Hi there, friends. Today I wanted to talk a little bit about the morning routine. Well, when it comes down to it, I'm really going to talk about my Nightly Routine, but bear with me. For years, I lived without routine. I told myself routines meant the absence of spontaneity and a carefree spirit. I didn't want to be bogged down by routine. Routines were for older people or overly organized, tightly wound people. I didn't want to fall into those categories, so I fought it. No way! Not for me! Oh, how I wish I knew the truth, because in truth, a routine would have been a saving grace for me years ago as a busy stay at home mom with three little ones running around. Back then, I didn't know the true benefits of having a routine. Today, I am much older (eek) but wiser (mostly) and a Nightly routine has been a happy part of Lewisville.
My morning routine really starts the night before. I'm going to admit something that's rather embarrassing, but remember older and wiser now.. ... Older and wiser.... Here it goes. I never did dishes at night. The dinner dishes sat overnight in the sink. The leftover food was put away and the cooking mess was picked up, but that was the extent of my after dinner cleaning. I'd wake up the next morning to make coffee and YIKES there it was! The mess from the night before. Waking up to a mess dictates the rest of your day and if it's among the first things you see in the morning, it can be depressing, a bit overwhelming, and you feel behind the rest of your day. I knew things had to change, but I was stuck in a rut, a negative routine of my own.
I read about Melissa's morning routine and it really helped me establish my own. The problem was that I didn't have a regular nightly routine to set the morning in the right direction. I had set up routines for the kids- baths, brush teeth, set clothes out for the next day, read, pray, then bedtime. I missed the element of incorporating a routine for myself. So here it is, my nightly routine that makes my morning routine go smooth.
Leftovers are stored and put away.
Dishes are rinsed and put into the dishwasher. I wash my pots and pans by hand and they air dry on the counter overnight. They're the only things left on the counters/stove.
The stove is cleaned and wiped, not a deep clean like in this post, just wiping down the glass and making it clean enough to cook the next morning.
Kitchen counters are cleaned and wiped.
The dinner table is cleaned and wiped.
The floor is swept.
My kids are 9, 11, and 13 so they all have their part in cleaning the kitchen after dinner. It's part of their chores and they are a huge help. To see their chore chart you can go here.
The one missing element in this routine that I'm trying to incorporate is to clean and polish the sink. I don't do that nightly, but I'm seeing the need to make this part of the routine now. It took me a while to fully integrate this routine for Lewisville, but now if we all work together, it takes us about 10-15 minutes. If I do it myself, which I have because I'm Mom and that's just what happens sometimes, it takes me about 25 minutes. Somedays, I don't sweep and that's ok.
My morning are so much easier now. I wake up to make coffee and I feel ahead of the game because the kitchen is ready and open for business! If you don't have a routine or have tried and failed before, take heart. I've been there and I know it's hard to establish one after years of doing my own thing. I strongly encourage you to set one up and try again. The popular belief is that it take 21 days to form a good habit. It might have been longer for me, but eventually, we got.
Hope this post was encouraging and helpful.