What’s Up Wednesday

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Linking up today with Erika and many more here for What’s Up Wednesday!

What We’re eating

I am on Spring Break this week, but I have been doing some cooking!

I made this small charcuterie platter before dinner.

Dinner was this wonderful salad of spinach, red onion, cheddar, green apple, and homemade dressing and grilled chicken and hasselback potatoes.

Another night was copycat Alice Springs chicken from Outback and the same-ish potatoes.

Caprese sandwiches have been a recent thing I have tried and they are delish. I added chicken for Tom’s.

I am ready to have someone else cook for me soon!

What I’m reminiscing about

I’m always loving the memories that pop up on Facebook.

This was when my boys academic team won big. It was so fun to watch them do this together. They are on the right. They used to look so, so identical, and as the years go on they look more and more different.


What I’m loving

The trees started blooming and they are so pretty! It seemed to happen all of a sudden.

We have had some gorgeous days. We do have some cold snaps but I feel like those make me appreciate the warmer days even more!

What I’ve been up to

I have been finishing up Easter baskets and shopping to refresh my patio and deck. I have decided to call my upper one my deck and my lower one my patio. I know you were all on the edge of your seats about that decision.

I went in World Market. It is such a cool store. I also have gone to Hobby Lobby, Home Goods, and TJ Maxx. I love having the time to leisurely peruse these stores on a weekday.

What I’m dreading

I am dreading trying to teach in a mask. I hate the mask. I know it’s necessary, but I talk a lot to teach Spanish. I am going to have to figure this out. My favorite masks are Pomchies brand, so I do plan to wear those.

What I’m working on

In addition to doing some spring cleaning and sprucing of my outdoor spaces, I am working on a few more things to be ready to return to school April 5.

What I’m watching

I can’t find much I want to watch on any of the streaming services. I am watching Bravo shows and that’s about it.

What I’m reading

I just finished this and it is cute but a bit cheesy. It makes a good summer read!

I just started this and I am only about 60 pages in but I like it so far. I am interested to see what will happen.

What I’m listening to

I may like this podcast that makes fun of my Bravo shows even more than the shows themselves!

What I’m wearing

I wore these fun pants to work last week.I have several pairs of printed palazzo pants that I wear with solid color tops.

I am also trying to wear my long sleeve spring tops before it gets too hot to wear long sleeves. I love this old tie-dye that is Chaps brand from Kohl’s.

What I’m doing this weekend

My kids are coming home from college! They have a four day weekend and I am sure they will have homework, but I am hoping they have time to do a couple of things in addition to celebrating Easter. I need to plan my menu and order the food before it’s too late.

Also, I’m sure I won’t sleep great Sunday night with back to school jitters! In April! Crazy, but exciting, too!

What’s up with you this Wednesday?


Heath Ice Cream Cake

March 30, 2021

I’m on Spring Break, so I am bringing back a yummy recipe that I posted last year!

You need:

ice cream sandwiches – I did the mini this time but I really think the big work better. You need a very soft crust on the sandwiches so that this dessert all melds together.

Cool Whip

Heath pieces

Using an 8×8 (I highly recommend using the aluminum disposable if you are going to take this somewhere – and this would be a great dessert to take to a bbq – with a very small number of people, of course), spread a bit of Cool Whip on the bottom of the pan.

Now do one layer of your ice cream sandwiches.

Now do another thicker layer of Cool Whip and half of the Heath bag.

Repeat and this is what it will look like.

Put in freezer for several hours so that it will re-freeze together well. Cut in slices and serve.

Disclaimer: One son was mad that I “ruined” the ice cream sandwiches and said “So you mean you took something great on its own and did this to it?” Husband does not like Cool Whip so I said I would do vanilla ice cream instead of Cool Whip next time.

You can’t please everyone, right?

Let me know if you make it!


Hello Monday – Spring Break!

Monday, March 29, 2021

Hello Monday of Spring Break! I am linking up today with Heather, Tanya, and many more here!

I am tired! I don’t think it is just physical, either. I am mentally, emotionally, and physically tired and I don’t think I could have added travel to my plate.

