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Weekly Routine: A week in life of our family of five with twins

In this episode I go through a week in the life of our family, day by day what our routine and schedule looks like. 

We have an 8 year old, and 4 year old twins, my husband is a full time shift worker and I run a more-than-full time business - and here is how we have set up our week so that we can navigate and thrive within the busyness of our growing family! 

I mentioned tried tips and tricks on how I have gotten our mornings and nights to run more smoothly with less stress, and how I carve out time for my own self care. 

 

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie (00:00.906)

Hello and welcome to episode 22 of the Needle Naturopath podcast. I'm your host Melanie, and I am coming to you off the back of a beautiful holiday I had with my family. We went to, well, hang on, we haven't even gone yet. I'm recording this in advance, let's be real, because I need to batch create when I'm away. We flew, well, we are flying to Cairns.

 

And then we're going to Fitzroy Island and we are staying in Palm Cove and then staying in Port Douglas and then flying back home. So, so excited. So, so excited. I love that precious time with the girls. It's funny, Willow had a Mother's Day sort of letter she wrote to me from school and it had on it, like, what's your favorite thing to do with your mom? And she wrote, go to Darwin. And I could have cried because

 

We've been to Darwin only once. We had this amazing two-week motorhome explorer of the Northern Territory, so we flew to Darwin and then we spent two weeks in a motorhome going down, you know, all the way to Litchfield, Catherine, Kakadu, and it was the most epic holiday I've ever been on. And anyway, that's my last favourite thing to do with me, so that was really, really cute.

 

And yeah, and she said also in another part, like going on holidays with mum. So that made me more excited for this holiday. Cause I'm like, gosh, it's just, she bloody loves it. That's that's out of all the things in her eight years with me, her favorite thing to do with me is was go to Darwin. So what a sweet pea. So.

 

This episode, I'm going to run through our weekly routine, our family routine as a family of five. So we've got Willow, who's eight and the twins Hunter and River, who are four. And I enjoy hearing about other people, how they run their home and household and what their week looks like, because it offers me solidarity, but also can help me in like, OK, that's a really good way to do that. Or I like.

 

that structure or routine and I'm going to implement that. So maybe this could help you in your own family life. Obviously this has been a fine tuned thing because we are a well-oiled machine by now. I mean, I've been parenting for eight years now, but I had to really step up my game once I had the twins. Like everything was so fluid and floaty and airy when it was just me and Willow. But once the twinnies came along, it was like a military structure and not initially, but I found that I was struggling.

 

without it. So this is what's helped me. So let's look at our week. So Willow goes to school so that's obviously five days a week. The twins are in four year old kinder so that's three days a week so they're in kinder 9 15 to 2 15 three days a week. Scott is a police officer so he works a shit roster most of the time and it's kind of all over the show every week is so different. So I'm going to go through.

 

Melanie (03:15.254)

just life what it looks like in a standard week. Cause he's, yeah, he's normally, he normally works evenings, days, some nights, every weekend, pretty much. So yeah. And then I work obviously in my business and I'm gonna go through the exact hours that I work and what kind of thing I do. So starting off with a Monday, every morning I get woken by the kids.

 

anywhere from 530 to 630, but it is so rarely 630 that I'm going to say it's like 530, 545. Now, depending on how much sleep I've had, I will either lay in bed for a little bit and I'll be out by 615 out of bed, or I'll just get out straight away. I often find if I lie in bed after they've woken me, I feel worse.

 

Like I feel like I need it in that minute and I just need a moment and I just want to sort of settle into waking on my own accord. But I feel more groggy if I am sorry if I fall back asleep. So I don't try to do that because I feel like shit. So about a month ago, we implemented a new family rule that there is no television, phone screen, nothing, no technology in the mornings anymore.

 

That was a huge one because that is something I really relied on in the younger years of the twins was TV in the morning so that I could either I go back to sleep or B just get all the things I needed to get done without them crying, whinging under my feet. So absolutely no shade if you do use television cause I did for many years, but they're at an age where I don't feel like I needed any longer. And I also knew it wasn't helping them.

 

be their best little selves before kindy or school or the day. Cause I found that get almost like they'd wake up all fresh and then they'd plonk themselves in front of the TV and then get off the TV 30 minutes, 60 minutes later and be half dead, kind of groggy, irritable, whingey. So I thought, no, you know what? I rely on screens like it's my babysitter and I just am sick of doing that. And

 

I feel like it's my job to put in a firm boundary because these kids are not going to have any boundaries themselves with screens. And I know the twins can play and find things to do and it's going to be like ripping off a band-aid. I've just got to bloody do it. And I found the first few mornings a little bit frictiony. Like

 

Melanie (06:05.410)

they didn't know what to do with themselves and they were whining for it and asking to put the TV on because I, so I do pilates every morning and I found I would, if I had the TV on, I'd have a bloody minute to wake up, check my phone or do whatever I wanted to do. And then I could do pilates in peace whilst they were sitting in front of the TV because I was concerned that if they weren't watching TV that they would

 

I wake Willow because Willow wakes up much, much later than them. So when I'm talking about cutting screens, it really was for the twins. Cause I mean, Willow really didn't, she'd watch like 15 minutes. Like that was it. Cause she didn't wake up early enough to sort of have endless amounts of time to watch screens. So the twins Willow wakes at around six 45 or seven on average, the twins are more like that five 30 mark. So I didn't.

