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A Day in the Life of Leslie Popplewell Ferguson

Leslie Popplewell Ferguson is marketing manager for an animal health pharmaceutical company. She recently relocated to Fort Worth from Indianapolis and is working on getting adjusted to life in Texas. Leslie is a member of the Young Alumni Board at Purdue University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and directs their outreach to young alumni. Her husband Dan stays at home with their 2-year-old son Levi.

6AM I am up at 6am to walk one or both of our pugs. The older, Louis, a former quadriplegic, quite often doesn’t want to walk. He doesn’t get out from under the covers today, so Duke and I go for a walk to the Trinity Trail and back. Dan and Louis walk later. My husband is a stay-at-home dad since we moved to Fort Worth, and our son doesn’t always get up before I leave for my office by 8am. Today he does. Yay! It makes for a long day when I don’t get to see him until the evening.

7:45AM I get a great smile that makes my day but is quickly gone when I lay down Levi to change his very full diaper. He has always hated the diaper change. He gets milk first thing and asks for a cup of cereal. He likes to carry around his cup of cereal just out of reach of the dogs so they follow him. That keeps him occupied while I finish getting ready, and I get hugs and kisses before I head out the door. The weather is supposed to warm up enough for Dan and Levi to get to the Fort Worth Zoo today. It makes for a good day when they can get outside.

8:00AM I will never get used to traffic for no reason. I’ve lived in Northern New Jersey, Atlanta and Chicago. None of these places had the amount of traffic per capita or overabundance of construction as Fort Worth does. It is difficult to gauge when to leave to get to the office at a certain time because traffic can be stopped at anytime on any given day; I’ve given up on trying to figure it out.

8:30AM I get in to the office in time to get through my email, check sales numbers and read a couple of articles in trade journals before my first meeting at 10am – upcoming product launch strategies.

11AM Parasiticides team meeting and lunch at my desk – leftover turkey chili.

1PM I have been working with industry trade organizations developing training and have blocked off a couple hours to create content for training. It’s a good day, because I get a text with a picture of Levi at the park.

3PM Two-hour marketing department meeting. After this strategy session, I get back to my office and I’ve missed more than 30 emails. I thought most of the people I get emails from were in that meeting, ugh!

5:05PM I put my foot down and am out the door just after 5pm. I try to get home to see the family and catch the national news. I rarely make it on time. I just need my daily dose of Brian Williams. I haven’t gotten used to the national news being on at 5:30pm. I need to record it so I can watch it later.

6PM Dan was making dinner when I got home. He usually does; I’m not sure if it’s a reflection of my cooking. No matter, this gives me some one-on-one time with Levi. He loves basketball and trains. Tonight we put together a pretty awesome track for him to hook all his engines and cars into one giant train. He lies on his side and pushes them around the track, over the bridges and through the rail crossing. He loves it. I love watching him. I’m adopted and when Levi was born it was the first time I had been in a room with someone I was biologically related to since I was born. I probably think about this everyday and how blessed I am to have this awesome kid in my life.

6:45PM After dinner we go for a family walk down to the trail. Louis, Duke, Dan, Levi and myself – we are a motley crew. We let Levi walk in an effort to burn off some of his endless 2-year-old energy (it never works). A restaurant along the trail often has live music, so we stop and let Levi dance for a few minutes, and then we are off again.

7:15PM Giving Levi a bath is something I love to do, because it is the half-hour of my day that I get to spend just with him. A few weeks ago, we bought him a basketball goal for the tub. He is channeling Jimmy Chitwood as he makes shot after shot. After his bath we get him dressed for bed while I fight him shooting baskets in his room. I try to let him play for a little bit while Dan and I clean up.

8PM Levi has never been an early-to-bed kind of kid. He could stay up to 11pm if we let him. We turn the TV off at 8pm and focus on cleaning up toys and reading books. I pick out five books, and Levi picks out four more. Tonight’s reading list: How Do You Hug a Porcupine?, Giraffes Can’t Dance, The Night Before Christmas, How do Dinosaurs Love Their Dogs?, Little Blue Truck , Hippos Go Berserk!, Ça Bouge and How do Dinosaurs Say Good Night? After requesting to re-read a few, my voice is tired.

8:45PM We tell Levi it’s time to go to bed. He grabs his milk and his dinosaur train and runs to his room. He’s always happy to go, but that changes quickly. He finds a ball and shoots it one more time. Dan picks him up, and we give hugs and kisses and he puts him in his crib. We walk out and get the “I’m-mad-at-the-world-cry” for about two minutes.

9PM We lucked out tonight, and Levi is happily playing with his train as 9pm approaches. This gives Dan and me about one hour of semi-quality time to plan the week and to catch up on some of the crazy things Levi did today. Bed at 11pm is the goal. We head to bed after Dan walks the boys for the last time. We are crowded out of our bed by two pugs. Tomorrow night’s discussion: purchasing a king-size bed.