This marks a milestone for me – my first spring break without my boys home with me! We traveled about half of the time over the years. Tom took off all our part of spring break most years, too. I’m feeling a bit nostalgic, but I do have some fun plans and a long list of things I want to accomplish.

Let’s back up to Thursday…

This is my school’s Fine Arts Center. Our entire faculty was back in this space at 8:00 after over a year of being in the building together. We have about 120 teachers. It was weird and kind of like a family reunion! I have been there for 21 years so to say this has been a big part of my life is an understatement!

We had meetings in this space both Thursday and Friday and alumni donated our breakfast and lunch both days, and gave us a really nice pullover with our school logo. How awesome is that!

Most of both days we had to continue getting our rooms ready. I made copies for the first time in over year! Makin’ copies! I made 12 seating charts. Yes, 12. I teach 6 in person classes Monday and Tuesday and then teach 6 in person classes Thursday and Friday with a different group. The seating charts are super important for contact tracing. I think I am almost ready to go for April 5, but I will have to do some work over the break. I am also teaching 4 virtual classes a week without students in the room.

Friday after work, I needed to be in my anti-gravity lounger on my porch. If you don’t have one of these, get one now. Make it your Mother’s Day present if you must. I face my bedroom doors because I don’t want to face the neighbor on the other side of my house.

I am going to have to figure out my new routine to be out of the house by 7:00. I will of course do my night routine of shower, then do my 10 minute hair and face routine in the morning, and use one of my outfit formulas – post coming this week, I hope!

I finished reading my Friday blogs and Ernie is a big star! He was featured on Preppy Empty Nester! Katie features a reader’s dog at the end of each post. If you don’t already read Katie’s blog, you must start now! She is hilarious and has beautiful taste in clothing, homes and home decor, and Amazon products!

We are trying to make sure the fame doesn’t go to Ernie’s head. Have I told you I make boiled chicken for him, along with canned green beans and carrots. He requested filet mignon Friday night.

Friday night was special because Jack came home to watch his brother live streamed in his play! Mason took a required theatre course in the fall semester at college, tried out for a play and got a role, then tried out for another play and now thinks he might double major in English and Theatre. So, the acting bug has officially bitten both of my kids.

Mason played Torvald in A Doll’s House. It stinks that they had to wear masks and be without an audience. I really miss theatre, concerts, and movies.

Here he is; he cut his hair for this role!

He was wonderful, of course – totally unbiased Mom opinion. So, Tom, Jack, and I had dinner and watched the play together.

Jack is in Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors in May and Midsummer Night’s Dream in the Shakespeare in the Park series this summer. I have not gotten to see Jack act since the month before the pandemic started in Pride and Prejudice.

Saturday morning I got to enter my library! I have so missed this place!

And, I went to Trader Joe’s and there was no line. I needed to replenish some of the staples that I buy there each month – brioche bread, ciabatta bread, bagels, and a few other things. I keep all of these items in my freezer.

After that, I headed out to the country – about 30 minutes away from my house – to do something really cool! My aunt and uncle from Michigan have been in Florida for the winter and they were visiting on their way north. My mom arranged for the three of them and me to meet their cousin’s daughter who has lived near me for years but whom I had never met. My mom and aunt had met her before.

She and her husband have a beautiful home and property that looks quintessentially Kentucky with horses grazing all around the adjoining properties. She has created three cookbooks and is an excellent cook.

Beautiful Easter table setting:

We had chicken salad on croissants, salad, and potato soup. I started eating my soup before I remembered a photo.

And, homemade cream puffs for dessert!

The person who built the house had this Kentucky Derby mural painted in the basement.

The basement bar:

The wine room:

The house is incredible!

We looked at old photos and toured the house after lunch. It was a really great day spent with my mom, aunt, uncle, and third cousin and husband.

I came home and made a pink lemonade cocktail and read a bit before making dinner. I made Jack bowtie pasta chicken alfredo and Tom and I chicken caprese sandwiches.

We watched some shows together and Jack did some homework. We were hoping to see Mason after his final performance Saturday night but he remembered they had a cast party to celebrate. So, we will celebrate him next week. The kids have Good Friday off from classes and Easter Monday off.

