Mandy Brignon is a working mom who teaches in Frisco and happily raises her son Major, 5, and daughter Charlie Anna, 1. She is married to Brit, a civil engineer, who also works in Frisco. The family lives in the quiet country town of Celina.
6AM Wake up and put in contacts. I get dressed, do makeup and hair, and brush teeth all while listening to the news on television. Charlie Anna is up early so I gladly kiss and squeeze her and start with her breakfast, which is still a bottle (very easy in the morning).
6:30-7AM Brit wakes up and hides in the bathroom. He is not a morning person so it’s a while before he’s ready to speak. I change Charlie Anna and brush her eight tiny teeth—something she loves! Wake up Major (who is very much like his father and does not like mornings).
7AM Brit starts coaxing Major to get clothes on, wash face, brush teeth … it’s not an easy job. Our plan in the morning works most days. Each adult is responsible for getting one child ready. Sort of like divide and conquer. Charlie Anna and I kiss and hug our “boys” and we are out the door. Brit will take Major to preschool a bit later.
7:20AM I drop off Charlie Anna at the baby sitter’s. Thankful that my baby girl has a warm and loving environment to stay at, and it’s a block from my school.
7:30-8:15AM At school. Get the classroom ready for the day and pick up students. Talk to my kids (students) about anything and everything as they unpack and start morning work. Listen to announcements.
8:45AM Whole group lesson in math—money and adding/subtracting value. Then, on to partner work. It’s interesting, and sometimes amusing, to watch 8- and 9-year-olds problem solving.
10:15-11AM Take students to P.E. Check teacher mailbox, catch up on e-mails, return calls, grade papers.
11:30AM Recess! A wonderful break in the day. I am not on duty today so I stay in and work on plans and prepare materials.
12PM Lunch. I scarf down cafeteria food while monitoring students.
1:45PM Writing. I share a personal narrative with the students about Major and Charlie Anna. They enjoy hearing my writing (thank goodness) and then they are off to their own journals.
2:15PM Science. Begin a new objective about forms of energy. They kids don’t seem too interested. I will approach this lesson in a different way tomorrow.
2:45-3:20PM Pack up, dismiss students and visit with parents and teachers outside. It’s nice to talk to adults for a change. I love working with children and find them far more enthusiastic and energetic than adults. But Phineas and Ferb discussions don’t go that deep.
4PM Pick up kids (not students). This is such a rejuvenating part of my day. I love teaching and being “Mrs. Brignon.” But, I crave my children while I’m away from them and I love being “Mom” even more. I head down the street to get Charlie Anna. Chat a bit with Mrs. Cynthia, the sitter.
4:30PM Drive to Sandcastle Private School. Major started there at age 2. He has learned so much! When I walk into his classroom he is constructing a railroad track with a friend. He sees me and smiles, but then goes back to work. It’s comforting to know he loves his school and that he is engrossed in this particular project, but a little sad that he doesn’t run to me giving hugs and kisses.
5PM Home. A nice surprise, Brit is home early. He is already busy working in the yard. I put things away, change into comfy clothes, and shed the jewelry. I start dinner while Charlie Anna and Major play.
6PM Soft beef tacos, fiesta beans and rice for dinner. Nothing fancy, but semi-homemade. Brit and I talk while Major constructs his own mess of a taco and Charlie Anna experiments in feeding herself.
7PM I do bath time while Brit cleans the kitchen.
7:20PM Begin bedtime instructions to Major: brush teeth, get jammies on, pick out a book, clean up toys, etc.
7:50PM Read to Major, say prayers and snuggle. He may be too busy to hug and kiss me at school, but when it’s bedtime he’s back to being my little boy.
8PM Bedtime: Round 2. Wrestle with Charlie Anna to get pajamas on. She would much rather be naked. Brit gives her a nighttime bottle while I go on the great pacifier search. We have a dozen pacifiers hiding somewhere in the house. All I need is one!
8:15-9:10PM Put Charlie Anna in bed. Jump on the computer and run through Facebook, check out the news on MSN, and then feel guilty because I know I should be working around the house. Wash bottles and get bags and clothes ready for tomorrow. Fold clothes—a chore I absolutely loathe. But this load belongs to Charlie Anna so the clothes are so tiny and cute.
9:10-9:30PM Work with Brit in the attic moving boxes around and changing out seasonal items.
9:30PM Bath time for me. This is the time I get to relax.
9:50-10:15PM Check through the house for things to put away and lights to turn off. Kiss kids as they sleep and leave Brit on the couch watching BBQ Pitmasters (his time to relax). I hop into bed and debate over reading or watching TV. I choose reading first, then lose interest so the TV wins.
10:15PM Brit gets ready for bed. We talk a while. He turns the TV to ESPN. After 10 years of marriage I’ve come to appreciate that channel. It’s a great way to fall asleep.