baby. Out on the street, a woman approaches and shows me photos of her Shepherd mix on her phone. She explains that her dog's spleen exploded and that this is common in older German Shepherds. We chat for a few minutes. At first, I can't tell whether she's crazy or helpful. In the end, she convinces me to research Shepherds and spleens.

6:30pm – The evening air has cooled off a bit, so we stroll along the Hudson River on the way home. Moose needs a walk anyways. My cell phone blinks – I've missed three phone calls and a few texts. My hands are occupied walking the dog and pushing the stroller. I'll have to return the messages another time.



7:00pm – By the time we get home, I'm beat. I don't even know how much I walked today. Four miles? Five? It feels like a lot between strolling, taking the dog out, running errands, and meeting appointments. This is typical. Happy the weather is decent today. My husband is working late tonight, so I'm on my own for the bedtime routine. Townes needs a bath. I fill the tub with cool water and his favorite bath toys.

7:15pm – I towel off my clean little boy, wiggle him into his jimjams, and we snuggle on the beanbag for story time. Townes is a little restless. He keeps climbing out of my lap to retrieve more books off the shelves, piling them on my lap. We play in his room for awhile. Mostly dragging around fire trucks. Townes discovers another pacifier under his crib, and switches between two of them. He's tired. He drinks some milk. I rock him for a few minutes, sing him our family lullaby, and turn up the volume on the sound machine.

7:30pm – Townes fights sleep, but finally conks out in his crib. I sneak out of his bedroom and shut the door. There's some red wine chilling in the fridge. I pour myself a glass and sit down at my laptop to work for a few minutes. I'm exhausted. I could probably fall asleep right now. The apartment is still a mess. Maybe if I snap my fingers?




8:00pm – I do photo editing for a work project and then move on to other things. I have hired help on Thursdays and Fridays during the week because of my job(s), so I prep my son's meals, empty out the garbage, sweep the floors, and clean off the dining room table before I go to bed.

9:00pm – My husband gets home from work. It's been a long day for both of us. We catch up on things. We brainstorm our wine barrel issue. Yesterday Townes stuck my bracelet and watch (!) into the hole (photo here.) The barrel weighs 150 pounds, so we aren't sure how we can roll it around to retrieve my stuff from the inside. I wonder what else he's put in there? Maybe we'll have time to find out tomorrow. It's too late now. The neighbors below would not appreciate that kind of heavy noise at
this hour.

9:30pm – Townes is crying. My husband goes into his room and comforts him. I flip on the television, but there's nothing of interest on. I take the dog out again. I forget what it's like to have a backyard.

10:00pm – I read in bed for a bit, and then it's lights out.

Amazing, right?! Thanks, Jo!!

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6 comments :

  1. I love this post (and hopefully you make it a series!!). It's really nice to read about other Mom's routines. Sometimes the daily grind is a bit discouraging! I really enjoyed reading the details of Jodi's day!

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    1. so glad you like it lindsay! i love "day in the life" posts. hoping to post a bunch of totally different mom's days. :)

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  2. Thanks Lindsay! I'm with you on that – I love hear about other mom's daily routines too :) Also a special shout-out to parents of multiple children, single parents, and full-time outside-the-home working moms. Phew!

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  3. I loved this too! So different than my day with 4 kids and living in a place where we drive everywhere.

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    1. Such a great series idea, right? I'm so fascinated by it too.... We lived in the suburbs before, but never with a child, so those challenges and routines are so foreign to me.

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