Monday, July 2, 2012

40 Day Get Up and At ‘Em Challenge

Confession time, ladies: I am not a morning person.  Since having my daughter 26 months ago, I get up faithfully every single morning without exception (ok, that one time I had the flu and got the shakes so bad I had to get Mr. Old Fashioned to take the morning shift, but other than that, Im batting 1000!) and Im faithful to do what I HAVE to do in the morning, but if I had it my way, ladies, this is what my morning would look like:

1. Wake up (begrudgingly).
2. Get Bird up and give her a big hug (gladly, no matter the hour).
3. Make coffee and drink it.
4. Sit on the couch watching the Today show for an hour while my brain and body slowly wake up and my kid eats a nutritious meal that the Breakfast Fairy drops onto my table with no work required from me.

This last  one shows how out of touch I am with reality, ladies, because I haven’t had a TV that could access the Today show for over a decade.  But I said that’s what Id LIKE to do.  But in reality too often my mornings have resembled this, with an often-neglected Bible open in front of me instead of Matt Lauer, and Bird watching Max and Ruby while I wake up enough to prepare that breakfast that the fairy forgot to drop by.

But not any more.  I have had fits and starts in the past of more productive mornings and I ALWAYS feel better when I am disciplined enough to make them happen.  So, by God’s grace I have begun a 40 Day Get Up and At ‘Em Challenge for myself, and I hope you might join me if you struggle with the morning grump and frumps like I do.  And if you are one of those amazingly natural morning people, then join in, too, and leave me lots of comments to inspire me about how awesome you are.
For the last two days my mornings have looked like this, and by God’s grace, they will continue to look similar:
1. Wake at 6:20 or so, about 40 minutes before my daughter is up.
2. Make coffee, have quiet time with the Lord consisting of reading my bible, prayer, and a worship song (thanks to my cousin Leah for that last inspiration… I had never thought of incorporating music into my morning quiet time but it is AWESOME).
3. Wake Bird at 7 if she isnt already up, and let her play while I take a shower.
4. Get dressed.  Ladies Im not going to lie… many mornings when I don’t have to go anywhere I am still in my PJs until like 11.  I am not unproductive… Im doing stuff… but I always feel sort of blah doing it because I havent really gotten myself ready for the day.
5. Do my hair and makeup. This is another thing I am terrible about…. Ive never been much of a primper and Mr Old Fashioned likes me plain Jane and doesn't mind a pony tail so I get lazy.  I feel better when I do my hair and put on some lip gloss and blush (the extent of my makeup regiment) so I need to start doing this every morning… I just feel so much better when I do.
6. Get the Apron on and Breakfast going.
Here I am, aproned and ready to go (and notice the lip gloss… va va va voom!) at 8:10

The rest of my day then falls into place as it would, with my morning chores, etc, but just in the past two days I have felt way more productive and focused in doing them because Im already awake, caffeined, and most importantly, I have had a quiet, focused time with the Lord Jesus.  I am not lying, ladies when I say it is a 100 percent success rate of a better day when I start my day this way.  I always read my bible in the morning, but when Im trying to do it with Bird up, watching cartoons, etc, then I just don’t focus.  Oh, and the added bonus of this new system is that Bird is playing in her room while I get ready and then we’re right to breakfast, so no morning cartoon, which I like better.

Now of course the plan is not to do this JUST for 40 days.  The hope is that after a focused 40 day commitment, this routine will become a habit.  I plan to do a blog post each Saturday during the next 40 days just updating on how its been going, the challenges the advantages, what the Lord is teaching me through this commitment and how its affecting my abilities as a homemaker. 
If any of you ladies struggle as I do to get going in the morning, feel free to join me on this challenge!  Please let me know if you join me and either leave me a comment each Saturday or if you do your own post, Ill link up to it back here  on my page.  I was thinking about trying to make a button but ladies I have no idea how to do that so if you want to, feel free to just right click and save any of the challenge photos and use it in your blog posts or on your sidebar if you feel so inclined.  And your insights and stories of your morning routines are welcome at any time!

Im so excited to see what the Lord has in store for me as I seek to start my day right over the next 40 days.  Won’t you join me?  Blessings!

Proud to be linking up today with Homemaking Link-Up at Raising Homemakers, Works For Me Wednesdays at We Are That Family, Share Your Cup Thursdays at Jann Olson’s, Saturday Show and Tell at Cheerios and Lattes.


