Giving birth to Maeve
On feeling beautiful at 40

Small changes, big wins


Lately I've been thinking about small changes I've made that have made a big difference. I came up with seven and would love to share...

1. Carrying my AirPod case in my pocket when I'm using them. It's not a hyperbole to say that AirPods have changed my life. Being able to listen unwired to an audiobook or podcast while I go about my day brings me so much joy. And I credit AirPods with bringing audiobooks back into my life. What does not bring me joy, however, is the panic I feel when I can't find one of my AirPods (I always only use one at a time). I even lost one AirPod of my first pair which was very sad.

A small change I've made, and a tip from Erica, is that now whenever I'm using an AirPod I keep the case in my pocket. That way, any time I remove the AirPod I put it in its case right away. If I don't have a pocket then I bring the case to whatever room I'm in and keep it very nearby.

2. Charging my Apple Watch while Maeve is in the bath. Another technology win, I pair charging my Apple Watch with Maeve's bath time. Or, if she's not taking a bath, then with getting her ready for bed. I keep the charger in my closet near our bathroom counter and get it out while I'm getting Maeve ready. This way my watch is always charged before I go to bed so I can wear it during the night to track my sleep, which is data that I love.

3. Not going to sleep with an audiobook. Friends! This is actually maybe a big change for me because it's a years-long habit and last year I even said I was going to give up trying to change. I'm not sure exactly what inspired me, perhaps finally feeling annoyed enough at my dependent habit, but I decided to try breaking the habit again – and it's going great!

Now I read until I'm really sleepy, don my sleep mask, and then...go to sleep! I'm a few weeks into this habit change and I noticed almost immediately that my sleep overall is so much better. Although going to sleep with a book is incredibly comforting to me I think it caused me to wake up more often. Then I'd have to listen to more of the book which sometimes would activate my mind too much. From my Apple Watch sleep data I can see that my awake time at night has gone down significantly and is now only brief times to go to the bathroom, turn over, or even not at all.

4. Brushing Maeve's teeth in the bathtub at night. For Maeve's bedtime routine we were giving her a bath and then upon coming out of the bath trying to brush her teeth. She would often resist the teeth brushing and it caused frustration or derailment of the whole routine. But now we just brush her teeth while she's in the bath and there's no resistance at all! We brush her teeth, she spits out into the bath (eh, I'm fine with it), and then we have a small cup that we fill with water so she can rinse and spit. Now she even rinses with mouthwash too. Figuring out ways to make everyday habits happen without meltdowns for little kids is always such a big win.

5. Letting Maeve watch Paw Patrol each morning while she has her hair done. Maeve was so resistant to having her hair done to the point that we rarely could do more than put a clip in the side. But enter: Paw Patrol. I let go of my "absolutely no screen time on weekday mornings" rule to allow an episode of Paw Patrol each morning while Maeve gets her hair done. Now Maeve routinely wears a pony tail, braided pigtails, and recently I even started practicing a French braid which is a new skill for me!

I love the routine of making Maeve's hair each morning, and getting to do that as a mom of a daughter. I also love how sweet Paw Patrol is and how much Maeve loves it. Paw Patrol will always have a special place in my heart because of this hair styling ritual with Maeve.

6. Using a Wet brush. Speaking of hair, I received a Wet brush during a holiday favorite things party and let me tell you, this brush is magical! I had heard of the brand but I'm not sure if I would have gotten around to buying one myself. Thank goodness it came into my life. Somehow this brush brushes through even tangled hair but doesn't pull! I use it on Maeve after her bath and in the mornings after I spray her hair with detangler. I also use it on the boys who are both wearing their hair longer right now. One of our boys has hair that tends to get tangled and also seems to have a sensitive scalp. But he lets me brush his hair out with this brush until his hair is shiny and smooth. Magic!

7. Keeping sunscreen in the car. We've been keeping a bottle of the Trader Joe's daily sunscreen (a dupe for Super Goop Unseen Sunscreen) in our front seat console. Chris and I will often put the sunscreen on the backs of our hands when we're in the car, protecting our hands from sun exposure. And then we also have extra sunscreen if we'll be out and need to put sunscreen elsewhere. As an aside, we always wear daily sunscreen on our faces and both Chris and I use the Paula's Choice spf 50 daily sunscreen. The only bummer about this small change is that we can't keep the sunscreen in the car during the hot months because it'll just liquefy. Maybe we could keep it in a little basket in the laundry room so we would see it on our way out to the car...stay tuned!


What small changes have made a big difference in your life? I'd love to hear!


P.S. You might enjoy this Lazy Genius podcast episode and this Em For Marvelous blog post, both of which inspired this post.