 

I used TV so that they were quiet, so that they didn't go and wake Willow. I also use screens to stop one twin from waking the other because this would notoriously happen where someone would wake at five and the other twins fast asleep. And I don't want that other twin waking up unnecessarily. So I'd put them in front of the TV to keep them quiet and from waking each other. I, yeah. And it worked because then the other twin might have another 50 minutes of sleep, which is what she needed. But.

 

Melanie (07:33.298)

Anyway, I just didn't want to do it anymore. So no more TV. They have woken each other. So I have not, I have not sorted that problem out. Um, many, many times they will, one of them will come in. They always come in to let me know, to let Scott and I know they're awake. Um, and then I go, I'll go, okay, it's too early for mommy to get up.

 

you go and play or something like that. Or they'll hop into bed with us and have a snuggle or I'll say, all right, well, I'm getting up to do my parties. What are you going to do? And they'll start off watching me with doing parties and then they'll go play or something like that. But, um, a few times recently, they've come in that twin, say it's Hunter, come in and said, mommy, you know, morning time. And I'm like, oh, mommy's a bit tired. You woke me four times overnight. So I'm not getting up right now.

 

Melanie (08:27.178)

And then that twin would wander out and I would think they're happily playing cause I wouldn't hear anything. And what's happened is they've actually gone into she's gone into river's room and working river and then said to river, do you want to play? Um, so that's kind of shit, but twin life, Hey, there's so many negatives. Um, so.

 

Melanie (08:48.306)

I have to be up by 6 15. I have to be out of my bed by 6 15 beginning Pilates. Otherwise it cuts into the morning and I'm all stressed and then I can't do Pilates because I don't like my mornings being rushed. So I get out of bed at 6 15 and I pop on my move with Nicole Pilates video on YouTube. So she's the YouTube Pilates instructor that I've used for 18 months now. And I do her videos.

 

religiously and I've never enjoyed exercise more. Let me tell you, if you know me personally, you'll know I've never enjoyed exercise. I don't mind a walk in the pram with a, you know, not me in a pram. I don't mind walking the kids in the pram, that kind of stuff. I've dabbled in weightlifting at gyms and I enjoyed it for a period of time. F45, I enjoyed that for a period of time, but what always stopped me was just getting out of the house with the kids or finding someone to watch the kids at home.

 

Melanie (09:43.414)

because I'm an early morning exercise, not a night exercise. If I don't exercise in the morning, it will not happen. And I've just accepted that reality. I just, it's me. I don't like exercising in the afternoon or evening. And so with Scott shift works, um, his shift work, sorry, I kept finding myself feeling stuck with like, well what bloody exercise do I do? Because

 

I can't commit to a regular gym class because some mornings he's leaving at five, some mornings seven, some mornings 4.30, some days two p.m. Sometimes he leaves at five p.m. Like it's just, it's just two all over the show. So it was causing me stress and then I was just walking. So I would walk every day, but I got kind of got just sick of it. And with Melbourne, the weather, I just didn't want to walk in the weather. So then I'd sort of find myself.

 

not exercising much in winter. Anyway, everyone raves about platies, right? Like I've never heard anyone say they didn't like platies. So I was like, okay, I'm going to give this a go. Went on YouTube one day and move with Nicole popped up and I did her 20 minute platies video and I've never looked back. And at the start, all I could do was her 20 minute ones. I found the 30 minute and 40 minute and 50 minute ones way too hard for me. Just didn't have the stamina, especially my core. Like it was completely destroyed. I would say after having the twins,

 

Melanie (11:09.910)

And yeah, so I do have one of her videos or I either do depending on how I'm feeling 30 minute one or 40 minute one. And that takes me to just a past 7am. I then go out, the kids are playing, Willow is awake by this stage and I'll start making brekkie. So I really must have breakfast made by 7.20. Like seriously, otherwise we are late. So I always cook a hot breakfast for the girls.

 

It's not that I'm an amazing mom and I'm so dedicated to nutrition. It's that they don't bloody like anything else. Okay. So please don't feel bad if you aren't doing that. It's not the gold standard. It's just that the twins and Willow don't like cereals, don't like muesli or granola's. Um, so yeah, they won't eat any of it.

