Monday, March 17, 2014

Making Time for What’s Important

A few weeks ago, I felt kind of sorry for myself on a Sunday night as it seemed  my entire weekend was filled with “work.” Well, it was filled with quite a bit of actual work as I spent several hours grading papers and prepping for my classes.

But I spent the rest of the time doing housework (laundry, cleaning, ironing, organizing, etc.), going grocery shopping (at the store and the Farmers’ Market), and prepping and precooking food for the week. I also walked a lot, something I truly enjoy. Still, somewhat frustrated, I said on Sunday night to Andy: “How do people do it? I seem to spend my entire weekend doing work. And there is hardly any time for fun.”

Meal Prep 1027

As soon as I said that, I actually realized that it wasn’t entirely true. First, I actually enjoy cleaning and organizing the house. And I like the feeling when everything is “the way it should be” even more. It makes a HUGE difference in how my week will be. When things are nice, clean, and organized, I feel much more in control. When things are out of order, I get easily overwhelmed. Spending the time to get everything organized is worth it every time and an absolute necessity for me to live the life I want to live.

Second, I enjoy selecting healthy foods and prepping and precooking these foods. I feel connected to the food we eat, and when I do a lot of precooking on the weekend, we eat a lot better. It also helps me feel a lot less stressed and overwhelmed during the week.

Ultimately, I believe creating an organized living space and having plenty of healthy food options available has helped me lose weight and then maintain my weight, and allowed me to be as healthy as possible. It’s a priority for me, and it is who I am today. In the end, I know that I am a much happier and healthier person when I spend the necessary time to get these things done. We all have the same amount of time each day, and we all decide how to spend it (this is especially true on weekends or during time off). How we spend our time shows what is important to us and can have huge consequences for our health and happiness. Doing the Conscious Cleanse numerous times over the past year has helped me to become even more organized and focused on health and well being.

This past weekend there was definitely not only work but also lots of fun as we spent Sunday at the beach. The kid has been to Natural Bridges in Santa Cruz on two field trips, and Andy accompanied his class on one of them. They both had been talking about how much they liked it. And I agree. It’s a wonderful beach with a nice little walking path through the monarch butterfly habitat. Plus, there is plenty of street parking close by, so you can avoid the parking fee and get some steps at the same time.



Questions: How do you feel about doing a lot of housework and prep work on the weekend (or during the week)? Do you have any tips and tricks to make it any easier? Organizing our lives is high on my priority list; knowing that I’ll be my best self with the boys once everything is organized makes it easier. What was the highlight of your weekend?
 
Be well,
Andrea

34 comments:

  1. greta,
    Wednesday I was hiking on the Brocken,highest montain of lower-Saxony.
    Your pictures are very nice and so super weather.

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    1. Thank you! And, yes, great weather! :)

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  2. Im the queen of OK, SO WE NEED TO DO XXXXXX TO GET READY AND FOCUSED FOR OUR WEEK!! on sunday nights.
    the child? doesnt mind and is used to it.
    the husband? not a fan :-)

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    1. I can see that prepping can feel like a pain for the husband, but it's worth it! :)

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  3. Love those beach photos. I totally believe women live longer because, traditionally, they are the ones to be up and cleaning more often. Bodies in motion. Weekend prep is key to me maintaining my weight loss!

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    1. Yes, movement is good! :) And weekend prep truly is key to being successful in weight maintenance I think. Plus, being less stressed during the week increases overall well being I think.

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  4. Greta,
    The montain Brocken is the highest from North-Germany, lower-Saxony that`s wrong!

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    1. Interesting. I want to go sometime. Maybe in the summer when I'm visiting...

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  5. I feel your despair, Andrea! Sometimes I get discouraged on the weekends because I feel like I'm playing catch-up for everything I missed during the week (I miss those lazy weekends!), but a shift in perception really does help!

    Looks like you guys had a great time at the beach - I love the matching stripes! ;)

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    1. True. It really makes a difference how you look at it! :)

      The beach was wonderful. Hadn't really noticed that we both wore stripes... :)

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  6. Since I am now working two jobs, I feel like I don't get any "fun" time either and I don't want to spend my whole weekend doing household stuff.

    So I break it up - like tonight I'll do laundry, tomorrow night clean the bathroom, Wednesday night mop the kitchen floor. I am working Thursday, Friday and Saturday this week at the restaurant - so I'll definitely be ready for some rest on Sunday this week!

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    1. Breaking housework up is a good idea. I try to do things during the week, but I'm not focused on it enough during the week and get little done on week nights.... A former co-worker of mine was really organized and had a schedule for every day of the week and she always stuck to it.

