Category: Back to Basics Series

Week Five: Back to Basics – Housework

Hey!

Housework, there’s so much of it!

Although we do our daily housework, we do need to have some sort of schedule to consistently complete deep-cleaning tasks.

A while ago I searched online for housework schedules and stumbled across the How Jen Does It YouTube channel, and it’s my favourite channel for house related videos (and she has other great videos too).  Jen divides her house into different zones and completes a 15-minute deep-clean of one zone each day for a week.  Another more recent video is this weekly cleaning routine for general weekly tasks.

This seems pretty do-able for us, and my husband and I are going to each deep-clean a zone on alternate days.  This is my (or rather our!) goal for this week.  Because I’m writing this post on Monday (instead of Sunday) our deep-cleaning will start on Tuesday, and on one day we’ll complete two 15-minute deep-cleaning sessions.  Wish us luck!

Hope you’re having a great week.

Update on Week Four

Last week I completed my two short runs and meditated every day.  We shopped on Sunday for this week’s meals, and I did some meal prep on Sunday evening and finished off our meal prep today.  I tried to choose quick and easy to put-together meals to save us time in the evenings, but it also has saved us time meal prepping!  I went to bed early three nights last week.

 

 

 

 

Week Four: Back to Basics – Exercise

Hello again!

My focus for this week is to increase my current level of exercise.  My exercise routine doesn’t involve any sort of formal exercise program, I generally just dance (a lot!) at home, do a bit of yoga and go to an outdoor gym once a week near my parents’ house.  Looking after my little ones keeps me pretty active too.

Sometimes I think about employing a fitness instructor to help work out a more effective exercise program, and I think I might do this one day in the future.  At the moment though I’m happy to just start slightly increasing my exercise activities.

I’ve decided to include two short runs (which will increase in length over time) each week to my existing exercise routine. Eventually, I would also like to include an online workout session and start using more active modes of transport when out and about.

Please note I am not a health or fitness professional and the above is for informational purposes only.

 

Update on Week Three

Because our young ones are waking up earlier, I did wake up early (6 am or earlier) almost every morning last week.  I also meditated most evenings last week, however, I only made it to bed by 9 pm approximately half of the week.  Two nights I did get to bed around 9.30 pm though which is a vast improvement on my previous bedtime (10 pm – 10.30 pm each evening)!

Week Three: Back to Basics – Meal Prepping

THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS.  

Hello!

My next priority to help achieve my goals is to consistently meal prep every weekend to save time during our weeknights.  Having a system set up and sticking with it every week without fail is my goal.  We are lucky that my husband is paid on a weekly basis (on a weekday) but this doesn’t marry up with when we find it easiest to meal prep (on the weekend).  We talked a bit about it, and he suggested making our next shopping trip cover a week and a half worth of meals until the following Sunday, a great idea.  So we’ll start weekly meal prepping the following week on Sundays.  Seems pretty simple, but unfortunately, we weren’t doing it!  We usually do some meal prep during the weekends but not enough to avoid at least a couple of nights scrambling around for meals or getting take-out.

I know that some people may struggle financially and not be able to meal prep for additional days so if you’re keen to meal prep but can’t do more than a week, or a full week, just do the best you’re able to – every little bit of meal prep helps.

Also, part and parcel of meal prepping are first writing a meal plan and grocery list, and if possible try not to shop on an empty stomach.

Some of my favourite meal prepping videos/sites are:

I also get a lot of slow cooker and other cookbooks out of the library.  Some of my go-to slow cooker and grocery shopping books (I own a couple of these too) are:

 

Update on Week Two

I went to sleep early (3 nights) and meditated (4 nights), approximately half of last week.  We had a couple of events and there were a couple of nights where we just didn’t get to bed early (I think a lack in meal prepping influenced how these nights went). Hopefully next week I’ll do a bit better!

 

 

Week Two: Back to Basics – Meditation

THIS POST CONTAINS AN AFFILIATE LINK.  

Hey!  Welcome back.  I’m fresh into week two, and this week I’ve decided to tackle meditation.

