One Ordinary Day: Reflecting on #OneDayHH2019

This is the third year that I’ve participated in the #onedayhh instagram photo challenge created by Laura Tremaine, joining in with thousands of other people who post throughout the day that one day a year, sharing their ordinary lives without filter or perfection. I was excited this fell on a day that truly was ordinary for me because it sticks with the spirit behind the sharing. If you follow me on instagram or facebook you’ve already seen all these photos – I posted a lot. But I wanted to get a quick recap all in one place.

I began my day around 4:30. Which is honestly pretty typical. I never set an alarm, unless it’s a very rare day I genuinely need to be somewhere early in the morning and want that safety net in case my internal alarm doesn’t go off (that never happens). Getting up so early is both a blessing and curse. I’m usually incredibly productive in those hours before anyone else is up – I wake up wide awake and raring to go, always. But I can barely function by noon, which is apparently the price I pay for my morning productivity. I’ve learned to almost never schedule things in the afternoons because I need that time to recharge. I look forward to that break time, but I hate that I feel like I NEED it. Because I really do.

It was a normal morning of working on some dolls, getting the boys and their breakfasts ready, arguing with Caden about his toast – it’s always something with one of them, and standing outside with Annie because the snow scared me too much to walk on the sidewalks.

The only “unusual” event of the day was that I went to my friend Katy’s house for coffee with a group of friends. Though it’s not really that unusual anymore, it just usually happens at my house. I didn’t want to commit to hosting that week since I had just gotten home from North Carolina and had my liver biopsy two days before. As much as I love hosting, it was really pretty awesome just having to show up somewhere and not have to do anything to get ready for it.

Back at home I fit in my daily treadmill time – not much because I was still recovering from the biopsy. But I got on it and that’s what counts. I worked some more and made myself a pretty lame lunch of healthy organic tortilla chip nachos. I finished up my book swap dolls I was working on and went to take my afternoon nap!

I spent a few hours in the afternoon working on my gift guides. The temperatures rose and the snow melted, so I was able to take Annie on a short walk after all. And then I worked on dinner prep, we ate, and I spent another chunk of time on my gift guides. I finished the evening with some reading, tv with Greg, and in bed around ten.

What I really enjoy about this annual challenge is that it reminds me how much I truly do in a single day. Sometimes I feel like such a failure. I’m always questioning my worth and if I’m doing ENOUGH. Because nothing EVER feels like enough. But when it’s all right there in front of me and I can visually evaluate how many things I managed to do in 18 hours, it brings me a sense of pride and accomplishment. I don’t want to equate my worth with how much I can do in any given time, but it helps to see that I AM doing things. I even had time to see friends! I spent short, but quality time with each of my family members. I walked on the treadmill AND walked Annie. I completed a couple of great gift guides. I made two dolls almost completely from start to finish (the first dolls I’ve made all month!). I made three actual meals. I took a nap. I read. I took a moment to appreciate the beauty of the sunlight streaming through my windows. It was a completely ordinary day and a very accurate representation of what most of my days look like. I’m thankful to have had the opportunity to join in this challenge for another year.


Yesterday was the second year I participated in Laura Tremaine’s #onedayhh social media challenge. It’s an instagram movement for people all over the world to post random snippets of their day, on the same day of the year. I love this challenge because it’s not about being fancy or trying to glamourize your life. Rather it’s about sharing in the mundane, the boring, the everyday moments that are similar yet unique to us all.

To be honest, my day of sharing this year felt incredibly chaotic. It was definitely a pretty typical day for me, but I also didn’t feel like I had a moment of downtime to go photos of other people using the hashtag, which is kind of the whole point! Then again, that’s pretty telling of my life in general lately. On Laura’s final photo last night she commented on how documenting the day really made it clear how many things she’s trying to juggle at full capacity every single day and not doing the greatest job at it. I definitely feel the same way, but don’t really know what to do about it. It’s so hard trying to do everything. It’s hard working at home and not being constantly distracted by the zillion other things that are always going on and always need to be taken care of too. I can so relate to that neverending struggle.

Anyway, in case you were not following along on my instagram or facebook page yesterday, here was my day!

5:03 am – Daylight savings has really messed me up this week. I am on such a strict internal clock that it’s nearly impossible for me to sleep beyond 5 anyway, and this week it’s been closer to 4 each day. Yesterday it was about 4:45, so I’m getting there!

5:30 am – Showered and ready for my morning quiet time. Jack is always waiting for me. He really wants me to open the french doors so he can run upstairs and wake everyone up. But he settles for meowing at me and trying to sit on my lap or get me to pet him, all while pretending he doesn’t actually want the attention. Anyway, I have a plethora of devotional books I choose from each morning, usually reading from two, and then I finish planning out my day in my bullet journal.

5:53 am – As a rule, I try not to work this early in the morning. But I had some custom orders I really wanted to finish and knew it was going to be a busy day, so I tried to make a bit of progress. Most mornings I try to focus on doing something positive and lifegiving FOR MYSELF until 6:30 when it’s time to start mommy duties.

6:12 am – I brought up the space heater the other day because I’m freezing all day long. (Greg is NOT happy about this. I don’t know why it’s okay to run ceiling fans and extra fans in every room of the house all summer long, but one space heater in one room during winter is so sternly frowned upon…) The boys like to fight over it. Because they like to fight over everything.

6:36 am – Trying to put together a wooden golden snitch. They received these wooden building kits last Christmas and just rediscovered them in their rooms. They’re definitely pretty tricky for kids to do. Especially kids with zero patience.

