Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Podcast thoughts

I'm actually sort of serious about this podcast idea.  I'm sure it's the 834 hours I spend on the road each week, but I've really gotten into the medium and wonder if I have something to add.

Clearly, I'm not exactly NPR over here so it's not like I'm thinking about creating the next This American Life.  But of all the podcasts I listen to, I have noticed several themes, especially in the 'life hack/self-improvement' ones:

1) These podcasts are often created by men.  And -- sorry -- unless said host is in charge of >50% of the home management scene, I don't really enjoy hearing work-life-balance tips mansplained to me.  

2) When they are done by women, the women fall into two categories:
     a) Stay-at-home-moms with 'side gig' (The Simple Show leans that way even though the host and creator's side gig is probably quite a big one)

     b) Entrepreneurial women with flexible jobs (Spawned, Happier)

There is a void here.  I want to hear from intelligent women who are working more typical jobs (think: set hours and locations), with kids.  I want to hear them talk about how they are doing life. 

There absolutely may be podcasts out there that I don't know about that fit these criteria.  I actually just started listening to Happier in Hollywood and this has some of the features mentioned above, but it's a little more niche than I had in mind.

I envision a potpourri of topics:  from the trivial (school supply shopping - I just got the list for A's kindergarten and there are 26 very specific branded items I have to procure before August 21.  WHAT?) to bigger ones like making the most of leisure time (one of my faves, as you know) + procuring excellent childcare.  Clearly there would have to be guests (or a cohost) involved, as no one wants to hear me blather on to myself week after week . . . 

Honestly, I would love to listen to that podcast.  If it exists, please let me know!  If it doesn't . . . would anyone else be interested in hearing one like this?  

Second, I'd love to know if anyone know how much time it takes to put one together?  My gut feeling is that the initial development would take some time, but perhaps it would be more doable after that.  I have several hours/week I could devote to it (on my day off, obvs), but probably not much more than that.  Maybe more over maternity leave (perhaps the sound of the breast pump could be my opening music.  JK).  

ANYWAY I am not sure I have the time or capability -- but I do feel I have a halfway decent radio voice and a lot to say.  

the actual list of school supplies I have to somehow find and purchase.  FOR KINDERGARTEN.
just WOAH!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

time crunch, epilogue

You guys are great :) Thank you for your helpful insights the last couple of posts.  After writing them, I have become more aware of the time I do have (which is actually a good bit!) and am trying to use it better.   I find myself about 9000 more satisfied with my time use if I am:

a) taking time to work out most days
b) NOT spending it on my phone

. . . and the latter has been a challenge for me lately.  Josh has actually been quite an inspiration in this regard -- look at his tracking app stats from the last 11 months:

large reduction in screen time and % of awake time spent on phone

huge reduction in pickups - and an increase in (phone-detected) sleep!

He has to respond to texts at work so it's not like he will ever get to zero, but I am IMPRESSED.  I have had periods of excellent stats and other times when I am spending a hideous percentage of my 'free' hours scrolling.  

I do enjoy Instagram (posting + reading), but honestly that's really the only 'recreational' thing I want to use my phone for.  I also tend to get sucked into text message conversations -- not that I don't love my friends (I do!) but I think maybe sometimes I just need to pick up the @#&#! phone and CALL.  I never want to initiate a phone call (EVER . . .) but when I do, I am always happy I did.

Since writing those last two posts and starting to try to make the most (or at least MORE) of my alone hours, I have felt much more at peace.  There has been more reading, more ideas flowing, and just more enjoyment (maybe just due to increased awareness?) of the time I do have.

In other news ... I kind of want to start a podcast.  (Because clearly I have time for that, right?  Hahaha).  Unless someone can recommend a great one centered on life as a working woman in the throes of parenthood with young children ... suggestions welcome!

Workouts week of July 10-16 
pregnancy week 19

Monday - rest

Tuesday  - treadmill 3.38 mi / 40 min.  6 x 5 min running with 2 min walk breaks.

