I am so thrilled about today’s Day in the Life post! It only felt fitting that the week of Mother’s Day we’d get a peek into the lives of of one half of the Risen Motherhood team. I discovered the Risen Motherhood podcast when I was knee deep in the baby stages with my littles and have looked forward to new episodes every Wednesday morning since. If you’re a mom and you’ve asked me for a resource of any kind, there’s a 100% chance I sent you to RM. The gospel is at the core of every essay, podcast episode, and social media post and on top of that, Laura is just plain lovely. Enjoy!
Hi friends! I am thrilled to be here at Gold & Graphite today. I started following Jill quite a while ago and I immediately fell in love with her kiddos, aesthetic, mad lettering and illustration skills, and of course, above all, her heart for the Lord. I’ll never forget a post she wrote recently on Instagram about doing something that her “tomorrow self” will thank her for. Whether it’s eating, working out, or resting, it’s been a convicting challenge for me, and probably one of the best things I’ve heard to motivate me to not eat that extra dessert.
Anyway, a bit of background about me: I’m the Executive Director of Risen Motherhood, a nonprofit ministry that brings gospel-hope to moms. We work in the “digital media” realm, which means we produce podcasts, online articles, social media content ,and other digital resources all in the hopes of encouraging, equipping and challenging moms to apply God’s word to their everyday lives. It’s a gift to lead this organization and to believe in its mission so much. As the ED, I work 20 hours a week and I do a bit of everything. The team at R|M is incredibly skilled, so I’m grateful they make my job easy. On any given day, I’m working on editing, writing, content management, logistics, marketing, and more.
On top of being the ED at R|M, I also dabble a bit in social media consulting and web design and development, as well as home and new construction design. I would definitely classify these as “side gigs” and I only take on new work as I have capacity.
Of course, being a wife and mom is the most important role I play, and I’m blessed to be married to Mike who spends his day as an engineer and we have three kiddos together, Eli (6), Colette (4), and Eden (22 months). Eden, my youngest, has special needs, which means she has a lot of medical and therapy appointments that fill much of my week as well.
So what does managing all that look like in a day? It’s a little crazy, but here’s a peek at one day.
5 a.m. — I wake up. Per Jill’s “tomorrow self” advice, I’ve been working on waking up no earlier than 5 a.m., 5:30 a.m. is preferred, but sometimes I just can’t make it that far. For the past year and a half, my internal clock would wake up at 4 or 4:30 a.m. I was under a lot of stress, and life was full (too full) and it seemed to be the only way I could cope. Now that I’m setting more boundaries and learning to say “no,” more often, I’m working on finding a healthier sleep schedule.
After I wake, I get dressed, brush my teeth, and shuffle downstairs. I head straight for the coffee pot and bringing the entire carafe with me, I head into the library. I’m in Precepts at my local church and we’re studying Philippians, but the homework is only five days a week. On the rare weeks where I get it done in time, I’m working though the gospel of Luke. I’ll read two to three chapters at a time, then pick 1-4 verses to do a deeper dive into, using R|M’s Abide Method. Some days, if I’m short on time, I may just read, or listen in the car later using my Dwell app. (Side note: It’s completely dark when I wake up right now, but I took this photo a bit later in the day so you could actually see the room. All bottom shelves cleared out to protect from Eden the Destroyer.)
After about 20-30 minutes, I switch to work. Today I’m answering tons of emails to keep projects moving and working through our team’s list on Clickup, a “productivity platform” our team uses. (If you manage a small team, I highly recommend it. It has a learning curve, but now that we’re all bought in, we’ve never been more organized. And it’s cut our Voxer time by 70 percent.) Once I’m caught up and moved things as far forward as I can, I write a microblog for R|M to go out in about three weeks. We’re typically anywhere from 1-3 months ahead on social media.
7:15 — Colette, my middle daughter is up. She’s actually up around 6 a.m., but we have an Okay to Wake clock that mercifully keeps her in her room until 7:05 a.m. She and I go together to wake the other kiddos and get everyone ready for their day. I also take five minutes to do my hair and makeup (usually) and then we’re downstairs for breakfast—strawberries and yogurt today.
7:50 a.m. — Out the door for school and therapy. My oldest is in kindergarten and my four year old is in preschool two days a week and today is her day. They both attend the same school, so I go drop them off around 8:15 a.m. Then Eden and I head to therapy. She has privatized therapy three days a week, switching between occupational therapy, physical therapy and speech therapy. Today she has what they call “dual treatment” so she has OT and PT at the same time (the OT distracts her from the PT). I no longer go with her into these particular therapies, as I “cause too many tears.” I think she thinks I’ll rescue her (I mean, of course I will, I’m her mother.) so she cries more when I’m around. She seems to be doing really well with this method, and I appreciate the 45 minutes of quiet to get something done, so it feels like a win/win. Today I’m reading a book with an eye towards endorsement, so I’ve brought along a printed copy of the PDF I was sent. I don’t know about you, but I cannot read 200 pages on my laptop or phone, so I always like to print them out, even though it’s a million pieces of paper.
