Our morning candles... with my new table runner. I've discovered that creating an atmosphere of comfort, beauty and rest can completely change your attitude!
We are morning people!!!
Now that is something I NEVER imagined you would hear me say.
I began this journey almost at the beginning of the month, so its taken me a little longer than 14 days to go through the course, day by day. But I finished it nonetheless! And now, surprisingly, I'm a morning person! So now I can be really truthful and honest with you guys, without feeling ashamed like I would have a month ago.
Last year my mornings were rushed. I would hit the ground running with kiddos needing something of me immediately. Devotions were a thing that happened occasionally, sometimes on Saturdays when they didn't get up early. I looked at my devotion book, Whispers of Hope by Beth Moore and realized that I had been writing in it since my little sister was pregnant.. and my niece turned one in July. That's a little long to be working on a devotion that is supposed to take ten weeks. Yet mornings didn't leave time for anything. On the days that I did take time to workout it was quick, interrupted and honestly quite useless because as soon as my heart rate was up, someone else was needing something of me immediately. Mornings were NOT my friend. I rarely saw anything earlier than 8:30, and to be honest, it was normally more in the 9-10ish range... and I was really wondering why we didn't start school until 11?
But I'm getting ahead of myself.
My issue with mornings began a few years ago. When I really started trying to follow God, study my Bible and live by the word. I remember reading about the Proverbs 31 woman, and I honestly wanted to be like her! The wife of noble character... I longed for that. But there was that one little verse... the one that always got me...
15 She gets up while it is still night;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her female servants.
No. That part, that wasn't me. I wasn't a morning person. That I couldn't do.
I could sometimes get myself out of bed at 7:30 but I felt like I was miserable for the rest of the day, so I would make up for it by sleeping until 9 the next morning. I knew that coffee wasn't great for me, since I struggled with high blood pressure and don't enjoy coffee unless its sweetened up with far more of the yummy creamer than is safe for anyone. The mixture of the caffeine overload and the sugar high was enough to make me happy for a few hours, and come crashing down bitterly.
The week before I took the challenge I remember I was really dealing with some miserable headaches. I started backing off caffeine and the headaches were worse. I knew that if I was going to make it all day I was going to have to do it without that crash. So I had to do this, and I had to do it without that fuel.
I believe just having the course motivated me to work on this. Having something specific to turn too everyday. Also having the accountability of writing about doing the course! All of this gave me the encouragement that I need to actually bull through the first few days, and that was an amazing feeling!
Only a few days of getting up early and cutting the morning coffee or soft drink habit really changed the way that I felt. The headaches disappeared, and I felt so much better! A few days into it, I realized that I actually enjoyed getting up early! I enjoyed the time that I got to spend with my devotions and reading, the time that I got to spend talking to my husband before he left for class.. and just having some quiet time in the house made me a lot happier. It made me not so snappy at the kids when they were awake and about the house, because once they are awake quiet time is but a memory lol!
Now I am a morning person! I slip out of bed sometime between 6 and 6:15.. put on my soft robe and make my way into the living room. I boil a cup of hot tea (herbal tea is my favorite!) and settle down to read my devotions. Then I spend some time working on something online (this past few weeks it has been this course!) and make my way to the elliptical. I usually spend somewhere between 45 mins to an hour working out, shower and am ready to face the day with my kids. School works better once I have spent that time in the morning. Everything works better. I am intentional the evening before about making sure that the house is organized and that I have a pretty table for the next morning.
Mornings are nothing like they used to be. We drink hot tea, play classical music and light candles. Today while I was playing our classic music cd, Pachelbel's Canon came on and Brother yelled, "Hey turn this up! This is my favorite!" Pretty awesome when a seven year old has an appreciation for classical music.
I can't even begin to tell you the wonderful things that have came out of making over my mornings, and taking this course. So much is accomplished in the mornings... I treasure that time, and look forward to it when I go to sleep each night. Trust me, I never thought that was something that I would say! I accomplish more in those morning hours than I do sometimes the rest of the day. Those hours have balanced and changed me into a more productive person. They have made me who I am now.
When Kobe Bryan accepted his ESPY award, he said this...
"We’re up here because of two-a-days or five-a-days. We’re up here because we had a dream and let nothing stand in our way. If anything tried to bring us down, we used it to make us stronger.”
Now I can understand that statement, down to my bones. I'm where I am because of 6am. Because of making that effort and taking that time no matter how I felt, to center myself. I'm here because I determined to do it, and its changed me. In the two hours that I've committed to adding to my day, I've set goals and reached them. I've planned meals for my family. I've decided on school curriculum and choices. I've written blogs and inspired others. I've read books and fed my soul so that I can pour out to my family. And in doing all of these things, I've honored and learned an obedience to my heavenly Father to live best the moments that he's given me these past fourteen days. I've not wasted those mornings in idleness.. and for that, I'm so incredibly grateful!
So what's next?
In the scope of this course I have set some goals to execute. Smaller, more bite-sized goals that are attainable to me in this season of my life. They all come together to put in place the larger goals that I wanted.. but for this time, its the small goals that matter.
It's written in my notebook...
January- Finish the Make over my Mornings course. Make mornings a priority. All of the things I want to accomplish on this list.. becoming healthier, taking better care of my family, cultivating a closer relationship with Him and growing better physically, spiritually and mentally... all of those things can happen in those morning hours. So this is important.
- January's goal- accomplished!
February- Remake my calendar and schedule meal plans, find healthier food options.
So that is my goal for February.
I to intend to keep all of you readers, my faithful accountability partners- in the loop.
I also intend to keep reading blogs from Crystal Paine to keep encouraging and inspiring me. I was really excited when I saw this series on her blog: 15 days to a healthier you! I'm looking forward to reading!
I've also been going through a Made to Crave 60 day devotional, and its been so wonderful! I haven't finished the book yet, and that is my goal for Feb, as well as finishing the devotion! I would also like to follow up with the Action plan participants guide. I really enjoy her way of writing, and I could use all the help I can get in that area.
Just so everyone knows though, it all started here. With this challenge, this course, and the extra few hours that it gave me, I know that I will reach my goal and make 2017 my most intentional year yet! Thank you so much for following me on this journey, and I can't wait to share my journeys to come!