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Wednesday, January 4, 2023

DITL: The last Wednesday of 2023 -- single, middle aged, urbanite mom edition

December Day in The Life
Confession: I love to peek behind the curtains at other people's lives by way of blogs and YouTube. Day In The Life (DITL) videos and blog posts are among my favorites! After watching several last night, I thought it might be fun (or interesting?) to do a DITL blog post of my own!

If you are new here, I'm Malea, a single, middle aged mom to a 24 year old. I live in a major US city in the Pacific Northwest and also have two elderly dogs. My kiddo lives at home, and we've decided it financially makes senses for them to continue living at home -- it's the only way either of us will ever realistically meet our financial goals. 

Some of the motivation for this DITL isn't my own voyeuristic interest in the lives of others, but also:

  • I'm looking for accountability in my day-to-day life since I'm self-employed and work from home, making my own schedule. 

  • I want to get back into the swing of blogging and regular content creation.

  • I have plans around what I want to create as Mom2MomEd and other ventures move forward. Getting back into blogging will help immensely. 

For this Day In The Life post, I'll do my best to also share products I use and methods for various things -- this may include affiliate links. If you use these links, I may receive credits, commissions, and other compensation. Thank you in advance!

I kept track of my DITL activities and timeline using the app Notion. I'm very new to Notion and am still learning how to use it, but it was so simple to keep track of my day using a Journal setup!

Let's hop into the DITL for the last Wednesday of 2023! This post is long! I apologize for the lack of photos! I decided to do this spur of the minute!

830am -- I woke up, groggy and cozy, to the alarm on my phone. I definitely wanted to stay in bed longer! The mouth guard I purchased two days ago seemed like a failure of a product the night before, but last night it stayed in place and my jaw and teeth felt pretty good -- I clench my jaw and grind my teeth in my sleep. Most days, my jaw and teeth are fairly painful upon waking and I lost my dentist made mouth guard a while back. My previous one was expensive so I tried an over the counter option: DenTek Professional-Fit Dental Guard

I stayed in bed a few minutes more and checked email and social media. 

845am -- Time to get up! I went and used the bathroom, washed my hands, and then folded a few towels and bathmats that my kiddo had left on the counter next to the laundry area and put them by their door. 

Then...I climbed back into bed!

850am -- The veterinarian called to follow up on a message I left last night about my elderly (17 years +) dog and we formulated a plan for dealing with some bloody diarrhea that Sandy (my Cairn terrier) has had recently. Then, I got up, cleaned the dog potty (both of my dogs are elderly and we have a dog potty on our patio), washed my hands again, fed the dogs, and made myself a cup of coffee.


While waiting for my coffee, I started on two of my housekeeping rules of 5: washed 5 dishes and tidied downstairs for 5 minutes. I took my coffee out of the microwave and finished both little tasks.

I launched a series on my Rules of 5 Housekeeping. Check out all of my housekeeping posts HERE.

915am -- I replied to an email and scheduled an informational interview about a job I'm considering, texted with a couple of friends, and updated the future log in my planner.

  • Texts with M: about the vet's plan for my dog, a cat litter auto-ship I ordered for her, job search stuff for both of us
  • Texts with R: plans for getting together today

945am -- Worked on my January journal set up and a new Etsy product: a January print-at-home planner set. Check it out HERE. The planner set is undated, so you can use it from year to year.

1020am -- Took a mental break, checked Instagram, shared a food allergy public service announcement to my personal Instagram stories

1030am -- Went back to working on my planner set up, including taking photos and video for Etsy listings of the new printable set ups, as well as:

  • Texted with A: his power is out!
  • Texted more with M: about printers and making photocopies of homeschool materials for her son
  • Peeked at Instagram even though I'd just done that!
  • Checked a Mercari notification
11am -- Breakfast time: breakfast sandwich with a real egg, vegan cheese, vegan sausage patty, vegan butter, cooking spray. I aspire to be vegan for a variety of reasons (don't come for me if you hate veganism. Eat whatever you want! I'm 100% dairy free due to an allergy.)
  • Washed 5 dishes (one of my housekeeping rules of 5!) while ingredients cooked
  • DRANK WATER!!! -- I'm terrible at this!
  • Checked email and social accounts while eating

1116am -- Helped Sandy with her respiratory issues (she's old and coughs a lot), then went back to my breakfast after washing my hands

1130am -- Cleaned up breakfast, took 5 minutes to clean the ash from my fireplace from our recent storm and wind gusts that came down the chimney and blew some ash out and around the screen

1140am -- Prepared to head to R's house: refilled my water bottle, filled travel coffee mug; made a loose meal plan and a chore list for my kiddo while waiting on the microwave (chili for dinner tonight!)

1150am -- Texted R that I'm running 45 minutes behind schedule. And, I nearly forgot that I had to stop at the vet's office for medication and special food for Sandy!

  • Brushed hair PRE-shower
  • Pulled together clothes and found my preferred thumb brace -- I've been dealing with a thumb injury on my dominant hand for seven months at this point. I'm worried I may need surgery.
  • Showered, washed my hair, did a scalp detox scrub
  • Got dressed, brushed teeth, brushed hair, put toothbrush on its charger, did skincare routine
  • Texted with J about a variety of topics

1220pm -- FINALLY IN THE CAR! The building garage door is stuck open! I always wait to make sure it's closed as people sometimes try to sneak into the garage or building. I called and left a message for management. This seems to happen more and more frequently. I'm annoyed since I pay $150 on top of my rent for secured garage parking!

