It is an uneasy world that we find in ourselves in currently. We have all been home and social distancing for nearly a month with no end in sight and for me I am finding comfort in the routines that I have set up for myself. Home is a place I love to be anyways, but my daily life was certainly upended and my usual routines were no more when self isolation became necessary. I would no longer be doing my daily work commute and spending my time in the office from 9:00-6:00. I would also not be making a weekly trip to Trader Joe’s for a leisurely grocery shop nor would I stop in to a coffee shop for an iced latte to enjoy.
Although I do miss these little things, I have also found an appreciation for slowing down and being safe at home and creating new routines. I have taken this opportunity to appreciate my time, my loved ones and nature on a different level that I had not before. Here is a look at my current routine for the foreseeable future.
Monday through Friday I set my alarm for 7:00 a.m. instead of 6:00 a.m. since I am working from home until further notice. I do enjoy the extra sleep and not having to rush to make sure that I am out the door by 8:30. I wake up slowly, stretching and listening to the birds outside the window. I then get up, make the bed and get ready for the day. I take a shower and I currently wash my hair every other day. I will brush my teeth, moisturize my skin, get dressed, moisturize my face and then fix my hair. There is no need for makeup since I will be home…I haven’t actually worn makeup in almost a month. I think that is the longest I have ever been without wearing my makeup, I’m sure my skin is loving it!
I go downstairs, put on some music and make breakfast as well as a coffee. I make the same breakfast almost every morning which is a piece of avocado toast with an egg on top.
After eating breakfast I relax on the sofa and read my book for awhile. Sometimes the weather is nice and warm and sometimes it is still cold outside. Spring in Raleigh is a rollercoaster of warm days and cold days and you just have to check to see what the day is going to be like.
I am currently wearing the same kind of outfit each day which is a pair of jeans with either a sweater or a tee, depending on the weather. I like to keep it comfortable and casual, but I do not want to wear leisure clothing all day like pajamas, yoga pants or sweats. I would not wear these all day on any other given day of the week, so I do not do so now even though I am home all day. Dressing up a little gives me a sense of normalcy and confidence throughout the day.
At 9:00 a.m. I sign on for work. I am very lucky and grateful that I have a job that I am able to work from home indefinitely as I do have some friends who do still go into the office due to the nature of their work. Although I do miss the routine, being safe and self isolating is the most important thing right now.
I love that I have a desk set up right in front of the window in my bedroom. I get see the sunshine and nature everyday while I work, it definitely beats the cubicle view at work. I will miss having this view everyday once I get back to the office.
Around 12:00 or 1:00 I will eat lunch. I usually just eat the leftovers from dinner so as to not waste food, especially now that going out as little as possible is of the utmost importance. I try to make sure I use up everything that I have so as to minimize any grocery store trips for extra things here and there. When the weather is nice I will put on some music and eat lunch outside on the back porch. It’s a small luxury that I enjoy, especially during the spring.
After I eat lunch I do the dishes and then go for a walk around the neighborhood. If my husband is home then he comes with me and if he is working then I walk by myself and enjoy a podcast. Walking is so good for me right now in so many ways. It helps relieve anxiety, I am getting vitamin d from being in the sun, I am moving my body as well as feeding my mind something informative or inspirational. I also get fresh air and get to appreciate nature. I live in a quaint neighborhood really tucked away into a little valley, so the walks are quiet and pleasant and plenty of room to move around while social distancing from others who are walking too.
After lunch I sign back on to work until 6:00 p.m. The afternoons tend to be slower, so when the work queue is cleared out I will take the opportunity to lie down on the bed and rest a little bit and just let the sun shine in on me. Sometimes I might read a book or just listen to music, but either way it is a time for me to take a mental break and let my mind just rest and get calm.
At 6:00 p.m. I sign off of work and make my way downstairs. Now that time has sprung forward there is just so much more daylight and I am loving the sunlight that pours into our home in the afternoons. I usually just sit and enjoy it for a little bit before going for another walk. The sunset walks are very pretty and I always try to get another walk in for the day, depending on the weather. Once again I just either listen to music or my husband joins me. The evening walk is a quicker walk around, but still nice to enjoy.
I usually start making dinner around 7:00 p.m. as it only takes me no more than 30 minutes to get dinner done. I like to keep dinner easy and healthy by making simple recipes. This recipe was for salmon cakes with roasted broccolini and creamed truffle cauliflower. Very simple and very tasty.
After dinner and doing the dishes the husband and I will relax on the sofa watching a show or just talking with music in the background. Around 9:00 we will make our way upstairs to start getting ready for bed. Since I am not wearing makeup, my skincare routine has been more simplified. Monday and Thursday I will wash my face with a cleanser and my forio, then use a toner and moisturizer. Every other day I just splash my face with warm water, use witch hazel then moisturize and then every Sunday I will do a face mask. Since I am not wearing makeup I do not need to first remove the makeup and wash my face with cleanser everyday.
I get to bed around 9:30 or 10:00 and fall asleep by at least 10:30.
The weekends are for planning for the week ahead and relaxing. Even though I work from home right now, it’s still business as usual Monday through Friday, so I really use the weekend to relax and do more leisurely things. I like to do things like bake a sweet treat such as the brownies below.
A little brownie hack from me is to get the Ghiradelli box of dark chocolate brownie mix, mix up the dough and pour it into the pan, then drop spoonfuls of peanut butter into the dough and then take a butterknife and swirl it around. Not only is it so delicious, but it is very pretty too.
I also take the opportunity to plan out dinners, groceries and expenses for the week such as bills coming due, etc.
Since we can’t go to a coffee shop to get a coffee and just sit and have a conversation, we instead just recreate the experience at home. We will make a latte and sit on the back porch and drink our coffees, put on music and have a conversation right there as if we were at a cafe.
We have a beautiful view of the sky and the trees above, so it may even be better than a cafe here in town.
The grass in out backyard is just so soft and green that I will sometimes go out into it barefoot and just enjoy the feeling of nature under my feet. It really is such a little pleasure to just walk on the soft grass and feel it’s cool texture under my feet, especially after a good rain.
I have really been enjoying my time at home and all of these little routines that I have set up for myself over these past few weeks. They have kept me in a place of comfort and calm during anxious times. The world will retune to normal, albeit a new normal as I think things will not be the same as they were before. It has been a time of reflection and really a time of realizing what is really important in life.
While the big things in life such as travel, promotions and celebrations are all fun and worth looking forward to, things such as routines, a cozy home, loved ones, nature, comfort and nature are really worth investing time and effort into as you never know when you will find yourself housebound for awhile.