As we were getting our bearings parenting two small boys earlier this year (and let's be honest, we are still getting our bearings) I was so thankful to have stocked our freezer with pre-made meals. My favorite thing to grab was a freezer breakfast burritos made with eggs, spinach, potatoes and cheese. They were proteinful, delicious and just the thing to lend some bravery to mornings that came too early.
On such a morning I said to myself that a freezer burrito is like a high five from your past self. In this case it was a high five from a very pregnant Kelsey from a month earlier saying, "I know you're tired but look! there's coffee! And I made you breakfast!"
I thought more about these future high fives and realized that finding ways to plant high fives to my future self is one of my favorite things. I love finding little ways to make life easier for future-Kelsey. So I thought I'd share some of the high fives to my future self and wanted to share:
High five, busy mama!
+ Stock the freezer. This is a great future high five that's not just for new parents! Our weekday meals have been quick and simple lately (think black beans plus tortillas) and so to have something that requires more effort minus the effort, like quiche or enchiladas, makes a weeknight feel special. If I get the chance to do some cooking on a Sunday I love to double whatever I'm making and put away the extra portions as a future high five. And don't forget about breakfast. Burritos or muffins freeze wonderfully. The trick for burritos is to microwave them under a damp towel. To be really fancy you could crisp them up on the stove afterwards.
+ Prep the night before. We have so (so!) much stuff to get ready each weekday. Getting lunches, bottles, work bags, and my pump bag ready the night before makes all the difference between a harried morning and one where I sip coffee and play with the boys.
+ Buy extra. I'm not a Costco shopper and I don't routinely buy in bulk. But I am trying to get better about picking up things like toothpaste and other toiletries in multiples. When we run out of shampoo and I remember that I have a new bottle under the sink: high five!
+ Sunday meal prep. If we take some time on Sunday to prep healthy snacks and ingredients for healthy meals then eating well is easy (and fast) all week. I wrote a bit more about meal prep here and Tracy's meal prep Instagram feed is my happy place.
High five, weary traveler!
+ Clean the house before traveling. How amazing does it feel to return from a trip and to walk into a house with clean floors, scrubbed bathrooms and everything put away. So amazing. High five!
+ Buy basic groceries before traveling. There have been plenty of occasions when we've returned from a trip on a Sunday afternoon or evening and immediately have to start thinking of the work week. It can be emotionally draining for me so I love to eliminate the need to go to the grocery store by picking up a few things before we leave for a trip. I try to think of a couple of meals and snacks that will keep while we're away, such as pasta and a jar of sauce or something frozen (freezer meal!), so that we can have dinner and lunches for work for a couple of days. Chris must have cereal every morning and shelf-stable almond milk is the perfect solution for this. Definitely make sure you have coffee!
High five, worker bee!
+ To-do list at the end of a work day. Five minutes at the end of a work day is all I need to make a task list for the next morning. It's a negligible part of my day at the time but it makes all the difference the next morning when I'm able to pick right up from where I left off. I notice a difference when I start my work day with clear goals that I can immediately take action on.
I'm sure I'll think of others and I'd love to know what your future high fives are (so that I can adopt them)!