"A person who has not done one half his day's work by ten o'clock, runs a chance of leaving the other half undone." ~Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights
And so it is.
I am most often, the first person up in the morning, even before the cats (who at least have the good grace to look ashamed about it). It is, more often than not, dark still and on occasion I have dressed with something or another inside out and won't notice til I'm back from errands hours later.
I suspect most people head first and foremost to meet their own needs at the crack of dawn, figuring that, as they must get up, they are entitled to coffee. I have no such luxury.
The cats see to it that they are fed before anything else gets done at all by sheer obnoxiousness. Then the fish, the bird, guinea pig and the dog, get food and fresh water and at that point, I will stick a mug of yesterday's coffee in the microwave. (Where I will promptly forget about it.) Making a fresh pot for Mike, I putter about the kitchen, making dinner in the crockpot, cleaning and making his lunch to take to work.
Finally, my very favorite part of the day. The part I need and crave that is never, not ever, long enough. That soft, still, hushed time of morning that is MY time.
"I used to love night best but the older I get the more treasures and hope and joy I find in mornings." ~Terri Guillemets
This is the time of day I am absolutely most productive, sometimes, even creative. It is the only time of day that I listen to music. I can let it float over my nerve endings and soothe my soul. My Enya playlist is on Grooveshark and all is still and quiet as I sip my coffee, do devotions and Bible study. Email and social media are next, then homeschool prep for the day. Get up to let the dog out, the cat in and the chickens out too. (repeat as needed) Then, if time allows, I may write some. Before I know it, my time is over and I get to talk with my beloved for a bit over more coffee and send him off to work. Time to wake the girls for school and off we go into our day.
"You must have been warned against letting the golden hours slip by; but some of them are golden only because we let them slip by". ~James Matthew Barrie
It isn't always easy to appreciate the day as the hours go by, we get busy or bored or frustrated or not and time goes by. I treasure the time we spend reading aloud each morning, curled up near each other, close enough to touch, to snuggle, to connect before we go our separate ways. Chores, errands and school fill the day but it isn't without moments to cherish. There is comfort in it's very routine, it's ordinariness.
This is the time of year we begin to think about gifts for Christmas in earnest and the projects begin, together and in secret. My evening reading suffers greatly as my hands fly through knitting projects, watching with pleasure as they take form and near completion or as I rip it out yet again because they have not and begin again. Our family television viewing increases as does our discussion time while we work. My busy hands assuage my guilt at marathons of our favorites or something for school. Once in a great while we will listen to a book on tape together and the house is still and quiet as we work and listen and the evening goes by. Sometimes we are all doing different things immersed in our own book or game or project but there is a sense of togetherness, of family-time nonetheless.
"O precious evenings! all too swiftly sped!" Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
All too soon comes the hour where, reasonably, I can expect to sleep to some extent. The knitting is put away, the dishwasher has run, the laundry has been folded, the schoolwork checked. The chickens are in, the kids in bed, tomorrow's menu planned. My Kindle and I head to bed for whatever reading I am able before my eyes are too heavy to go further. Prayers of thanks, petitions for cares, praises for blessings sent heavenward as I drift off to sleep.