Friday, July 17, 2009

Morning Rituals, Sleep & Artist Dates

My July goals aren't going so well. I haven't lost a single pound (let alone 4), I have not gone near a treadmill (and it's way too damn hot to run outside, yes even in the morning/evening), I've done zero Rosetta Stone, and I am incapable of creating (not to mention sticking to) a Morning Ritual. Also? I'm tired.

Since discovering the ability to watch old episodes of Law & Order: CI on Netflix, I have not been getting my 8 hours of sleep. Y'all, this is why people banish the TV from the boudoir. But I have my laptop, which is basically a small TV that I watch way too closely. I think I need to banish the laptop from my bed, at least for a little while. But! Only during the week. Weekends are fair game. ;-)

Why is it soo hard for me to create a morning ritual?? The only thing that's ritual-esque about my mornings is that I wake up and immediately start the coffee pot. Then I go brush my teeth, rinse my face, etc. while the coffee brews, and then I make myself a cup and bring it into the bathroom. And then I start getting ready, and I'm usually in a hurry b/c I've overslept (b/c I stayed up too late watching Law & Order). This is not a morning ritual, or at least not the kind I want.

I want sun salutations, I want moments of peace, I want to write my morning pages whilst sipping coffee and eating a healthy breakfast. Here's another problem - my breakfasts have gone to crap. Nothing sounds good, nothing tastes good, and confession: On Monday's and Wednesday's when I take Lola to daycare, I end up hitting up the McD's on the way to the office. No bueno, my friends. (But yumm aren't their hash browns DELISH?) What do you guys eat for a quick but nutritious breakfast?
Another thing I want to incorporate into my daily life is an evening ritual. I've sort of unknowingly created one over the past week. After dinner and tidying up, I grab my books, journals, laptop, stickers, pens, some some of drink and/or fruit, and Lola and head to my delicious bed. I essentially "set up shop" in bed and for the next 2 hours or so, I write and read and collage and color and yes, watch Law & Order. I'm going to work on this one, fine tune it because I really like having an evening ritual. Do any of you have one, whether intentionally or unintentionally? What are they? What about morning rituals?

Artist Dates
One of my July goals was to have weekly artist dates. I think I have lots of mini-artist dates, whether I call them that or not. Tonight my "artist date" includes watching Food, Inc., brushing up on my French (via Rosetta Stone), taking a long, hot, relaxing bath with epsom salts + lavender/eucalyptus essential oils, and reading. I'm already 400 pages into my book club book, World Without End by Ken Follett. I haven't read his first, but I'm going to after I finish this one! 600 more pages to go before next Thursday... I can do it!!

Tomorrow I am going to yoga and then hitting a hotel pool (with poolside service!) with some friends. PRAY for no rain!!


ohmypuddin said...

Re: breakfast. Lately I've been eating whole grain frozen waffles topped with peanut butter and berries, if I have any. It's simple and easy. If I'm really in a hurry, I can eat in the car, but I prefer to eat it sitting quietly my couch with my dog sleeping in my lap.

lynchks said...

• yogurt w/ granola
• Luna bar
• Smart ones/Jimmy Dean's D-Lights frozen breakfast sandwiches (healthy and cooks in like a minute! tastes like an Egg McMuffin)
• instant oatmeal
• peanut butter toast and fruit

Have you ever been to I think that you would freakin love it.

City Girl said...

I am still working on the morning ritual thing - ever since I started the restricted diet, I am required to eat within 60 minutes of getting up (blood sugar/liver function/metabolism reasons), which has been really hard for me to do.

I was very much a eat breakfast on my way to work or at work person. But, it has worked some amount of structure into my morning at home so that it's less mad dash to work and has at least 10 minutes of mindfulness to eat and take all my supplements/medicine etc.

Once I get breakfast at home down, I am going to tackle the rest of a morning ritual.

it sounds like law and order on weeknights needs to go. you pretty much said as much :)

as for healthy breakfasts - pre-detox diet I did the following:

nonfat greek yogurt with berries (usually brought it with me to work)
natures path granola with milk
toast with lox and fork mashed avocado
egg sandwiches (sometimes homemade, sometimes the Starbucks reduced fat ones)
Starbucks reduced fat cinnamon or blueberry coffeecakes

fork mashed avocado on (rice) toast

smoothies (the key there for me is to have space in the dishwasher to stick the blender in so you can just blend, pour and drink/go because you dont have to worry about washing the blender)

almond butter on (rice) toast

almond butter and raspberries (usually cooked down a bit into raspberry sauce, often the night before) on (rice) toast or a (rice) tortilla

homemade hummus on (rice) toast

(occasionally) leftover veggies and fish if I wont be eating them at lunch

Hope this helps.