Sunday I was pretty lazy. I did go to World Market and Kirkland’s because I am wanting to add a few things to my lower patio and upper deck. Last year I did palm prints and I think I am going to keep that theme going. I did have a thought about doing two different decor schemes – using lemon trees and all things lemon on the upper deck? Anyway, neither place had much. And, it turned pretty cold on Sunday so I didn’t even want to work on it yet. I was very sad about that after such a nice day Saturday. It seems harder to take the cold once you have gotten used to the warmth!

How was your weekend? I hope it was great!

Thanks for reading,


Friday Favorites

Friday, March 26, 2021

Happy Friday! I am linking up today with Andrea, etc. right here!

Here are my favorites from this week:

I finished my last book and started this. It is so cute! This would be a great Spring Break read. I would say it is rated R. It is set in Hawaii and involves food trucks. So cute!

Magazine arrival! I am saving these for this weekend.

You know you’re old when you wouldn’t wear any of the styles in a fashion magazine! We will see after I read it this weekend!

I found these K cups that are environmentally friendly and they are really good.

I found them at Target and outside of Target, this goose appeared to be nesting. I would nest at Target, too, sweet goose. I was careful not to scare her.

I think I finally saw the Little House on the Prairie collection at Target. Where was this last year when I was making my own bread and churning my own butter. Just kidding – I never churned my own butter.

I am mad at myself for not trying this cute coffee shop sooner. I really like to support local coffee shops. If you are local it is called Red Hot Roasters. They have Easter drinks but I didn’t see them until I had ordered. I am going to try the Peeptastic Mocha and the Lavender Shortbread Latte.

Speaking of coffee, I was so tired Tuesday after school for some reason and I had errands to do, so that is why I got the coffee. I found out that a 4:00 p.m. small coffee does not keep me from going to sleep at 10:00 p.m. Good to know!


I use cheap shampoo. There I said it. I ran out and decided to try something more expensive. I was thinking about Olaplex, but they didn’t have it at Target and I wanted something on the spot.

I think I really like this! I do notice my hair gets brassy when it’s close to hair appointment time, so I had been thinking about a purple shampoo. They only had the conditioner so I am using her gentle shampoo and purple conditioner. Anyone use this brand?

Sandal Saga… Remember last week I told you I ordered these Coconuts by Matisse sandals from Tuckernuck but they were on backorder? Well, I wandered into a boutique that sells home decor and clothing and there they were, in my size, and not on backorder. I should have checked because I knew this store carried that brand. So, I cancelled my Tuckernuck!

They are squishy on the footbed and a comfortable height. I like the slight 70s vibe. Now I just need a place to wear them!

My Spring Break officially starts today at 2:30!

What were your favorites this week? I hope you had many!

Thanks for reading!


Balsamic Bruschetta Chicken

Thursday, March 25, 2021

O.k., here is a recipe that Tom really, really liked! I have now made it three times and I am really bad about following recipes so each time I have done it slightly differently! Also, I didn’t really know what to call it! I am no food blogger, so I hope I can explain this well. I know we don’t like back stories with our recipes, but indulge me for just a moment!

I saw a recipe and I thought it said Balsamic Chicken, but it actually said Bruschetta Chicken. So, I basically added the balsamic glaze to the bruschetta chicken recipe. I also decided to employ the Tik Tok pasta method and I added angel hair. So, this is really Tik Tok Balsamic Bruschetta Chicken! Whoa!

You need:

chicken (I like the tenders)

grape tomatoes

red onion

basil (if you want; mine went bad so I left it out this time)




angel hair (optional – you could do zucchini noodles or just have the chicken)

olive oil

balsamic glaze

mozzarella (I like fresh and I forgot to picture it)

Trigger warning! Raw chicken!

Preheat oven to 400 and assemble your tomatoes, red onion, garlic, salt, pepper, olive oil. Don’t get mad at me, but just throw in the amounts you want. You really can’t mess it up.

That will go in the oven for about 20 minutes.

Now you will use my “moist method” for chicken on the stove top. Trigger warning! Raw chicken!

Season chicken with s, p, and garlic powder if desired. Use medium high heat and put seasoned side down and then season other side. Cook first side until you see white edges.

