Menu

An unscientific tally of how long it takes mamas to do *all* the things

There really aren't enough minutes in the day

An unscientific tally of how long it takes mamas to do *all* the things

From juggling a dozen things at once to mastering the art of multitasking (even in our sleep), motherhood is all about stretching your minutes while simultaneously wondering how it's all going So. Dang. Fast.


And while a quick break to feed the baby here or a halt to comfort a crying toddler there may seem insubstantial, when you add everything up, there's no denying it: We're busy.

Studies and surveys back this up. We apparently spend 140 hours a year on bedtime, devote 98 hours a week to the duties of mothering and lose 44 days of sleep during the first year of a baby's life.

What is harder to tally up are all those moments spent on the little tasks that paint the big picture of motherhood.

Based on our experience, here are how many minutes we suspect the average mama of little ones spends on this beautiful, exhausting privilege of a job each year.

Snuggling in bed in the hope they'll let you sleep longer: 12 minutes a day or 4,380 minutes a year

Playing make-believe or reading stories before the sun is up: 25 minutes a day or 9,125 minutes a year

Breastfeeding, pumping or feeding: 120 minutes a day for mamas of babies or 43,800 minutes a year

Wiping things—counters, cheeks and booties: 20 minutes a day or 7,300 minutes a year

Getting yourself ready while trying to forget about whatever is happening in the other room: 5 minutes a day or 1,825 minutes a year

Reheating coffee: 3 minutes a day or 1,095 minutes a year

Preparing meals they may or may not eat: 40 minutes a day or 14,600 minutes a year

Picking up toys and then picking up toys again: 8 minutes a day or 2,920 minutes a year

Driving—chauffeuring, commuting or just going in circles around the block to help the baby sleep: 90 minutes a day or 32,850 minutes a year

Calling the doctor, sitting in the office and picking up prescriptions for yet another ear infection: 240 minutes a month or 2,880 minutes a year

Worrying, Googling and worrying some more: Some days 5 minutes some days all day for an average of 50 minutes a day or 18,250 minutes a year

Watching kids shows and then trying to get the theme songs out of your head: 35 minutes a day or 12,600 minutes a year

Wrestling kids in and out of car seats: 10 minutes a day or 3,650 minutes a year


Negotiating with an irrational toddler: 45 minutes a day or 16,425 minutes a year

Wiping tears—yours or theirs: 3 minutes a day or 1,095 minutes a year

Laughing about the wild, amazing things they say: 35 minutes a day or 12,775 minutes a year

Pointing out things to a kid before realizing the kid isn't even there: 1 minute a day or 365 minutes a year

Swapping outgrown clothes for new ones: 30 minutes a month or 360 minutes a year

Feeling sad about how quickly your kids are growing: 10 minutes a day or 3,650 minutes a year

Wishing your kids were *just a bit* bigger: 4 minutes a day or 1,460 minutes a year

Getting kids dressed: 10 minutes a day or 3,650 minutes a year

Getting kids dressed in new clothes when they promptly made a mess: 5 minutes a day or 1,825 minutes a year

Searching for a lost toy they need right now: 7 minutes a day or 2,555 minutes a year

Shutting yourself in the bathroom to scroll through Instagram in peace: 5 minutes a day or 1,825 minutes a year

Pinning things to Pinterest you'll never actually do: 16 minutes a day or 5,840 minutes a year

Ordering kids' things on Amazon you suddenly decide you can't live without: 5 minutes a day or 1,825 minutes a year

Saying things you never thought you'd say: 25 minutes a day or 9,125 minutes a year

Answering questions: 55 minutes a day or 20,075 minutes a year

Bathing, brushing teeth and tucking them in: 38 minutes a day or 13,870 minutes a year

Reading stories: 45 minutes a day or 16,425 minutes a year

Rocking, soothing or singing lullabies: 60 minutes a day or 21,900 minutes a year

Sitting by them as they fall asleep: 15 minutes a day or 5,475 minutes a year

Watching them sleep: 8 minutes a day or 2,920 minutes a year

Looking at baby pictures after bedtime: 10 minutes a day or 3,650 minutes a year

Thinking about who'll they'll grow up to be: 12 minutes a day or 4,380 minutes a year

Doubting yourself: 15 minutes a day or 5,475 minutes a year

Feeling proud of yourself: 10 minutes a day or 3,650

Wondering what you used to do with all your spare time: 2 minutes a day or 730 minutes a year

Thinking about how you wouldn't trade this chaos for anything: 8 minutes a day or 2,920

Tallied up, that's 311,857 minutes a year—or 5,198 hours a year.

And while that's an *exhausting* list, it sure isn't exhaustive. Chances are you are doing even more than that—from the moment the kids start to stir until long after they've gone to sleep (and often time in between).

