31 Things – Morning

Prompt 2 in Ali’s 31 Things class is about morning, and morning routine. I was again surprised at how much I wrote about it! Instead of taking new pictures this time, I’ve just reused some from my Week in the Life project from April. I’m still really enjoying these writing prompts, although I’m not even close to caught up. I don’t mind though, because I’d rather write a good amount than rush through each prompt and miss details of my life.

I’m not much of a morning person. I like staying up late at night, so it’s often a struggle to wake up each morning. I never get up on the first alarm, and always manage to hit snooze at least once. Even on days when I wake up naturally, I tend not to get straight up either. It doesn’t help in winter when it’s so cold either!

When it comes to mornings, I’m actually way better than I used to get. For quite awhile, when I was running poker tournaments and working at Wests, I used to sleep right up until midday most days, and then a sleep in was between 2 and 3pm! These days, my version of a sleep in is being up by 10am, although I still will lounge around in bed on the internet on my phone.

Michael is always the first one up. His alarm goes off at 5.45am each morning, and he’s the opposite of me and doesn’t hit snooze. He hops straight up and in the shower. Half the time, I don’t even wake up on his alarm or while he’s getting ready for work. Once he’s showered, he’ll go out and have brekkie while having some relaxing time on the computer, before brushing his teeth and heading out the door. I’m surprised some days that I don’t hear anything at all from him though. Goes to show that I sleep pretty solidly!

On work days, the time I get up tends to vary depending on what shifts I’m doing for the week. The earliest I’m ever usually up is 7am. This gives me time to get up, get ready and walk to work, and make it there with enough time to have a relaxing breakfast on the weeks when I have 8.30am starts.

Up until the last year or so, I’ve never really had any morning routines. I’ve found that I’m finally getting into a decent rhythm during the week lately though, and it seems to be working really well for me. I’d even say that I quite enjoy it! On work days, I start out by waking up on the first alarm, and hitting snooze. On the second alarm, I drag myself up and make the bed straight away most days. I then pick out work clothes so I can get dressed as soon as I hope out of the shower. This is especially helpful on cold mornings, since I don’t have to search a cold room in just a towel for something to wear! I hit the bathroom fan and start the shower heating up while I brush my teeth, and then I jump in once I’m done. After the shower, I dry myself, moisturise and get dressed, then I walk to work. Since I’m always at work early, I eat a relaxing brekkie there, usually of toast or cereal that I’ve brought in, although there is the occasional bacon and egg roll, and I’ll hang around chatting, or browsing online, or whatever else strikes my fancy on any particular day.

Even my shower routine is pretty well set… I use the same products each day, like Palmolive Naturals milk and honey shower gel, Palmolive Natural shampoo and conditioner and Redwin sorbolene cream. I wash my hair every second day, and use a face scrub once or twice a week. When I get out, I moisturise my face, legs and arms to try to prevent my eczema flaring up like it does on occasion when my skin gets dry. Then I’m done for the day. I’m not one who fusses over hair and makeup unless I’m going out, so this saves me quite a bit of time each morning at least!

I’ve realised that I’m pretty organised in the mornings lately as well. I’ve always have water bottles in the fridge ready to go, so once I’m dressed and ready, I head out and grab one for my work bag and grab my container of cereal if that’s what I’m having for breakfast. I tend to get this sort of thing sorted the night before to make the morning more peaceful. I always make sure there are clothes for me to choose from and socks and things ready to go as well, so it’s easy to decide in the morning. I think I would drive myself crazy if I wasn’t organised, especially if I had to attempt to iron work clothes each morning!

I love walking to work each day. I find it so relaxing, and end up getting to work feeling refreshed and happy. I know I shouldn’t be surprised that the fresh air and exercise has that affect, but it always amazes me. No matter how tired I am throughout the rest of the morning routine, it always perks me up when I walk in. Because I enjoy the walk, I even brought some gumboots for the days that it rains, so I can still easily walk in, but also avoid the wet feet and pants that come with walking through puddles! I also love the light in the morning as well. I never noticed it before, but I seem to find it so much more inspiring, and I can often be found taking pictures of gardens, flowers, birds, interesting leaves and much more along the way. It’s one of the best parts of working so close to home! It used to drive me crazy when I was catching the bus or train to Olympic Park each day. I found it so draining, and always got off the bus grumpy and tired. It’s also better than the hour each way I used to drive to work when I was working in Newcastle but living on the Central Coast!

