I have a lot of responsibilities as a single mother. We all do. It would be nice to share those responsibilities with another mature adult, but I do not have that option. I go it alone.
So, I have a certain tradition that I follow for New Year’s Day. I have done this for the past few years, and though each year is different, I follow the same formula.
The key to a successful New Year’s Day is to have privacy. I started this when my daughters were old enough to leave me alone (mostly) and let me be with my thoughts. I take this day off from work every year. It is best when no one is here with me, but I can tolerate older children here who can take care of themselves.
What can I say…every single mother needs at least one day a year to herself. This is my day.
So, below I will give you my New Year’s Day formula for the single mother. I will also give you an idea of what my day may look like by telling you what I expect to be doing under each step.
Step # 1: Morning Routine
This is very important. I refuse to set my alarm clock on New Year’s Day, though I do have to be up at 9:00 anyway because I have to take medication. The phone alarm will go off at that time. So, I cannot sleep past 9:00, but I would if I could. I have a hard time sleeping late anyway, and am usually up before 8:00 on my days off without benefit of an alarm clock.
My plan is to get up and eat breakfast while watching a movie of my choosing. I will likely talk to my mother for a few minutes, and I always make my bed.
I may go for a walk, if it is not too cold out, as I truly enjoy this activity.
I will then brush my teeth, take a long hot bath, lotion up and put my hair into a pony tail. I will lounge around in jammies all day. I will pluck my eyebrows, and trim my finger and toe nails.
*NOTE: I will do all housework the day before, making sure that the dishwasher is empty so that I do not have to put clean dishes away before putting dirty ones in the machine. I will then not have to worry about dirty dishes in the sink all day.
Step #2: Reflection
Once I am properly pampered, I will sit down with a notebook and and pen and begin by reflecting upon the previous year:
What went right?
What went wrong?
What will I leave the same?
What will I change?
What did I not get to? And, should I work on that this year?
I will make note of everything in my notebook.
I spend quite a bit of time on this, really thinking through the questions and considering my answers carefully.
Step #3: Resolutions
Again, I will record things into my notebook.
As I get myself a snack or lunch, depending upon the time, I will think about what my resolutions for the coming year will be. I will take into consideration what I have already written in my notebook, and also think about my goals for the coming years.
After eating, I will again sit down with my notebooks and pen:
Do I need to carry over any resolutions from last year? Things that I am still working on? Things that I did not get to?
What are my new goals for the new year? What do I need to add to my new list? What do I want to work on? What do I want to accomplish? For myself? For my children? For my home? What about my friends and other family members? Career? Financial?
What goals do I have that I want to accomplish within three years? Five? Ten? What are my goals for retirement?
How can I obtain all of my goals? What steps will need to be taken to acquire what I want and to accomplish what I need to do?
What things about my life and my household do I want to change? Financially? Environmentally? Educationally? Career-wise?
It takes a long time, usually at least a couple of hours for me to do this step. It takes a lot of contemplation. A lot of concentration.
Step #4: Plans for this Year
Okay, now I work on what needs to be planned for the coming year:
Recording birthdays, anniversaries, approximate graduation and wedding dates as well as approximate due dates for those who are expecting.
Putting reminders on each calendar month about what needs to be done when, and what needs to be paid when. This makes it easier for me to schedule early reminders.
Making up new chore charts, and scheduling seasonal chores.
Making sure that I know what seeds and other gardening stuff that I will need to order or pick up, and when to do this.
Creating a daily/weekly/monthly schedule for myself.
Being sure that Zowie is up to date on all of her homeschool projects, and making a list of what she may need to finish things.
Writing on the calendar all expected dates that Zowie will be away for school and Upward Bound functions, to visit friends, and to have friends visit.
Writing on the calendar any big plans that I have for the year, like going to Salem, Massachusetts with friends next summer.
Writing up my wants and needs lists. I have separate pages in my notebook for me, Zowie (she writes her own lists), school, each room, outside/shed, books, etc. Whatever we think is important. This is a very important step to my yearly planning, as it helps me to create my yard and clearance sale shopping lists.
Making a master to-do list, and then smaller daily and weekly lists.
Creating a budget.
Once this is all done, I will eat dinner and then go to bed to read – if there is time before I have to go to sleep.
That is what my day looks like. Each of you will likely have your own ideas for what you could be doing on your day off. Please share your New Year’s goals in the comments below.
Happy New Year!
P.S. How do you spend your New Year’s Day? Let us know in the comments section. Thank you.
Other Articles of Interest: