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mama the night owl | how to survive

Ok. So if you follow me on facebook, you know that I often update at 2am. I am crazy like that. My brain doesn’t start really going until about 10pm…& my productive (for-mama-only) hours are 10pm-2am. You read that right. That is my very precious chunk of the day when everyone is sleeping & I get to do whatever I want. But…how? How on earth can I swing a schedule like that & make it work without being a total zombie?? Many of you have asked. So here is how it happens in this house:

  • BABYWISE the munchkin. We started this routine the day she came home from the hospital. The girl is like clockwork. She goes down at 7pm. She gets up at 830am. She still takes a 1.5ish hour nap in the afternoon. If I got her up earlier in the morning, she’d nap longer, but I would rather have her sleep in (’cause I do too). What is more precious than a sleeping babe? ::sigh:: newborns were so easy. (ps. this was taken on the 30D…over a year ago…)

  • MAKE LATTES AT HOME. Huh? Were you around for my how-to post? If not…learn how to make a latte here. You will never go back to drip & you will have ALL the joy of starbucks…3 minutes after you step in your kitchen. Ah…my morning bliss!

  • USE THAT PRECIOUS {NITE}TIME WISELY. How do I do all the creative stuff + be organized? I plan & execute it at night. I make notes in evernote to keep my creative projects organized & thus, be more efficient. I meal plan, then make my grocery list (and errand lists) in Grocery IQ. I get my day set in iCal & plan the week’s errands around the playdates & obligations so I am not running all over town. I never go to bed with a dirty house. Counters wiped. Toys in their proper [hidden] place. I wake up to a clean & tidy house. Which I LOVE [and require for sanity]. Then…the next morning…I have plenty of energy for this ball of sass!

But I sure would love to be a morning person. My husband definitely is. Are you? Have you been forced to be since motherhood? How have you adjusted? I know that early school days are [sniff, sniff] right around the corner & that is going to hit me like a Mack truck. :[

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  • Lacie - Its funny that you posted this. I was thinking of the same thing today. What quiet time to I like more – the time in the morning with my coffee or the time at night when everyone is sleeping…I still cannot decide. I have recently started working more at night and I may be more productive then, but the morning time is nice, then I am not showering with a “ball of sass” :) I am still undecided.ReplyCancel

  • The Up North Writer Mama - A night time routine has been the key for us to have smooth running days. Waking up to a messy house is very unmotivating for me. I also like to set the timer on the coffee pot so I can wake up to already-brewed coffee. I also do a quick bathroom wipe-down, start a load of laundry, and make the bed before we head downstairs. All of this stuff helps me start off the day feeling more energized. I can really feel a difference when I slack off in these areas.

    I might have to try your latte this weekend, though! :)

    I’m still trying to find the right time to work, though… I’m a morning person AND a night owl, but at night my brain just needs a break. However, these days sleep is such a luxury that it’s hard to wake up in the morning before my son does! hahaReplyCancel

  • Bobbi Kae Watt - Perfect timing with this post! No kidding-yesterday I was thinking of asking you where you get your energy and how you manage everything you have going on! Our daughter is almost 8 months and I’m trying to figure out if I could get more done in the morning or night. I started Babywise around 5 months. From about 6-7 1/2 months, Kaiya (our daughter), lost 1/2 a pound. I pretty much had to throw babywise out the window temporarily, and let Kaiya have as much boob time as possible. I am relieved to say that she is gaining weight again (however she is still in the lower 5% for weight) and I was happy we were able to make it work with breast milk alone. Anyway, because of this, I am having to get up more throughout the night again…we don’t want her burning through precious calories. Hopefully I can get more sleep soon, cuz this is a tough schedule to keep! Thanks so much for posting about this. Did you ever find out if they’re going to come out with ideskcal for the iphone? Seems like it would be pretty easy to do! :)ReplyCancel

  • Monica - Our little one is 15 weeks old, and we are the biggest Babywise fans! We too started it right away and that combined with a sweet baby she has been sleeping through the night since about 6 weeks old! She goes down now at 8:30 and we normally wake her at 7 to eat, after being up for about an hour she goes down for morning nap. I LOVE the predictability of our days. We are still working on moving bed time up a bit more, but I am hesitant to b/c she is in such a great routine now! We definatly reccomend that book to all our expecting friends! Ps..I am so not a morning person, so her morning nap means Mommys morning nap too! I wish you could turn yourself into a morning person, but so far I haven’t figured out how!ReplyCancel

  • Jaimie - I’m the same way with being prepared. I make lists like crazy and I definitely never go to bed with a messy house. No way! But even with a latte, I’m not sure I could function daily on only 6.5 hours every day! Go you! My kiddo doesn’t take naps anymore though.. so it’s go, go, go all day!ReplyCancel

  • Amy - I have an award for you on my blog!ReplyCancel

  • Kelly - I think I could of wrote the EXACT same post except make it 2 kids (4 & 2yrs) and minus the clean house! lol :( I sooooo wish I could figure out a balance of family, work from home, meal planning and housekeeping. Hint Hint: Meal Planning & Housekeeping posts!ReplyCancel

  • Kendall stoy - Can you do a detailed post on your Babywise experience. I planned to be that way….and caved. I am weak. I have been trying to get my (almost) 9 month old back on track, but how long do you let them cry??? I worry letting him cry too long, but he is SO stubborn! I know I am going to have to pay now, for being a softie earlier, but I need help! Thanks :)ReplyCancel

  • Becky Baxter - I think it all depends on how much sleep your body needs. Keith can run on 6 hours with no issue. I, however, MUST have 8 hours or I get really cranky. I don’t nap well as it only makes me more tired. My 3 year old twins sleep 12-13 hours a night and nap about 1-2 hours every other day. We dropped it to every other day napping about 6 months ago because they were staying up till 9pm and getting up at 8 napping ever day. From one year till 2.5 they slept 13 plus hours at night plus a 2 hour nap. Anyway, my point is I would rather have them down at 7pm and up at 8am napping every other day to give me a big chunk of recharge time in the evenings for my introvert personality. I am up till 11-12 each night and sleep until they drag me out of bed at 7-8. I WISH I could run on 6 hours sleep and a nap but I can’t. Still, I do get 4-5 hours each night kid free.ReplyCancel

  • molly flanagan - Oh goodness, I could never stay up that late. Wow! New Years Eve was pushing it for me (I lasted till 10pm)! I am definitely more of a morning person. I do the same sorts of things you do to get ready for the day. I just try to be in bed by 10:30 or 11:00. And, well, I am sure I don’t get as much work done! I get up around 6:15. It is imperative that I have some quite time in the morning to read my bible, and prepare for the day before the onslaught begins! However, my kids have always taken 3 hour naps, so that is a huge help in the middle of the day. xoxoReplyCancel

  • Katie - Definitely a morning person, going to a 9:00 movie is too late, no way I will be able to stay awake through the whole thing. I have thought about picking one night a week and staying up all night to get caught up on all the things I want to do. I did it a few times while on maternity leave, but with work outside the home, its just not feasible!…maybe later :)ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer Sagle - I found your blog today and I have been reading for hours!! You are one talented woman! I’m an aspiring photographer just starting out and learning how to photograph by “playing” and practicing alot. Some of your posts talk about ISO and makes so much sence. I did a photo shoot a few months ago and couldn’t figure out why the photos had so much noise. Now I know that the ISO was up way to high! It’s like a freakin light bulb went off in my head. I will definately be stalking your blog from now on! HA!ReplyCancel

  • Shannon - thanks for a great post Shawna! i love the sleeping pic and of course the grocery IQ and the evernote look awesome. i am going to dig deeper tonight! i am totally the same in that i like my whole house picked up, counters wiped, sink empty before relaxing at night. luckily my 3 1/2 yr old is starting to like it too and has been helping! most nights i can’t sit down to relax (compute or watch a show) with a messy nights. although…there are the nights where i am totally wiped out from the day when i do just let it go…..errrrrr! babywise sounds interesting. with our 3rd on the way in May and the two boys on a somewhat decent schedule this sounds intriguing. although i do love nursing and co-sleeping and pretty much nursed on demand with both my boys. not sure how that fits in but i’m going to check it out! thanks agian!ReplyCancel

  • Denae - Wow. I don’t think I could accomplish all that, even as a stay at home mom. My natural wake up time is around 9p and that is IF I go to bed early at 11p-Midnight. I hate early mornings. I am already trying to wrap my head around managing three instead of two. Our google calendar has been amazingly helpful. I will have to check out the mealplanning/grocery stuff. The hubs acts like I hate him if I let the home cooked meals slip.ReplyCancel

  • Erinn - If you do decide to do a babywise post I can help give a “multiples” perspective. Still following it and works like a charm!ReplyCancel

  • Colleen - So you only need 6 hours of sleep?! I am so jealous. Right when the baby goes down for the night, I am fading. I wish I was a night owl.ReplyCancel

  • Lauren Clark - Shawna,
    I am the same way as far as sleeping. That is “my get things done time”! I stay up until 2:00 am most nights. I am good on 6-7 hours of sleep! After 4 children, a set of twins, all of which have been Babywised, I am a confident believer in that system. It allows Moms to stay sane, especially those of us with multiples!ReplyCancel

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