 

So Willow's breakfast, she hates eggs. So she'll be having either a smoothie. She has a smoothie probably four times a week. Like I put a bit of protein powder in it, not too much, but like a half dose. She has the smoothie that I rave about on my Instagram all the time, actually. There's a recipe in my Reel, so have a look on there. So make that for her, she loves that. Twins hate smoothies, but love eggs. So they have eggs probably four times a week. So they have either, I do poached eggs, scrambled eggs, or fried eggs. For them, I slather butter on toast and I give them avocado.

 

If we have mushrooms, I'll give them mushrooms as well. Sometimes cooking mushrooms are like, it's just a drainer. So I just do literally eggs on buttered toast. Porridge, all three of them don't mind porridge. They would only have it once a fortnight probably though, because I just find they do leave a lot of it. It's not their favorite breakfast. But again, this takes a little bit of time, but I do love porridge because I can fill it out with so much stuff that they don't know about. Like I can put cheese seeds, flax seed meal.

 

Melanie (12:57.474)

Um, I do sometimes put some flower seeds in as well. You could do hemp seeds, all that jazz. I like to put organic frozen berries in and then the porridge sort of cools, um, the porridge heats them up. So they're beautiful. And then peanut butter as well on top. So it's a really good nutritious breakfast for them. And then Willow also loves baked beans on toast. So I'll do that maybe once a week for her with cheese. Um, yeah.

 

They're the breakfast the girls tend to enjoy. My breakfast will just be normally one of those. Like whatever one of the kids is having, I'll just make extra and have that myself. Although I do love granola with yogurt and nuts and seeds and berries and all that. So sometimes I do that for myself as well. Then breakfast is done. I'll then be.

 

packing lunch boxes. So I always do our lunch boxes the night before. I've never done one in the morning and I never plan on it cause I will not have time, but I do their sandwiches or whatever they're having for lunch. I'll prepare that in the morning. So normally like, for example, if the twins eggs are cooking I will be making their lunch at that time. Like if the porridge is cooking, that's what I'm doing. It's like pack up all that, put the ice cubes the ice box in, put it in their backpacks.

 

go get their drink bottles from their rooms, fill up the drink bottles, put them in, put the bags near the door, that's done. Then I'll be telling everyone to get dressed. Often someone needs me to dress them, but I'm in a really good place where it's not all three at least, because there was a long, long, long, long time where I'm dressing three humans and it was exhausting. Especially the twins Hunter found getting dressed a real sticky point, very dysregulated. Even when I was giving her full autonomy on, you can pick whatever you wanna wear.

 

Melanie (14:48.514)

the sock wasn't right or this wasn't right. I was a problem with, yeah, it's funny. I found her socks to be a real drama, like a severe conflict point for her. Don't know why. I don't know. It's like she had anxiety about her socks. They weren't high enough. They weren't the right ones. She's missing her bluey socks. Wear her bluey socks. They're in the wash, you know, all that. That would take up so much time. But now the twins love getting dressed on their own. I'll go tell them.

 

it's cold day or it's a hot day and then they know what that means. Um, and then I'll say they'll come out and they're like, Oh my God, I'm so proud of just myself. And then I'm like, okay, we need to just put on an extra layer. We need to change this. So that takes a little bit of time. Um, and then I make my own coffee at around, Oh, and I do everyone's hair. So try to get everyone's hair out of the way by eight. So

 

You know, three daughters is take time brushing all the knots out. What has to do you want doing hairstyle? Then taking out three times because I didn't do it correctly. Willow, though, she is so self-sufficient now being eight. She completely gets herself dressed. She does her own hair and she brushes her own teeth without any direction from me. But I need to, you know, go get the twins toothbrushes, put their toothpaste on, brush their little teeth with them. I do their hair for them. And then.

 

Melanie (16:09.598)

You know, these takes us to about 8am and at this point I am making myself a coffee. So I never have my coffee before 8am and I really implore you to try doing that as well. Um, bearing in mind as well, most mornings I'm on my own. So I would say four out of five weekdays, Scott is not home in the morning because he's, he's already left for work. Um, I actually prefer that.

 

Melanie (16:38.126)

No disrespect to his... him. But the morning just works so much smoother when it's just me. Like so much smoother because I'm just like I know what I need to get done when. I do not empty the dishwasher in the mornings. That's Scott's job. So before he goes to work, he does the dishwasher. So if he leaves at yeah 6 30 or 7 or 6am, he's doing the dishwasher. And that was kind of like a firm...

 

rule we not I'm not going to say rule that's a funny word but it was a firm thing that I said this is what I need you to do like I'm struggling with the housework I feel like I'm doing too much by the time you get home I've done everything uh I need some support in in this and so I I said you have to empty the would you empty the dishwasher every morning so that I never have to worry about the dishwasher and he's like yeah totally that'll be my thing.