When I’m on late shifts, my routine changes slightly. I wake up later, and will get up and make the bed, then set up the laptop and have brekkie at the computer, before coming in to brush my teeth and have a shower. If I have running around to do, I’ll often do it in the mornings, since I won’t have time to do it after work, things like getting my eyebrows done, or developing photos. I’ll leave home earlier and walk straight to the Westfield, then do what needs going and head straight to work. It makes me much happier than trying to cram it all in to late night shopping!

Since we’re in the process of starting to look for a place to buy, I’ve been thinking about what sort of changes will happen to my morning routine then. I doubt I’ll live this close to where I’m working again, so I think what will happen is I’ll end up getting up earlier and driving to the oval down the street from here to park, then walking the rest of the way in, like so many other people do each day. I think that would make me much happier than if I was to try and bus or train it, or if I was to have to pay huge amounts for parking by trying to get closer to work.

On weekends, I like to have at least one day of sleeping in if possible. I’ll usually wake up at whatever time my body naturally feels like getting up, and I’ll stay snuggled in bed browsing the net on my phone. One of my favourite weekend traditions is Michael making soft boiled eggs for brekkie, which he usually does each weekend. He’ll let me stay in bed reading, and then as they’re ready, he’ll come and tell me to get up and come out, so I put the dressing gown on and head out to eat. I think it’s one of the nicest things he does for me, and I don’t know if he realises how much I enjoy the relaxing start to the day!

It often surprises me that I’m not really a morning person. Both Mum and Dad are early starters, which Dad starting work around 6am each day, but leaving at about 5am to travel to wherever he needs to be for the day, and Mum starting a lot of her shifts at 3 or 4am. Dad’s always done it though, so I guess it’s nothing new for him, although Mum’s only done it for the last 5 or so years. She used to like sleep-ins on the weekends as well, so maybe it’s something I’ll grow out of at a later stage.

One thing I miss from when I was still in High School was that Dad used to wake me up each morning with a nice, hot cup of tea each day before he left, since I had to be up early to make my way to school. I used to have to catch 2 buses to get there, because we moved when I was in year 9 so we were much further away, and I didn’t want to change schools. I think this was about the only time in my life where mornings didn’t bother me at all! I had some terrible habits at this stage though, always having coke and chocolate at school for brekkie! This did change about part way through year 11 though, when I started buying a vegemite muffin and milk each day instead, which was cheaper, and healthier!

Up until the last year or so, I’ve never been a big brekkie eater. I always choose sleep over food, which never bothered me too much, although when the chance came up, I would never refuse a big breakfast! It’s the one meal of the day that I can eat a lot, although I don’t have a big brekkie very often. I find now though, that I can’t go more than an hour or so after waking up without eating, or my stomach starts growling quite a lot and I can’t focus much. It’s weird how it’s become such a habit and necessity for me! I’m not complaining at all though, because I know how much healthier it is for me to eat, and I usually make decent choices that time of the day anyway.

I’ve never been one who’s needed coffee or caffeine to get me started in the morning either. I’ve never been a huge coffee drinker anyway, and have only ever drunk it because I enjoy the taste, rather than needing a pick me up. I drink maybe 2-3 coffees a week, usually only on coffee dates, or when I want to kick back and relax with a warm drink but don’t feel like tea, or if I buy brekkie. It’s not a big deal for me to have it or not, and I actually prefer not to drink it in the morning since I tend to find it rather dehydrating overall. I’m a huge water drinker though, and will pretty much always go through a bottle of water before I even start work!

One interesting fact though, is that no matter how late I stay up, if I need to get up early for something like a flight or a long trip, or an appointment or anything scheduled like that, I wake up on the first alarm and I’m up and ready with no problems. I’ve noticed that on these days, I don’t get grumpy at all, either, which is an amazing fact! I don’t know why, but the days when I’m busy, I can run off no sleep and be ok, but when I sleep more, it’s not always the case.

Sometimes I have dreams too. I don’t remember a lot of dreams, but if I have a dream in the morning just before my alarm, it tends to turn into a half dream, half day dream after the alarm goes off. These are usually really strange happenings, which I start to forget at soon as I get up, but are sometime so random and amusing that I’ll text or call Michael to tell him about them. I like the dreams where I’m a kick ass heroine the best though… I can fight, play guitar and drums and speak multiple languages and so much other cool stuff! These happy day dreams also lead to a good start for the day!

I don’t often eat morning tea either, although if I do, I like having something like a banana, a le snack, or a muesli bar. If I have a late lunch break, I’ll sometimes have a hot Milo to help tide me over before I have a proper meal.

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