Jode said...

What a great post and challenge! I have been thinking much the same thing lately...i know i would feel so much better if i got up and had some time before my twins get up for the day but i keep putting it off and savouring time in bed...however, then i am grumpy because i don't get time for a cuppa, breakfast etc...and it's my fault hehe!
i could perhaps change before 11am too and even brush my hair...ok i shall join the challenge with you...just need to think on how to put that into practise!
Good's an awesome challenge you have set yourself and makes a lot of sense...thanks for the inspiration too!

The Old-Fashioned Housewife said...

Jode- Thanks so much for the sweet and encouraging comments and for sharing your own morning struggles- I hear EVERY word you said (especially about the grumpy part!). God bless you and do let me know if you decide to make a chance once you've thought it over. God bless!

Anonymous said...

I let my morning routine fall by the wayside as I stayed up too late so the first thing I do to get up early is go to bed early. I enjoy some quiet time before I get to work and get the kids up too...I think it helps the day to move smoothly if you aren't running after it, one shoe on, yelping about lost socks and lunches :)

The Old-Fashioned Housewife said...

That is a fantastic and important tip, Mrs Milk Can- getting to bed at a decent time! Thanks for sharing! :)

The Kopers said...

This is awesome! I love it! Way to go! I'm not looking at it right now, but I know that part of the Proverbs 31 woman description talks about her being up while it is still dark and that was the thing that motivated me to get up before my kids a few years ago! I know that our days go better, we are more productive and more blessed on days when we do this because it is how the Lord intended us to live! Thanks for the encouragement in this area! It is just great!

The Old-Fashioned Housewife said...

Oh thanks so much, Leah, god bless you, cousin. I so appreciate your advice to me along these lines this week, it was great inspiration. God is good. :)

Rachel said...

For the last week I have been waking up before the kids and going for a walk. I almost always talk myself out of going if I wait until they're awake {there's always just too much to do} It's nice to have time to myself and feel good that I got my walk in. I'd love for you to share this at my link party.

Rose said...

This is something I struggled with for years and am finally in a routine where I am up at 6:00 nearly every weekday morning. It really does make a difference in how smoothly the day runs.

Marie-Louise said...

Good post! I'm also not a morning person. Most days I have to go to work late (13:00), so it's so easy to stay up late and wake up late the next day. But it doesn't work anymore because I now have to leave earlier on Thursdays and Fridays for my second job.
The comming weeks I have to work early. Leaving 6.30... So I hope I will get used to a routine. Also for the days I'm not working!
I will start today by going to bed...RIGHT NOW! :) (It's far too late already!)

Anastasia Ricks said...

Hi there! I'm visiting from Share Your Cup Thursday. I love your blog. This is a wonderful challenge! I am so bad at this not being a morning person. I am now a new follower and would be honored if you would visit and follow me back at Thanks!

Gina said...

Just found your blog from a comment on SPFH Facebook page and love it. I am a morning person, so it easy for me. I love getting up early and getting everything done before lunch. I am off for the summer since I work at an elementary school but even during school, I manage to get a lot done early. Mornings are my favorite time of day. Forgot to mention, we are empty nesters so it is a little different for us but I was always like this even when the kids were home.

Anonymous said...

I have been forcing myself to get up and exercise every morning by making hubby's lunch for him before he leaves at 5:30am!! If I made it and left it in the fridge for him the night before I'd never get out of bed, so this has been working for me so far :) After I exercise I'm free to shower, get dressed, read my Bible, journal, and have breakfast in the quiet of the morning before the kids get up. It just starts my day off right, I'm more productive throughout the day, and I feel much better for it. I shall be checking in with you every Saturday to see how you're doing. Good luck and God Bless.

Barb King said...

Visiting from Share your cup thursday. I don't have issues with getting up, just getting organized. Could you tell me where you got those great vintage photos that you made your graphics with? I was looking for something just like that but dont know where to find them. Barb

Jann Olson said...

Hi Nicole, I have been away so I am a little slow at visiting. Love your get up and go challenge. For some reason I have never been a sleeper inner (is that a word?) lol! I just automatically wake up a 7 every morning. Always ready to take on the day. I am missing one thing though, I don't put on any lip gloss. I think keeping your lips kissing soft is very important. Good for you girl! Hey, and I could take a tip of reading my scriptures daily also. Always have good intentions, but doesn't happen often.