 

Scott's fantastic when it's his thing. If he knows this is my responsibility, he does it like no problem. I don't have to remind him. So we've set it up in the house where the dishwasher's his, the washing is mine. Because I bloody hated him doing my washing because he would mix colors and whites and I bloody hated that. And he ruined a ton of cloth nappies when the twins were in cloth nappies.

 

Um, because he mixed everything together and it like all the beautiful colors leached out, um, and became gray and I was just spewing. So I'm like, please just let me do it myself. And, you know, if I have my period and all that, like I want to be the one doing my knickers, I love him, but you know, I need, I need some dignity or privacy. I don't know what the word is there. Um, so yeah, I went on for tangent there, but he does the dishwasher and I think that helps cause like I speak to a few moms and they sort of saying their mornings are

 

F'd and they don't have any time to make this old breakfast. Um, but it sounds as though a lot of them are doing house hold tasks, like cleaning or the dishwasher or things like that. And yeah, I found that that had to go for my morning. It's a non-negotiable that I ate breakfast. There's never a morning where I don't eat breakfast. And I implore you to have that same.

 

Melanie (18:56.554)

same thing. I couldn't do it. I just couldn't do it. I have to eat breakfast. I need that wake up hit. I need the hit of energy. I know I need the nutrition and it sustains me for the whole day. So I always eat at the same time as the girls. I think the problem would come about when moms are making their kids breakfast and then using the time when the kids are eating breakfast to do

 

Melanie (19:24.290)

do lunch boxes, things like that, that definitely would mean you have less time. So what I suggest is to try to pick out what things you can do at night. For me, it's lunch boxes. I always do them in the afternoon or whilst dinner's cooking, I'll do lunch boxes. I used to leave lunch boxes until everyone was asleep, but I freaking resented the shit out of that because I'm like, this is my time to relax and I'm doing lunch boxes and the kids, no one's awake. Like I could be relaxing right now.

 

So I pretty much do it. Yeah, like as soon as we get, start sort of sorting out dinner or if it's simmering away on the stove or we've come home from school and the kids are playing, I'll unpack everyone's bags, wash the lunch boxes and pack them up again. I also don't shower in the morning, ever, ever. And I can get away with that because Pilates, I don't sweat from Pilates. I definitely, it's an exertion and it's great.

 

So that's not to say it's not hard, but I don't sweat to the point where I need a shower at all. So I'm comfortable showering at night and it means I have so much more time because I don't think I would have the time to shower in the morning. I just wouldn't. So make my coffee. And then as I'm drinking my coffee, I'm kind of walking around and cleaning up the house, making sure everyone's getting ready, you know, all the bits and bobs that just take time. And then I finally get myself ready. So I'll come into my room.

 

Um, if I have a bit of time, I'll put on a bit of makeup or if I look like shit or tired, uh, otherwise I'll just get myself dressed, do my hair, brush my teeth. Once I finished my coffee and then we're ready to go and we're all ready by eight 30 and then we either walk to school if the weather's nice and the twins are happy too, because it really does depend on them or we will jump in the car and drive to school. Um, and then so.

 

Melanie (21:16.562)

Mondays I have my days with my twins, so I drop off at school and then I've just got the day with them. I don't work, I just do whatever I'm doing with them. They come along for errands, like just life, you know, appointments, park, cafe, lunch. They were doing gymnastics for a while on a Monday, but we actually just cancelled it because I just didn't see the value in it. I felt like it was so expensive and all they were doing was like playing little games and tumbling around. They weren't doing any actual gymnastics kind of.

 

stuff and maybe I expected too much for a group for a four year old class. But Willow does gymnastics and it's really, it's intense and it's proper gymnastics where they're doing all the proper things. And I sort of thought that that the twins might be nearing, like being able to learn how to do certain moves and things, but that was not the case. So we just canceled that actually last week. It was just, you know, also like with.

 

interest rate rises, our mortgage is going up all the time. And I was like, okay, like what can we cut? I feel like we need to tighten the bootstraps. I get stressed about money all the time. Even though we're in a really, really privileged position and we do have a lot of financial freedom, just the way I was brought up, like money. I always, I watched my money. I'm careful with my money is what I should say. Um, even when you, you, you know, you have money, you, I, I like to be careful with it.

 

And so I thought, nah, I don't think gymnastics is going to be helping our bank account at the moment. And yeah, didn't see the value. So canceled that. So yeah, that's Mondays. Pick up Willow at 3.30 and then she has art class on a Monday. So we do an art class, an external art class. And I drop her off there at four and my mom or dad pick her up and bring her home. If they can't or Scott's home, we'll do it. It's just...

 

It's not in the same suburb as us. So it was a bit tricky getting the twins in the car to pick her up at 3.30, come home for just a touch of time, get the twins back in the car to take her to the other suburb by four. And then by the time when they settled, turning around and going back home and then going back out again in peak hour traffic to go get her, it was just, it was just too much. Um, so thankfully my mom and dad have said they would, yeah, whoever's available would do that.

