As I sit here surrounded by moving boxes and to do lists, I realize that moving into a new house is a perfect time to establish new routines. New space, fresh start! I am someone that loves structure, which makes me question how I let myself fall out of an established routine in the first place. Maybe it was the freedom of the empty nest life? When we moved here, I wasn’t working anymore and suddenly could do pretty much what I wanted, when I wanted. It was fun for a couple of years. Who wouldn’t love having 7 bars and restaurants in walking distance, especially on warm summer nights when a band is playing?! We were like newlyweds all over again, but this time with money! I didn’t have an alarm clock to wake up to or set schedule to keep. I was staying up way too late and sleeping in until I felt like getting up. I had been home with my babies in my early 20’s so it wasn’t until my 40’s that I even visited bars and stay out late on a regular basis! It felt like a permanent vacation, especially when my friends came to visit. It was a great life and I was living it to the fullest.
But as tends to happen, I feel like that phase has run its course. There are a few things that I think contributed to this.
–A global pandemic that made it more appealing to spend time at home and with small groups. After two years of living with this virus I pay a lot more attention to the number of people in the crowd and who I am going to be spending time with afterwards. My cozy pajamas, comfortable couch and thousands of streaming options can a be pretty tempting alternative!
–It’s been nearly six years since our first visit here and we are still discovering new places in the area. New trails to hike, more local businesses to support, fun events we haven’t been to. This is a beautiful place to live and there are so many great things to do! We love just taking drives with no idea where we will end up.
–Working a part time job which does require getting out of bed before 10am. It isn’t nearly as much fun staying out until 1am when you have to work the next morning!
These days our weekly trivia night with local friends is enough excitement for me most of the time. I am more likely to suggest we stay home and spend the evening watching British baking shows and House Hunters International than go out drinking and dancing. Which isn’t to say we don’t enjoy a good karaoke night or getting giggly with our friends now and then, we just don’t need it on a weekly basis anymore. I promise I’m not going to start complaining about the music being too loud or “kids these days”! I’m not getting too old to stay out late, but rather less inclined to feel the need to, if that makes sense.
I feel like I’ve gotten a bit off topic but the point I was trying to make was, I’ve been craving more structure in my routine. Once we move (two more weeks), I plan to make some changes. I’d like to get myself used to going to sleep before midnight and waking up by 7:30 without an alarm clock. This is the sunrise side after all and I would like to see it more often! I also want to create a self-care checklist to incorporate into my regular routine that I can check off each day. I LOVE crossing things off a list, it’s just so satisfying! This is what I am currently thinking:
– 20 minutes each morning for stretching/meditation
-Two writing sessions a week to work on my blog/journaling
-A weekly hike with my walking buddy
-A weekly group exercise activity (yoga, cardio drumming, line dancing, group workout, etc.)
-Dedicated time each week to work on my correspondence (sounds old fashioned I know, but how many times do we THINK about reaching out to someone but don’t actually do it)
-10 minutes before bedtime for skin care. I use moisturizer every day but am hit and miss with other products. I need to make myself a priority and take the time to take care of myself! I have a drawer full of Fab, Fit and Fun products that I should actually use!
In addition to all of this I’ll still be working part time, volunteering with my groups, helping to manage our household, and having fun with friends and family both at home and late nights on the town. It will be a full life. One that I want to take the time to appreciate. Preferably while meditating on my yoga mat overlooking my peaceful, new backyard.
I’ll let you know how it goes. If you have tried a self care check list of your own and want to offer suggestions or tips please be sure to leave a comment.