Magic Mornings = Successful Days

Successful morning makes for successful days!

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in life, it’s that a lingering sense of inadequacy is always present. Regardless of what stage of life you or I are in, we’ve probably felt overwhelmed and under-equipped at some point, if not at multiples times each day. As a mother I’ll often stop and think, what on earth did I do with my time before kids? But the fact is, I remember feeling overwhelmed and frazzled before kids. Is it just me, I wondered? I doubt it.

But lately I’ve discovered the magic of changing my morning routine to positively impact my mind and how I’m able to handle the rest of my day— as easy or as stressful as it might be. What’s my secret? Getting up earlier, actually! Who knew?

my morning routine

I’ve discovered that an extra hour each morning can work wonders for the rest of my day. Maybe this is no revelation to all of you morning people out there, but for me, it has taken a huge sacrifice each day to get there. To get up before a work schedule dictated the beginning of my day. To get up before Lucy was whining for me to make her breakfast, and then a different breakfast because she changed her mind. To get up just for the sake of having an easier morning has been no easy task, but it’s done wonders for the success of my days!

Let me tell you, waking up earlier will do nothing for you if you’re sleep deprived. So I suppose the first positive change starts the evening before— turning off electronics, saying no to “just one more episode” urges, and making needed changes to prepare for a restful night of rest in order to be able to function the next day.

But once I’m there in the morning (alongside my go-getter husband who has been my biggest inspiration), getting up earlier gives me much needed alone time to contemplate my dreams and goals (for life, or just for my day), or just to catch up on some reading. There’s nothing quite like being able to drink all of my coffee while it’s still hot, savoring its creamy deliciousness, and just sitting completely still if that’s what I feel like doing. This time makes me feel rejuvenated, but also starts my day with a sense of accomplishment and pride, knowing that I got started earlier than I actually needed to.

starting off the day on a productive note

When I don’t carve out this time at the beginning of my day (which is the last thing I feel like doing when my bed is so cozy and warm!), I’m awoken by a screaming baby (who’s been crying for who knows how long?) or a yelling toddler (who’s awoken a screaming baby) who is ready with her list of demands for the day, starting with breakfast because she is STARVING (she’s probably yelling this in my ear which is covered with my bed sheets). Not exactly the chill and empowering start to the day I really crave, is it? This is what I try to remind myself during the mental battle each day to get my bones out. of. BED!

So I wake up early and make the magic happen. What do I do first? I’ll drag myself into the kitchen and get a pot of water onto the stove. As the water reaches its boiling point, I’ll challenge myself to accomplish as many little kitchen/home tasks I can in that amount of time. Usually I can get a load of laundry started, unload the dishwasher, and water my plants. Then, I’ll pour the hot water over coffee grounds in my french press and set the timer for another four minutes. Time to scurry around getting my gym bag ready, putting away a few stray toys, and maybe if I’m quick, I can clean a bottle or two. By now my coffee is ready and I already feel accomplished and ready to attack the day. But this is my moment. My coffee is ready. I’ve got my special Simply Pure Hazelnut creamer. It’s just the beginning of my day, but I have accomplished tasks already and can fully rest, relax, and contemplate my plan of attack as I sip my coffee in silence. I feel equipped to start the day on my own terms. I feel ready to adult! And it’s magic. Until I hear Lucy’s bedroom door squeak open and the chaos begins. But I’m ready. Bring it, sisters! What do you want for breakfast?!

here come the monsters!

beginning my days on my own terms, not theirs.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of International Delight. The opinions and text are all mine.

 

Snapshot of a Saturday Afternoon

Making Nice in the Midwest

Life in the blogosphere can appear pretty editorialized most of the time, depending on where you’re reading. I know I’m inundated with beautiful images of pristine homes with clean hard wood floors and elegant children’s toys, decadent doughnut-eating women with trim figures and made-up faces, and let’s not forget the $700 strollers filled with children wearing mid-level designer clothing. I honestly do love to look at those things— they’re pretty, escapist, and inspiring in a way, but a reality check every now and then is great for the soul!

So here’s my Saturday afternoon reality check. What did this Saturday look like? Well, it was very boring. And as wonderful as it was mundane. I thought I’d give you a peek into the reality of our perfectly normal and unexciting afternoon, with glimpses of our home, unstaged and not exactly photo ready. (Though I’ll be honest— this is actually pretty clean as far as things tend to get with a toddler and a maker mom!) So allow me to get a little chatty, rambley, and most importantly— real— with you today!

Making Nice in the Midwest

Phil had come home from a morning business meeting and thought he’d take Lucy outside to rake leaves. We have lots of trees, so I figured that would keep them occupied for a while, and I could putz around the house picking up things from our chaotic week. Well, no such luck. Phil brought out the leaf blower and it was game over. (She doesn’t like loud things.) So we sat down for a two hour lunch. That’s how long lunches with Lucy usually last if you hold your ground as a parent and actually make her eat more than just half of a sandwich for lunch. During that time I nursed Juniper and put her in her swing for a nap. She’s a terrifically easy baby, and usually falls asleep nicely in it.