 

Then Tuesday is obviously the same morning routine, same, but the twins are going to kinder. So I dropped Will off at school first and then the twins start kinder at 9.15 in a different suburb. So we always drive on a Tuesday, drop them off. And then I see clients all day Tuesday. So I get back home and then I start work at either 9.45 or 10. I like to start at 10 because it gives me a little bit of a buffer. Often the twins are crying. Not often, I shouldn't say that.

 

Last year was worse, this year's better, but sometimes they need that extra cuddle and I, you know, I can't get away quickly. Um, or I'll duck into the shops or I'll come home and do a, you know, a bit of a tidy up. Our cleaner comes on a Tuesday for three hours. So I do have to do the cleanup before the cleaner, you know, the drill, like you pick up everything off the floor, you pull out your fresh linen that you want her to pop on the beds and things like that. So she cleans while I work, which has been.

 

absolutely life-changing in our home. I couldn't imagine not having a cleaner anymore and it's just freed me up to focus more time on the kids because I'm not spending that time cleaning now. So to us that was really worthwhile. The money was worthwhile. You know it was important to us. So have her coming three hours on a Tuesday. I see clients until about

 

three o'clock and then I make myself a protein smoothie and then I go get Willow from school. So I go and either walk down if I'm feeling like it or if I'm a bit brain dead, I'll drive. Even though obviously the walk would make me feel so much better, but sometimes you know when you're just so tired after work. Pick her up, bring her home. Mom and dad or mom, either or, will pick up the twins at 2.15 on a Tuesday and then they have their little routine.

 

Melanie (25:29.898)

They go to the park, they go home to Nanny Poppy's house. Mom gets them bathed, puts their jammies on and gives them dinner, washes their hair and does all of that, which is just so bloody amazing. I'm so lucky to have her support there and doing that for me because then, so I get Willow from school.

 

Often we learn on a Tuesday, I'll have booked a makeup class to gymnastics. Cause like so many, she's got that many makeup classes. I, you know, from illness holidays and also when we just can't make it on a Saturday for her gymnastics class. So she very, very often has gymnastics class on a Tuesday and that starts at four 15. So we come home from school, have an afternoon snack, get her organized. And then I take her to gymnastics.

 

Gymnastics is in the same suburb as when my parents live. So this is perfect. So I dropped Will off at gymnastics at 4.15. Then I just drive to my parents' house, hang out there for a little bit, get the 20 sorted, wait till they've sort of starting eating their dinner because they kind of eat, they eat early dinner. They eat at like, literally like 4.45 or five when it's a Tuesday with mum. And then I get them into the car and I drive them back home. And then

 

Melanie (26:42.914)

whatever I need to do. So lunch boxes, preparing the day, you know, preparing anything for the next day, organizing dinner on a Tuesday, I always do a slow cooked meal. That was something I wanted to note. I always have a slow cooker for a Tuesday. Or if I don't, it's because I have leftovers or something frozen. I never cook on a Tuesday evening. It's a bit of a full day. I mean, I'm seeing clients all

 

Melanie (27:12.170)

I'm doing gymnastics, picking up the twins, all of that. I don't ever get home until about 5.15. So I just couldn't do dinner because we eat by 5.30 every day. So we eat dinner. And then my dad will pick up Willow, if he's home or my mom from gymnastics at 6.15. If they aren't available, then I have to do it. But hopefully Scott's home to do it because it's a big nightmare at that time. 6.15 is when I'm putting the twins to bed. So that pushes out the routine, which I hate.

 

and they get tired. So my dad's been off work since January because he got a really bad, really bad, really bad, my God, leg injury at he was bike riding and the pedal slammed into his shin and he got a hematoma. He got a ligament damage. He got an infection, became septic was in hospital. Anyway, so he

 

Melanie (28:06.706)

still doesn't have much function in his leg like he can walk but it puffs up swells up and he's waiting for a specialist appointment in July so he's been off work since Jan so yeah he gets he gets willow Tuesday brings her home we are putting the twins to bed at this point so Scott if he's on a day shift he does one twin and I do the other twin and we alternate so just say I did Hunter last night well I'm doing River today and um daddy's doing you River what did I say yep

 

Anyway, you get what I mean. We alternate twins. The twins don't love this. They will put up a bit of resistance. I know I want mommy to do it. I don't want daddy to put it do it. But then once they once I just put that firm boundary in, which I didn't for years, and I absolutely wish I had off because.

 

Melanie (28:53.014)

Bedtime was so stressful and just pure resentment for me. Like Scott, an able-bodied human adult was sitting, scrolling on his phone on the couch or in bed while I'm frantically putting three kids to sleep. And it wasn't a lack of him offering, he absolutely was, but they would not let him. And I felt like it was so much easier just to talk myself, but I've switched that mindset a few months ago. I just said, I'm done. I am completely done now. I am...

