Routines

The Two Routines I Can’t Live Without

coffee + Jesus

I’m not a morning person.  In fact, waking up in the morning has to be my least favorite activity in all creation.  It’s worse than a mosquito bite on the bottom of your foot.  It’s worse than getting stung by a bee.  It’s worse than a 5 month old milk bottle found under the backseat of your car.  I really HATE waking up.

That’s because I’m not the cute little toddler who springs out of bed ready to run full steam all over the living room chasing the dog.  Oh no.  I’m that mom who has severe brain fog, neurons that don’t fire well until after some caffeine has been injected, the mom who shows up to school drop off in the mornings with a messy bun and sweatpants and I may or may not be wearing a bra.  Yeah, I’m that mom. 

BUT.

I LOVE coffee.  And I LOVE Jesus.  And these two together are the fuel to my life, the water to my growth, the reasons I can wake up in the morning.  I guess I love my family too, just not really in the mornings *wink*.  I love them more in the afternoon or the evening when my brain has turned on and I can actually manage their noise and demands for attention.  In the mornings they’re just really annoying (have I mentioned that I’m also an introvert yet?).

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Routine #1 – Coffee

What do I love in the mornings?  I love COFFEE.  I love the warmth as it slides down your throat, the steam that swirls off the inky blackness, the bitter richness that jolts your mind and body awake so you can function during the day.  There’s something about coffee and cradling that cozy coffee cup against cold hands that cries out “HOME” to me.  It’s comforting.  Familiar.  Wonderful. 

One of my favorite routines is drinking my morning cup of coffee.  Yes, when I had little kids at home it was an afternoon routine instead of a morning routine because that’s when I could finally drink it hot instead of cold (you toddler mommas out there know exactly what I mean), but every single day I made time for my coffee. 

“Coffee is my means of mental self-help.”

I make time for my coffee because it’s my means of mental self-help.  I relax when I drink my coffee.  I clear my mind and focus on how I feel.  I search internally for emotional heaviness and I think about what I have planned for the day.  I hold my stress in my head and neck and shoulders, so when I drink my coffee, I physically relax those areas where I hold stress.  My morning cup of coffee is a way of forcing myself to slow down, to meditate, to ground myself, to notice what’s out of balance or alignment in my mind and body.

Routine #2 – Jesus

My second morning routine is spending time with Jesus.  I’m a Christian and it’s important to me that I spend time with Jesus every day.  I know not everyone holds the same beliefs I do, so if you aren’t a Christian, you can substitute your religion or meditation into this section if you’d like.

But for me, I want to know Jesus more.  I want to memorize scripture.  I want to study my Bible.  I want my spirit to connect with His Spirit and see what God has for me that day.  I want to cover my friends and family in prayer.  I want to worship and be intimate with Jesus, hearing his voice and feeling his Presence.  This second morning routine is more important than my first really, but man do I love coffee still!

What Does my Coffee Routine Involve?

My husband is a dream.  He really is.  He’s a morning person, and he makes me coffee every morning.  It’s one of the things I really appreciate about him because the way he makes coffee makes it taste SO good! 

But every coffee is absolutely NOT the same.  Ever had Folgers or 6 o’clock Coffee?  Dirt my friends.  It tastes like dirt.  And it’s disgusting.  I might be a BIT of a coffee snob but if you’ve been drinking either of these your whole life, you’re about to get a wake up call into a glorious new world!

My favorite brand of coffee is Peet’s Coffee.  It’s based out of Seattle, Washington and it’ll give Starbucks a run for its money any day.  If you’re a coffee snob too (I know I am, I admit it!), or if you just love coffee and are ready for some coffee indulgence, then you’ll REALLY appreciate these coffee subscription options.  My daily morning cup of coffee has included some of the offerings from these options and it’s truly a great cup of coffee to get you going in the morning.

Peet's coffee

Peet’s Subscription Box Options

I love subscription boxes! There’s something so lovely about getting happy mail instead of bills, and it’s even more fun when there’s a surprise inside! With these coffee subscription boxes you get a little bit of Christmas every month *happy dance!* and you’ll also never run out of coffee…which could TOTALLY become a thing during COVID *insert crying emoji here*.

Another thing I love about Peet’s coffee is that it’s sustainably sourced and grown organically. This company cares about people and the environment and they’ve got the certifications to prove they’ve taken the extra effort to make sure all the coffee you get was grown, harvested, and roasted ethically. Did I also mention that every subscription box gets free shipping too?!?

Small Batch Series Subscription Box

The Small Batch Series is for the serious coffee lover who wants some adventure in their lives.  These small batches are rare and unique finds from around the world selectively sourced and newly found.  A new batch is delivered monthly, and the current limited release small batches are Ethiopian Biftu Gudina, and a seasonal Vine & Walnut Autumn Blend (which I’m totally getting for myself!). 

Single Origin Series Subscription Box

If you love exploring coffee from different countries, then the Single Origin Series is the subscription for you.  Each country has its own environmental influences on the way coffee beans taste, and this subscription will give you the quintessential coffee from that country.  Brewing this month is the full-bodied, mellow New Guinea Highland coffee bean from the rich volcanic fields of Papa New Guinea.

