How To Cultivate A Peaceful Morning With A Toddler

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Hi friends!

As a mama, there can be a big adjustment when it comes to mornings. What used to be a quiet, slow, calm time of day, with young kids morning time has the tendency to be hectic, loud, and wild. I used to savor the quiet of the mornings. I used to ease into my day with a cup of coffee and the news and meditation...it was a time of quiet reflection, planning out the day ahead, and setting the tone for a positive, collected, productive day.

But when you have a little one, you are often times jarred awake by a cry or a "MAAAMAAAAA" and with that you are thrust into the day, full-speed ahead. Screaming, yelling, running, throwing, playing, clanking, scrambling to get a breakfast together...it's definitely a far-cry from the days of quietly easing into your day! Don't get me wrong - it's great and fun, and I love it! But...just saying! haha Some mornings you just want to have a quiet, peaceful, calm start to your day.

Here are a few things I have been doing that have helped James and I to have a calmer, more peaceful, slow morning together:

  • Light a candle: James loves watching the flame flicker while he eats his breakfast. He asks me every morning to light our candle. It helps to create such a peaceful scene and it mesmerizes him!
  • Play calm music: I have started playing either worship music or Jack Johnson in the mornings. Music sets the mood, and I've noticed that the whole atmosphere is so much calmer and more peaceful when we have our "morning music" playing softly in the background.
  • Plan out breakfast ahead of time: Toddlers can wake up ravenous, and the key is getting a quick meal to them ... STAT. It can be so stressful to try to come up with something quick to make while a toddler is screaming or whining. I like to plan out breakfasts for the week. For example, Monday, Wednesday, Friday we'll have scrambled eggs, toast, and fruit. Tuesday and Sunday, we'll have oatmeal and fruit. Thursday and Saturday we'll have waffles and fruit and yogurt. Just an example. I don't do that exact schedule every week, but knowing what I'll be making in the morning makes it a bit easier and calmer. I usually will give James a bowl of berries to tie him over while I cook his breakfast.
  • Go outside: Now that the weather is warm, we have been heading out into the back yard right after breakfast. I bring my coffee, James plays with his water table and trucks, and we watch bugs and birds fly around. It's so nice to get fresh air in the morning, and James is able to run around and play independently and explore while I get to have a quiet time to enjoy my coffee. :)

What are some of your tips for cultivating a peaceful morning with little ones? I'd love to hear any of your tips/tricks!

Have a beautiful Sunday!

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Sunday Posivity

Even if life doesn't always look EXACTLY (or even remotely) like how you thought it would or how you think it is supposed to, it doesn't mean that there aren't amazing things in it worth celebrating! I've come to find that there is ALWAYS always always something beautiful in every situation...you just have to look for it. Sometimes you have to look really really hard, but it's there. 

Comment below with one thing that is worth celebrating in your life!

Have a great week!

Sunday Positivity

Happy New Year! It's a brand new BEAUTIFUL year full of possibility and potential and opportunity ...Believe in yourself! You are capable of incredible things! Let's make this a WONDERFUL year!

What is your biggest goal in 2017? Share in the comments below!

Why I Am Now A Morning Person

Recently, Ben’s work schedule changed. He used to work nights, but now he works from about 4:30am until about 4:30pm - which has been SO NICE. Needless to say, we have experienced a major shift in our schedules. While I thought that waking up at 3:30am was going to be rough, it has actually turned out to be amazing. I have found that I am much more productive when I am early to rise, early to bed, I have (surprisingly) more energy, and I have come to realize that, much to my utter shock, I am a morning person! Here’s what my daily schedule looks like now:

3:30am (ish) - Wake up, get Ben and myself some coffee and an english muffin while Ben gets ready for work. Pack Ben’s lunch.

4:00am (ish) - Ben leaves for work. I hop back into bed with my coffee, read my daily devotional, meditate, read the news, catch up on e-mails, work on writing projects.

5:45am (ish) - Get out of bed, get dressed, do hair and makeup, make myself a snack of fresh fruit or yogurt. 

6:15am - Head out for a sunrise walk with Gunner.

7:00am - Work out.

7:30am (ish) - Make a big breakfast.

7:45am - Do the dishes and make the bed.

8:00am until about 12:00pm - Work.

12:00pm - Take Gunner out for a shorter mid-day walk.

12:15pm (ish) - Make lunch

1:00pm until 4:00pm - Work

4:00pm - Start working on dinner.

5:00pm until 7:00pm - Ben gets home, eat dinner, watch a show, relax together. Take Gunner out for a quick evening walk.

7:00pn - Get ready for bed, shower, etc...

8:00pm - Bed time!

Here’s what I LOVE about waking up before the sun:

  • I feel like I’m ahead of the game. I get SO much done before 8:00am, that I feel so productive and peaceful and ready to tackle my work for the day. 
  • I get to experience the quiet of the world at sunrise. Before most other people are awake, Gunner and I get to get outside and experience a beautiful sunrise, the birds’ songs as they wake up, the dewey grass along the trail, and cool fresh morning breeze. And we have the trail all to ourselves. 
  • I feel like I have more motivation to meditate. When my morning begins before 4:00am, I feel like I have more time to meditate and that I am less rushed. When I used to start my day at around eight or nine, I would always feel a sense of hurriedness that would (I’m ashamed to admit) often times keep me from meditating. I would feel like I had to “catch up” with the rest of the world, and like meditating, even for only 20 minutes or so, was taking up a big chunk of my day. 
  • I actually get MORE sleep. Going to bed at 8:00pm, I actually end up falling right asleep when we get in bed, whereas before, I would get in bed at 11:00pm and sit on my phone or toss and turn for an hour or two (or three…) before finally falling asleep. Now, I am so tired and satisfied from all that I accomplished in the day that I have no trouble falling asleep. 

I never thought of myself as a morning person before. But that is probably because I was going to sleep at midnight, or later in some cases, and then trying to wake up at six when Ben would get home from work. Now, I hop right up at 3:30am and am rested and ready and EXCITED to tackle the day and experience the beautiful quiet hours of morning before the rest of the world is awake. 

xo, Anna