 

swapping with Scott every night and I'm only putting one twin to sleep. But of course, when he works, that's when I'm putting both to sleep. Um, yeah, we do, we start getting them ready to hop into bed at about six 15. Sometimes it is six 30, but six 15 is when we start, you know, right. Brush your teeth. Let's hop into bed. Let's do our back tickles, our snuggles. And the ideal time for them to be asleep is around six 30, but sometimes at six 45.

 

Melanie (29:52.634)

Um, yeah. And then I come on out, spend a little bit of time with Willow. We might put on some telly together. I might do, oh, normally we just do a readers actually and a book, but sometimes she's like, can we watch a movie? Like a, you know, a bit, a bigger girl movie, like Harry Potter or something. So we'll put on a bit of a movie for awhile. And then I put her to bed. So I lie down with her. Um, I don't lie down until she's asleep. I lie down for like maybe five or 10 minutes. And then I say, I'm going now. And without fail, she will resist that as well. She always says, no, I know, stay. You know, don't.

 

Don't go, but I always say, no, it's my time now. I need to go have a shower. Um, yeah, go have a shower and then I start work. Every night I work, every single night I work on my laptop. Me and Scott lie in bed and we will watch something on Netflix, but I'll be working on my laptop the whole time. So that's my evenings. And like I said, often Scott is not home for evenings, but yeah, it's just all over the show.

 

Wednesdays, obviously the morning is the same and the twins go to kinder on this day as well. But on a Wednesday, I don't see clients on a Wednesday. What I do once I get home from dropping off the twins to kinder and Willow school is I do all the other work. So running a business, there is so much work to be done that isn't client stuff. So emails, prescription, finalizing, blood test interpretation.

 

podcast interviews, paying my staff, what else? Marketing, there is so much involved in Instagram, posts, my weekly email, my weekly newsletter, researching for podcast ideas. You know, yeah, there's a lot, there's so much more that I didn't list now, but you know, reordering stock.

 

Melanie (31:47.542)

Yeah. So this Wednesday, for example, I'm getting a photo shoot done because I haven't had many, I haven't had a recent business photo shoot done. So I need to update a photo of myself. So that'll take up most of my Wednesday because you get your hair and makeup done and then you get all your photos done. And then I pick up the twinnies at two 15 from kindy on a Wednesday. And then we go for a park play right next to their kinder. And then we go and we, we play at the park for about, you know, 45 minutes. And then at three, we go get Willow from school.

 

On a Wednesday, Willow has her tutor coming at four o'clock. I got a tutor for Willow because I felt like after COVID, she wasn't doing so well in spelling and reading. She's fantastic at maths, but yeah, spelling and reading, she wasn't doing so great. And I felt like she was struggling. So I found a local teacher's aide who does tutoring. So...

 

She's been amazing and I've seen absolute leaps and bounds with Willow. And that also could be because, you know, she's in grade two now and consolidating everything and, um, maybe I, you know, maybe puppy puppy in grade one, she was just finding it hard to put everything together, but it's all coming together really well. So that's, um, yeah. So Chloe's here four to five. And in that time.

 

the twins get an hour of TV. So when will his tutors hear that that's when they're allowed to watch TV, that's the first time in the day. And that's the only time of the day. So I forgot to mention after school, um, if we're home, that's when they get to use their TV time. So they get an hour a day. Um, they don't often even use the hour, but they are only allowed to watch something after they get home from kindy or school. Um, Thursday,

 

drop Willow at school and then it is my day with the twins again and we just do whatever we, you know, we have on obviously on a Monday to Tuesday. They do watch a little bit more TV throughout the day. Sometimes it's because they're fighting a lot and that I can, I can see they need some space from one another or I'm doing something and I just need a bloody break. So they tend to have like 10 minutes here and there scattered through the day or like we might go out for the whole morning.

 

We might go to gymnastics, the park, the shops, and then we get home and they have a little bit of TV before we go get Willow from school or something like that. And that seems to work fine. And then Thursday at four o'clock there, dad picks them up. So for anyone that doesn't know, I am not with the twins. I'm not with my daughter's father, biological father. So he comes to collect them at four o'clock and then they go to his house. So Thursday night is just a-

 

pretty much relax slash work night. I work the whole time on my laptop, but at least I'm sort of lying in bed and relaxing and working. So I work from, yeah, pretty much the minute they leave from four until I go to sleep on my laptop, doing all the bits and pieces, like I said, that people probably don't realize are inside running a business. Then Fridays is another work day. So...

