10 Ways to be productive at a 3hour Glucose Test

Friday, July 18, 2014

After two perfectly passed 1hour Glucose tests for my first two pregnancies, it took this third baby to finally fail it.  

I was bummed.  To say the least.

Obviously I don't want to have gestational diabetes, but more so than that - three hours of sitting at the lab seems like a huge waste of time for this pregnant mumma of two.  I can handle the 1 hour test..heck, 1 hour with an abundance of doctor office magazines and quiet - that's practically a vacation!  

But 3 full hours without kids feels like a long time of not getting things done.  Uninterrupted time is like an efficiency gold mine and I was disheartened that I'd need to commit myself to a full morning of basically waiting around.

So in an effort to make use of my full 3 hours despite the confines of the hospital's first floor - I brought along some activities to do during the time that would make me feel like I had not wasted away three hours of perfectly good kid-free time.

The key here is to make sure you have your supplies with you.  I packed up a tote with the following items to make sure I could be as productive as possible at the appointment:

  • my planner
  • a pen
  • blank paper
  • cellphone & headphones
  • thank you note cards
  • my current leisure-reading book
  • new baby preparation book
  • my creative journal

Once I had my supplies and my test got underway, I got started on using the time to get stuff accomplished.  I tried to focus on task for 20-30 minutes and ended up leaving the appointment feeling fairly productive and proud of time well spent.

1. Prepare for Baby To Do List:  Despite only having a mere 10 weeks left to go before Studerbaby #3 arrives, we have plenty still left on our To Do list.  It always helps me try to get a list together of the things that we need to get finished in the next few weeks.  Our list ranges from washing baby hand-me-down clothes, to re-assembling the crib, to completing our Cord Blood Donation paperwork.

2. Scheduling the plan of attack for Baby To Do List:  I have a bit of a love affair with my planner, so it was no big surprise that it accompanied me to my 3hour glucose test.  After putting down most of my Baby To Do List (#1), I then flipped through my planner to pencil in weeks/days that I can start working on the list to make sure I get it all done.  It's first important to make the list and then even more critical to set a due date (or start date).  So, next week I penciled in to have the hubs bring down and reassemble the crib and finish setting up the nursery (move my daughter's clothes out of the changing table/dresser, etc).

3. Meal Plan (or Post-baby Freezer Meal Plan):  I organize our meal plan at the beginning of each month, so that was already taken care of for our regularly scheduled meals.  However, I have been thinking about post-baby freezer meals and how insanely grateful I was after my daughter was born that I had already prepped a good 13 meals before she arrived.  I've decided this needs to happen again to keep my family's bellies full, so I took some time during my appointment to jot down meals I remember we enjoyed last time - as well as do some pinsearching of new ones that we can try for this time around.  (I scheduled the making of these meals to start in 3 weeks from now - so I'll have until then to finalize a list and get to shopping!)

4. Baby Preparation Reading:  I may have already been through newborn raising twice, but I could still use a little refresher course on how those first few weeks will go; especially since on top of the rotten eight tiredness, I'll also still be in charge of maintaining life for my other two kids.  One of our favorite parenthood books is On Becoming Baby Wise.  Since I've read it twice before for my other two, this was a good chance to sweep through the highlighted sections and refresh my mind for another sweet little tiny baby.

5. Thank You note writing:  We are so lucky to have people that send us little gifts and surprises for our upcoming new baby, even though it's our third.  I believe wholeheartedly that thank you notes are a beautiful and important part of life.  And yet, in the busyness of life, somehow they get pushed to the back burner constantly.  I took a little while to finish out some thank you notes I've been meaning to write while I had some peace and quiet and no laundry staring at me (within sight anyway).

6. Take a Walk:  I was requested to stay on the first floor of the hospital, but after talking to a nurse about the hallways - I made a couple loops around the floor and racked up another 1.2 miles for the month of July.  While walking, I like to listen to audible books (right now I'm listening to The Husband's Secret) so it's like two birds with one stone!  Getting a quick walk in for the day and getting some pleasure 'reading' in at the same time!

7. TED Talks:  Maybe everyone doesn't classify this as particularly productive - but watching TED talks always pumps creative and energy into my brain - so I count it!  I watched this awesome video about our kids and grandkids being a different species (!) at my appointment (with headphones, obviously).  Some of my other favorite TED talks include:  Birth of a Word, How Schools Kill Creativity, I'm not your Inspiration Thank You Very Much,and  If I Should Have a Daughter

8. Creative journal doodling:  I brought along my creative journal and got some blog post thoughts down that have been bouncing around in my brain for the past few days.  I read back over the last notes of my novels in an attempt to ignite the writing fire again (I did!).  And I looked over the list of upcoming interviews scheduled for The Mom Next Door Series.

9.  Leisure Reading:  Most of my leisure reading happens just as I get into bed at the end of a long day.  I find myself reading for no more than five or ten minutes before falling asleep (sometimes with the book falling right onto my face, hah!)  I took my current read, Maya Angelou's I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and got some solid pleasure reading time in while sitting in the waiting room.

10.  Nap:  Okay, fine.  Guilty as charged.  I totally took a quick 15 minute cat nap.  I didn't initially mean to do it, but I sort of just drifted off with my head in my hand and it was kind of wonderful.  Like a tiny little battery recharge for the day.

How else do you productively pass the time during long, unavoidable appointments?


  1. Oh my gosh, I had to take the 3 hour text twice!!! And I can tell you, I read a book the whole time. I wasn't nearly as productive as you :)

  2. You.are.amazing! I love that you donate cord blood, and I love the idea of making meals beforehand! Brilliant!

    Also, I loved The Husband's Secret. I love ALL of Liane Moriarty's books, but What Alice Forgot is my favorite!!!

  3. Love it!!! My first 3 hour test, I barfed, in the wIting room w/in 45 minutes. I had to go back the next week. Same thing happened except that time, I made it to the lab to barf. Thank God they didn't make me do it again. Yuk!!!