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A Month at a Glance: Goals, Updates, & Inspiration // July

Welcome back to my blog, ElizabethAndPlans! Today's post will be the first attempt at writing a monthly reflection (or at least every other month) - a month at a glance to reflect upon goals, life events and updates, and where I have been finding inspiration day to day. In this month's "Month at a Glance" I am excited to share my current morning and quiet time routine, how I have been preparing for our baby girl's arrival, our 4th of July adventures, and some tasty treats I recently made. I hope you stick around until the end. If you have any suggestions for content you would like to see, you can send me a message here.


Morning and Quiet Time Routine

I have been on summer break from the previous school year since the beginning of June. It usually takes me a couple of weeks to unwind, reset, and establish healthy and realistic routines that allow me to make and eat sustainable meals, complete chores and tasks efficiently, plan quality time with my husband and family, all while recuperating from the previous school year. This summer is quite different, however, as I began the third trimester of my pregnancy as the school year was coming to a close. This summer's focus needed to focus on preparing and planning for our daughter's arrival, quality family time, and resting my body.


During the school year, I always struggle with establishing morning routines that make me feel good and at peace. The summer time is my time to refresh, reset, and allow myself to not rush through the things that bring me joy and inspiration for the day.


After sleeping in a little bit, (hey, I'm a teacher on summer break), my morning routine consists of getting ready right away - shower, get dressed, and a simple hair & makeup routine depending on the day's events. Next, I make sure to refill my water bottle for the day (my goal has been to drink at a least a gallon of water a day, if not more). I make a simple breakfast, grab my laptop and planners, and prepare my space either at the kitchen counter or outside if the weather permits. During this time, I have been making it a routine to complete my Blessed is She devotionals and readings for the day, listen to a podcast or watch a workshop video, and list out my tasks and appointments for the day. Even writing down a simple "do the laundry" and "fold the laundry" or "eat breakfast" helps me stay on track and accomplish my goals. Shown below are a few examples of how my space appears during my morning and quiet time routine.

Each morning is not always perfect or the most productive, yet I've learned to give myself grace as well as permission to make it whatever it needs to be for me each morning. Some mornings I am extremely productive and feeling motivated, while other mornings I take my time to complete extra readings and listen to music. This is my time with God and to reset my mind and heart for the day.


Once our baby girl makes her arrival, morning routines will drastically change - and that's okay and expected. I am hoping to revisit these moments and routines down the road as they truly provide me an opportunity to talk to God and sit in silence with Him.


Preparing for Our Baby Girl's Due Date

Our baby's due date is at the end of August, which provides us with about a month and a half left to prepare before she arrives. I took some time last week to organize and set aside the items we will be packing for labor and delivery at the hospital. As someone who would label herself as an over packer, I am truly making an effort to pack only essentials and items I know we will need and use. The packing process was making me so excited but also very anxious. I am a planner and I have probably created at least a dozen planner sheets and lists all related to pregnancy, labor & delivery, and shopping lists!


Below is a basket filled with the clothing items I will be packing in my hospital bag for labor and delivery. I plan on writing a separate blog post going into more detail on the items I will be packing for myself and the baby as a first time mom. I took time to ask family members and friends on their recommendations, as well as completing research online.

month at a glance

My husband and I are so beyond excited to meet our baby girl next month! We found out I was pregnant very early on (exactly a week before Christmas). It feels as though I have been pregnant for a long time, yet I also can't believe how quickly this time has gone. Aside from the extreme morning sickness and dehydration experienced in the first trimester, this pregnancy has been such a beautiful and calming time in my life. There are so many anxieties, worries, and sleepless nights ahead of us, yet I know all of that will be outweighed by the love and joy she will bring to our little family. My husband is just as excited to meet her, and I already know they will have the sweetest father-daughter relationship.


4th of July Adventures

My husband and I are making an effort to stay as local as possible during the months of July and August in anticipation for our baby's due date. However, we did make plans to visit with my parents at our family cabin over 4th of July. It felt so refreshing to pack our bags, drive a little ways away, and get a change of scenery for four days and nights. We were able to drive to a couple nearby lakes, do some hiking, enjoy the fresh air and views, go to a local golf course, and spend quality time together. We're hoping - or at least I'm hoping - we can find some time to get away for a couple more day trips either to the beach or back up to the mountains. Here are a few photos from our week away!

New Recipes

This month I made a goal to try new recipes and bake more to fill up some quiet time at home and to make baking more of a routine and hobby. My husband will often share healthier versions of treats and desserts with me, so I thought I'd give a few recipes a try.


No Bake Peanut Butter & Chocolate Oat Bars

These were a favorite of both my husband and I! We've eaten about half of them already and the rest are staying chilled in our freezer. Healthy and wholesome ingredients, tasty, and a perfect treat or snack. Recipe can be found here!


Strawberry Shortcake Muffins

I'd definitely rate these muffins 10/10! I recommend slicing them in half and adding sugar free whipped cream as a filling. Very tasty!


Healthy Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

This is a recipe I will be retrying at some point in the near future. While it was definitely tasty and filling, my loaf came out a little dry. Still recommended!


What's next?


Well, the month still has a lot in store for us. Our second baby shower is quickly approaching, we are continuing to plan and prepare for our baby's arrival, and I will be finalizing plans and preparations for the long term substitute teacher who will be taking over my class for the first half of the school year.


My goal is to continue to have productive yet purposeful morning routines with God. These will allow me an opportunity to read, reflect, and find the guidance I need for each day. I also hope we are able to have a few more days out exploring either at the beach or nearby mountains. Lastly, as much as I am a planner and like to have everything organized, I hope to find peace and contentment with the time and things I already have during this time. Not everything needs to be perfect 24/7. This time will be our time to not only prepare the space around us, but also the space within our minds and hearts. I pray that the remainder of this month brings my husband and I moments of happiness, fulfillment, and peace, as well as draws us closer together as we await this next wonderful chapter in our lives.


I'd love to hear from you! Share your own "A Month at a Glance" updates and goals HERE :)


Blessings,

Morgan Elizabeth



month at a glance



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My faith in Christ. Being a supportive wife. Educating the hearts and minds of children. These are my callings. I am so excited to share my journey, my inspirations, and my current projects in one place. 

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