  • Picked up dog food and medication from the vet -- OMG! The dog food cost $50!
  • Listened to Think Out Loud on OPB/NPR in the car until it started to cut out -- literary festival book chat about "Girlhood" -- will go back and listen later (you can listen the full episode HERE); switched to KINK.fm (independent alt-rock radio station; listen HERE)

1pm -- Stopped to get gas at Costco on the way to R's -- I'm more than an hour behind schedule now!

  • Had two major brainstorms while driving -- was able to write them down while waiting in line for gas at Costco (Gas was $3.35/gal for regular unleaded -- what is it where you live? Do you use any apps like GasBuddy to keep track? Here, Costco is consistently the lowest price for gas, followed closely by a couple of Fred Meyer and Arco locations.)

115pm -- Finally arrived at R's house

  • Traded some stuff -- she looked through my sorted out stickers and washi tape; I looked through her donations pile
  • Put together her KALLAX bookcase, played with her dogs
  • Drank a mini can of Coke which later will prove to be a mistake as it always makes me want ANOTHER Coke!
  • Chatted about our January fitness bingo plans and other plans for January
  • Proofread a scrapbook for R
  • Showed R my in-progress London travel journal
3pm-ish -- Back in the car and heading to Target -- so hard to drive past Old Navy without going in! I want another pair of jeans, but I have several already! I'm going to try to buy NO new clothing between now and January 1, 2024 unless it's strictly necessary work wear!Picked up the things I NEEDED at Target (trash bags), couldn't find trash cans in the sizes and styles I need/want. Of course, bought extra stuff (including another Coke!, 50% off Christmas stuff that M and I will both use for crafting or craft kits, a bath mat that will be perfect for the kitchen floor, frozen ginger -- why does nowhere have frozen basil cubes???, a package of Applegate peppered salami for a snack, Yum Earth Valentine's Day fruit snacks for M's kids, cinnamon gummy hearts for myself)
  • Found frozen ginger (YAY!), but it seems like NOWHERE sells frozen basil anymore!
  • Texted with M while at Target

415ish -- Stopped at Starbucks for a grande soy, peppermint latte -- cashier seemed annoyed that I asked, "You got that it's a latte, not a mocha, right?" At least 50% of the time, I receive a mocha instead, so I always double check -- the chocolate sauce used at Starbucks gives me a migraine and makes me feel woozy and weird. I actually used a "whoops, our bad" gift card from the last time when I was given a mocha instead of a latte!

450ish -- Back home and my building's exit garage door is still stuck open! If it's still stuck at this time tomorrow, I'm going to ask for a $10/day credit until it's fixed as this is happening more and more frequently! If anything happens to my car, I'll be asking for reimbursement on that too! [The garage door was fixed the next morning.]

5pm -- Used my wagon (it was already in my car and is the best thing I've ever bought at Costco!) to unload the car and head up to my apartment. Once inside and settled, put away frozen stuff and then fed both dogs, cleaned up the dog potty and texted more with M and R (a lot of R asking if I wanted things that I don't want and me asking M if she wants them, which she does!). 

  • Working on this blog post
  • Tiny bit of tidying
  • Used the bathroom and washed hands
  • Started drinking the dumb Coke (why does it taste soooooo good???)
  • Watched a couple of 2023 planning videos on YouTube
  • Worked a little on my January planner spread
  • Checked email and social notifications
  • Played a little EverMerge via Mistplay (those commercials about getting gift cards for game play are true, though you don't accrue as fast as the commercials make it seem -- get 50 units (points) by signing up HERE. I've already earned a $10 PayPal gift card and am halfway to another one!

630 to 640pm -- Finished unloading the wagon; messaged M to see if she wanted a few things; put things AWAY instead of just leaving them out for later; pulled out several ingredients for dinner (chili)

  • ALMOST bought pasta sauce at Target, but am glad I didn't. In pulling out ingredients for dinner, I found that I have two full jars in the cupboard and a half full jar in the fridge. 
  • Decanted brown rice into our larger rice container -- we seem to be all out of white rice, but have three bags of brown! We definitely prefer white rice, but I'm working on using up what we have before buying more of any particular category of groceries. 

Funnily, I actually have a loose grocery inventory in Google Sheets (I plan to transfer this to a Notion Template and will share it with you when I've done that!). It's fairly new though, so I'm not in the habit of checking it regularly -- I will update it this weekend! If I had just looked at it while in the store, I would have known I didn't need pasta sauce.

650pm -- Taking a little game play break and relaxing before starting dinner 

7pm-820pm -- Beef for chili is still too frozen; chatted and goofed off with kiddo; searched online for mini cashbooks by Daigo (I bought some a few years ago at Kinokuniya, but haven't seen them since), trash cans, and fireplace ash bucket

  • Found trash can for patio, fireplace ash bucket, and extra long bottle brush on Wayfair 
  • Watched some de-cluttering and minimalism videos on YouTube

820pm -- A little de-cluttering and organizing in office/craft/fitness area 

  • Removed vintage and stuff to sell and shifted binders from the floor onto empty shelves
  • Updated Notion shopping list
  • Sorted an old pile of mail -- tried to email my old gym about a gift card they offered as part of Chapter 11 bankruptcy but kept getting error messages!

845pm -- Can't stop yawning! I decided to call it quits for the day and went to bed. Usually, I'm up for several more hours, but I was sick a few weeks ago and haven't felt back to normal yet.

To be honest, while I enjoyed documenting a day in my life, I probably won't be doing this more than once per month. Noting everything down took up considerable time. As a result, I feel like there's a lot I would normally do in a given day that I didn't get to on this day. This also wasn't really a typical day for me either with being out of the house for so long. I work from home and I'm a shy, introverted, INFJ who loves to stay at home. Being out of the house so much feels strange to me. Maybe next time I'll document a day spent exclusively at home. What do you think?




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