My painful morning routine.

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Mornings are always the hardest time of day for me, it’s when im in the most pain and in the most foul mood. I am not a morning person and I don’t think I will ever be a morning person.

I have an alarm set for 6am but most days I am up between 5-6am without my alarm. It would be great to say that I jump out of bed feeling fresh as a daisy, make my way down stairs feeling great and pop the kettle on…. Well that’s not gonna happen.

I have to spend the first 5-10 minutes after waking, flexing and stretching the tendons in my ankle because over night they have seized up and hurt like hell. I can then get out of bed, try to hobble quietly past my childrens rooms and venture down the stairs, Most mornings i’m in that much pain I have to go down the stairs on my bum. By the time i’m down I really need a strong coffee.

morning-819362_640I love a really dark roast coffee first thing in the morning, I take my first round of tablets with it and I find the stronger the coffee the quicker the tablets kick-in.  (It may be just in My head but hey, a lot of thing are these days. lol) My first round of tablets are Omeprazole, to protect my stomach, vitamins, added  minerals, my contraceptive pill and then finally my first painkiller of the day is Naproxen. These are an anti-inflammatory drug that helps my tendons, so that is 5 tablets within the first 30 minutes i’m awake.

By now the dogs are starting to get restless as they want to go out in the garden. I grab my coffee, let the dogs out and have my first cigarette of the day. (YES I know this is bad for me, YES I know I should really give up and i’ve tried a few times but with everything else going on I just cant do it right now)

It’s then time to take round two of my tablets, I take three Gabapentin tablets and then head back upstairs to wake up the children.

My older children have learnt mornings are not great for me and try to help as much as they can.

toast-1077984_640Breakfast is next and to do this I have to sit on the top of our bin because I can’t stand up in one place for long. After they will get themselves dressed without much fuss. (Thankfully, my middle daughter used to be a nightmare to get dressed but now she’s getting older its getting easier)

We have a wall poster of their morning routine that they follow which is really helpful.

After they will go brush their teeth and wash their faces, the last step is to double-check their bags to make sure they have everything they need for the day.

My eldest rides his bike to school and I am lucky enough that my hubby is here to take my middle daughter to school. I would love to do the school run everyday and I know my daughter would love me to pick her up, its something I want to work on for her next year in school.

I like to walk my children to the door and give them a kiss goodbye every morning. My son will always say ‘Stay there mum, it’s ok’ but I always make an effort to see them out in the mornings.

medical-1905067_640At this point I take my third round of tablets if I need them. I use my co-dydramol as a back up if my pain is too bad. I don’t always need them, it’s just when i’m having a bad day or I have walked too much the day before.

After the children go to school it’s mine and Ellas turn to get washed, dressed and ready for the day.

This is around 9.30am now and my tablets have fully kicked in and I start to feel kind of normal and I’m able to do normal things again like laundry, hovering and playing games with Ella.  For the rest of the day I try to keep on top of the housework and keep Ella busy with games and activities.

If you liked this and want to see my evening or cleaning routine please let me know.         (These tend to be less painful)

xx

 

 

 

Meal planning and food shop haul.

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We are a family of 5 plus an extra 4 dogs, we live on quite a tight budget and have to work out our weekly and monthly budget for bills and food shopping, then the amount we have left gets split in half. Half goes towards debts and the other half will go into our saving jar. The money in the jar goes toward either days out with the children or new items the children need like school shoes etc.

At the beginning of the month we will stock up the freezer on all the essential we will be needing, i’m not a great cook so I don’t tend to try new receipts, I stick to my go-to dinners that I know I can cook and my family like. We generally do all our other shopping on a Tuesday so I need to get all my planning done on a Monday.

To make sure we stay on budget I like to write out a meal plan every week. Meal planning is a must for our family, it help keep the peace with my children because they help pick their meals so they can not argue when it comes to dinner times. It also helps because I will go through the freezer the night before and pick out meals from what we already have so i’m not over spending on shopping.

I like to use the ‘Free meal planning’ printables that you can find on the internet. I am a great fan of pinterest, you can find so many lovely designs on there. This week I am using a lovely printout, this suits my family because there is enough space to write two meals in each day ( we eat at different times than the children) also there is space for a shopping list on the side.

This was a free printable that I downloaded from a site called ‘Neat house sweet home’ There is a lot of lovely free printables on this site, you can visit the page here

These are meals we have picked for the week and the shopping list I used.

We don’t tend to stick to just one shop, it depends on what type of items we need, sometimes we go to Asdas, Icelands, Aldis and Tescos. This week we went to Asdas because we needed dog food, we have to get two types of dog food now we have the pup and Asdas are reliable for their puppy food.

Below are the images of what we got on our shopping trip.