6:42 am – Packing lunches, making breakfasts. Two things I despise doing in the morning, but there’s no way around it!

7:24 am – On our way to school after digging through the basement trying to find appropriately sized hats and mittens (Caden is still wearing mine anyway). Most mornings I try to go on an extra walk with Annie after the boys are at their schools, but it was so cold yesterday and I had so much to do, so I headed straight back home.

7:56 am – Finally time for breakfast. I try to hold off on eating until after the boys are at school, so I have time to actually make something, sit down, and enjoy it. If I try to eat earlier I end up scarfing down something I shouldn’t, just for the sake of staving off my hunger. Yesterday’s breakfast was particularly hard because I’m getting really sick of the limited number of things I’ve been allowing myself to choose from each day. The boys have been eating bagels and cream cheese for breakfasts and it is KILLING me not to have one too. Donuts, pastries, muffins, etc – I’m fine without those. But a savory bagel with jalapeno cream cheese?? Oatmeal, even with the toppings, does not compare.

9:16 am – Getting in an hour or two of work on my first Christmas dolls of the season. I had hoped to have a lot done this week, but I made the mistake of opening the shop up to custom orders and ended up with a couple that were all extremely complicated and time consuming to arrange, so it reallllly slowed me down this week.

10:46 am – Swinging by the post office to mail some dolls. It’s been a pretty good week for sales!

11:04am – I stopped in at the Christmas open house of Twisted Sister, one of my favorite shops, even though I rarely find things I want to buy anymore. This trip I found a large vintage plastic deer I plan to put with a big doll and a 1950’s puzzle of the United States that I’m going to take apart to make a huge batch of state themed dolls.

11:45 am – I stopped in at Kohls to return something and ended up standing in the boys section for ages trying to find Caden some new pants and pajamas. They always have such a tiny selection of the things I actually need that I wasn’t very successful.

12:55 pm – After a stop at Aldi, finally got back home and threw together a lunch of leftovers. It was just a rough day food wise. I’ve never wanted to get fast food so badly, but I’m trying so hard to stick to my goal this month of never getting food out and about unless I carefully planned it out. Which I did not. Most days I’m ready to eat lunch at 10, so pushing myself until 1 and being that desperately hungry was just a recipe for not liking whatever I was going to make myself.

1:08 pm – Nap time with Rory. This is when it started to feel like I was losing control of the day because I try to read and nap closer to noon, so I have more time in the afternoon to get more done. I only read for a few minutes and had a fast and restless nap.

2:15 pm – These three love to fight over who gets to sleep by me. Generally Annie rarely comes upstairs, but ever since I got back from DC she’s sticking pretty close to my side. There’s an understanding that nap time is when the CATS get Mommy time, but every once in awhile Annie thinks it’s great fun to jump up on the bed and get everyone riled up. The cats have also been fighting with each other lately because they don’t think there’s enough room for both of them.

2:29 pm – Coffee time. Went with a fancier mocha this time.

3:14 pm – The mail has been coming later in the day making it a lot harder for me to hide my packages before everyone comes! Can you tell I’ve been doing some Christmas shopping this week!? Though to be fair, both of those huge Target boxes only had one thing in them with a ton of plastic bubble fillers.

3:33 pm – Trying to get dinner put together. Should have done it a couple hours earlier to make it actually hot enough to eat by 5! I usually try and do a lot of dinner prep right after school, earning myself a bit more time to do something I want to do in the half hour before it’s time to cook and eat. Somehow that feels much more rewarding and efficient to me.

3:37 pm – Trying to cook more healthified breakfasts and lunches means making a much bigger mess all day long. Also try to get that done before dinnertime when it all gets piled back up again.

3:54 pm – Spending a tiny bit of time with Annie outside watching the boys play kickball. They were getting along really well yesterday!

4:19 pm – See, I had time to fit in something I wanted to do! Took a break to read the last chapter of my 100th book of the year! Probably the most exciting thing to happen yesterday, as I have a 100 book challenge for myself every year. Unfortunately, this is one of my lowest rated books of the year – I did not like it.

5:14 pm – Chicken tortilla soup for dinner. I blew my healthy eating for the day by having way too many fried tortilla strips. They’re just so dang good.

5:48 pm – Literacy Night at school.

6:29 pm – Trying to get these crazy kids to leave. Shepard pouted the whole way home because he was having so much fun and didn’t want to go.

6:47 pm – I didn’t think I’d get even close to my step goal for the day, but then we walked to and from school for Literacy Night and I only had 1400 steps to go, so I grabbed Annie and we hit that 10K.

7:22 pm – About the time I decide I absolutely cannot be productive anymore for the day, so I settled into my chair for twenty minutes of my 101st book. I’ve been wanting to read this book for ages. My book club always has so many rave reviews for it.

8:42 pm – Settling in for our nightly tv time. We finished the first episode of that new Sabrina netflix show and were both pretty meh on it. Then we started the other new netflix show, Bodyguard. Possibly better, once we wrap our minds around that thick accent.

9:45 pm – A bit later than usual, calling it a day. I read about ten minutes and went to sleep. Overall – fun to document everything, but also kind of wish this wasn’t such an accurate representation of my life right now. Always running from one thing to the next, never having time to solidly sit down and get anything done. I wish I could say things would slow down soon, but I thought November would be that slow season and every week just brings more and more new things to the calendar. It’s exhausting!