self care sunday

I have a little routine that I do on Sundays.

I start my mornings with a 90-minute heated vinyasa and restorative class. Afterwards, I like to grab something to eat and enjoy a few minutes at home alone before everyone returns from church. Typically, I like to get my planner out. If it’s the beginning of the month, I’ll write in all of the happenings; then, I fill in my plan for the week. I like to set my goals (chores, exercise/health, plans, etc) and have them all there to review as the week goes on. This helps me stay accountable and also helps keep my anxiety in check.

In addition to planning out my week, I like to look at my birthday list. I made it a goal to send birthday cards to close friends and family, so I like to see who I need to fill out a card for. I also like to do a little health & beauty self-care.

My husband got me two face masks for Christmas. One is a charcoal kit with a magnet — it’s wonderful and always leaves me skin looking and feeling great; the other is a peel mask and I use it in tandem with face wash. I like to do the charcoal mask on Sundays when I can because it takes a while to set and it’s really nice to end the weekend/start the week feeling good. (If I miss the weekend mask, I’ll use the peel mask on date night for perfect-looking skin.)

Tonight, in addition to my charcoal mask, I used a sugar scrub and a rich lotion; I also gave myself a mani-pedi. I like to have my nails painted but rarely make time to get them done and even less frequently do I make the time to do them myself. (Surprisingly, wet nails plus three kids and a dog isn’t a winning combination.)

It’s been a good day to calm down and reset — I’m glad I prioritized self care today and still had time to make a big batch of pasta salad, egg sandwiches for the kids’ breakfasts, and school lunches. I am looking forward to hitting the week with a run/weights tomorrow and a calm presence.

potty training

We started potty training 3 last month. We did the 3-day potty training idea where we had him sit on the potty every 30-45-60 minutes and see how it goes. He seemed to figure out the potty training piece pretty quickly and I think it was more out of his own frustration than anything.

I’m not sure if there are other parents on here who have children with swallowing disorders. 3 has several health issues but one of them requires a thickening agent to drink. We are wondering if the thickened liquids take longer to process and work their way through his little body. He drinks a lot and still only goes to the bathroom every three hours or so. He’s been consistent with this from the start of his training.

Our experience with him has been largely great; but not completely. We went through a 2-day period where he had some spite peeing while with my husband. He didn’t seem to enjoy having to clean himself up afterwards, though, so that ended pretty quickly, fortunately.

Night-time potty training is a whole other experience. We are still doing diapers at night. First, we tried waking him every 3-4 hours through the night which turned into a nightmare for us because nobody was getting any sleep. After a few days of realizing that just wasn’t going to work, we changed things around. 3 goes to bed at 7:30PM; at 9:30PM, we get him up and put him on the toilet and then put him in a diaper. He’s half asleep at this time, so he doesn’t really know what’s going on but he’s been going, which is great. My husband gets up for work at 5:45AM and gets 3 up, puts him on the toilet, and then gets him dressed in underwear and puts him back in bed until 7AM when his get-out-of-bed clock lights up.

This is a strategy that’s worked for us. Aside from the spite pee incidents, he’s been doing great through the day and even the 9:30/5:45 toilet trips, which is great. I am flying solo with him over my spring break, so I’m hopeful that he can keep it up on the flight and we can stay dry on our trip from Boston to Pittsburgh!

 

yoga & boston

When I lived in Boston, I was probably the healthiest I’d been since living in DC. I used to walk everywhere I could, I was training for my first half-marathon and I was going to yoga at a studio called Sweat & Soul regularly.┬áMy favorite yoga class there was hip hop yoga — what’s not to love: A heated room, hip hop music, and a vinyasa flow. It was a great workout and I was going twice a week.

I have tried several yoga studios in my area since moving to the suburbs but none of them compare, so I get bored and agitated during my practice. I’ve managed to do a good bit of at-home practice but it’s just not the same; and my husband, surprisingly, is not impressed by my jacking up the heat to recreate a studio feel.

My husband was traveling for work a few weeks ago and I spent a lot of time thinking about how to get back to that level of health and happiness. I scoured the Internet, but was unable to find any hip hop yoga classes on Boston’s north shore. I looked in my immediate area and maybe 15 miles in every direction. The only hit was ONE yoga studio in Boston’s Copley area.

I checked out the yoga studio online and took them up on their free first week offer. I attended Friday night’s restorative class and yesterday’s hip hop. I loved both but if I’m being honest here, I found far more benefits than just the yoga classes.

The studio is in a bustling area of the city, so after class both days, I walked to a restaurant and grabbed dinner/lunch to go. I got to walk around the city for a little before heading back on the MBTA and going home. I realized as I walked that being in the city gives me another type of energy. I truly love walking around — it brings me a great joy! Another thing I realized was how much these classes can lessen my mental load.

Currently, I am the go-to for all questions in the household, but if I’m gone (and off the grid, as I am during yoga and was before/after largely), nobody can ask me any questions. As a result, I had 3-4 hours on Friday and Saturday where I just got to be, me. It really helped me feel energized and after discussing, my husband and I agree that this should be a big part of my weekly routine. So, I am hoping to get there Friday & Saturday and then Monday afternoon before class and Tuesday evening.

Now, I have to keep this in mind as I meal plan. With hot yoga, you shouldn’t eat within four hours of class, so I will miss a few dinners a week that I’ll need to figure out. I think want to make sure I’m budgeting to grab something at Dig Inn, Sweetgreen, Cava, or other counter service places that offer loads of veggies.

I was pleasantly surprised at how great it felt to have that much time to myself and how the simple act of walking and grabbing a bowl of beets, brussels sprouts, and apples could make feel so great. I am looking forward to more weeks like this and more walking around once spring/summer are upon us. (It’s tough to be too excited about logging miles walking during a New England winter.)

What kind of exercise or activity makes you feel joyful?