Monday, October 19, 2009
What it's like to be me in the mornings
The alarm goes off at 5:30, but most mornings I've already been awake for at least 15 or 20 minutes. It's my quiet time, my reflecting time. Problems that were tangled into a knot the night before begin to loosen in the mornings. New ideas come, and I see new ways to tackle what lies before me in the day.
Shower every other morning. Some weeks Mark and I are really coordinated--he takes a shower one day, and I take a shower the next. Other weeks we're on the same cycle, and we take quick turns. Every morning, floss, take vitamins, moisturize and put on makeup. (Not Saturdays)
One of us goes downstairs to start the cereal. We started eating steel-cut oats a couple of years ago, and we've been eating them every morning since. They take 20 minutes to simmer, so one of us goes down and gets the water boiling and adds the oats. Then that one can come back upstairs to get dressed.
Getting dressed: try to look professional, but I don't have to be overly fancy. I usually only wear jeans once a week or so (usually on Tuesdays, Cub Scout days), but most days I wear slacks and a nice shirt or sweater. I used to wear leather shoes more often, but the last couple of years I've gradually transitioned into wearing athletic shoes almost every day. It's just easier, and better for my feet, with the orthotics. Last month I bought some new shoes at REI (the ones I was wearing were two years old, and I had been wearing them almost every day). The ones that fit best were trail running shoes! Hah! I met up with a couple of trail-running gals when I went on my 50-mile hike in 2008, and I was pretty impressed with them. Now when Mark and I go for a walk, I joke that I just might take off trail running...hasn't happened yet...
Gather up the student papers I was grading the night before and put them plus the laptop into my teacher bag. A few quiet minutes for morning prayers, and then downstairs for breakfast. By this time the oats have finished cooking. One of us (usually Mark--he's better at it) scrambles a couple of eggs, and I cut up some fruit. Lately I've been eschewing sugar, so I add a little extra fruit to the oats, and maybe some slivered almonds.
Read the morning paper, check email while we eat. The grandkids are usually up by then, so we chat with them while we eat breakfast. Rinse the dishes, into the dishwasher, assemble the lunches: 1/2 turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread, fruit, plain yogurt or cottage cheese for me / sweetened yogurt for Mark, a few almonds, a small bag of homemade trail mix, string cheese. Toss the lunches into our lunch bags, find the employee ID badge for school.
Give the grandkids a hug, head for the door. It's 7:00 am, more or less. We have to be to school no later than 7:30, but we always try to get there before that so we can run off copies, set up lesson materials, chat with colleagues a bit before the day begins in earnest.
I actually enjoy my morning routine. I don't dread getting up and going to work. My mornings keep me healthy and ready to be on top of my day. The only things that would make it better would be to work in some exercise - a walk, or some yoga. I've tried, but I'm not consistent about that yet. Maybe next month!
(If you really read this post, please make a comment. This has got to be one of the driest topics I've posted here yet...most likely interesting only to me...)