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A Saturday in the life of Hollee Hirzel

Hollee retired from her finance career in 2012 to be a stay-at-home mom. She lives in University Park with her husband, Zac, and their two boys, Tommy, 7, and Ryan, 4, and she’s involved with a number of local charities, including the Junior League of Dallas, SMU Cox School of Business, the Great Investors’ Best Ideas Foundation and The Michael J. Fox Foundation.  

6:30AM I wake up, brush my teeth and do a five-minute meditation. Some friends and I have decided that a morning stretch and meditation will make the days smoother and keep us focused on things that matter. I get back into bed for a few minutes and watch the news.

6:45AM I watch Ryan “read” books and talk to his stuffed animals on the video monitor. I’m always amazed at the sheer volume of stuff in his little bed. There are at least two dozen books, four pillows, six blankets and numerous stuffed animals. It’s like a playroom on springs. Pray Ryan doesn’t start screaming to get out of bed and wake up his brother.

6:50AM Ryan’s hollering that it’s wake-up time. I ask my husband if he wants to get him. He doesn’t, but maybe if I keep asking, someday I’ll get a yes?!

7:00AM Ryan has recently taken an interest in his attire and has narrowed his options down to two shirts. It makes laundry brutal, but I know he’ll either be wearing a golf shirt or a Captain America shirt. Today we have to debate why he has to wear his T-ball uniform instead of Captain America.

7:06AM Ryan did, in fact, wake his brother. Tommy changes and makes his bed. It’s precious how he tries to get the sheets and blankets straight and the throw pillows just right too. He puts a star on his star chart for making his bed and heads downstairs.

7:10AM Tommy makes Eggo Nutri-Grain blueberry waffles, and I pour white milk for Ryan and chocolate milk (really regular milk with a dash of chocolate to fool him) for Tommy. I wish I were a good cook, but I’m horrible, so frozen waffles or cereal is the breakfast of champions at our house.

7:24AM The boys have inhaled almost an entire box of waffles so they get to play Monopoly while I jump in the shower. The boys have become obsessed with board games recently. It’s great because they play together without tackling (at least for a few minutes).

8:00AM The best part of a busy Saturday is not packing lunchboxes. I don’t know why I despise packing lunches so much, but I appreciate weekends for this fact alone.

8:30AM I get the boys dressed in their soccer and T-ball uniforms and into the car. I throw in the water, snacks, sunscreen (although I’ll probably forget to put it on the kids) and cleats. Let the day begin.

9AM Ryan has his first T-ball game. Tommy helps field the balls. Ryan is so excited that he’s finally big enough to play.

9:45AM Grab the snacks, thank the coach and jump in the car to drive from Bradfield to the Town North YMCA.

10AM We arrive at Ryan’s soccer game. Get the snacks, thank the coach and repeat. 

10:45AM Drive home, throw on some makeup and head to a dear friend’s baby shower. It’s so peaceful driving along White Rock Lake on my way to the ladies’ brunch while Zac has to get the kids bathed, changed and fed. The games are over, but the parties are starting. I set things out for them before I left.   

12:30PM I’m home. I grab the presents for the two parties. Both start within 30 minutes of each other. Zac and I play rock-paper-scissors — I win! I choose to take Tommy to the 6-year-old birthday party. 

1:15PM It’s a drop-off party and a sweet mom offered to drive Tommy home, so Zac, Ryan and I will all go to the 4-year-old birthday party. This should be naptime, but it’s Saturday so we power through. 

1:30PM Ryan’s excited about the bounce house. He throws his shoes off in the car and runs to play with the other boys and girls in the bounce house. I think my boys have a sixth sense that allows them to know where bounce houses are from miles away. We had just turned onto the party street when he started shouting with excitement.     

2:10PM I give Ryan the three-minute warning because we have to be home by 2:20pm to meet his brother.

2:15PM The tantrum begins. Guess we needed that nap. Zac grabs him and runs toward the car while I walk backwards apologizing and thanking the host. 

3:00PM Snack time with the kids. I give them fruit since they both had pizza and birthday cake for lunch and also because grapes and apples are quick and easy. I let the boys watch some TV on the couch in hopes I can get some laundry done. Zac went to work after the party but is supposed to be back to pick me up at 7 for dinner.

4:30PM I take the kids to Smith Park by our house and let them run wild and tire themselves out a little more. The kids play football and soccer, so I catch up on some emails on my iPhone. I call Zac and suggest we postpone dinner tonight.

5:15PM Time for the kids’ dinner — a grilled cheese for Ryan and a burrito (cut-up hot dogs, tortillas and shredded cheese, all kept separate) for Tommy.

5:55PM We brush teeth and I get the boys in the bath — lots of bubbles, warm water and as many toys as we can fit. The kids squirt each other and try to wash their own hair.   

6:20PM The boys pick out matching PJs and some games to play. Sorry, chess and Hiss. We have a good time (since I’m the only girl in the house, I get to be the first player). 

7:10PM We watch 30 minutes of an old DVRed SMU football game.

7:40PM Read stories and say prayers in Tommy’s room (because the older kid room is way cooler). Call Zac at work and let him know I’m glad we’ve postponed dinner. He agrees and stays at work a little while longer.

7:50PM I put Ryan to bed, then go to Tommy’s room and read a chapter book about George Washington. (He picked it out — he’s already smarter than me.) 

8:15PM Shower and blow-dry my hair. I check the weather report for Sunday. Of course, they are calling for rain, and I have naturally crazy curly hair. Oh well.

8:30PM Zac comes home and brings takeout from Zoë’s for us. 

9:15PM Read my new book Cleaning House, check emails and watch TiVo before bed. 

10:30PM Off to dreamland in my comfy bed.  

Published December 2015