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The word “thrive” has been popping up in my life a lot lately.  I’ve seen it everywhere from blog posts to billboards.  I’m starting to think that maybe God wants a little more out of me than he has been getting lately.

Not so long ago I told a friend that every day I feel like I am waking up on a horse that is already off and running, and no matter how hard I try I can’t seem to grasp the reigns.

I was tired of waking up to chaos every morning and ready to make some changes.  Change like that is tough and slow when you still have a toddler who doesn’t sleep well, but even small things can make a difference.


I really like the idea of being able to live in the moment and bloom where I am planted.  But the funny (and ironic) thing about enjoying the moments as they come is that it requires some advanced planning.

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Here’s why.

Planning to live in the moment.  We all want to spend our time living in the moment and enjoying life.  But the ironic thing is that we actually have to plan ahead to make it happen more often.

It’s a typical school morning.

Let’s say some random person (it’s me) finally is able to pull herself out of bed after only hitting the snooze button once.  Feeling super proud of herself, she stumbles out to the kitchen for coffee.

Except–oops–she forgot to set up the pot the night before.  Now she has to make coffee before drinking her morning coffee!  (She manages to measure out the coffee grinds, but turns it on before adding water because she got pulled away.)

The kids are up and headed down the steps.  Hey, they got themselves up!  But the 10-year-old has no clean pants to wear.  The 8-year-old can’t find his lunchbox anywhere.  Oh, and the 11-year-old did his homework, but he’s already left for school with his father and there sits the homework on the counter.

The 1-year-old has a dirty diaper, and now you realize you can’t change him and get to school on time.

Now, I know I am rarely going to have mornings when nothing goes wrong.  But most of those situations could have been prevented with a little bit of routine and planning.

The night before routine.

The best way to make sure my morning runs smoothly is to plan it out before my head ever hits the pillow.  I have a checklist of things everyone needs to do, and it looks like this:

  • all kids complete homework, have it checked by a parent (if necessary), and put it INSIDE their backpacks
  • all kids prep a lunch
  • the dishwasher is loaded and run
  • a load of laundry is set to wash overnight
  • clothes for the morning are laid out
  • the coffee pot is set up to make delicious wake up juice

It’s also important to have a plan for the morning.

The plan for the kids each morning looks like this:

  • get dressed
  • eat breakfast
  • pack their lunch
  • brush/potty/wash faces
  • get into car with backpacks and lunch boxes

live in the moment

Meanwhile, I do these 4 things:

  • empty the dishwasher
  • change out laundry (I need to do 3 loads per day to keep it going smoothly)
  • make the bed (it looks much nicer and is my space for folding laundry)
  • plan out supper

I have found that if I only do these 4 things in the morning and nothing else (aside from monitoring kid activities, of course), the house will still run pretty smoothly.  Ideally, I will also do some cleaning, too.  But on those days where everything is just crazy and I can do these 4 things, we will be fine.

Back in June, I purchased Money Saving Mom’s Make Over Your Mornings course.  It was a great course both because of its wonderful content, but also because it is so encouraging!  Since we are getting back into the school year, it’s the perfect time for me to review it and get more ideas for my own effort to live in the moment.

If you haven’t checked out Make Over Your Mornings yet, I really encourage you to give it a try.  I was worried that it would be geared towards morning people (which I am obviously NOT), but in reality, it is full of information that everyone can benefit from.

Not sure it will work for you?  No worries!  There is a 100% money back guarantee if you find that the course doesn’t meet your needs.

What kind of routines do you have in place to help you plan to live in the moment?