City Girl said...

PS - I also used to do luna bars or bumble bars for breakfast and, years ago, zone bars. not the best thing, but better than fast food.

AnalieseMarie said...

For breakfast, I typically have some granola with soy milk and berries, or some Greek yogurt (Fage brand is good) drizzled with organic honey and topped with berries, dried fruit, or slivered almonds.

If I have time, I'll make an omelette with avocado, basil, and goat cheese. It's really pretty quick and easy since eggs cook so fast!

julie said...

I know we've already talked about it a bit, but I'll mention it again in case I missed something. :)

Pre-workout breakfast:
- 1/2 Ezekiel English muffin with a tsp. of organic almond butter

Post-workout breakfast (usually one of the following):
- an organic Braeburn apple w/ org l-f cottage cheese and some almonds
- smoothie made of org skim milk, 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder and a big heap of frozen fruit
- whole wheat tortilla with black beans and some org cheddar cheese (I've been adding mashed potatoes randomly and it's SO GOOD)
- slice of whole wheat toast w/almond butter, piece of fruit and glass of org skim milk

It was hard for me to get away from the fast food drive thru back a year ago or so. But between pre-wedding fitness-ing and budget controlling, I haven't hit a drive thru (other than the occasional Sbux) since January. It gets easier, I promise. Believe me, I know. I used to work on the McD's account, remember?! :)

S said...

Bfast - Lately it's been a string Cheese and then a little later some Fiber One cereal (about 1 cup) w/ 1 cup of blue diamond unsweetened vanilla almond milk. Sometimes I have the chocolate unsweetened almond milk. Also, during the morning time, I manage to down some coffee w/ a little creamer. Side note - has been an inspiration to me for a lot of meals. As far routine, getting up and doing 30 to 45 minutes of cardio. I'm working on getting up to doing 1 hour worth. Evening routine, reading a book in bed before passing out. :-)

Kirsten said...

Carolyn - Regarding breakfast, I have a protein shake every morning.

I have protein powder, add liquid (either coffee or water) and sometimes frozen fruit.

Typically in the mornings, I do the chocolate protein powder, plus iced coffee, sometimes I add a sugar-free syrup or an extract (tastes just like a mocha).

It's really, really good and really quick.

Washing the blender is a pain, but typically, I throw it in the sink, swish some water in it and then let it soak for the rest of the day and wash it when I get home.

Revisionista said...

love this post!! And your evening ritual sounds so fun.

I need an evening ritual that doesn't involve twitter ;)

so le livre is 1000 pages?!?! craziness! but it must be good if you're already at 400.

your evening and weekend sound lovely. enjoy!

Rachel said...

Your day tomorrow sounds lovely! :)

I feel your pain about the morning ritual. Just remember that you recognize that you are not where you want to be. So now you can work on changing some things! (and so will I!!)

La Couturier said...

My favorite breakfast is a petit omelette: eggs & cheese (obviously!), green pepper, mushrooms, onions, ham!

La C.

Sarah said...

I feel your pain! I am far from being a morning person. My mornings start by me hitting my snooze anywhere from 20 min to 60 mins (yeah, I hit it for an hour sometimes). I then drag my body that feels like a corpse out of bed and hitting the coffee pot. Eat some cereal and drink some coffee while watching Today. The coffee wakes me up a tad, so then I update my ipod podcasts and usually get distracted (checking blogs, reading emails). It is then followed by a race to shower, get dressed, and do my hair in order no to be late for my first client.

If only it could start with my bod feeling light and energized, moving on to some yoga, breakfast, and a normal paced shower. *dreams of that morning*

Anonymous said...

