In defense of my slow start this morning, even the sky has opted to burrow under quilts rather than face the flurrying cold. I have to wonder if the temperatures this February are some kind of karmic grudge for all the sun we soaked up last month in Florida, some bitter Sherpa spirit blasting away at the residual glow of swimsuits and lime sherbet. If you live in a climate that requires you to dig your car out of snow banks every morning, 1) I’m so sorry, and 2) you might want to skip this next line: The thermometer hasn’t risen above freezing in a week. This is where I show my southern roots by shivering promptly to death.

I had penciled in our first week back from the States as a recovery period, but a round of seasonal bugs and the ensuing laundry apocalypse turned one week into two, and it’s only now that I’m marking out new routines… by which I mean hitting the snooze button and tunneling back under the covers because my Texas-bred sensibilities don’t know how else to respond to icicles.

Motivation has been a finicky bird this year, alternately hopping with impatience and swooping out of reach, and I don’t know yet how to get from here to the spring-loaded 6 a.m. writing sessions I imagine. However, I’m working on finding the way—on wrestling my night owl feathers into bed before tiredness turns to mania, on tethering my focus to deadlines instead of minutia, on honoring this gift of time. It’s a worthy work, and I’m happy.

Even if I can’t stop shivering.

How does winter weather affect your day? What gets you up and at ‘em on dark, snow-lashed mornings? Is it at all forgivable to be mentioning lime sherbet in February?

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  1. Dog-sitting. The alarm clock. The fact that the kids have to go to school or they’ll wind up flipping burgers at MickyD’s. The paycheck. No blinds in the bedroom.

  2. Ha! I don’t have blinds in my bedroom either! When (which is apparently never right now) I am running, I just get up. Like it is a rule. If I don’t, I won’t, and then I REALLY won’t for a long, long time. (See: Now.)

    So, now? I am a slug. I lay in bed for sometimes 30 minutes before the children rip me from my warm, snuggle-y cocoon. I then mourn the warmth and turn my attention to getting my butt ready for work. Like I should be doing right now. I have to leave in a half hour. Huh.

    Sending love and hugs your way….xo

  3. We have had freezing -12 to – 20° C for a week now here in Munich, which makes me consider every morning to let Noah stay home from Kindergarden so I don’t have to leave the house to pick him up again … At night, it’s hard to leave the warm bed every time Jonas cries because his nose is stuffed or he lost the pacifier … but well, that is what you do as a mom because you simply love your kids, right?

  4. Paying the bills barely gets me out of bed most weekdays. On the weekends, I almost spring into the day anticipating a run in the fresh (but cold) air.

  5. Hot cup of tea, wearing my man’s sweatshirt and slippers, sitting in front of the heater or lingering in a hot shower until I feel ready to move. 🙂 With all my travels I’ve had nearly a year straight of summer so I’m actually REALLY looking forward to winter. 🙂

  6. Clear skies, 75 degrees, and best of all.. no snow. I love L.A.

  7. No snow-lashed mornings in San Francisco, and winter actually has way more sunny days than summer if you can believe it (due to fog). What gets me out of bed earlier than I want: getting to bed soon enough the night before so I’m not exhausted (hard, because my husband and I are night owls), and most importantly, like others, just making it a rule that I have to, and then sticking to it for a few days. Works for a while anyhow! (And lately: helped tremendously by end of pregnancy insomnia and noise from neighbors upstairs that starts at 6am!).

  8. Liz – I have the [very poor] excuse that Daniel takes the girls to school in the mornings, but maybe dog-sitting would work. If I wouldn’t die from allergies, that is. 🙂

    Megsie – We don’t have blinds either, but the sun doesn’t tend to straggle out of its own bed until mid-morning. Bah. I do have to ask though… HOW does running motivate you to get up? I should be running too, but just the thought is enough to make me burrow deeper under the covers!

    Heike – Oh my goodness. I can no longer complain about the cold here, can I? Yes to the mama sacrifices; it helps to think that one day they’ll be dragged out of a warm bed at 2 a.m. by their own babies. 🙂

    Zippy – You and Megsie are my running heroes. Seriously, I need to know your secrets!

    Krista – Your wake-up routine is much more my style. 🙂 My problem is that I could easily pass the entire morning lingering. It would make for some lovely hours… but some equally stressed ones later in the day.

    Nomad – I love Florida in January for the same reason. I might have to plan a California trip one of these winters!

    Willow – “getting to bed soon enough the night before” = words of wisdom. Hard to implement, but probably what I need to be working on the most. Congratulations on the source of your insomnia, by the way!!

  9. What worked for me was to find a running partner who was more motivated than me to workout and who wanted to run early. Even though we no longer run together, I’m still in that habit.

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