Morning Routine for the Modern Mom

Recently I posted a little tidbit about how I fit in “Me” time with three small children, and a husband that works (mostly insane) hours. As promised, here is a more detailed version of how I map out my mornings.

(Dark pic because the sun isn’t even up yet!)

5:15am – Alarm goes off. Hit (gasp!) Snooze. But I thought the key to having a successful morning routine is NOT hitting Snooze? Well, I use it as a timer (and also as a safety net so I don’t fall back asleep because that honestly sometimes happens.) During my nine minutes of snooze, I meditate by I placing one hand over my heart and my other hand over my belly. I clear away all the mind-chatter and feel my heartbeat and breath. I say a Hail Mary and The Our Father. Then, I review my day like a movie reel. I don’t set expectations, but rather imagine myself going through the motions of what I want to accomplish, and with the attitude I wish to have throughout the day. For example, I imagine speaking calmly to my children when (I can guarantee) they will be as slow as sloths getting into the car. I also imagine myself doing tasks I hope not to forget like laying the class snack by the front door. (It helps!)

 

5:24am – Alarm goes off again. (And I contemplate hitting snooze again.) I get out of bed, take my medicine, wash my face, and get dressed. Getting dressed has been one of the hardest things to train myself to do… and I’m still working on it! It’s hard because I don’t think my brain is awake enough to decide what to wear. But deciding to put *something* on (like workout clothes, 99% of the time) is better than staying in my pajamas.

 

5:35am – I throw in a load of laundry (“A load a day keeps the mountain away”). This little life hack has helped tremendously.

I also take this quiet time to practice mindfulness. I’m learning to be aware of the sounds and noises and other senses around me… the sound of the water hitting the washing machine, the rush of cold air when I open the windows, the sound of the cars’ tires rolling on the pavement, the sounds (and sometimes smells) of the sea lions, the feeling of my fingers touching knobs and handles, the sound of the cricket stuck under our refrigerator (how is he still alive?!)

Next, I start a pot of coffee. (I love my French press.) But before that, I always drink warm lemon water with local honey. It’s a gentle way to wake up my body, and the local honey helps with my allergies. Then, I sit down and get busy with my Bible. I read one chapter a day (sometimes two if I’m having an exceptionally smooth morning.) Right now I am reading Proverbs, mainly because I personally feel like it needs less brain power in the morning to navigate (as compared to other chapters in the Bible).

Then, I “Prayer Journal”. (I wrote about my prayer process here.) I like to write down my prayers because it holds me more accountable to be truthful, as well as navigate my weaknesses and come up with a plan on how to be a better version of myself. I also imagine my kids one day reading through my prayer journal and apologizing for driving me crazy. Kidding. Kinda. But I do imagine them reminiscing over some lovely memories and realizing that whatever they go through in life, their feelings are normal.

After that, I “mind dump”. I quickly jot down whatever comes to mind that I need or want to do. (i.e., “diapers at Costco”, “dog food”, “send thank-you note”, “phone bill”, “babysitter for Friday”, etc.) If I wake up with too much *stuff* in my brain, I’ll mind dump first-thing in the morning to prevent it from becoming too much of a distraction. I also take this opportunity to review my agenda for the day, and 1. Make sure I know the correct date, and 2. Know exactly what I’m suppose to be doing for the day.

 

6 or 6:15am – I cook and eat breakfast. Usually I eat some sort of egg dish (I love my egg sandwich maker) or avocado toast, with fruit, and drink my HOT coffee. I used to cook these elaborate Whole30 and paleo meals, but it got to be too time consuming–with a lot of cleanup.

(Side note: If anyone has quick and easy paleo breakfasts, send them my way!)

 

6:30am – Switch over the laundry and wake up the kids.

(Another side note: Lately, Alexander has been waking up around the six o’clock hour so he usually gets to share a yummy breakfast with me.)

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So there you have it! My morning course of action.

Am I tired of waking up at 5:15am? Do I wish I could sleep in? Yes and Yes. I almost always dread waking up that early, but historically speaking, my day is awful if I don’t.

One day, while staring at the darkened ceiling, I asked myself, “How did you feel when you hit Snooze yesterday?” Terrible. Short-fused and flustered.

Then I asked myself, “How did you feel when you used to wake up early?” Accomplished. Refreshed. Patient.

Sooo… Self, “Which do you want to feel?!” Obviously the latter!

Even when I try to “cheat” on the weekends and claim an extra forty-five minutes or hour of sleep (because, y’know, it’s the freakin’ weekend!), it throws everything off. So for now, this is the path I’m taking.