SO sorry about the law and order thing. that one is totally my fault! agh! but take comfort in knowing you are not the only one with this problem... :)

i have been having a lot of realizations about my daily life lately, i think because i am about to turn 30. i decided it's ridiculous to expect myself to do as much as i have been. i've been trying to blog, sell on ebay yeah right, have a performance career and teach full time. along with spending time with mike and the pups. not realistic. i have to give up the blogging and styling, except for the occasional fun post. i have to focus on performing. i need to relax more. i just can't do it all.

and neither can you! rosetta stone plus reading plus writing plus working out is a lot to do in one day on top of working, sleeping, eating, socializing, and law and order!

don't be so hard on yourself! you are so super smart and beautiful and witty and fun. consider making a day for rosetta stone, a day for reading, a day for writing etc... don't feel like you have to fit it all in one day. then those same things that bring you joy start causing you stress... that's no bueno!

furthermore... accept the fact that you are not a morning person! nothin wrong with that! don't put so much pressure on yourself. make an evening ritual instead, like you are considering. you will get more out of it, sleep better, and then maybe even wake up more refreshed! but don't put yourself in the position to feel guilty first thing in the morning just because you put an expectation on yourself that was going against your nature!!! haha!!!

you and i are so similar in certain ways. i spent ALL of my 20's trying to force an unrealistic schedule of activities on myself. i would stick with it for about a week, and then get exhausted and then do nothing for a week... vicious cycle. just spread it out a little more and make realistic goals and you will have a totally balanced and fabulous life :) you really already do, in my opinion!!!!

Anonymous said...

also, read that book french women don't get fat. it will change your life.

(it's not about weight. it's about lifestyle. a little about diet.)

Cindy Fearon, RYT/LMT said...

hey carolyn, i too am wanting to have a morning ritual to include sun salutations or at least some sort of yoga and meditation, but am having a very difficult time as well. i do have a ritual, though it's not exactly what i want! i wish i could impart some wonderful wisdom to help you, but maybe knowing you're not alone will help a little!!

Kiki said...

I've started making homemade granola bars - ridiculously easy and quick, packed with whatever dried fruit, nuts, and seeds you want, and no worries about the scary things that go into other bars. One batch feeds me for breakfast and snacks all week.

These are based on Nigella Lawson's breakfast bars, but I add WAY more dried fruit and nuts than she does. Check out the foundation recipe here:

Lightning fast breakfast is one of these with two pieces of fruit - that definitely keeps me going strong for a couple hours.

City Girl said...

Kiki's post reminded me of a fruit and nut bar I used to make. I got the recipe from a message board on makeupalley. I just cut and pasted it into an email, so this is what I am cutting and pasting in here - including the original poster's edits comments:

I've been getting lots of MUA mails asking for my fruit & nut bar
recipe, so here it is r/o 3/28/2007 6:05:00 PM
-1 cup whole-grain flour. Doesn't really matter what kind because it
doesn't have to rise. I used whole spelt flour, but you could use
barley, wheat, etc
-1 cup rolled oats
-1/4 cup baby food prunes or apple butter
-1/3 cup liquid. Water is fine, but I like unsweetened almond milk.
-1 cup chopped walnuts (yay for omegas)
-1 cup dried fruit, in small pieces. I like 1/2 cup dried apricots,
finely chopped, and 1/2 cup dried blueberries. Just about anything
would work, except maybe dried apples because they're so dry.

Mix everything together to form a stiff dough. Press into a greased
8x8 pan and score into 16 squares. Bake at 325 15-20 minutes or until
firm. There ya go! No oil, no sugar :)

City Girl said...

Sorry for the multiple comments - having dried fruits mixed with nuts in baggies makes for another great grab and go breakfast.

MGS Photography said...

Ugh, I have not met any of my July goals fact I've gained a couple pounds. Boo! This heat keeps me from doing anything remotely active...

Regarding breakfast, I generally eat a bowl of honey nut cheerios, or toast and jam or cheese and tea. No matter what I eat in the morning, I'm starving by 9 (I eat breakfast around 6) so I keep 100cal popcorn at my desk.

The best drivethrough breakfast is Starbucks' oatmeal! It's actually quite good and comes with brown sugar, chopped nuts and dried fruit mixins. It's also fairly lowcal, and you can choose not to put in the mixins...

amanda said...

Ugh, I am struggling on the healthy diet thing lately. I am thinking a detox might be in order.

But my days usually start out fairly healthy...some yogurt and a couple of tablespoons of granola.

Kim in Oz said...

Thanks so much for your blog, I've recently discovered it and just love it. I'm 47 & I love reading your frustrations, which are very similar to mine! You writing is so personal and free, I feel like you are a friend :-). Thanks everyone for your ideas on a quick nutri breakky, very handy for a f/t working mum of 2 & a hubby!