Flip to other side and cook for about 3 more minutes. Now cover the pan and keep on heat for another 2 minutes or so. Remove from heat but leave lid on. This magically helps to keep chicken moist.

Now drizzle balsamic glaze.

Here’s where my photos kinda dropped off. Your tomato mixture should be done. Take out and smush the tomatoes and mix all around. Put a piece of fresh mozzarella on top of each chicken piece and put in oven for a couple of minutes.


Now, this really opens up lots of possibilities. You could totally leave the balsamic out and add this chicken to the true Tik Tok pasta recipe. You could also leave the pasta out and just add the chicken.

I find myself wondering why I haven’t been doing this to tomatoes all of my life. I really like the flavor!

Also, in the summer I love to do a grape tomato and a tiny mozzarella ball on a toothpick and then drizzle balsamic. The flavors are amazing.

Let me know if you try it!


What I Wore Wednesday

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

I am happy to link up today with The Style Six here!

What have you been wearing lately?

On St. Patrick’s Day, I wore this old top from Costco, consignment Matilda Jane pants, my Madewell sneakers, and my consignment necklace that is Kate Spade inspired and looks like shamrocks. I also used my yellow bag. I had a work day at home with no live classes and some meetings via Zoom. But, I ran to the grocery to make my St. Patrick’s Day meal happen!

Saturday I ran to the mall. I wore my Pioneer Woman Umgee kimono from Amazon (it’s not really Pioneer Woman, but I think it looks like her dishes!), my new Etsy red clogs, and some old tan Hue jeggings. I didn’t really like the look of the jeggings when I saw this photo.

Saturday night I wore my newish top with black Matilda Janes, black clogs, and I carried my snakeskin clutch that was a birthday present from one of my besties. Better picture to follow…

My friend Kara was happy to show me her “rule of three” Saturday night. If you aren’t familiar with this concept in fashion, it basically says that you look more pulled together with three items. In this case, her outfit is top, kimono, long necklace that serves as her three. She thought it looked like a very Amy outfit. It does!

Kara is a busy mom of three and very frugal. She got to the point a few years ago where she had very little to wear and needed help. I spent two hours with her at my favorite consignment store and she was simply thrilled. She came away with an entire new wardrobe for around $200 including shoes. I had her pick a color palette. I asked her what activities she was dressing for and what she envisioned wearing. I asked her what she was wearing when she got the most compliments. I made her try on things she wouldn’t have picked. I was quite the task master and it was really fun for me!

Katie was wearing jeans on Sunday that she distressed herself. She used scissors and tweezers to achieve this look and washed them and dried them. This is a fun little project if you have a pair of jeans that you could do this to.

I happened upon a 75% off winter sale at a little housewares/clothing boutique last week and picked up these sneakers for $14!

They are a bit big, but I think I can make them work. I think they look very fallish, but I hope to wear them a couple of times before it gets too warm out.

I’ve got a couple of things I’m thinking about:

Old Navy loose luxe v-neck tunic tees look interesting and I could use some solids.

OMG, this bag is everything! But, the short handle may drive me crazy?

And, really considering these clog-like sandals. They are so cute!

Of course, I really need to do a good inventory and clean out and that is on my list for Spring Break!

What have you been wearing?

Have you been shopping for spring and summer?


Just Say Yes!

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Happy birthday to my twin niece and nephew Mia and Miles today! They are 14 and headed to high school next year – how is that possible? Yes, my sister copied off of me by having twins 5 years after me!

Example of me saying YES!

I grew up in the Nancy Reagan “Just Say No” campaign era. Did you? I will be talking about a different topic today, though, than what Nancy was talking about.

I used to say NO a lot of the time…

I was really good about saying no to more than I could handle as a working mom. I wanted to be able to be the best mom I could be and I wanted to be the best teacher I could be, so I can as careful not to take too much on. I did juggle several things and was very busy, but I was good about learning to say, “I appreciate you asking but I am unable to add that to my plate right now” at work. And believe me, teachers are asked to be on committees, sponsor clubs, coach teams, and more. And I did it all for my first four years of teaching and it about killed me!

