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It’s about the halfway point of winter, and at this time every year, fellow blogger Modern Mrs. Darcy asks the question: What’s Saving You Right Now?
Winter always feels long, and–if you’re living in the Polar Vortex–I think it feels particularly long for many people this year. We’re not in the vortex, but we did start getting snowstorms in early October, so yes, it feels long here too.
Whether winter is getting you down or other stresses are weighing, I think we all try to find things that make it a little better. Books are an obvious answer for me, and I hope you’re finding great books that are helping you get through as well. But we can’t read all the time (much as we might like to!).
Maybe you find ways to add a little color when it’s dreary outside. Maybe you’re eating healthier, or you’ve found the perfect jeans, or you made a big job or house change that has improved everything. Big or small, these things matter and are worth appreciating. Here are some of mine.
I’m linking up with Modern Mrs. Darcy.
6 Things that Are Saving Me in 2019
1. Grocery Pick Up
This is my new favorite thing! I hate grocery shopping. It’s tedious, feels like a waste of precious free time, and I never fail to forget something. In the last few months, all of the grocery stores near me have added a pick up option.
I use the phone app to add items as I think of them through the week, schedule a pick-up time, and they bring out my groceries! It takes about 10 minutes, tops.
For some reason, this feels even more convenient to me than delivery, because I can swing by the store when I’m ready and don’t have to wait for someone to show up at my house.
2. Audiobooks at the Gym
After months of mostly using our gym membership to take the kids swimming, I finally started dropping them off in childcare and doing my workouts there, instead of in our home gym.
My youngest child is home with me two days a week, and we typically go for a couple of hours, plus at least one day on the weekend before swimming lessons. She loves seeing all her buddies there, and I get to focus and listen to books. Finally, I have time for audiobooks!
It definitely has to be the “right” audiobook–lighter reads, both fiction and nonfiction work best. (Sorry, those of you who loved Lincoln in the Bardo. It was too weird of a listen for me to get through while trying to work out.)
I know not everyone can listen while exercising, but this is also specific to how I work out. I do some cardio–which is when I find it hardest to listen–but I have always loved lifting weights. I’ve gotten back into it in a big way in the last six months, and it’s the audiobooks that keep me coming back and keep me there long enough for excellent workouts.
This is really the first time I’ve found a good rhythm to exercise since having kids–dedicated time, instead of just squeezing it in. I’m stronger and feel better than I have in ages.
So, if you want to listen to more audiobooks but have trouble doing so while working out, I want to encourage you to get in the weight room. Try the free weights! They’re not scary, and all the beefcakes in there are too busy admiring their own guns in mirror to care about what you’re doing.
3. Weighted Blankets
After some restless weeks of sleep late last year, my husband and I both decided to try weighted blankets and see if they were worth the fuss. We had already been considering getting separate duvets, European style, so the timing was good to get a weighted blanket for each of us. We also got one for each of the kids.
We ALL love them. The girls curl up with theirs when they’re lounging (and they’ve helped with some calm-downs after tantrums as well), and my husband and I have both been sleeping better. Having two separate blankets is nice, too. I’m always up later than he is, reading, and now we’re not tugging on the blankets anymore.
I will always love physical books, but I ALSO love my new Kindle. I had been reading e-books on an iPad, but the Kindle is so much better. It’s the perfect size, doesn’t give me eyestrain, and there are no distractions on it. It’s also waterproof, though I haven’t tested that yet. It’s small enough to toss in my purse, so I’m much more likely to keep my phone away and pull out a book.
5. Wearing a Watch
I also got a watch for Christmas–which, like many people, I haven’t worn for years. But it’s another thing that keeps me from pulling my phone out. I’d forgotten how nice it is to have the time–literally–on hand. Plus, my watch is wooden and pretty!
6. Blue-Light Blocking Glasses
I’ve been seeing more about blue-light blocking glasses in the news lately. I started using mine about a year ago when I was dealing with eyestrain and headaches when I used the computer–which was a LOT. Once I started using these glasses, the headaches and eyestrain instantly went away–and I haven’t had them since.
I wear them for computer use and watching TV and movies. The eyestrain was my concern, but supposedly they also help you sleep better, especially if you use screens before bed.
What’s saving YOU right now?
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