Posts Tagged ‘morning’

These Early Birds Gobble

February 8, 2018


I’m usually a very solid sleeper, falling back to sleep pretty easily after I awake during the night. But when I found myself wide awake one morning this week just before 5am, less than an hour before my usual rising time, I decided to get up and get going.

I’m fortunate to live in a safe environment that enables me– with appropriate reflective gear and blinking lights on my jacket and ankles — to be a regular pre-dawn runner/walker. Whatever the weather, I head out before any in my house is up. It’s a habit I cherish; in fact, one the rare occasions that I’m not able to do it, I find myself cranky and out of sorts for much of the day. My favorite poet-artist Brian Andreas captured the sentiment perfectly in this poem, Before Dawn, that hangs by our door:


I was joined watched by some of the local wildlife, wild turkeys roosting in the trees of my suburban neighborhood. They started calling to each other across a few blocks, probably debating whether to “fly” down to the ground or to hit the snooze button and stay on their branches for a bit longer. Although you can’t really see any of the birds, you can hear a few seconds of their chatter.


By the time I got home — with my usual cup of coffee from the nearby coffee shop — I’d decide to put the mostly brown bananas on the counter to good use. Instead of banana bread, I usually make muffins; they bake faster and are a good grab-and-go snack or breakfast. I tossed some frozen wild Maine blueberries into half of the double batch and popped them into the oven.


While they baked, I did a couple of rounds of the border on the Wee Penny baby dress. I’m hoping to finish it tomorrow.


After I’d done a bit of quality assurance testing of the muffins (they passed), I dove into the day. When I plotted out my daily schedule, I add “nap” to the list. As regularly happens with items on my to-do list, I didn’t complete that one. There’s always tomorrow!


Love on the Street

August 30, 2013

I don’t usually take my phone when I run in the morning. I don’t want to be connected or reachable.

But recently I’ve been walking, instead of running, in an attempt to let an injury heal and have started listening to some of my favorite podcasts. Since my phone is also a camera, I sometimes get to capture images that catch my eye. Like today…


Before Dawn

May 21, 2011

I haven’t always been a morning person. A poster of Snoopy draped over his doghouse declaring “I think I’m allergic to morning” hung in my bedroom throughout my teenage years. As the mother of teens, I have to wonder whether it’s physically possible for a teenager to be a morning person. But I digress….

Nearly every morning for the past decade or so, I’ve woken before everyone in the house and slipped out the door for an hour or so of movement — usually running but sometimes walking. Most days I’m alone although Wednesdays are reserved for a walk with Liz, a sister-friend from childhood (4th grade at the Pleasant Street School) who lives 1.5 miles away.

As I run through the streets, my mind kicks into gear. Sometimes I let thoughts pour out and flow where they will. Like someone gathering seashells — picking up each one, considering it for a moment, then putting it aside into a pile, perhaps to be gathered later or perhaps to be washed back into the sea.

Sometimes I mentally grab a topic and mull it over — thinking of conversations that I need or want to have (or wish I’d handled better), organizing a work project, drafting something I need to write (and hoping I’ll remember it by the time I get home). Always I pray, thanking the good Lord for getting me up and out, for a body that works even when achy or slow, for a safe place to run, for my many blessings, especially those still sleeping at home. And then there’s my list — friends, family, people I’ve never met (friends’ parents or siblings, colleagues, even world leaders) who may need a bit of extra help during the day — I pray that they’ll feel peace, strength, love, courage, and grace when they need it the most. And really, who can’t use a little of that each day?!

Of course, there are mornings, especially in the dark days of winter when the sun doesn’t rise until after 7 or when I’ve only had a handful of hours of sleep, when I’m tempted to stay in bed. But I know that if I don’t spend some time with just myself, I’ll feel unsettled for much of the day.

A few years ago, I discovered a poem that captures perfectly what I’d, until then, been unable to explain about why this morning routine is so important to me. This quirky print hangs by my back door.

Before Dawn

I’ve always like the time before dawn
because there’s no one around to
remind me who I’m supposed to be, so
it’s easier to remember who I am.

Brian Andreas of StoryPeople

When a friend who’s a developmental psychologist saw the print, she said, “Oh, of course, you’re not ‘in relation’ to anyone at that point.”  Exactly. I’m not a mother, wife, worker, sister, or friend. All those are part of me, but for an hour or so before dawn each day, I’m just me.

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