Morning really is my favorite time of day. That is, the mornings when I'm just "bing!" awake at 5:20 am and I get up, put on the decaf to brew, light a few candles and do some morning prayin' while the brown stuff gets ready to drink.
Then it's time to do some quiet reading and sipping. Usually I have more than an hour like this to myself before the rest of my family starts to stir. I love, love, love such early morning times.
Part of the challenge I'm facing these days is carving out that time I need to recharge my batteries. And figuring out just WHAT recharges my batteries. Schooling the kids is much more intense this year than it was last year, as it should be (more kids, and we are doing more stuff). This feeling that my time is no longer my own, but that it's much more fully being give to a JOB (too bad I don't get paid) is taking some getting used to.
Well, glory to God for all things! (That's my new phrase that I'm trying to incorporate into my vocabulary whenever I want to complain about my life).
So, what recharges my batteries?
Well, prayer time ALONE. I'm doing morning prayers with the kids in order to teach them the habit, but I realized pretty quickly that that just isn't quite the same.
Time with other adults. God is good. I've started going to a Wednesday night women's bible study that a friend invited me to. Most/all of the women live in this part of town and I'm so happy to be getting to know some more people in my area.
I've also had some good opportunities to see and spend time with old friends this week, too.
Time to read. This is good because once my school work with the kids is done, I often need to lay down and rest for a bit. I love to read. I have about three things I ought to be reading right now and it's so hard to get through it all. The early mornings help.
Blogging. Yep, writing and reading other's blogs recharges my batteries, helps me feel more connected.
Getting out of the house alone. Even just going to the coffee shop with notebooks to grade. That's a good one. I always have the need to do that. I'm only caught up on ONE of my kid's school work grading. Must tackle more of that, soon. I also like to go thrift store shopping, but don't want to buy things I don't need just for gratuitous fun. I like the tactile experience of riffling through the racks of clothing and the thrill of the hunt to find something good amongst all the yucky stuff. (It would be nice if I could find a perfect fitting scoop neck long sleeved black t-shirt at the thrift store. He he he.)
Studying Scripture. Lately I've been taking it in large chunks, but also trying to adhere to the discipline of daily gospel and epistle readings. A book called "Through the Year with the Church Fathers" which has daily readings and some quotations to read by various ECF's is my new bed time companion.
Walking. I'm not doing as much as I used to, because too much gets my back to hurting, and I have to save some energy to clean house and cook, but I am trying to walk regularly. I like the fresh air and being out of doors and the quiet.
Sewing or other crafty thing. Have not done much of this lately but when I do, it is usually a good thing.
So, here's to finding the right balance so that I don't go totally crazy in my life. I have to have that quiet space to think about God. I have to have times when no one is talking to me. That's just vital. But I'm also so grateful that I have times around people, too.
How do YOU recharge your batteries and take care of yourself?