The Quiet of the Morning
The early hours of the morning are my favorite of the entire day. If it’s a week day, they start a little faster and earlier, at 4:30, to be exact. I rise quickly to make breakfast and pack a lunch for my husband before I send him off to work. A weekday breakfast is usually his fruit and greens smoothies with a little protein added in the form of nuts or seeds. I don’t eat until later. He isn’t a “sit and chat” kind of guy before leaving for work. In fact, our entire food prep/lunch cooler packing routine takes about ten minutes, fifteen tops if his lunch is more complicated than a sandwich or a salad, and then I’m kissing him goodbye and closing the door behind him.
But weekends are different. Our children are grown now, but even when the grandchildren come to visit, they tend to sleep in until at least 8 AM. So I usually arise around 6 or 7 AM. I patter down the stairs to let the dog out, and from the moment I hear those first chirps and twitters from the birds, my mood is set. Bliss. The house is quiet and still neat and clean, how I left it the night before, and the next two hours or so are mine.
I perk up some coffee then nestle into my comfy spot on the couch with a good book, and for an hour or so I read, daydream, plan, and journal. I think about what I want to do for the day, the weekend, and the week. Sometimes (especially at time like my annual birthday life-planning session, coming up next week) I make long term plans. It’s peaceful, and it’s my most alert time of day, so I can think. In fact, it was during this exact time of day that this very blog was born!
A little later, when activity outside begins to pick up, cars begin to go by and neighborhood noise begins to increase, I know it’s time to think about making breakfast. Weekend breakfast is more about joy than necessity. For me, I’d be happy with a piece of crusty bread smeared with butter and fresh strawberry jam. Oh heaven! I think that’s the french girl in me, but Mr. C likes a big old-fashioned style breakfast.
It used to be eggs over easy, bacon, home fries, corned beef hash, english, and coffee. Maybe even a little juice, but times have changed. We are older, and we eat healthier now. A typical weekend morning might include an egg white omelet made with tons of onions, mushrooms, peppers, spinach, tomato, and bits of broccoli and maybe some chicken thrown in cooked up with a side of sweet potato hash. Occasionally there will be a whole-grain toast, but normally we stay away from the grains in the morning, opting to save them for later in the day instead. There is always freshly brewed coffee–black for him. I use a little soy creamer in mine. Sometimes a small version of a fruit and greens smoothie or maybe just some cut melons and fruit to finish the meal off with a bit of sweetness.
Every now and again, I might even make a couple of tea breads–banana or pumpkin (recipes can be found here) or cinnamon buns as a treat, especially when the kids are visiting.
When we can, we like to eat out on the deck, sitting in the morning sun. The neighbors have chickens and the rooster likes to tell us it’s morning pretty much all day long. I don’t mind. He’s just far enough away for it to be a pleasant background noise. I can also look out across the fields from the deck, and from where I sit, I can see a small portion of my gardens just around the side of the house. The barn swallows swoop around us, and a variety of birds such as wrens, finches, jays, and crows sit ready for us to drop a few crumbs.
We can even throw the ball a few times for the dog and watch him explore the tree line for critters, laughing when a hare jumps out at him, sending him fleeing for home, ears pinned back and feet almost never touching the ground. To me, this is heaven. It’s the most ideal environment to transition from a quiet morning to the busyness of the day ahead.
Speaking of which . . . it’s about that time. Good morning to you all. May it be a good one.