Wouldn't it be so much easier to wake up happy in the mornings if you woke up to the mountains in this picture? (This photo is actually one my sister took. She lives in Colorado. I'm not jealous. Ok maybe just a little jealous. Or a lot.)
I have never enjoyed the mornings. I would never have been classified as a "morning person". My husband greets me in the morning with a sweet hello, and my usual response is simply a sound..."ugh". Once I had a cup of coffee, washed my face, and dressed for the day, I am usually up to a few words rather than a grunt. When we didn't have kids, this wasn't really an issue. I could just roll out of bed. Get myself ready in my own time. I didn't have any one else asking anything of me.
Then kids came. Everything changed. I now had to roll out of bed quickly and head down the hall to a hungry baby. Change his diaper, dress him, feed him, and get him settled for the morning. Add a second little one and double everything from before. Rushing in the mornings, not washing my face, or getting dressed till almost lunch time, stressed me out! I felt yucky. I probably looked yucky. I didn't feel refreshed, or ready to take on the day. When you feel that way, it becomes difficult to get motivated to do much of anything. I hated the mornings. My boys were the only good part about it. It's hard not to feel joy when being around them!
It was too difficult to give my family my best when I was half asleep. I decided a change needed to happen. A few mornings I woke up about 30 minutes before the kids usually wake, in order to get in some Bible reading. I noticed on those mornings, that even though I got a tiny bit less sleep, I felt better. I was completely awake and actually prepared for when they woke. I didn't feel as sluggish or as irritated. I was on to something...
Once I am done, I head back to our room to wash my face, brush my hair, and get dressed for the day. This only takes me about five minutes. It is usually around 7:00 by this time. I head back to the kitchen and fill in my daily routine in my Home Management Binder. This helps me to get my priorities in line for the day and stay on task. After that is filled out, I start breakfast, wake up the boys, and get going with the day. I will let the boys sleep in past 7:30 if they were up later that night. During that extra sleep time, I try to start a load of laundry or any other small chore that needs to be done.
I never thought I would say...I love my mornings! The house is so peaceful and quiet. I get to spend time with my Savior. Plus, I get dressed before noon! It has been wonderful since switching to this routine.
This is a loose routine, so on the nights we have to stay up late, I sleep in a bit later and just adjust. On those mornings though, I regret not making myself get up earlier. I miss my quiet time.
If you are struggling in the mornings, I encourage you to give this a try. Make up a routine that works for you. Do something so that you can relax, enjoy, and look forward to each morning. If the thought of losing an extra hour of sleep seems like too much at first, then work up to it in fifteen minute increments. It is so much easier to get through the day joyfully when you have started it that way!
Thanks to my awesome sister Erica for the gorgeous pics! Colorado is beautiful. Yes, we are all jealous now.