I’ve been meditating on and off for a while, but it’s something I’d like to do consistently every day so that it becomes part of my daily routine, as essential as the other things I do on a day to day basis.

Finding time in the morning can be extremely tricky in our household, as we’re basically trying our best to just get out the door on time.  As I keep working towards getting up earlier in the morning, (my goal is 6 am and I’m currently getting up at 6.30 am), my plan is to meditate in the evenings and then eventually add in meditating in the morning as well.  At the moment I think my best bet for having a consistent meditation practice would be to meditate just before bedtime.

For a while now I’ve been meditating to one of Oprah Winfrey and Deepak Chopra’s meditation experiences/challenges similar to this one (affiliate link) and I’ve found it to be really great.  There is a variety to choose from so you can choose the one that best fits you if you are keen to go that route.  They also offer free 21-day meditation experiences/challenges from time to time so if you’re interested, but would like to try one first, then here’s a link to the Chopra Centre Meditation website to sign up and have a free 21-day meditation experience.  They also have a store available on their website.

 

Update on Week One

Week one actually worked out to be pretty successful, I went to bed by 9 pm five nights out of seven, but our sleep was often disturbed by our little ones in the middle of the night.  So it worked out well that we went to bed earlier just to get a somewhat decent sleep!

I haven’t set my alarm as yet, although I’m now waking up at the earlier time of 6.30 am most mornings which is great.  I’ll start setting it for 6.30am this week as my set ‘wake up’ time as I continue going to bed at 9 pm each night, except for one night each week when I have an evening club meeting to attend.

I did review my daily schedule and re-jig it a bit, re-arranging things to fit in with our kids’ new routines.  It does seem though my general daily schedule has the ability to fail pretty easily though if things get hectic during the day.  Perhaps I’ll have to look at doing some tasks early in the morning before everyone wakes up if my new schedule doesn’t fare so well.  We’ll see!

I hope you are going really well with your goals.

Do you meditate or do any other mindfulness exercises?  

Do you have any meditation/mindfulness websites or apps that you would recommend?

Week One: Back to Basics – Sleep

Ahh…a good night’s sleep.

Decent sleep can seem hard to achieve sometimes, and the issue for me is the length of sleep rather than getting to sleep, although if I consume caffeine too late in the day I can kiss a good night’s sleep goodbye too!  Pursuing goals takes a good amount of energy and sleep is central to having decent energy throughout the day, so this is something I decided to focus on first in my efforts to work towards my goals.

I live in a busy household and we don’t always get to bed as early as we would like to, and subsequently, we often don’t get up as early as we would like to in order to get out the door at our desired leaving time(s).  It sometimes seems like a mammoth multitasking juggling effort to get us all out the door each morning, and I’m actually I’m less involved in this effort because I wake up slightly later in the morning.  We also get stuck when trying to finish all our household jobs done before heading to bed.

Liz from Frugalwoods wrote a blog post about her strict bedtime routine which sounds fantastic for someone like me that needs a lot of sleep.

We are definitely going to bed earlier than we used to but still not early enough for me to wake up at an early hour (I probably need to wake up about 6 am).  I’m still trying to get out of bed at 7.15am!   I seem to need a lot of sleep.

A while ago I drafted a daily schedule where I developed a general timetable for a typical day and identified where I could fit desired tasks (e.g. personal projects) amongst the other things I needed to do so I had a set times for all tasks.  I’ll revisit it this week because my children’s sleep times and length have changed slightly and it probably needs to be updated.

I also downloaded the Rock Clock app a while ago which I’m going to use to set a new wake up time of 6 am, which means I’ll set my evening bedtime for around 9 pm and I need to set up my scheduled activities to fit within these new times.  I’ll write back later on with my progress and let you know how it is going!

I follow the ChooseFI website and podcast and one of the many things I like about it is that they talk about taking action towards your goals each week.  I loved this and plan to tackle something new each week to help work towards my goals.

 

What is your sleep like?  Do you have a sleep and/or daily schedule? 

What do you think are the most important factors for you to reach your goals?

Please note I’m not a health or medical practitioner so please consult a medical professional if you are having sleep issues.