Do my kids sometimes wake up before 6:30am? Yes. Do I always get to do every single thing in my routine? No. If that happens, I just write, “To be continued…” in my prayer journal and get back to it later in the day when I can.

Is my routine a surefire way to have a perfect morning? Heck no! But it definitely makes for a BETTER morning. The important thing is that I’m trying my best and doing something to help me be the best version of myself.

* * *

How do you feel about morning routines? What is yours like?

Loyally, Katie

P.S. This morning routine was not created over night. I prayed for a long time for God to help me stop yelling at my kids in the morning, and taking them to school in house slippers because I was so flustered and flighty. I hope this post inspires you to make your own changes (that best fit you and your family) to make your mornings more peaceful.

 

Clear, Smooth, & Moisturized

I often get asked what my daily face regimen is like so I thought I’d write a little post about it. I am nearly obsessed with keeping my face as clear, smooth, and moisturized as possible. It’s a pet peeve of mine for anyone to touch my face. And while the thought of wrinkles does pester in the back of my mind like any other 30-something-year-old, I am more concerned about sun damage, cleanliness, and whether or not a product contains harmful toxins and chemicals. 


*Please note, this is not a sponsored post. (But wouldn’t that have been nice?!)

A product I have used for a few years now is the Makeup Removal Cloth by Norwex.  I refuse to use anything else, as this cloth does not contain soap or other harsh cleansers. Since using this cloth, my face does not break out. You just wet the cloth and wipe your face. I swear to you it removes even eyeliner and mascara. Then, just wash the cloth in your washing machine as often as you want (I do it every week) and reuse! Incredible, right?

(I even had a random bout of eczema on my hand, but after using the Body Cloth for three days it disappeared and never returned!)

Next, I use a toner. Honestly, I have been skipping this step for the past few years because I haven’t found a toner I like, as most of them leave my skin feeling filmy. That was until I was recently introduced to Modere’s toner. Why use a toner? Because it helps remove any traces of dirt or grim your regular makeup remover may have missed. I believe it’s a vital part of skin care.

But what’s best about it is that I’m not using harsh chemicals on my face. I know this is true because Modere is an EWG Verified Member. EWG (Environmental Working Group) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that “empowers people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment”. To be “verified” the products must score in the “green” zone, they cannot contain any ecotoxicity and/or contamination concerns, they must disclose all ingredients used on the label, they must follow the European Union’s labeling requirements/guidelines, among other standards.

Basically, they use all their smartness to do the research, and people like me get to reap the benefits. It takes the guesswork out of knowing which products are good or bad for me. I downloaded the app onto my phone and while I’m shopping I can scan almost anything to see how it scores by their standard. I used to research products I brought into my home and it can be so daunting and confusing! Now, I just look it up on EWG.

I am currently still using Rodan and Field’s Hydration Serum, night cream, and eye cream, and I like it, but I’d love to try Modere’s Dual Action Eye Gel and Wrinkle Guard next!
For years I have been using TRESemme shampoo and conditioner, but a hair stylist said it was leaving my hair with a waxy film. I gave Modere’s hair products a try, and let me tell you, I was not disappointed. I was actually thoroughly impressed and surprised with how great my hair felt immediately after showering, and also after styling: smooth and silky, without a waxy or greasy feeling! I was gifted a Body Bar and can tell you I’m just as equally satisfied. It has a very gentle exfoliant and my skin is so smooth; I rarely use lotion after showering. 

Two other products I own are the Hand Wash and Fresh Space (air freshening spray). I like using them in my home because they don’t contain controversial chemicals!

However, my MOST FAVORITE product I use every single day is Modere’s Antioxidant Gel. I cannot rave about it enough, actually. The first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is wipe my face with Norwex’s Makeup Removal Cloth, then apply the Antioxidant Gel. From the moment I put it on my face for the first time, I fell in love! It was like running a silk scarf across my face. I kid you not.

Some other products I hope to try soon are Modere’s Skin Veil, and Body Butter. I bet my kids would like the Body Butter because it has a sweet fragrance of caramel, cotton candy, and sugary fig. Yum!

Oh! I almost forgot! I use Modere’s toothpaste, too. The first time I tried it I thought, “I don’t know about this–it doesn’t seem strong enough.” But I don’t have any complaints. I actually accidentally used Crest the other day and thought it was way too sweet tasting! I’m sticking with Modere. 

To top off my daily routine, I always floss! 😉

So there you have it. A pretty simple routine, I’d say.

And just in case anyone is interested in the Modere products I mentioned above, you can use my Referral Code: 597875 and receive $10 off your first purchase. 

I’d love to hear what your routine is like, and what products you love!

loyally,
katie