So, just in case you don't tell yourself this enough, remember: You are amazing. And you've got this.

You might also like:

These new arrivals from the Motherly Shop are *so* good you need them all

Noodle and Boo, Mushie and Plan Toys—everything you need, mama.

Motherhood is hard work—finding great products and brands to make the journey easier doesn't have to be. Each week, we stock the Motherly Shop with brilliant new products we know you'll need and love from brands and makers that really care.

So, what's new this week?

Noodle and Boo: Holistic baby skin care

Through working with chemists who specialize in natural and holistic skin care, Noodle and Boo has developed exclusive formulas that nourish, replenish and protect especially delicate, eczema-prone and sensitive skin—including laundry detergent. Their signature, obsession-worthy scent—which is subtly sweet, pure and fresh—is the closest thing to bottling up "baby smell" we've ever found.

Mushie: Kids' dinnerware that actually looks great

We're totally crushing on Mushie's minimalist dinnerware for kids. Their innovative baby and toddler products leverage Swedish design to marry both form and function while putting safety front and center. Everything is created in soft, muted colors from BPA-free materials.

Plan Toys: Open-ended toys that last

Corralling and cleaning up the toys becomes less stressful when you bring home fewer, better, more beautiful ones. Plan Toys checks all the boxes. Made from re-purposed rubber wood, they're better for the planet as well.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

Mushie silicone baby bib

Mushie silicone baby bib

There's no going back to cloth bibs after falling in love with this Swedish design. The pocket catches whatever misses their mouths and the BPA-free silicone is waterproof and easy to wipe down between uses.

$13

Mushie kids' square dinnerware plate set

Mushie kids' square dinnerware plate set

We're totally crushing on the soft muted colors that flow with our table aesthetics and the thoughtful high-sided design that helps babies and toddler who are learning to feed themselves.

$15

Noodle and Boo nursery essentials kit

Noodle and Boo nursery essentials kit

Stocked with everything a new mama needs to care for her little one's delicate skin, Noodle and Boo's nursery essentials gift set is the perfect way to create a holistic and natural skin care routine from day one.

$45

Plan Toys doctor set 

Plan Toys doctor set

Ideal for quiet time and imaginative role play, we love the gorgeous planet-friendly doctor kit from Plan Toys. The rubber wood stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, thermometer, syringe and reflex hammer pack up neat and tidy into the red cotton case should they need to dash off on a rescue mission.

$30

Noodle and Boo instant hand sanitizer

Noodle and Boo instant hand sanitizer

Since we're buying and using hand sanitizer by the truckload these days, we're thrilled Noodle and Boo has made one we can feel good about using on little ones who cram their hands in their mouths 24/7. Not only does it kill 99.9% of germs, but it also leaves hands moisturized as well.

$10

Plan Toys natural wooden blocks set

Plan Toys natural wooden blocks set

A toy box isn't complete without a set of blocks—and this set is one of our new favorites. The sustainable, re-purposed wood is eco-friendly, comes at a relatively affordable price point and are certain to last well beyond multiple kids, hand-me-downs and even generations.

$30

Noodle and Boo family fun pack cleansing set

Noodle and Boo family fun pack cleansing set

Because their products were developed for delicate and eczema-prone skin, Noodle and Boo's full line of skin care has become a favorite among those with sensitive skin of all ages. This set is the perfect way to pamper the entire family.

$48

Mushie kids' round dinnerware bowl set

Mushie kids' round dinnerware bowl set

No need to sacrifice safety or design with the sustainable dinnerware from Mushie. Their minimalist, functional dishes are perfect for serving up meals and snacks to your tablemates who might hurl it to the floor at any point. They're made in Denmark from BPA-free polypropylene plastic mamas can feel good about and dishwasher and microwave-safe as well.

$14

Plan Toys geo stacking blocks

Plan Toys geo stacking blocks

The best engaging, open-ended toys are the ones that are left out and available, inviting little (and big!) ones to play. These beautiful gem-like blocks make for addicting coffee table play for the entire family.

$30

Plan Toys wooden green dollhouse

Plan Toys wooden green dollhouse

Energy-efficient design isn't just for grown-up real estate. This green dollhouse includes a wind turbine, a solar cell panel, electric inverter, recycling bins, a rain barrel, a biofacade and a blind that can adjust the amount of sunlight and air circulation along with minimalist furniture we'd totally love to have in our own houses.

$250

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

Shop

14 sweet 'just thinking of you' gifts for every mama

A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs.

Who says you have to wait for birthdays or holidays to give your bestie a great gift? A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs in these more-than-trying times. We've rounded up some of our favorite go-to gifts that are certain to be a bright spot in her week. But be warned, you may want to snag a few for yourself. (You deserve it, mama.)