My children love eating fresh fruit and their favourites are bananas and melon so these two are pretty much always on our list. The children choose to have jacket potatos for dinner so we got them as well.

This week we decided to get round rolls instead of loafs of bread, having sandwiches all the time can get boring. I have a sweet tooth and love Asdas lemon cake. Kira is not a great eater in the morning so we get her these brioche rolls and she is quite happy to eat them for breakfast.

Callum loves these golden balls in the morning with milk and Ellas likes to eat them dry. We eat quite a lot of pasta so this is an essential item I always buy. My children are always hungry straight after school so we buy these snack bags as they are handy to put in out snack basket.

In this next picture we have all of our tins, condiments and the most essential of all COFFEE and SUGAR. My hubby and Ella enjoy having toast and marmalade as a morning snack so this can always be found in our cupboard.

wp-image-1818245362Last of all these are the items we needed for the fridge, My children love having a yogurt or moose after dinner so we tend to stock them up quite frequently.

We buy dog food and washing powder in bulk so we tend to these every other week, so one week it will be dog food and the next week it will be washing powder, we do this as it fits in our budget.  This week was dog food ( sorry no pictures for this) we brought 12 cans of puppy food and 24 cans for the bigger dogs and we got a large bag of mixer biscuits to go with that.

All of this came to £79.65 Usually our food shopping budget is £70 and we normally have a little left but because of the extra puppy food we went over this week.

I would love hear from you, Do you meal plan? Do you have a budget you like to stick to? Which shops do think have the best money saving deals?

xx

Make your mornings run smoother.

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Beautiful morning

Some people are morning people and some are not. I’m not a morning person, I love a lay-in so when that horrid alarm goes off I have to really pull myself out of bed and when you know your morning is going to be hectic and you have to hit the ground running, it makes it even harder to get up.

Just imagine this…

I have one child running around shouting ‘Mum I can’t find my sock’ and another child stropping and shouting ‘Mum my hair won’t go the way I want it’ At the same time I have a naked toddler running around shouting at everyone because she thinks it funny that the others are shouting. All of this is before I’ve even had chance to make breakfast.

This is how my mornings would be nearly every day. It was time to change and start getting organised. I searched online and found some great ideas on pinterest. It was like a light bulb moment, Why had I not done this before. I have put together are a list of some of the best tips that have really helped me make my mornings run smoother.

 Start the night before.

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Get clothes ready the night before.

Get a head start on your mornings. After cooking dinner is a great time just to spend 10 minutes getting any packed lunches or snack ready for the next day. You can store them in the fridge and add them to school bags in the morning. Before your children go to bed, get them to pick out which uniform/clothes they want to wear the next day also get them to go through their school bags and add anything they need for the next day and place their bags by the front door.

When the children have gone to bed, it’s now time to focus on what you will be needing for the next day, check your schedule or diary, get your clothes ready, check your bag and make sure you have everything you will be needing, place your bag, keys, sunglasses etc all by the front door so you can quickly grab it on your way out.

Set your alarm 30 minutes earlier.

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Get up earlier than the children.

This a hard one for me, Getting up earlier than your children helps you wake up properly before you have to jump into mum mode, It’s a great time to have a coffee, meditate, take a shower, start getting your self ready. This can help your morning run smoother because you are more awake and ready to start the day.

Stay away from technology.

I have made myself a rule to avoid technology in the mornings. Once my children wake up I stop checking/replying to emails, I stay off of social media and I don’t even let my children watch TV until they have finished their jobs and are ready for school.

Make mornings a happy time.

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Happy mornings

When waking up children try to be a bit gentler with them, put some music on, make them their favourite breakfast, give them lots of cuddles and give them chance to wake up properly before they have to start getting ready.

Make a morning routine.

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Brush teeth

Having a morning routine can help children get ready faster as they know the jobs that need to get done and what they need to do next. Children like routines it makes their lives easier and definitely helps my morning run smoother. We use a simple routine of  wake up at 7am, get dressed, eat breakfast, brush teeth, wash face, brush hair, check bags, get shoes on and leave for school. This has now become an automatic habit for my children and they don’t even need to look at the poster I made for them.

Offer rewards for finishing all their jobs and having a smooth morning.

My daughter has a princess poster that I printed for her (you can find so many different posters on the internet) and after she has finished all of her jobs and we have had a good morning, she gets to colour in a heart and when she gets to 10 hearts she can have a little treat of her choice.

Plan to leave the house 10 minutes earlier than you need to.

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Plan to leave 10 minutes earlier.

Things don’t always go to plan, life is just like that so by planning to leave earlier than you need to gives you some wiggle room to be able to solve a problem or two and still get out the door on time.

These tips have helped me transform our mornings from manic to smooth and almost every day the children are ready and heading out the door on time.

I hope these tips can help you and I would love to hear about any tips you use to help your mornings run smoother.

xx