A Helicopter Mom’s Daily Schedule

A Helicopter Mom’s Daily Schedule

I have been devoting significant chunks of time during this hyper-enjoyable Baltimore vacation to reading an absolutely silly book called The Perfect Baby Handbook: A Guide for Excessively Motivated Parents by Dale Hrabi. This book is a laugh-out-loud satirical handbook for helicopter parents dead-set on raising perfect children. What is a perfect baby? Crazy-glue attached, helmet-wearing overprotected, early admission to Harvard at 6 months…This book is definitely one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen, and here’s one of my favorite excerpts:

A prototypical daily routine for a perfect baby
When cultivating greatness, the first step is to establish a schedule. Perfect infants have much they want to achieve each day and like to know that regular blocks of time have been set aside for key activities such as feeding, sleeping, smiling, the gleeful destruction of Mommy’s new Vanity Fair, and slack-jawed staring.

The legendary routine outlined here—ideal for a four- to six-month-old—had its public debut in the home of Mohinder and Alison Singh of Phoenix, Arizona in 2008.

7:00 a.m. – Baby wakes up.

7:01 a.m. – Surveys her domain.

7:03 a.m. – Notes that Exersaucer is dusty again.

7:04 a.m. – Announces this news piercingly.

7:07 a.m. – Enjoys day’s first feeding; forgets Exersaucer crisis.

7:31 a.m. – Burps triumphantly.

7:32 a.m. – Savors brisk lavender aromatherapy massage.

7:40 a.m. – Endures diaper change by flipping through Bon Appétit.

7:45 a.m. – Considers toy options.

7:48 a.m. – Compresses Squeezy Snake while murmuring what sound like conjugations of the French verb péter.

7:50 a.m. – Is interrupted by Daddy, who’s off to work.

7:51 a.m. – Cocks head at nautical motif on Dad’s tie. Sailboats? Really? In mid-winter?

7:52 a.m. – Waves goodbye to Dad in adorably “feeble” manner. Throws in crying fit for free.

7:59 a.m. – Pulls self together.

8:08 a.m. – Finds thoughts drifting to Martin Scorcese’s early work.

8:14 a.m. – Falls in and out of love with a keychain.

8:20 a.m. – Baby Pilates (10 minutes).

8:30 a.m. – Poking Things (20 minutes).

8:50 a.m. – Poking Things that Turn Out to Be Mom’s Eyes (1 minute).

8:51 a.m. – Rolls over.

9:01 a.m. – Performs loose interpretation of the Bride’s solo dance from Martha Graham’s 1944 ballet Appalachian Spring.

9:10 a.m. – Silent Meditation (1 minute).

9:11 a.m. – Semi-Silent Meditation (4 minutes).

9:15 a.m. – Meditative Shrieking (15 minutes).

9:30 a.m. – Second feeding.

10:00 a.m. – Nap.

12:30 p.m. – Wakes up; coughs discreetly.

12:33 p.m. – Diaper change.

12:38 p.m. – Declares that new diaper makes her look chunky.

12:40 p.m. – Supervises alterations.

12:45 p.m. – Third feeding.

1:20 p.m. – Visits with dignitaries, heads of state, or (on slow days) Mom’s friend Rachel.

1:45 p.m. – Perfects vacant facial expressions (10 minutes).

1:55 p.m. – Sobs (15 minutes).

2:10 p.m. – Power nap.

2:12 p.m. – Reviews atomic structure of favorite amino acid.

2:27 p.m. – Lollygags (3 minutes).

2:30 p.m. – Meets with perfume experts re: development of signature scent.

3:00 p.m. – Fourth feeding.

3:30 p.m. – Nap.

5:20 p.m. – Wakes up abruptly.

5:22 p.m. – For disorienting moment, thinks she’s trapped in the jungle in ‘Nam…

5:23 p.m. – Oh the filth, the baking sun, the stinking Vietcong with their foul—

5:25 p.m. – Diaper change.

5:30 p.m. – Fifth feeding.

6:00 p.m. – Grasps concepts.

6:10 p.m. – Does other things to concepts…

6:15 p.m. – Romps! (8 minutes).

6:23 p.m. – Prepares for Daddy’s return by adjusting face into mournful expression.

6:25 p.m. – Greets Daddy resentfully.

6:26 p.m. – Fails to resist pleasure of being tickled by Daddy.

6:30 p.m. – Reclaims her dignity.

6:32 p.m. – Completes clapping class homework.

6:46 p.m. – Drastic Mood Swings (14 minutes).

7:00 p.m. – Sinks into soothing bubble bath.

7:01 p.m. – Recalls with dismay the need to actually be washed.

7:03 p.m. – Diversionary Splashing.

7:30 p.m. – Final diaper change.

7:36 p.m. – Watches Daddy’s lips move as he reads something educational aloud.

7:46 p.m. – Interrupts to request Accuweather forecast.

7:50 p.m. – Final feeding.

8:12 p.m. – Burps national anthem.

8:15 p.m. – Says good night to the stickers on nursery window.

8:16 p.m. – Waves at parents.

8:20 p.m. – Effortlessly drifts to sleep.

8:37 p.m. – Tormented by dreams of dusty Exersaucer.

8:40 p.m. – Wakes up screaming.

8:43 p.m. – Though still trembling, manages to execute a few soothing shadow puppets.

8:47 p.m. – Drifts to sleep, this time for good; dreams of complex quilting patterns.

All content ©2009 Dale Hrabi | The Perfect Baby Handbook


  1. Very funny. It’s kind of exhausting if you think about it 🙂

  2. Cute! It’s great to have a good sense of humor with babies, because if we get too stressed about their schedules nothing will ever happen :).

  3. got dizzy half way thru- time for my nap!

  4. Meditative Shrieking

    Lol! That was too much! I love it. Thank you for posting this. I am still cracking up.

  5. This is great!! Thank you so much for posting, showed it to my husband and he is laughing as well! Gotta show this to my family every time they begin pestering me about putting our baby on a schedule!

  6. I hate to be unoriginal, but this really was hilarious. I had trouble deciding my favourite moment. Thanks for the laugh, I needed it!!

    (Once I was on a plane when I read a book by Seinfeld, I can’t remember which one, but I was cracking up so loud and didnt realise because I still had my headphones on …. until I flipped over and they popped off and I heard myself. Oops.)

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