Here are some our favorite "just because" gifts to give our hardworking mama friends.

New Mother face + body care duo

volition face + body care duo

This correcting oil and stretch mark minimizer is perfect for the pregnant mama looking to keep her pregnancy glow. The correcting oil brightens the skin while reducing dark spots, and the stretch mark minimizer works to smooth her ever-growing belly.

$70

Allover roller

esker allover roller

This jade roller goes beyond your typical face roller and can be used anywhere on the body. It works to increase stimulation and reduce puffiness and is perfect for applying any oils to the face or body. Plus, it feels like a mini spa treatment.

$65

Kombucha making kit

farmsteady kombucha making kit

What could be a more perfect gift for the health-obsessed friend? This kombucha making kit comes with everything you need to brew your own homemade green tea kombucha. They'll think this is the tastiest gift ever.

$45

Laetitia lipstick

cupid & psyche laetitia

This red lipstick is perfect for your makeup enthusiast bestie who is looking to spruce up her life in quarantine. Crafted in the United States, these bee and vegan-friendly and cruelty-free lipsticks are created to flatter all complexions. Cupid and Psyche Beauty makes finding the perfect red lip way too easy!

$23

Jigsaw puzzle

inner piecec jigsaw puzzle

Mamas need to destress now more than ever during quarantine. This adorable jigsaw puzzle is perfect for the mama who needs a brain break! The 500-piece puzzle designed by artist Ray Oranges features an abstract gradient design that fits a standard frame when completed. Bonus: It's printed on recycled paper and the company donates $1 from every puzzle sold to youth mindfulness programs.

$30

Matilda's Bloombox

matilda's bloombox

If we have to be stuck inside, we might as well have some gorgeous florals to brighten up the space. Matilda's Bloombox locally sources blooms, delivers them to her door and provides simple tips on how to arrange it into a beautiful bouquet.

$39

'I Am Enough' bracelet

I Am Enough bracelet

Let this dainty bracelet serve as a constant reminder to your bestie that she is enough. She'll wear this on her wrist and read this daily oath to herself, "I Am Enough."

$35

Glow assorted teas

vahdam low assorted teas

This tea gift box set covers the entire spectrum of flavors from sweet to spicy. Individually packaged in beautiful tins, your gal pal will feel like a queen sipping her morning tea. Originally $40, this set is currently on sale for just $24. We'll take two, please.

$24

Find your voice journal

find your voice journal

Journaling is a great way to ease anxiety and will slow your bestie's racing mind before bed. This gift is perfect for first time journalists and includes prompts, daily quotes and coloring pages to help her unlock her potential and find her voice.

$22

Premium frother

shore magic premium frother

This gift is fitting for your latte-sipping bestie who can't go a day without her coffee. All she has to do is add two scoops of collagen to her favorite drink, and she'll have a perfectly foamy drink ready in seconds. Skipping the drive-thru line has never been so easy!

$25

Bath soak infusion kit

maude bath soak infusion kit

Say hello to hydration! She'll be feeling smooth and relaxed as ever after a long bath soaking in these salts. This vegan + cruelty-free set incorporates dead sea salt and dehydrated coconut milk powder for an ultra hydrating experience.

$32

Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

It's a hard-earned title she answers to a hundred times per day. Whether she's new to the club or a seasoned professional, this delicate script 'mama' necklace is guaranteed to be a perfect fit.

$105

Superfood honey

Beekeeper's Naturals B.Powered honey

With a lack of sleep and jam-packed days, getting through the afternoon can be a real challenge. Send her a powerful pick-me-up in the form of a therapeutic blend of royal jelly, bee pollen, propolis and raw honey. It makes the ideal companion for tea, smoothies, yogurt or even on its on.

$17

Calming midnight mask with melatonin

Who doesn't deserve a reminder to pamper themself every once in awhile? Even better, this mask does all its work at night while you're sleeping with no extra effort needed. It's an amazing plant-powered antioxidant-packed mask that has melatonin, wild dandelion leaf and hyaluronic acid to rehydrate, repair and reset facial skin. It's so good, you might want to gift it to yourself. We won't tell, mama.

$68

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

Shop

Two weeks. I cannot believe that it has been two weeks since my second son was brought into this world. Two weeks since my husband and I welcomed baby Simon, the final piece of our little family.

But, here is the whopper: It has been two weeks since I have been the mom of a toddler and a newborn. I am now responsible for taking care of two tiny humans.

It absolutely blows my mind how much my life has changed in the last two weeks. It's definitely not all rainbows and unicorns around here, but things are going pretty well. This is me being cautiously optimistic.

What I have done is learned a lot about myself, my kids and my new life in the last two weeks.

Keep reading Show less
Life