Signature Blend Series Subscription Box

Designed for those who love blended coffees, the Signature Blend Series combines complex flavors with hand roasted nuance to bring unique, delicious coffee flavors right to your door. This month’s blend is Major Dickason’s Blend, an all-time bestseller and the epitomy of a signature Peet’s cup of coffee.  It’s delicious!

What Does my Jesus Routine Involve?

Greek/Hebrew Study Bible

When I was in college, I was part of a Messianic ministry that met every weekend to read through the Jewish Torah portion of scripture for that week, and then we would study the New Testament to see how Jesus had fulfilled any prophecy from that Torah Portion.  I bought a Greek/Hebrew Study Bible during that time, and it’s become a HUGE resource for my personal bible study.   My Greek Hebrew Study Bible has major words cross-referenced to the Greek, Hebrew, or Aramaic original language dictionary in the back of the book so you can look up the original word and its meaning.  There are also cross-references to other scripture passages that mention the same topic or phrase, and as usual, there’s also an index in the back.  My bible also has biblical maps at the very back that show the biblical countries, cities, and prophet journeys that the bible writers took when they were writing the bible scrolls.  My Greek/Hebrew Study Bible has been such an interesting tool to have too since you learn nuances about other languages, it’s easy to look up related topics, and it’s super easy to find the scripture that you’re looking for. 

Journal

I also spend some time journaling.  I don’t journal every day, but I do journal 4 or 5 times a week.  It helps me to write down my prayers and to write down scripture that I love or that simply impacts my heart for that day.  I tend to journal through my prayers as a way of staying focused during prayer and ot make sure I’ve prayed for everything I want to cover that morning.  I’ve purchased several different kinds of journals over the years, but as a lefty, my favorite ones are the spiraled 6”x9” or 8”x10”kind that can lay flat. They let my hand travel over the page more easily, and I like that I can slip them into a purse or a bag without them taking up tons of room. 

Bible Gateway App

When I don’t have my Greek/Hebrew Study Bible with me, I use the Bible Gateway app.  It’s a fantastic app!  It’s got 20+ different bible versions so it’s easy to compare scripture phrasing in different versions since you just click to switch versions.  There are multiple daily bible reading settings so you can read the entire bible in a year, read through the Old Testament, read through the New Testament, or just read through Psalms if you want to.  The search feature that’s included allows you to look up scripture phrases or particular verses and I love that it’s super easy to use.

She Reads Truth App

When I’m in the mood to do some deep thinking or a themed study, sometimes I’ll use the She Reads Truth app.  This app does a fantastic job with personal reflection prompts and gathering topical studies, and there are both free and paid studies depending on what you want.  You can read through a day’s study in 10 minutes or less so it makes a great choice when you don’t have much time but still want to do some studying.

Bible Study Fellowship

Pre-COVID, I attended Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) and I can’t recommend it more!  For those of you looking for an intense, in-depth dive into scripture, BSF is a fantastic way to do it.  When you enroll into BSF, you are placed into a study group of men or women who are similarly aged or in similar stages of life and you go through the study with that group.  BSF is doing all their study groups online through zoom this year because of quarantine, but before they had in person gatherings and it was so fun to get to know the people in your group.  I’ve grown and learned a ton through Bible Study Fellowship and I really recommend it quite highly!

My Daily Routine

My daily routine has changed a bit over the years.  When I was in college I spent time reading my bible and praying in the evenings, and of course my coffee time was in the morning right when I woke up.  When I had babies and toddlers in the house, I switched my routine around so that I woke up before they did (it was soooooo early in the morning, ugh!) but I needed that still, quiet time before they woke up to have the emotional fortitude to manage rambunctious house-destroyers every day.  I also needed the caffeine jolt to be ready to go when they woke up too!  These days, my kids are pretty calm in the mornings, so in the mornings I get up and help get them ready for school, take them to school, and when I get home, I have the house to myself and I spend 30 minutes to an hour drinking my cup (or cups!) of coffee and reading and praying and journaling.  After I’ve had that still, quiet time to ground myself and wake up some more, then I head to my home office to get started with work. 

Depending on the season of life you’re in, you may need to move your self-help time around a bit to fit into your current schedule and routines.  Whatever season you’re in though, I highly recommend being intentional in getting your mental, emotional and spiritual self into a place where you’re able to give to your family.  When we are dry and weary and stretched thin, it’s really hard to be intentional and purposeful in our parenting, not to mention having the ability to be kind and thoughtful to our kids during the day.  To be honest, the days that I miss my morning quiet time or don’t get to finish my coffee are the worst days we have because I tend to be cranky and short tempered on those days.  I’ve learned that it’s totally worth the effort the carve out the “me time” so that I can spend the rest of my day serving and helping my family.

Pin - The Two Routines I Can't Live Without

What do you think about my two morning routines?  Would it be helpful for you to explore some new coffee options to help you relax and focus in the mornings, or maybe get some new options for bible study using a Greek/Hebrew Study bible or a new bible app?  Maybe you just need a new journal for writing down your thoughts and getting your priorities for the day journaled out?  However you do it, take some time to focus on your own mental self-help.  It’ll help you, and it’ll help your family too.

All the best,

Erin

P.S. I’d love to hear what you do for mental self-help. Leave me a comment below and let me know!

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