 

Melanie (35:02.018)

They're at their dad's all day. Well, they go to kinder, but he has them all Friday, like the whole Friday. So I do, I, that's when I record my podcast every Friday. I write my weekly newsletter. I do. Yeah. Just, gosh, what did I do today? I did Instagram posts. I made up a herbal prescription, vaginal cream. I made up some anxiety herbs for a client and posted them. Um,

 

I forgot to mention as well, my mom works in my business. So she packs every single order. All the Evernatal and Iron Biotic orders is mom doing that. So she works at our house Monday, Wednesday and Friday. So Friday, her and I might troubleshoot anything or do a little bit of work together. I have, I book all my appointments on Fridays as well. So for example,

 

Melanie (35:59.278)

Cairo, whatever, like dentist, hair, that's all Fridays, catch up day for me. And then Saturday, I pick the girls up from their dad's house at 8.30 AM. And we go straight to the park normally and just have a little bit of connection time because it's been a day and a bit since I've seen them. So we just spend about an hour at the park and connect.

 

and it's beautiful because no one's ever at the park at 8.30am at this particular park. So it's like this really special thing we do every Saturday morning. And then we come home for a little bit or we'll go to the shops or just whatever really on a Saturday and then Willow has gymnastics 11.15 to 12.15 on a Saturday. And so I'll drop her off at that time. And then I take the twins to a park in the same suburb as Willow's gymnastics.

 

and play at a park until 12 15 get Willow. And then we just chill. We come back home normally, or we'll go, I shouldn't say that we eat 50 50. We'll either go hang out and have lunch and spend the afternoon at my mom's house with my dad, mom and dad, or we will go home and chill. The girls are pretty tired after their dad's house. I, you know, I speak pretty much all blended families. It's difficult. Like the routine is altered. They have their own bedtime.

 

at his house, he doesn't adhere to the same routine that I might have, for example. So, you know, a 630 bedtime at my house is never a 630 bedtime at his house. Like it's more like 730 from, yeah. So they're always, and they just, they get their emotions out, all separated families. You'll know what I'm talking about. When the kids come back to their primary care giver, they let every single emotion out that they've been holding in for a day and a half when you weren't there.

 

Melanie (37:53.822)

And so the twins are just very emotional on a Saturday. Willow, not so much anymore. She's old enough, but the twins, oh my gosh, I'm like a punching bag on Saturdays and it's just holding space and letting it all get out. And then it's like a resetting, you know, they're back to their normal self on set on Sundays. Um, Scott almost always, I would say works. Yeah. Friday night, Saturday night, or one of the two.

 

Melanie (38:23.746)

Um, or he'll work Sunday. Not like it's just, for example, um, this weekend he's working 6pm Friday, 6pm Saturday, and then 12pm Sunday, and then 8am Monday, 8am Tuesday, day off Wednesday, 2pm Thursday, 2pm Friday. So, you know, like it's all over the show. So, um.

 

Melanie (38:49.230)

I'm often home by myself with the girls that day night. So I just pop them to bed by myself and just chill. Actually, that's a lie. I work every night on my laptop, actually. It's funny when people say like, oh my God, I wanna run my business and you're so lucky. And oh my God, you're so this and it was all very lovely. But I sort of say like, yeah, but I work every single night. So.

 

Melanie (39:18.122)

You know, I kind of miss having a workplace that I check out from and I don't think about it again until I go back to my next shift. Um, but unfortunately any business owner will tell you it's not like that when you're in your own business, like it bleeds into every aspect of my life. Um, sometimes I'm better at holding boundaries than other times, but you know, so often I'm replying to messages on Instagram when I'm with the girls. And you know, like.

 

Oh shit, this needs attention quickly because mom's had a problem downstairs with an order. Yeah. So I think I used to be better at separating my work days from my mothering days, but I don't know lately. Yeah. Anyway, that's something I need to get better at, but yeah, I work every bloody night and it's shit and exhausting, but it is what it is. I want the time with the girls. I don't want to work five days a week or four days a week in my business. Um,

 

So that's the price I pay. I only, like I mentioned, I work 10 till three on a Wednesday, 10 till two on a, sorry, 10 till three on a Tuesday, 10 till two on a Wednesday, and then all day Friday. Friday's a really long day because they're not with me anyway. So I might as well smash out a long day. I don't see clients though on a Friday.

 

Melanie (40:45.282)

Um, but yeah, I don't want to work any more time away from them. So that's why I work every night and it's just a season when they're in school. I'll probably be stopping the night work unless we have a baby, in which case I'm kind of stuffed on I for another five years, which is weighing on my mind a little, um, and then Sunday we often do a family roast. So.

 

I'll invite Scott's parents over my parents. Sometimes it's all of us. Sometimes it's just my parents. I love doing that. I forgot to mention as well, we always do pizza nights that day. So if Scott's home Saturday night, even if he's not, he'll make pizzas earlier. He makes, yeah, he makes the dough, rolls the dough. His pizzas are the fricking best. I like that. I like that we have our set nights, like slow cook Tuesday and things like that. Like it just gives me some structure to my week with cooking.

