I have two boys ages 13 and 10. Believe me...it is difficult to keep peace in our house, and I don't want to fool you into thinking that our home is a peaceful place every day. I only wish! However, I do my best to do little things each day to "at least" make my heart feel more at ease and calm. 1. Get Up Before the Kids: It's always important to be up before the kids. Even if it's just for a few minutes. This gives you a chance to start the day off without chaos and helps you get ahead of the game. I use this time to do my devotional and drink a cup of coffee in peace. This sets the tone for the day.
2. Make a List: I am a true and true list maker. Almost to a fault, but it helps my brain stay organized and not get off task. When the kids were in school and our days were normal, I would have a ton on my list full of teaching classes and appointments. During quarantine, I'm trying to "spring clean" one room a day and powerwash the porches. However, nothing is too small to put on your list. I'll put "brush my teeth" just to make me feel like I'm accomplishing something. I promise lists will be your best friend.
3. Make Your Bed: I read somewhere that your bed takes up about 80% of your room (okay that's probably not a completely right statistic but it's something like that), the point is that if you make your bed your room almost instantly looks clean. Take two minutes and make your bed. It makes a HUGE difference. 4. Get Dressed: As a mom, I know how easy it is to just wear your PJs until noon especially right now when we are not going anywhere; however, I find that when you are in your pajamas too long the day just slips away. Make a point at the beginning of the morning to brush your hair, get dressed in real clothes (not tights and a t-shirt), brush your teeth, and put on a little makeup. I'm not talking about a full-on face of makeup, but some lip gloss and maybe a little mascara. I find that when I'm dressed I am way more productive and with my kids at home, I think they take me more seriously and especially more seriously during our homeschool time.
5. Play Music: Play anything that has a peaceful vibe around the house instead of having the TV on. Something about good music just gets your heart relaxed and sets the tone for everyone around. I have been playing a lot of Steve Tyrell and Carole King. These two seem to calm things down if it is getting a little wild in the house. 6. Light Candles: My favorite candle is the Tyler Candle Company, Warm Sugar Cookie. It's more of a fall scent, but I don't care. It reminds me of the smell of home. Tyler Candles are amazing. You only need one to scent your entire house. Good music and a homey scent can ease tension in the house. 7. Lamps: We are blessed to have a lot of natural light in our house so I don't often turn on the ceiling lights. I just turn on lamps. I usually turn on all the lamps in the morning. Something about the soft light makes the house feel warm and peaceful. 8. If You Need to Get a Task Done, Bake: Often when the house is a mess, and I need to fold laundry, etc...but have no willpower to do it, I bake. For some reason, I get a jolt of competitive energy to see how much I can get done while the brownies or cookies are in the oven. I have no idea why this works, but I promise it does! If you don't want to bake...I get you. Just set the timer on your phone. I promise a little competition with yourself is just the motivation you need.
9. Exercise and Get Outside: I have been running for 10 years now. I think of it as free therapy. It's amazing the ideas that pop into your head when you walk or run. Running is how I got the idea to start this blog and prayed for the courage to do it. Getting outside, smelling, and feeling the fresh air is just what you need to relax. You don't have to run 5 miles...just walk 10 to 20 minutes outside. I promise it makes all the difference in the world. 10. All Labels Forward: This one is a bit weird, but I promise it will make your heart so happy and change your life forever. I saw this on a show one time, and I loved the idea. In the fridge, the guy had all his labels faced forward. This seems a little OCD, but I promise this is a game-changer! I now face all the labels forward in the fridge and the pantry. It brings a certain peace in the kitchen. I even now have my kids trained so that all the soft drinks, water bottles, etc...face forward. I promise this one will be your favorite. I hope you have a chance to try a few or hopefully all of the ways that keep me from not losing it while we are at home during the quarantine. Wishing you all the blessings during this tough time for our country. All my love, amber :)