9:15 a.m. — Eden is brought back to me and we head out for some errands. We stop by the grocery store to get groceries and pick up Eden’s prescriptions, then we stop by a staging project I’m working on to tweak a few things and take note of what else we need to get. Before I know it it’s 11 a.m. and I have to head back to the school to pick up Colette.
11:15 a.m. — Preschool pick up. I grab Colette and we head to Chick-fil-a. Much to her disappointment, it’s drive-through only today, as I have a phone call at 12 p.m. I need to get back for. The girls and I eat in the car as we head back to the house.
12 p.m. Eden is napping and Colette is playing trains in the library while I take my call. It’s quick, so 15 minutes later, Colette and I are preparing dough for a chocolate tart I’ll serve a in a couple days when when we have some friends over for dessert. She loves to help me cook, and has actually gotten pretty good at it!
1 p.m. — Colette goes down for her nap. Some days she sleeps, some days she just reads and plays quietly, the only rules are she has to stay in her room. Ninety nine percent of the time, she falls asleep within five minutes. While the kids nap, I get to work. Today I’m just working on a couple larger projects, writing and editing some planning documents for fundraising and donor communication and outlining our fall schedule. I mentioned that we try to be pretty far ahead on social media, but that’s not the case for the podcast. While we’d like to be 3 months ahead, sometimes we’re scrambling a day or two before. But this year, we’re setting out to change that. Planning the fall schedule in April is a good start.
2:45 p.m. — I wake up both girls (the worst) to go pick up my son from school. I give Eden her medication, pack a snack for the car for the two older kiddos, and head out the door.
3:30 p.m. — We swing by the library on the way home to pick up a few books we have on hold and I let the kids play for a half hour or so. We love the local library and I have grand plans to spend lots more time there this summer. (Sorry for the lime green, I probably should have put this picture in black and white.)
4:30 p.m. — We’re back home, so Colette and I start dinner after she has a chance to change her clothes. (While she’d prefer to change every hour on the hour, we’ve made a deal that she gets one outfit change a day.) Tonight it’s beef and broccoli and Colette is in fine form as my sous chef. Eli heads outside to play with his cousins after he finishes his homework. We live next door to my brother, sister-in-law, and their three kids, and It. Is. A. Gift. Eden plays on the floor, unloading drawers, and rearranging the bottom shelves of the pantry.
6 p.m. — My husband is home and I call Eli in from outside. Eli heads straight upstairs to shower because he’s so dirty, and I set the table and get the food cooled down for the kiddos while we wait for him. (Hot Mom Tip: I put their plates in the freezer.)
6:30 p.m. — We start the bedtime routine. My husband puts Eden down first because she has a handful of evening routines for medication/health that take a bit longer. But it’s great bonding time for my husband and her and I’m thankful he’s willing to do it. The kids and I stay downstairs to clean up the living room and the kitchen. I’ve been working recently on having them help me around the house more, so we play a rousing game of hot and cold for the odd dishes they don’t know where to put as they unload the dishwasher. Then we play “spot the difference” between the cabinet front I’ve washed down and the ones they’ve been assigned to. It’s hard to have young kiddos help with chores, but I’m learning to slow down and see it as a training ground. Once I shifted my perspective from having my kids do chores to “help me do less work” to having my kids do chores as a chance to “teach them how to work,” it became easier. Now I see it as a chance to show my children how important it is to serve others, how to show respect and stewardship for the things God has given us, how be generous with their time and talents, how to work hard even when they don’t want to, and to do everything as unto the Lord (among many, many other lessons).
7 p.m.– My husband calls for the kids, so they run upstairs as I finish up a few cleaning tasks, make coffee for the morning, and head for the couch. Tonight I’m working on a website redesign for a local business, so I make a few tweaks until my husband comes downstairs. When he returns we talk for a bit then read side-by-side. Now, this isn’t a normal picture, we usually watch TV, but we recently gave up our TV for a month so we would both be motivated to read more books. (Hence, the library trip earlier today.) If you’re stuck in an evening funk, I highly recommend it. It’s been amazing for our marriage, pushing us to have more conversation at night, do things we usually think we’re “too tired to do” (like have a bonfire), and for me to get through my ever-growing reading list.
9 p.m. We’re also better about going upstairs at a decent hour. As we’re both early risers, we like to go to bed at a decent hour. Tonight we head up to get ready for bed around 9 p.m. I read one last chapter of a book and the lights are out around 9:30 p.m.
The days around here are crazy and full, but I love it. Thank you for following along on one of my days—if you’d like to follow along and see more peeks of my life, check out www.laurawifler.com, or on Instagram, @laurawifler.
Thank you so much, Laura, for sharing your day with us! I just started Parks and Rec over but giving up the TV as motivation to read more books is sounding very, very tempting right now. Speaking of books, the Risen Motherhood book comes out September of this year and you can pre-order it now right here! I have and am eagerly awaiting the day that Amazon box arrives on my doorstep. In the meantime, every post linked here will lead you to a Risen Motherhood resource I have recommended in the past and still love and stand by today.