Making Nice in the Midwest

Hey sweet cheeks! Atta girl, just sit there nicely and drift off to dream land while mommy helps sis make a poop on the potty. How’s that for glamorous living? Yeah, we have a training toilet right out in the open in our living room. Not to get too graphic, but it smells reeeeal nice after Lucy pays it a visit. But hey! This is a really good thing, because it means one less bottom to wipe and diaper. Potty training is going well. We think Lucy’s probably 80% trained, but that’s a story for another day. And don’t worry— I won’t be telling you about our potty training journey! I’m just thinking that content probably doesn’t belong here. You’re welcome.

Making Nice in the Midwest

Making Nice in the Midwest

After lunch, Lucy wanted to wash dishes. I was glad to hear it, because “dish washing” is an activity that keeps her occupied for up to a couple of hours usually. She just likes to play in the water and dump out little cups of water into bigger cups of water. That sort of thing. I can’t wait until this excitement for dish washing translates into actual clean dishes.

Making Nice in the Midwest

Lucy’s wearing whatever Phil picked out for her in the morning, which actually sort of matches what I’m wearing— and that would be the same thing I wore to bed last night— Phil’s Ohio State sweatshirt and some comfy black lounge pants. No face washed, no hairs brushed, and no teeth brushed. (That goes for both me and Lucy.) Hey, it’s Saturday. No judging allowed. We’re just takin’ it easy and ignoring all of the actual dishes that need washed from the past few days. (…that are plentiful enough to be lining the window sill in the kitchen.)

Making Nice in the Midwest

The laundry basket on the sofa is filled with my clothes that were cleaned and folded two days ago, and still haven’t made it from the basket into my dresser drawers. But that’s okay! Because I can just dash out to the living room to get underwear if I need to. Joys of living in a small house.Making Nice in the Midwest

Uh, oh! Juniper isn’t being her usual easy going self any more! She is tired, sad, and needs a little mommy time. So I set down the camera and took her into my bed to nurse her for a few minutes. She gets distracted out in the rest of our house, so sometimes we have to steal away and then she can focus and eat.

Making Nice in the Midwest

Making Nice in the Midwest

Speaking of laundry, I have no idea if that pile of clothes on Lucy’s dresser is clean or dirty. I haven’t gotten around to dealing with it— or to dusting the dresser, apparently. Note the box of wipes at the ready— you never know when you’ll need cleaning supplies nearby when you’re potty training a toddler!

Making Nice in the Midwest

Check it out! My dining room has been a mess for the past month as I’ve been working on this dollhouse project. The mammoth thing has eclipsed my Fall decorations, and in order to prevent the same thing happening to Christmas decorations, I’ve set a deadline for Wednesday to complete the project. That deadline includes the structure, not the furnishings. While it’s out and being photographed, I thought I’d pull back the sheet a bit to give you a peek inside!

Making Nice in the Midwest

This corner of the living room is actually pretty clean. Lucy never played with any of her toys today. Just the garden rake and the dishes. Fine by me!

Making Nice in the Midwest

And now it’s time for Lucy to go with Daddy to Grandma and Grandpa’s house to watch the Ohio State game. They’re both excited about it, and I’m looking forward to a little me-time. Time to go put on the kettle to make a pot of coffee and get cracking on this dollhouse before Juniper wakes up!

How was your Saturday?

A Visit To: Glamping Hub New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Everyone said, “Try to get out of the house when the baby comes.” So, naturally I got out of the house, packed up the car, and drove to the woods in upstate New York to spend a few days with my girls. I don’t think that’s what everyone meant by their “get out of the house” advice, but it sure was just what I needed!

As I mentioned last week, I was invited by Glamping Hub to spend a couple of nights in one of their locations. They offer luxury tents, yurts, trailers, vans, and even tipis. But since the weather is unpredictable this time of year, I settled on this location, and I’m so glad I did! Not only because it was rainy most of the trip, but also because the location was so charming and the interior of the treehouse style cabin made me feel 100% cooler than I actually am. We had such a fun time!

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

It’s always been a dream of mine to have a home with a sunken living room. While I haven’t actually owned a home like this (yet), I was able to experience it at the treehouse. Now I’m even more convinced that I’d like this feature in a home someday. So cozy! The perfect conversation pit with a wood burning stove and projector system for movie watching.

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

The cabin also houses a collection of 250 records for guests to enjoy. Well, 252 records now, since my friends and I pitched in to add a couple to their collection- The Black Keys’ Rubber Factory (sharing some local Ohio love) and Wilco’s Star Wars. We enjoyed selecting different albums to create a soundtrack to our trip.

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

We enjoyed visiting the cute little town of Beacon, NY during our stay, and brought back Thai food one night, and Mexican another. The kitchen did come equipped with plenty of pots, pans, and whatnot to make our own food, but it was nice to not have to worry about it for a couple of days.

https://glampinghub.com/portal/staycations-north-america/

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

My friends and I had a really nice time just spending time together with no agenda. We encouraged each other, loved on each other, and just had fun playing games and laughing. It was an inspiring time. And I’m not just talking about how I’m now inspired to find these exact chairs for my dining room at home, and am even more obsessed with the sunken living room idea. It’s just good to get away, away from computers and the daily grind, and feel recharged spiritually and creatively.

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Glamping Hub Treehouse Lovenest in upstate New York

Thanks Glamping Hub, and thanks to the owners of the Lovenest! I hope we were able to send some positive energy into your space during our stay.

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