Wednesday - treadmill 3.6 mi / 42 min.  2 x 10 min running with 2 min walk break, then 3 spurts of 'faster' running for 4 minutes each

Thursday - barre3 30 min workout

Friday - rest

Saturday - treadmill 4.07 mi / 46 min.  24 min running (conveniently, an entire episode of Wild Kratts), 3 min walk break, then 0.25 mi x 5 at faster paces

Sunday - rest

totals - 11 miles, 1 barre3 workout

Thursday, July 13, 2017

time crunch, part 2

Soem clarifications and notes:

1) I actually almost never have solo weekends anymore!  This is by design.  I don't want to act all martyr-esque, because truthfully being home with both kids by myself for the weekend is a rarity these days.  In 2016, Josh and I sync'd our call weekends and haven't looked back - it was a great decision.  Yes, it comes with a cost (childcare 1 in every 5 weekends) but is soooo worth it to both of us to be parenting together on most weekends rather than taking turns half the time.

2) Perhaps it would help me to take a clear look at when/where my 'free time' currently lies on a typical working weekday.

The kids sleep about ~8 pm (Annabel's bedtime - sometimes she doesn't fall asleep until a little later, but I aim for 8!) to 6:30 am (when Annabel woke up this morning).  Sometimes it's 7 am, but right now it's unusual for both kids to make it to that magical hour.  Cameron sleeps a little more, often 7:30 pm - 6:45 am.  So, like many parents & caregivers, my "free time" most work days is limited to pre-6:30 am and post-8:00 pm.  Josh often takes the morning shift so I can work out (yay!), though sometimes he has to leave by 7 (and also has to get ready) so this can be variable.

I need about 7.5-8 hours of sleep while pregnant (7 seems to work fine while not gestating!).

So, without additional childcare, I can realistically fit in for me:

- a ~45 minute (max) workout (5:45 AM - 6:30 AM)
- a short journaling or meditation session (5:00 - 5:45 AM), or pieces of a blog post
- 60 min of reading or TV max, post kid bedtime (8:15 - 9:15 PM) - otherwise will be too tired to get up early the next day

Not a ton, but not nothing!

3) My work days themselves are pretty packed (and often feel frenetic), but sometimes I can write a blog post during lunch.  Usually that time is very limited (like . . . 20 minutes between end of last morning pt's note and starting to see PM patient) and I use it to eat with my coworkers.

However, since going to 80%, I am now lucky enough to have an entire extra day per week.  Typically our nanny does work that day (and so far this has been mostly the case, though sometimes I've 'traded' her for weekend coverage).  Sometimes, time gets eaten up by to-do items (yesterday: ultrasound + car oil change) but otherwise it is an amazing outlet that I need to use WELL.

huge sign of relief @ anatomy scan yesterday - all parts accounted for!

4) Commute.  I'm in the car for about 90 minutes/day.  I typically listen to podcasts.  I need to reframe this as 'me time', even if it's a little bit captive.  I could also do audiobooks, but at this point I have so many podcasts that I love, so I still don't get through all of them!

5) Evenings.  I could also probably go out one weeknight per week (with childcare), but most of the time am too tired to really want to.  I'm bailing on book club this week - in part due to laziness, but also because I didn't finish the book!

6) I outsource A LOT, so the hours listed above truly are mine for the taking.  I can focus on 'important-but-not-urgent' work-related projects if needed, and I can take time for myself.  I just need to make sure I'm doing that!!  Taking stock of the specific hours above reveals that my time is limited, but it's there.  I just need to make the most of it.


scheduling more fun & relaxing things for my days off
     - goal: one prenatal massage per month until delivery :)
     - dedicated reading time
     - trying some new workouts

tracking time in some kind of fun and non-arduous way, in a way that I can SEE and appreciate how I am using (and hopefully not wasting) my 'free' hours
some kind of book reading challenge (2 books/month really should be doable)
writing here more

half-day today!  I'm thinking of a planner-based tracking system that is NOT terribly detailed (otherwise it will fail) - since I'm already using it to block off time anyway!


Obviously, things are going to get 999x more challenging in just a few (okay 4.5 . . .) short months.  But I want to make the most of the time I have before then!

Random pic of Annabel at 2-3 months or so - can't believe I get to do this again!