Currently: January
Pandemic check in #8

Goals for February


This year February 1st is my January 1st. I was just easing into 2022 and feeling energized when COVID hit our household. That pulled the rug right out from all the routine we were just settling into. Whew! But even COVID aside, I think collectively we could all use some rest, recharge, and reflection after the holidays. Especially so considering what we've experienced in 2020 and 2021. I'm here to gently remind you that a fresh start is a mindset and it can happen on January 1st or February 1st or July 23rd.

This month I'm celebrating the routine and the ordinary. A few pillars of routine for me at the beginning of 2022 include:

+ Maeve going to daycare for school-day hours Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. We added a daycare day in December and I wrestled with it emotionally at first. I wondered if I should be sending Maeve to daycare three days a week when I don't do paid work. I pictured a faceless, judgmental person questioning our decision (note to self: this is never helpful or a good way to make decisions). And then I checked in with myself and put the imagined judgment aside. I reflected on the writing and podcasting work that I do. I thought about how it makes me feel like myself and also connects me to a wonderful community of readers and listeners that I value. I thought about the household management tasks that I do that take real time and energy. And I thought about how much I enjoy my days with Maeve at home when I don’t have pressing tasks, creative or home-related, nagging at me. Together with validation fro Chris and from friends like Erica and Sarah I’m putting any guilt aside, I’ve never been one to invite in mom guilt anyway, and am really happy with our daycare schedule.

+ Spending my childcare time writing and recording blog posts as well as recording and editing podcast episodes with Erica. For a long time we've been recording episodes on Sunday mornings but are now able to record on the weekdays which we are both loving. It feels good to have one less weekend commitment and to bring my weekday energy to the show.

+ On Monday mornings I get up really early (about 4:30 a.m.), pour a Yeti tumbler full of hot coffee, and start my week screen-free. I catch up on my line-a-day journal (usually I write in this once or twice per week) and fill out a fresh Intentions for the Week page. I love this collection of grounding practices that has become a favorite ritual.

+ Usually exercising four times a week: two early-morning Orange Theory workouts (Wednesday and Sunday) and two evening High Fitness classes (Monday and Thursday).

+ Currently Dash is playing soccer which means practice on Thursday evenings and a game on Saturday.

Trading off with Chris to take every other Friday late afternoon and evening off. We were doing this on Tuesdays but realized Fridays might be better. On these days the "off" parent heads out around 4 p.m. or earlier depending on our work days. At parent at home for the evening takes care of dinner, bedtime, and all the kiddo management for the rest of the day. I wrote about this in my post "Recharge rituals in a busy season."

With the exception of the 10 days we were home on COVID quarantine I am starting the year feeling balanced and content which honestly still feels fairly foreign after living through the past two years. Plus having a baby and growing our family at the same time!I've noticed too that I have more capacity to reach out to friends and offer support. This feels like another measuring stick of sorts to know how I'm doing. I feel like my best self when I'm able to visit a friend with a new baby, drop off flowers to someone having a hard week, or put a care package in the mail. For much of 2020 and 2021 I did not have enough of myself to give beyond a text (which is still something of course and I appreciate getting those) but sometimes I didn't even have capacity for that. And so, as the second month of the year begins, I'm appreciating feeling like myself, which is no small thing.


Big things happening in February

+ We're going to Universal Studios! For Christmas, Chris surprised the boys and me with plans for the trip. My parents will stay with Maeve while we drive to California and have a magical time.

+ Valentine's Day. We'll have something simple but fun for the kids when they wake up on Valentine's morning. For dinner that night I'll plan to make a dessert which doesn't usually happen on weekdays.


February goals

+ Create a Prius memorial in the garage. Our Prius was such a great car and served us well for so many years. I had the idea that I'd love to frame and hang a few photos that I have of the Prius, like the first day I got it, the boys as a toddler and baby in car seats, and a photo of all three kids in the backseat, along with the license plate.

+ PTSO (Parent, Teacher, Student Organization) website update. I've been working on updating the website for the PTSO and need to finish to coordinate going live with the new site.

+ Plan a date with Chris!

+ Complete car organization. I'm inspired to make our roomy, new car as functional as possible for our family. So far I've stocked the driver and passenger doors with Wet Ones and the perfectly-shaped cylindrical tissue boxes. I'm on the hunt for a car trash can and perhaps some hanging organizers for the third row where the boys sit. If you have favorite car organization products or hacks I would love to hear about them!

+ Declutter and organize my bathroom counter and closet shelf. These have become dumping grounds for "things I don't want Maeve to get into" so there's lots of important stuff but all in a jumble. I need some systems!


Happy February, friends!


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