Monday, 31 March 2014


I’ve been thinking a lot about routines, the big ones and the little ones. How things change over time and how you need to adjust the routine to fit in with the new world order. Some of the routines are for my benefit and some benefit those around me. Some routines are purposefully instigated and some develop serendipitously without great thought or intellectual input. There are some routines which work immediately and some which don’t however hard you try. I like the word routine, as opposed to habit. Habit implies negativity, perhaps even laziness not to change. Routine, to me, suggests a purpose. Routines have always helped me; made me feel organised and assisted me managing my days. When I worked in a lab, routine and order was all part of the methodology. Even now I still bring those aspects of my training (and my personality) to my working world. Routines really helped me with my children. They liked (and still do) our routines surrounding bedtime and mealtimes; I can definitely see the joy in knowing when you’re going to be fed! It helps you to feel safe knowing that some things are unchangeable. Routines are going to change for us. BigR starts school in September. I’m looking into flexible working. The ABO is now based at home. Things are shifting but in amongst this we still have our safe routines and new ones likely to start.

:: When BigR wakes up in the morning (and once her (timer controlled) light is on!!), she’s allowed a little bit of TV. This gives me either time to shower and get ready or time for 20 minutes more rest at the weekend. Everyday she has half a cup of water (I have no idea why half but it’s the routine), some dry shreddies in bowl and a box of raisins. Woe betide the absence of shreddies in the house…other types of cereal disrupt the routine…Once the birthday cards are on cbeebies that’s my cue to get up/go downstairs (!) it’s the routine.

:: Going back to work and starting a new part of my job 2 days a week in a different city in Yorkshire meant I had a fairly long (in time but not in miles) commute with the nursery drop-off in the middle. Usually I make myself a pot of coffee when I reached the office but it’s not as easy to do that here (office shenanigans – happy days). Each day I did that drive, after the girls were in nursery I would go past a McDonald’s on my way to the office …after 2 weeks I stopped for a coffee at the drive thru. It felt slightly odd to be stopping on the way. Surely you only do that on long motorway journeys?? What a revelation! It made the journey easier and improved my mood. It’s harder here to make a ‘nice’ coffee so this routine has really improved my world. I’ve also been unnecessarily overexcited about getting my first ‘free’ coffee…and am halfway to the next one…
:: Starting my 101 days notebook is a new routine but one I still have to be mindful of. That’s no bad thing really. Being present with it is part of what it’s about. I’ve followed Clare Law’s Three Beautiful Things blog for some time. She writes so beautifully about her days. I’m not always managing three things; occasionally it is more but that’s OK this is my 101 days.

I wonder what other routines I’ll think of?


  1. Oh, I'm glad I'm not the only one who allows a bit of TV in the mornings! It really does buy you time to get the essentials done, doesn't it?
    Congratulations on the new flexible working too.
    As for routines, I live by them. I wouldn't describe myself as a control freak by any means but having things in hand really does help reduce stress, worry and the panic that you've forgotten things. And you're right - children love routine. It makes them feel safe and secure.
    Sarah x

  2. Sometimes cbeebies is my lifesaver!!
    Routines are essential to my world. I find children fare best (and are happiest) if they know what's going to happen (for the most part). Routine and predictability is good :-)

  3. Routine is very important to me. I agree, it does have to be flexible and change with everyone's needs, but I don't know where I'd be without it. I think it especially makes parenting easier. I've never been a fan of the anything-goes approach I see with some families. It would not work well for me. I'm not a control freak, necessarily, but I like to know where everything is, what's coming next and so forth. I have to say that I love McDonalds for coffee these days. Most of ours have been refashioned with McCafe elements and their lattes are excellent, in my opinion. My usual is a nonfat latte with hazelnut syrup. Cheaper than Starbucks and better too, I think.

    1. The anything goes approach would not work well with us either! We're not very good at 'going with the flow' and 'everything on a whim'! Although a little bit of spontaneity is OK but in small doses :) Yes I have to say I was expecting the coffee not to be that great but it was delicious and you're right, much better value here as well! :)

  4. I love a routine. I've written about our early evening/bedtime routine before. I do like the notebook too. I have at least four notebooks on the go t the moment.

    Leanne xx

    1. I'm always tempted by a notebook.I have to be very very disciplined if I'm in a shop buying something always seems to jump into my bag!