The Benefits of Rising Early

Bread Rising, 5:30 am

5:30 in the morning, and the bread dough is rising nicely…

I’m finding nearly impossible these days to sleep past 4:30. It has nothing to do with my back – it’s been this way since mid-November. I’ll be sleeping quite soundly, then – BING! 4am, eyes wide open. Sometimes it’s a little later, but by 4;30, it’s obvious that I’m not going back to sleep.

So I get up.

And do things.

Sunrise 1-11-13

It took a while to make peace with this, and turn it into something good. For several weeks, it was Just Frustrating. Not sure where the turning point came, but once it did Life became smoother. More efficient.

Efficient. From now on, that’s going to substitute for ‘organized’ in my thinking. A desk top or a cabinet’s contents can be organized, but organizing me requires too much advance planning, and leaves little room for the inevitable randomness of Life with a Three-Year-Old.

7:30 Breakfast

Who, most days, sleeps until around 7.

Which gives me several quiet hours to consider our Day Ahead. The Have to Do things, the Want to Do things. Good weather for outside play, or find a project to do indoors? Does the cookie jar need filling? There’s even time to consider the age-old “What’s for Dinner?” question, long before it’s asked…

That’s her “Smile for Me!” face, by the way…

Bread, out of the oven by 8

There’s time to change the sheets on the bed. Start a load of laundry. Plenty of time for my cranky old oven to preheat, for the bread dough that proofed in the fridge all night to rise and be ready to bake shortly after sunrise.

Time to enjoy my coffee  s l o w l y ….

Time to stand on the porch and absorb the dark silence that only exists in those wee small hours…no birds…no traffic…no light…and to try to store that peacefulness inside, and call on it later when it might be needed…

The down-side, of course, is that by 8 pm, I’m fading fast…the minute Angel is in bed and the coffee pot readied for morning, I’m pretty much done. 9 pm – lights out.

Waiting to go out

I can live with that…as long as there’s time to play.



34 thoughts on “The Benefits of Rising Early

    • This is one of those, “If only I’d realized the first time around” things…when my own kids were little, I just wanted them to let me sleep-in!
      The link with your gravatar isn’t working…I’d love to see your blog, too. Is there another one?

  1. The bread looks delicious! I can almost smell it from here.
    Years ago, when I was in my mid-30’s, I started waking up every single blessed morning at 4:00 am. Like you, I finally gave up and decided to go with it. I learned to love those early morning hours. After a few years of that, things gradually went back to normal and I gradually started sleeping later and later. Now here I am yearning to enjoy the early morning again. There’s something special about that time of day. 🙂

    • 5:30 is my ‘normal’ time; been doing that for years. I don’t know why it’s suddenly an hour earlier, but I’m trying to make use of it. Now that I’m over being ticked-off 😉
      The bread is amazing – new recipe and technique. Might be the best I’ve ever made…

  2. The sky pictures yesterday and today, have been awesome!! Maybe if I got up early I might find a red sky here!! Your bread looks good. Have a good weekend.

  3. Those early hours of the morning before the rest of the house is awake are very special. I don’t get to see them too often though – up too early and by 4pm I’m grouchy and horrible, even more so than usual! Another wonderful sunrise.

  4. My, what lovely post…as I was reading it, I could feel the tension (that I didn’t realize was there) leave my shoulders. It makes me remember the peace I seem to be missing in my “hampster wheel” life of late. I obviously need to re-vamp. Thanks for that reminder! And thanks for your blog!

    • I don’t know how shift workers do it…it was hard enough when I was working to do one day per week that was 12 – 9, rather than my usual 7 – 4. All the department heads were required to close the store once per week…

  5. I have always enjoyed the early hours of morning. The time before everyone wakes up. Time for just me. Time for me to do stuff without being interupted. Glad you are enjoying it a whole lot more now.

  6. You certainly are productive so early in the morning. Even now that Max allows me to sleep in till 7:00 — some mornings — I’m not one to do much other than sip coffee for a spell. And considering how many times I’ve made mistakes just getting that cup of coffee, I think it best I avoid anything mechanical until I’ve been awake for at least an hour.
    Love that pic of Angel at the door with the soccer ball.

  7. I don’t really like getting up early but the times when I do get up before the boys and have that quiet, slowly sipped cup of coffee and just be, it is a very nice time and a good way to start the day. You, however, not only have time for a slow cup of coffee but you are also productive – way to go! Yummy fresh baked bread.

    And your granddaughter’s Smile For Me face is beautiful! 🙂

    • I didn’t like it when I was younger. When the kids were little, there was a lot of,”It’s YOUR turn to get up with them” at our house…But those were also the days when I was up until after midnight 🙂

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