After struggling depression for several years, in which time even completing daily tasks took more energy than I had some days, I am trying now, to find my way on “the other side.”  On March 17th, the fog lifted and I have felt “normal” since then,  Praise the Lord!!!  As time goes by I’m working on a post with my testimony and my struggle with depression and eating disorder, but that is for another day.

Now, I’m just trying to pick up the pieces and I think routines can be important for that.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not talking about planning out every second of the day, but for me just a general plan is nice.  I’ve seen a lot of different takes on this and read a lot of literature, and it seems to be a concept going way back.

So, I’ve been working on my daily routine.  Here is a simple list of daily to-do’s that I have found beneficial in our lives.

Make the bed.  I think this is important.  The first thing I do when I get up in the morning is make the bed.  First of all, it makes such a difference in the room.  If your bed is unmade, it makes the room look messy, even if it’s clean otherwise.  On the other hand, even if the room could use some work, if the bed is made, it has a neater feel to it.  Also, I think it’s good to start out your day on a productive note.  Kinda sets the tone, if you will.

-Get dressed, in real clothes. I’m still working on this one.  My husband saw this on my list of “goals” for the New Year.  He said, “Real clothes?  What does that mean?”  I’m guessing that my fellow stay-at-home moms probably won’t need an explanation! Lol.  Anyway, there are several reasons for this.  First of all, I feel like it respects my husband, telling him that he is worth my best and not just sweats everyday.  Secondly, I feel like this, again, sets the tone for the day.  Lounge clothes speak of idleness while “real” clothes remind me that the day has begun and it’s time to do something.

Quiet time. Read your Bible, talk to your God and redeemer.  I think that spending daily time in His word and in His presence is vital to maintaining a strong walk with God.

Meal times together at the table.  For me, this was something I had backslid a bit on.  We’ve always had family dinner at the table, but sometimes we eat when it’s just me and the boys and it was way too tempting for me to let them watch a show while they eat, and for me to have some quiet time while I eat.  But, I really think it’s important to eat all of our meals together at the table, so that’s what we’ve been doing, every day for lunch and dinner, even when Chad isn’t there.  We also pray over our meals, and one of the most precious things in the world is hearing my babies pray.

Wash the dishes.  Since I cook for 2/3 meals each day and we don’t use any paper products in our kitchen, the dishes add up.  I find it’s so much better to keep ahead of them and wash them every night, so that I wake up to a clean house and clean kitchen.

Laundry.  This is another thing that can get away from you, and is easier to stay on top of it if you just do a load a day.

A bedtime routine for the kiddos.  We’ve been really lazy about creating a bedtime routine with our kids.  We have our own reasons for that, but now we’re really working to get them (well, Logan…Caeden is pretty much there already) into a routine at bedtime.  We’ve only been doing it for about a week and a half now, but it’s going okay.  Not perfect, but still better than what we were doing before.

-Work out. For the past 2 weeks (yay!), I have been working out daily…I only missed one day due to a very busy day and unexpected things coming up at the end of my day.  I’m actually losing weight, slowly but surely.  More importantly, I have felt better.

So, those are my basics for now.  I’m just getting started, so here are some other things I’m planning to slowly work into my list of daily to-do’s.  Also,  I have been kind of “spring cleaning” over the past couple of weeks, really looking to simplify our belongings, so some of the maintenance cleaning stuff is kind of on the back burner right now:

-Homeschool lesson  I’m working on a little learning area for all of our stuff to go.  I’ll post pics when I get to it.  My to-do list is pretty long right now, since I’m in the middle of overhauling the boys’ bedroom and closet.

-(3) 10 minute cleanings:  once before lunch, once before Chad gets home from work, once at bedtime.  If the house is already clean, then 10 minutes is enough time to go through and pick up the key areas, so that Chad has an orderly house to come home to and we all have an orderly house to wake up to.

Bedtime routine for myself.  My eventual goal is for the boys to be in bed by 9-9:30, giving me time to hang out, relax, read a book, watch TV, do what needs doing…whatever and get in bed myself by 10:30-11.  I have always suffered from insomnia, and one of the things that helps that is to have a sleeping routine and bedtime.

Writing time.  It’s really hard with two little ones, but I really, really want to start working in some writing time.  I’m doing good so far, getting this blog up and such, but I’d like to have even more to work on the projects I’ve got going.  I have a novel that needs to be perfected and sent off to agents/publishers, and a couple more works in progress.

I didn’t include playtime with the boys, because that’s a given and it’s going to happen everyday regardless :)

 I’m sure I’m forgetting something important!  What is important on your daily schedule?

(Also check out: Works for Me Wednesday, Proverbs 31 Thursday,


  1. says

    God bless you dear. My heart truly goes out to you. As someone who just fought a battle with anerexia last year, depression, and had a stroke on labor day, I understand. Praying very much for you.

  2. slackersharla says

    I’d enjoy reading about how the fog lifted.
    I’ve been working on a daily routine since I had my baby, and what used to be so easy for me is now a huge deal. Thanks for the list of essentials.

  3. Tayrina Gonzalez Alvarez says

    Thanks for this routine… love it. I'm analizing right now…and there some of the those points that I'm already doing.. yay! Need to work on some! Thanks for sharing. God Bless You! :)

  4. Debi says

    I cannot encourage you enough to make a daily routine and stick to it. We are homeschoolers and many days were chaotic because even though we had a bare bones routine, we needed more meat to it.

    • Crystal Brothers says

      Debi, I thank you for your advice, and I agree with you. I made this bare bones schedule before we were homeschooling. But the truth is, I suffer from severe chronic depression and some days are just hard to get through. Sometimes even the bare bones is a struggle in itself. Sometimes, it’s more than I can handle, and it’s only by the grace of God that we can get through it.

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