Do you have an evening routine? Is it family-focused, self-care focused, or have you figured out how to do both?
A few years ago I wrote a blog post about my morning routine. Just as important, is the evening routine.
I admit, I generally put much less thought into my evening routine than I do my morning routine. Perhaps because I’m naturally more of a morning person.
It seems like somewhere between late afternoon and evening the routine goes out the window and the focus becomes just getting through the day. You know:
- Making sure the kids are “good” (ideally playing outside, not doing too much screen, getting their homework done, and have eaten a nourishing snack!),
- finishing up my work,
- making dinner,
- shuttling the kids to and from activities,
- cleaning up the kitchen,
- taking the dog for a walk,
- and, on a really organized or energetic evening, prepping muffins or overnight oats for the morning!
Usually, we get through it all ok and then, finally, around 9 pm, my husband and I can sit down on the couch with a cup of tea (me: chamomile, him: decaf Earl Grey) to watch a show.
But as my kids are getting older (5th and 7th grade) they are staying up later. Sometimes they have activities that don’t end until 9 pm but more often than not it’s one of the screens that is holding their attention–whether checking sports stats on the computer or playing a video game. They also know that my husband and I often watch a show and they would love to sit and watch with us.
And sometimes we do that. We all sit and watch a show together, which is really nice. (They are really into “The Office” right now!) But lately it seems like our evenings have gotten later and later and before I know it it’s 9:30 pm and the kids are not in bed. Suddenly it’s both their bedtime and my bedtime and there is no time for self-care or mom and dad alone time.
So in an effort to stay on track in the evening, you know, to be super mom, I’ve come up with a new evening routine. No, but seriously, if I can follow this routine at least a few days a week or so I will be happy. If not, that’s ok too, it means it was probably not a good routine, right? I should note that this routine is more of a weekday routine — on the weekends I know we will all be up later.
My top 3 goals? 1) Get the kids to bed earlier. 2) More quality time with my husband. 3) More frequent pampering for myself!
When you have kids, routines are important. But routines and expectations are also always changing as the kids grow and change. (I realize that in no time at all I will have no control over my kids’ bedtimes!)
Self-care and alone time for mom and dad can often be an after-thought, but it’s equally important! So be sure to include yourself in the evening routine. I know I don’t do enough self-care in the evenings, but I have a goal of pampering myself more often with baths, face masks, and journaling.