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  7. I can totally understand what you mean. It seems that our weekends are full of activities and not low-key/bored/relax moment. But I agree that these things keep us healthy and give us peace of mind and make the rest of the week easier.
    My trick to feel that I still have a bit of break is to allow myself to do-nothing for couple of hours on Sunday, that way I feel like I had a real break.

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    1. Yes, having some time to just relax and do nothing for a few hours is so important.

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  8. I usually try to do all the house work on the weekdays...leave the weekend for relaxing and having fun, but this weekend I too was in the mood of organizing...so a did work on a lot of things...cleaning closets, cabinets, plants...you name it, I was on fire...and it felt really good after everything was done...
    Great pictures!
    Have a great week ahead Andre :D

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    1. It feels so good when everything is organized! :)

      Have a great week, too, Juliana!

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  9. I clean downstairs every 2 weeks and upstairs also. It's just the 2 of us so it doesn't get that dirty. I always do it on Monday night. I don't do household chores on Sunday, Sunday is my day of rest where I can do what ever I want to do and that's never household chores :) I believe it's important to have at least 1 day for fun in a week. Sure there are times when I know my week will be so busy, i do my household on Sunday but that doesn't happen often.

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    1. Yes, having one day just for fun (or at least mostly fun) is important! I'm trying to change my routine a bit to make more time for fun on the weekend...

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  10. I feel similarly on Sunday nights. I think back and feel like "damn all I ever do on weekends is chores." But I DO get a chance to do some fun stuff and I like your take on it!

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    1. Yes, focusing on the fun can make a difference. And how you look at the "work" certainly makes a difference, too.

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  11. I agree - I sometimes feel like on the weekends it is all about cleaning, laundry, cooking, etc. BUT, if I didn't do those things, I would be completely overwhelmed with the mess of it all. I also love a clean and organized life - so I guess it is just part of the package!

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    1. Yes, it is part of the package! :) But I think I may try to change my routine a bit to have a longer stretch of "fun" on the weekend and do a bit more of the chores during the week.

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  12. Such beautiful pics!!!!!! I will say that when I was working Corp & those long long weeks, - I spent the whole weekend doing chores & errands - not a fun thing.. it is hard to balance it all.

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    1. Yes, it's hard to find balance...

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  13. Mmm.... I prep all weekend too. Grocery shopping, cooking, chopping vegetables, cleaning, (not laundry...hubby does laundry). It is vital to my weekday survival but I also find it overwhelming. Often I don't do anything else. On top of that, I feel like I spend way to much time picking up after people, and I have a toddler who still wakes up in the middle of the night a few times a week.

    In the winter, I tried for about a month to reclaim my Sundays and tried to get everything done on Saturday. Sunday I didn't cook except to use the crockpot. That was doable, only because we didn't have our CSA in the winter. Now there is SO MUCH more prep with the CSA in season.

    On the flip side, work was canceled today due to a power outage, so I think I'm going to do some decluttering because the kids are in school/daycare and the husband is on travel.

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    1. Yes, with a CSA and lots of produce, there is lots of prepping to do.

      Happy decluttering! :)

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  14. I am so jealous that you are at the beach! We still have snow piles and 35 degrees! I love things to be organized but I hate doing it. Probably because I live with 3 slobs and 1) I get tired of doing it and 2) it never stays that way for more than a second.

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    1. Hope spring will be coming your way soon! And I hear you about things not staying organized...

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  15. I sometimes feel as though I'm going in circles with all the prep/taking care of kids/doing school, etc. But I am pretty organized and try my best to find the joy in the day-to-day. I love the pictures of you and your family!

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    1. Yes, there is joy in cooking, prepping, organizing... I just sometimes have to remind me of it... :)

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  16. Really great post Andrea! I agree-although I don't always want to work on the weekends, I do enjoy what I do, so I think it's important to remind myself of that :-). I TRY to take 1 weekend day off, and when I do, I also try hard not to feel guilty about it :-) I'm teaching a class tomorrow, and need to prepare, but I decided I'll work hard to morrow morning, and this afternoon I took my daughter and her 2 BFFS to a movie which was great fun! The other thing I've started telling myself, is that, really, balance is impossible-this part of my life is pretty crazy, so instead of trying to cram even more in now, I tell myself there will be time for all the other things I want to do later in life :-)

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    1. Yes, one of my favorite quotes is: "You can do everything in life, just not at the same time." It's important to remember!

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  17. I am like you. I can't relax and enjoy myself if my house is out of order and messy. I am very organized and feel so much better when things are clean and picked up. Your food prep is such a great idea!

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