I also had to say no to social things sometimes by saying, “I would love to, but I just can’t do that right now with my kids at this age and a job that I have to be ready to do!”

Me saying YES to the cat café experience!

Now, I am trying to say YES more…

When my kids got older, I realized it was my time to say “yes” to more things. At work, I became department chair again (I held the position until my boys started kindergarten and I said yes to being room mom and different things at their school) and I said yes to being on the hiring committee for several years. I also started saying yes to more social things like book clubs or spontaneous happy hours and dinners out.

When Coronavirus hit, I knew it was even more important to say yes to anything that I thought was safe! There wasn’t much to say yes to!

In the past, I may have been too rigid about my schedule, but I am learning that saying yes more brings so much happiness to me.

Jack and I saying YES to being extras in a movie!

The more you say yes, the more you will be asked. Have you noticed that?

Do you have any friends who always say no and you stop asking? The opposite is true, too!

Saying yes to small things can help you to say yes to bigger things in the future. Maybe we should consider these small yeses as warm ups to bigger ones?

Do any of you always feel like you are the one asking and you never get asked? I think it’s about equal for me. I do half of the asking and get asked the other half of the time. I have talked about this with my sister and a couple of friends. I think there are just naturally those that are the planners in each social circle. Some people just don’t think to invite people but they are happy to be invited. Life is short; don’t get bogged down with who asked whom. Keeping score is exhausting. Put yourself out there and text a friend that you’d like to see them and see what happens.

Also, I should add that we have had different comfort levels during the pandemic. I like to start with, “Are you comfortable going to a patio right now?” or “What is your current comfort level?”

What have you said YES to recently?

What are your thoughts on having a YES mindset?

Do you say NO more often or do you say YES more frequently?

Thank you for saying YES to my blog today!


Hello Monday

Monday, March 22, 2021

How was your weekend? Mine was really social and really sunny! That is a great combo! I am happy to link up today with Heather, Tanya, and more here.

Friday after my last class, I headed to my deck to read in the sun! I forgot to tell you on Friday that I treated myself to my first pedicure in months Thursday afternoon with Essie’s Bikini So Teeny.

I got to see both boys briefly that afternoon for haircuts. Mason cut off his long hair for his play. He was sad to see it go but wants the play to be really good.

Tom and I went to dinner just the two of us for the first time in forever. We tried a new place called Diamond Street Grub.

I had a dragonfruit margarita.

And, we got fish for me and nachos for Tom. It was way too much food and food that doesn’t save well!

Saturday morning I cleaned out my china cabinet/liquor cabinet. It had gotten so disorganized.

And, I did my Easter/spring decor.

This weekend my high school friend Jim and his wife and two other couples that are friends of theirs and whom I didn’t know stayed in an Airbnb for Jim’s birthday. They invited us to join in their weekend fun – with basically as many breweries as they could visit!

I met up with them at rooftop bar Saturday late afternoon. Tom visited his parents so it was just me.


Then, we moved to a brewery and four more of our high school friends joined. Several of us live in Louisville because it is the closest big city to our hometown. This was in a cool courtyard in an area called NULU which means “new Louisville”.

High school friends Mike, Dan, and the birthday boy Jim. Dan told me he reads my blog daily, which is so sweet. He may be my only male reader. Hi Dan! He has two daughters, so maybe he can impress them with something he learns from me? Lol!

Wives – Kara, me, Katie, and Beth. Beth was also my high school friend.

Kara was excited to tell me she was wearing “the rule of three” and knew I would be proud.

I said goodbye around 8 because I had been hanging out since 5. Remember that introverted extrovert thing? I was tired. I would also like to mention that all of us were fully vaccinated except maybe one and it was a good feeling to finally take pictures together.

Sunday Tom and I met Jack with lunch to watch a baseball game at his college, because Tom and I enjoy baseball. He isn’t that into sports but he obliged us.

We tried a new fast food place called “Jaggers” owned by Texas Roadhouse.

It was nice to see all the people sitting on the hill watching the game.

We said goodbye to Jack and went to three more places with Jim and his friends. I got a bourbon slushie at one of the places.

Then, Tom and I took Jim and his wife back to their Airbnb and sat around and talked for a bit.

