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How Denton Mom Ilona Jade, Photographer and Nurse, Spends Her Friday

The Seattle transplant works from home with her 1-year-old in tow.

Nurse and photographer Ilona Jade has a 1-year-old baby girl, Jolene, with her husband of seven years, Andrey. The trio recently moved to Denton from Seattle, Washington, and enjoys hanging out with friends, traveling and learning together—aka watching documentaries, reading biography and history books, and visiting museums. 

6:30AM My alarm goes off. My baby is crying from her room to be picked up, and I nudge my husband to go bring her for cuddles and breastfeeding. Today is my day off, so I take it easy.

7AM My husband gets out of bed to start working, and my baby girl and I snuggle some more in bed as she snoozes.

8AM After taking another catnap, Jolene and I are up and ready to conquer our day. We get our outfits on, brush our teeth and head to the kitchen to make breakfast. Delicious Stumptown coffee is ready for me to enjoy.

8:10AM I let Jolene play in her play area as I prepare breakfast for the three of us.

8:30AM We eat breakfast as a family, and my hubby and I talk about our goals for the day and what we are looking forward to.

8:50AM More playtime for baby while I set goals for the day and write out my lists of things to do.

9AM After tidying up the kitchen, I sit down at our dining table with my Bible study materials and do some learning and devotionals. The current study is on 2 Samuel, so there is a lot to chew on.

9:30AM Baby Jolene crawls over to me and whines; she is ready for her nap, so I snuggle her and put her down in her crib.

9:45AM Jolene has fallen asleep after some crying, so now I can get to work and edit some photos. I tweak my photography website a bit and add a new photo. I also scroll through Instagram and respond to emails.

10:45AM I’ve managed to edit a photo shoot, partially, but I’m getting restless sitting in my chair, so I get up to do my morning stretches and a light workout.

11:15AM Jolene is up from her morning nap, and I change her and put on a cute baby outfit—also packing one to go because messes happen. We are heading out to meet with another mama for a lunch play date.

11:45AM I meet up with my friend at Seven Mile Café. As we settle in, I order some freshly squeezed orange juice. I am tempted to get their Stumptown brewed coffee, but I already had coffee this morning, and I know I would get too jittery. We hang out and catch up as we try to keep our kiddos entertained long enough for us to finish our food. The kids are getting restless, so we decide to go to a nearby playground and let the kids get their energy out.

1:30PM We finish off our play date, and I head home, but not before I remember I need a few things from the grocery store for the meals I have planned.

2:30PM As soon as we arrive home, Jolene falls asleep in her car seat. I carry her over to her crib, tiptoeing and hushing so I don’t wake her up.

2:40PM I sit down on our cozy couch with my glass water bottle and phone and take a little breather. I check my phone updates and get carried away looking at recipes for dinner.

3:00PM I hop into my home office and do some more editing—I have five shoots to edit and get out to my clients.

3:30PM I have a call scheduled with a client to discuss her wedding plans and what she envisions for her big day. After that, another client call but for a family shoot. I jot down notes as we talk about their family and all the quirks and special things about them.

4PM Jolene is up from her nap, and I give her a snack as I throw some chicken breast into the Crock-Pot to make my favorite recent dish: buffalo chicken–stuffed sweet potatoes. I’m drooling thinking about it.

4:30PM Time to edit more photos as Jolene plays nearby in her large playpen that is overloaded with toys. I stare at her and get filled with emotions wishing I could play with her. She is just so darn cute, and how lucky am I to hang out with her all day!

5:30PM My hubby gets home from work, and I give him a big, warm hug and kisses. I’ve missed the man! Jolene giggles as she reaches for her daddy; she might love him more than me sometimes.

5:45PM I take a break and sit down with my hubby, tea in hand, on our comfy sofa, and we talk about our days and what’s new. I tell him how excited I am for dinner. I love cooking, and he sure knows it.

6:30PM I prep dinner and serve it on pretty gray plates. Andrey is eager to try it but not before I take a snap for my Instagram. I love creating pretty meals!

7:30PM After dinner, we play with Jolene and have more family time. Andrey grabs his guitar and sings a few songs for us. Jolene dances and claps. This is my favorite time, so I savor the moments. I breastfeed Jolene again.

8PM It’s getting late, so we get Jolene ready for bed. As I clean up after dinner, Andrey changes Joey into her pajamas and reads her a book before putting her in her crib.

8:30PM I pack our lunches for tomorrow (I will be picking up a shift at the hospital), and I check some more things off my to-do list.

9PM Hubby and I snuggle up on the couch and talk a little before turning on The Office. I just started watching it last month for the first time.

10PM We get ready for bed—yawn! It’s been a great day.