 

Um, I always do a meal delivery, well, worst meal delivery. I often will do that one night a week. I want to say is every Saturday night. Cause I want to get all my groceries delivered on Sunday, but often Saturday night passes and like, Oh shit, I didn't do my delivery. I always get our fruit and veg box delivered on a Tuesday as well. I forgot to mention. So we get our fruit and veg. It's a, it's a random box, which means I don't pick anything in it, which I absolutely love.

 

It just takes the mental load completely like that aspect of that task off my shoulders. I don't have to. How many apples do I need? Do I need veggie? Do I need carrots? Do I need this? Do I need that? What am I using? I don't get a choice. So this is from series fair food, food fair series, food fair. Now I can't remember. Google series C E R E S food fair. That should come up. It's Melbourne based delivery.

 

It's $85 and it is so much fruit and veg organic guys. It's organic as well. So, so much fruit and veg that you just can't get from the supermarkets. Like you can't, you can't get a really wide range of organic fruit and veg from the shops, you can get your basics, but I was doing that from just bullies and coles to shopping in the organic section. And so many times I'm like, far out. I just have the same four veggies that I use constantly. But now.

 

I'm getting all these veggies that I wasn't able to get. Like I'm getting organic pomegranates and organic silverbeet, celery, what else? Lettuce, I'm just trying to think what I've got. Turnips, radishes, you get your onions, your potatoes, your cucumbers, zucchini, carrots.

 

Melanie (43:42.610)

I'm getting organic kale, which I was never really finding at the shops. And it's really helping me because I'm opening up the box and I'm like, okay, what am I cooking this week with these ingredients? Like I had heaps of silver beaten kale. So I made a greens pie from the book, Life After Birth. So I was able to use up all of the greens in that, which was just awesome. And because I have all these veggies, I'm like, oh, we're getting a new box in on Tuesday. I'm going to make a minestrone soup.

 

or I just, I'm using, I'm not wasting as much. That's what I meant to say. Because I'm like, okay, what am I, what am I gonna cook with this ingredient? Or I need to get rid of all this stuff. So anyway, that's really, I'm really loving that. So that comes every Tuesday. Sunday I'm meal, I don't like the word meal prep. It's not, it's not a conscious thing, but we're always home on a Sunday. Normally like Willow plays football Sunday morning, but her dad takes her and picks her up. That's his thing with her on a Sunday morning.

 

Um, we'll go out and do something like we might go explore Warren diet, or we might go for a hike. Um, we might go, yeah, find somewhere naturey, the park. Um.

 

Melanie (44:54.218)

I don't even know what we do, you know, just weekend stuff. But almost always Sunday afternoon, evening is at home and I love to cook. So I'll always be like cooking something for the week. So I made banana and oat muffins last Sunday and sausage rolls. So I made banana and oat muffins last Sunday and sausage rolls. So I made banana and oat muffins last Sunday

 

Melanie (45:16.286)

I made some sausage rolls. I might make a minestrone soup. I might make a meal that I freeze for the week because I always know there's a couple of nights where I'm on my own with the kids because Scott's at work. Like he'll do a, yeah, like a two to 10 shift. So I'm like, okay, I'm going to make a meal and then freeze it. And then I pull it out for that day. And that really helps me. So yeah, that's our weekly routine. I went on so many tensions there and that was a really long episode. But I hope that you might have found some

 

something you could you could put in place for your own life. Life's it's everything runs really well now like there was years where it wasn't. There were years and years of the twins of being like, just keeping my head above water, quite literally, and then taking a huge breath and then going back down again and having to hold my breath for far far too long, and then coming back up again. But I can honestly say hand over heart.

 

things are very smooth now. And I do think having my structured week and my routine helps that and sort of running my life by times. Like I know I need to be out of bed by 6.15 and I need to have started this by seven. And I just think it makes me less stressed. I enjoy it. I enjoy sticking to a routine. Maybe it's the dopamine hit. Okay, well.

 

Melanie (46:43.402)

I was going to say, I can't remember now. It's been a long episode. Oh, if you can give my podcast a rating and a review, I would be so, so grateful. It helps it get into more women's ears that need the help, that need to learn about different health things. So I'd be so grateful. It takes five seconds. All you need to do is scroll down on my podcast page and hit leave a review. You don't even need to write anything. You can just...

 

pick your stars. I'm hoping you pick five. Um, but yeah, if you also, if we're not friends on Facebook, oh my God, I said we're not friends on Facebook. I don't even use Facebook really. So I don't know why I said that. If we are not friends on Instagram, come on over and follow me. I am at the needle naturopath and yeah, I would love to hear from you. So have a beautiful day.

 

Melanie (47:39.950)

Thanks for tuning in. This was a really long episode, but I will catch you next week.