They had snacks and I brought guacamole and plantain chips and goat cheese spread and crackers.

Tom with a plantain chip. He thought they looked like tongues.

My friend Jim and his friends live in Cincinnati, Ohio which is only about 1.5 hours away. We made a pact to go visit them this year.

We were wiped out and headed home to our empty nest for a quick dinner and a couple of shows. We were outside for much of the day and the sun felt great, but it really took it out of us!

I hope you had a lot of sunshine, too! Any highlights?

Thanks for reading!


Friday Favorites

Friday, March 19. 2021

Happy Friday! I am one week closer to spring break! We have two live class days Monday and Tuesday, and then three asynchronous days before break. Teachers report back to my school building on Thursday and Friday for training, meetings, and set up. It is surreal!

I am linking up today with Andrea, etc. right here.

Here are some things that made me smile this week:

I showed you my new to me consignment kimono on Wednesday here and I thought I would show you that I wore it for my weekly happy hour date. If you are looking for an easy outfit, jeans, t-shirt, kimono really could be the answer! Yes, I am getting as much wear out of the white booties as I can!

I met Elizabeth, my French teacher friend, at Parlour which is a pizza place. They have a new and improved patio and really good cocktails.

I am almost finished with this. I took photos of books at the bookstore and then requested them through my library website. This was mildly entertaining but predictable. Husband cheats on wife, wife goes to Paris.

I got kind of bored so I started this and it is fun and a quick read. I am almost done with this one, too. Girl has accident, has amnesia, and tries to regain her identity.

For St. Patrick’s Day, I did a surprise ham, cheese, and egg breakfast sandwich to go for hub.

I got this text when he opened it at work.

He thought it was green eggs and ham; this is his sense of humor.

I have been self-tanning but my hands have been white. So, I did a little trick. You put a bit of self-tanner on the back of one hand and then rub the back of the other hand on top. I tried to take a photo of me doing this but it was a hot mess.

On our St. Patrick’s Day walk, Ernie and I noticed this patch of clover. I tried to find a four leaf but then got bored.

A sign of spring!

I made an Irish dinner, too. I told Tom to get ready and he asked if we were having “famine”. As a joke, I had a plate ready for him with just one potato on it.

But, seriously, I made Jen’s meal! I will be making this again.

I left out the raisins in the Irish soda bread.

And, this butter is ah-mazing!

I know we are all talking about it, but it’s still so hard to believe it’s been a full year! I love my Bravo shows and I also love a couple of TLC shows like Outdaughtered about the family with quintuplets. It is so weird to see the pandemic play out on these reality shows.

I learned there are two types of people:

  1. Those who used the last year to get in the best shape of their life.
  2. Those who ate and drank their feelings.

I love this quote below! It’s true! I have been kinda emotional this month. I am sad for my students but happy they get to have some time back in school. Our elementary schools opened on Wednesday and I got teary-eyed hearing the school announcements from my yard. I realized I hadn’t heard the “normal” school sounds in over a year. Our colleges have started to announce normal in-person classes for the fall. That made me get teary-eyed. I hope we aren’t jumping the gun.

I am either an introverted extrovert or an extroverted introvert. Who knew? I think I spent my whole life thinking I was an extrovert but I would hit a wall and be done with people. I think I just thought I was a moody b****. Now, I am thinking that I just need a balance. The best definition I have ever heard is…

You are an extrovert if you get energy from being around people.

You are an introvert if you get energy from time alone.

I need both! I am happy doing both. I would think a balance would be good for everyone, regardless of extrovert or introvert status.

And, finally, I want to mention that this past Wednesday was my two week mark after my second vaccination. That is when they say you are fully vaccinated and have about a 94% protection of getting seriously ill or hospitalized from Covid. It is such a wonderful feeling after a year of mental exhaustion and questioning every move. Tom gets his second in two weeks. Now, I am anxious for my boys to get theirs. I am hoping they get the one shot Johnson and Johnson.

