A day in the life (of me)

November 14, 2013

I subscribe to a neat magazine called Offscreen. Inside is a regular feature titled A Day in the Life in which people lay out their typical day, about hour by hour. Most of the interviewees are younger than me and very few have kids, so I find their stories interesting. Like as in alternate universe interesting.

Many of these peoples' lives have a similar pattern: Wake up late (after 8:00 a.m.), check phone, make breakfast, ride bike to work, drink cappuccino, hang out with co-workers, tweet, like, tweet some more, lunch with friends, email, design stuff, hit the gym and ride bike home. Make supper with significant other, work on side project, go to bed late. Next day, repeat.I have a very different life than this. It's really tiring, but I love my life and I love my family. It's just really different, as you'll see.

  • 4:15 a.m. - Our two-year old wakes up crying. Either my wife or I head to his room to lay on the floor for a few minutes. He quickly goes back to sleep. Unfortunately we also fall asleep, on the carpet, for two hours
  • 6:30 a.m. - Our seven-year old is awake and playing aggressively with his toys, so the noise wakes up our two-year old. Today, I'm on his floor, so I slowly drag myself up to his crib and take him out to go play with his brother
  • 6:45 a.m. - We head downstairs to make the kids' lunches, feed them breakfast, feed the dog and find all of their homework and books for school. Our nine-year is still asleep, so I go to wake her up, but turns out she's just reading a book in bed
  • 7:30 a.m. - With the kids fed, bags packed, teeth brushed and jackets on, we get them ready for the bus
  • 8:00 a.m. - The two older kids are off to school and my wife and I finally get a chance to eat, talk and drink coffee
  • 8:30 a.m. - It's one of the days my wife goes to work (she heads to the office four days a week), so she drops off our son at a friend's house. I get in the truck and drive to work
  • 8:45 a.m. - I arrive at the office and turn on my computer. After making coffee for me and Mike, I sit down to read email and answer what I need to answer. I go through my to-do list and chat with Mike about what we're going to do today
  • 10:00 a.m. - A client meeting starts at our office. We review a software product we're making for them and go over some of my designs, then discuss tech about how the system will work as well as some changes we need to make
  • 11:00 a.m. - Meeting over, I open my email again and see what's transpired since earlier this morning. Nothing is an emergency, so I close the app and open Fireworks to make some design changes to the software interface
  • 12:30 p.m. - I'm getting hungry, so I eat lunch and flip through a magazine. Someone knocks at the door; it's a client with a couple of questions who decided to drop in on their way by
  • 2:30 p.m. - After finishing my design changes, I send off the revised file to the client for review, generate some invoices and pay the bills. I then pack up and head home, as it's my day to take care of the kids after school
  • 3:30 p.m. - With all three kids in the house, I clean up the kitchen, help with homework and start making supper
  • 5:00 p.m. - My wife arrives home and we eat supper together. Our daughter has dance tonight (as she has five days a week) and our older son has soccer, so 45 minutes later, we're back in our vehicles with the girls off to dance and us three boys headed to soccer practice
  • 7:30 p.m. - After cheering our hearts out at soccer, I head home and I start getting our younger ones ready for bed
  • 8:30 p.m. - The two boys are now asleep, but our daughter is still awake and talking about her day with my wife, so I kiss her good night and venture into the cold to take the dog our for some exercise. I like these walks, but finding the motivation can be hard, especially at -35 C. If it's about -25 C or warmer, we go XC skiing under the lights
  • 9:30 p.m. - I return from my ski or walk, the latter being where I've listened to a podcast and heard some things that made me think about changes we could make to our business. That, or mid-90s rap
  • 10:30 p.m. - After watching some TV and reading a few pages in our books, we head off to bed

So there you go; basically my average day and what I'd assume is the typical schedule for a dad like me who is trying to balance a business and his family.