I have a love-hate relationship with routine.

I hate doing things that have to be done repeatedly. I begrudge folding laundry, because I know I’m just going to have to unfold it to wear it. I loathe washing the dishes, because I know that they are only going to get dirty again. For years I refused to make my bed, knowing that I would inevitably just mess it up when I went to bed the next night. I hate sweeping and vaccuuming and don’t even get me started on dusting!

But I like the sense of peace that having these routine things done brings to my life. I love, at the end of a long day, being able to fall into a well-made bed. I love the calmness I feel when the dishes are all done; I love being able to find the clothes I want to wear because they’ve been folded or hung up where they belong; I love being able to find the partner to a shoe by looking directly next to it on the shoe rack, where the shoes were placed after they were taken off. And I couldn’t have my coffee ready to wake me up each morning if I didn’t go through the routine of grinding the coffee beans and putting the grounds in a filter, the filter in the filter basket and water into the machine EVERY SINGLE NIGHT before bed.

My nighttime routine (ideally) consists of:

  • taking out my contacts
  • washing my face
  • brushing teeth
  • making sure the dishes are all washed
  • checking my calendar to see if I have anything important going on the next morning
  • plugging in my beloved Hermione & Marla to ensure they are charged up for the next day
  • making sure my coffee machine is set up for making my coffee at the touch of a button upon waking in the morning
  • packing my lunch for the next day
  • double checking that my alarm is set for the correct time
  • getting into bed
  • triple checking that my alarm is set for the correct time

And as much as I begrudge doing this every night, I’m very happy in the morning when I wake up to a clean kitchen, freshly made coffee and not having make-up smeared all over my pillowcase because I was too lazy to take it off the night before.

What is your nighttime routine?

Comments |3|

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  • My nighttime routine is rather boring. That is, I brush my teeth, jump into bed, finish reading various blogs, finish off some emails, double check my alarms, turn on my music (Loreena McKennitt, The Highwayman usually) and drift off into sweet oblivion.

    Morning is a different story. Much more regimented. That is, I turn off my first cell phone alarm, then my ipod alarm, then my computer alarm, then my second cell phone alarm, then my regular alarm and finally the second alarm on my regular alarm (I know – how many alarms can one man have?). I follow this with checking email, blog checks, stretching, breakfast (oatmeal, fruit cup, bran bar and either coffee, cup of juice or soy milk), brush teeth, floss, mouthwash, stretch more, attempt some chin ups, attempt some push ups, stretch more, shower, stretch more, dry hair, apply stupid lotion to stupid eczema, eye drops, dress, bike to school.


  • Make sure doors are locked and windows on the ground floor are closed and locked. Turn off lights on main floor. Brush teeth, get into PJs and get into bed.

    Like Dan, my morning routine is a little more involved – turn off alarm (or hit snooze, but no more than once), shower, get dressed, feed the cat, make lunch while the water is boiling for coffee (I have a French press) and my bagel is toasting, read a chapter of whatever book I’m reading while eating breakfast, pack lunch, dry my hair, brush teeth, put on makeup, and leave for work.


  • I love posts on routines. Here is mine.

    – When I use contacts, take them off.
    – Proceed with bodily function to ensure that there is no liquid remaining in the body during sleep.
    – Brush my teeth. Floss.
    – Check my to do list for the next day.
    – When I used to drink coffee, prepare the coffee maker for the next day and set the clock.
    – Set my alarm clock.
    – Read half of a page of the 24 Hrs newspaper.
    – Sleep.


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