I want to recommend Walgreen’s if you have those in your state. I went on their website, made an account (super quick), and was able to make an appointment for just a couple of days away. You go in to the pharmacy and the pharmacist does the injection in a little room, Then you have a 10-15 minute wait to make sure you don’t have a reaction. I walked around the store and shopped. I got my first one in a giant vaccination clinic but they dissed me on my second and told me they didn’t have a spot for me. The first one was a 2 hour wait. So, I enjoyed my Walgreen’s experience way more! My sister in Indiana got hers at Meijer pharmacy (grocery store chain) because she has asthma. So, hope that helps someone. I think age 40 and up will be opening soon in many states. Our state is still on 60 and up and certain jobs.

How was your week? Any highlights? If you missed any posts this week, I did Hello Monday here, Tuesday Tip on homemade honey mustard dressing here, What I Wore Wednesday here, and finally, Thursday Thoughts on routines here.

I appreciate you stopping by and leaving me comments!


Thursday Thoughts – Routines

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Are you a routine-oriented person? I think sometimes the word “routine” has a bad connotation. “My life is so routine” is not a good statement usually. But, I think routines can actually make your life easier. I find that I have to change routines for different times of the year or different seasons of life. I guess for me, routines help with my productivity and the more efficient I am, the more time I have for the fun things in life!

I feel lucky that I am naturally a morning person. But, there were many years that I wasn’t maximizing my mornings. I used to get as much sleep as possible in the morning and then get up and rush around. When my twins were between 1 and 2 years old I finally figured out that I needed some time to myself before they got up. With even just 30 minutes of quiet time I was so much more ready to “mom” and it really did set up our whole day in a good way.

In the summers, I would get out a toy they hadn’t seen in a while and it felt new to them; I would have it where it was the first thing they saw when they came out to the family room. Or, I would prepare an activity for them to do that morning (teacher mom!) So, by getting up early and having my time, I also had time to do this. I also must admit that I had wonderful sleepers.

My favorite way to start my day is to take my coffee on the porch. I am struggling with what to call my new upper patio. I have a lower patio and and upper patio now. So is this new space my deck and the other my patio? What should I call them?

I start my day with 2 ish cups of coffee, a devotional or Bible verse, and my favorite blogs.

The amount of time I spend doing this varies depending on what I have to do that day. After my coffee, I heat up my breakfast, eat it, and then go get ready for the day.

This routine will be changing for the last 8 weeks of the school year as I am going to be going in to my school from 7:00-3:00. I think I will still get up with enough time for one cup of coffee and some reading, but I will probably take my second cup to go.

Around 10 in the warmer months, I have my iced coffee. Sometimes I take this in the car in the summer if I’m running errands.

During the last year, I have walked Ernie during my lunch break. I am hoping to walk him at 3:00 when I get home now.

I love an afternoon ritual of a coffee or a cocktail, but I usually only do the cocktail a couple of times a week. I am pretty disciplined about stopping work around 3-4. It’s easy to work longer when you work from home, but it is not healthy.

With the exception of part of December and part of January, I have a weekly friend date this last year. In the spring and summer I hosted on my patio, but since the fall I have gone to restaurant patios. Routines shouldn’t all be about things you don’t enjoy. You should have routines that bring you pleasure, as well.

This is relatively new, but I am enjoying these routines:

Grocery pick up – Thursdays – so that I am stocked for the weekend.

House cleaning – Friday afternoons after my last class – again, it feels good to have the house clean for the weekend.

Breakfast prep for the week – Sunday mornings – I think I am going to just take a sandwich for lunch when I go back to school. I think that sounds like the easiest thing to eat when I know I won’t have much time.

Laundry – I do my one load of clothing Monday mornings before I start my first class. I do one household load of sheets and towels Friday afternoon with my cleaning.

Making dinner – I start dinner between 4:45-5:00 every week night. I turn on the news or a podcast while I cook.

Shower – I shower and wash my hair most weeknights around 7:00 after dinner. I sleep better when I do this and it makes my morning routine so much easier. I rarely use a hair dryer so it also helps my hair.

Bedtime – I get in bed no later than 10:00. I think 10-6 is optimum for me.

I know some people have Friday pizza routines and that is so fun because it is a family routine. Some people have a special breakfast on the weekends.

I’m sure I have forgotten something! What are your favorite routines?