My Evening Routine – Updated in 2023

I feel like in order to have a good day the next day, it starts the night before- cliché I know, but somewhat true. A couple years back I started experiencing some really bad chronic back pain that really started to affect me in ways that I didn’t really understand. This really affected my sleep, which then affected my morning, the next day, and then a cycle was born. A couple weeks into physical therapy I completely overhauled and shifted my evenings to try and help develop a better sleeping habit. For me, sleep is a big chunk of my attitude and approach to the day in a way that I didn’t recognize prior to working through my chronic pain. 

A couple of things….

This is what I’ve found works best for me. It allows me to calm both my body and my mind, both of which will hold tension and thoughts all night if I let them. This is also something that will apply year-round, although the time of evening might change come Summer. The basic concept and order of events stays the same, meaning my evening routine will always be about an hour and a half before I’m ready to read and then lay my head down. So, basically in the summer I will do this routine and then maybe pop outside and read out there until I’m ready for bed or what not. This is just what I need to do to get into that bedtime calmness.

So, my “evening” technically begins around 7:30PM when I put the kettle on, turn off anything on my phone that deals with “words” (I used to listen to podcasts as I cleaned in the evening and got ready for bed, but I found that that didn’t end up being very “relaxing”). I’ll turn on a classical music playlist on Spotify and start to do the dishes while the kettle is boiling. I pour an evening cup of tea- I swear by the Twining’s Nightly Calm- and will nurse it over while I tidy up the kitchen, wiping down all the counters, sweeping the floor and then a quick Swiffer. Once I finish in the kitchen it is usually time for the boys to start cleaning up their toys and getting ready for bed. 

I’m very lucky in the fact that, when he’s home, my husband will do most of the boy’s night routine. It’s kind of become his time with them (though there’s a lot of back and forth about cleaning typically ha-ha) and I’m happy to leave that to him. I continue to nurse the evening tea as I help the boys tidy up their toys (this is usually just pushing the boxes back where they belong and putting the couches and blankets back where they belong). Usually by the time this is done I’ve finished my tea and I’ll clean the mug up, turn all the lights off downstairs and head upstairs. 

I’ve still got the classical music playing in my ears as I head into the bathroom to take my makeup off, wash my face, and brush my teeth. During this time the boys are getting a bath (if Robert is not home, I’ll put off washing my face until after bedtime so as to handle the boy’s bedtime). I’ll admit, it took me a long time to get the good habit of washing my face every night. My skin tends to be fairly normal, no major breakouts, and most of the time it absorbs moisture very well. I would always take my make up off, but I’ve found that beyond the good benefits of skincare, it also just continues that feeling of “the day has ended”. Sometimes your body and mind really need the physical reminders to start shutting down. 

So, wash my face, brush my teeth, then moisturize my hands- this is a necessity especially in winter when my hands crack. 

On school nights the boys are in bed by 8:30PM (weekends tend to be anywhere from 8:30-10:00PM depending on what we’re doing- the later time being rare). Starting at 9:00PM my phone is put away and not touched again. I’ve always had the do not disturb option come on at 9:00PM, but I’ve been guilty of continuing to peruse social media or whatever until the second bedtime. No more. Looking at my phone, at all the “things” just makes my mind light up again and it’s hard to come back from that. So, phone up and away, and that includes the classical music playlist that I had going. It’s all done and gone. 

Once kids are in bed, in winter at least, I’ll crawl into bed and do some reading for about an hour until I turn the reading lamp off and go to sleep around 10:30PM. I’m not sure how this will change in the summer- I’m sure I’ll be sipping on my tea outside or downstairs with my book and soaking up the last of the light much later into the night. 

And that’s it! Seriously so simple and full of “obvious” duh things, but we often forget or miss out. This honestly has truly changed how I sleep and how I feel when I wake up the next morning, which in turn has been a game changer across the board. 

Evening Routine – Summer 2018

Ah Summer Evenings, is there anything better? Maybe curling up in front of a roaring fire on a cool fall night, but we can’t do that just yet, so let’s just stick with Summer Evenings. In the Spring, I talked about my Morning Routine (which you can read HERE), and I thought I would give you a little insight into what my Summer Evening Routine looks like. 

My evening routines aren’t as strategically planned out as my mornings, they are more so for winding down after the day and a little prep for the next day. I do a couple of things that help me not only wind down from the day, but get ready for tomorrow. 

My work day typically ends around 4PM, but I usually don’t stop working until closer to 5PM. That last hour is usually devoted to my business and blog and a couple of other projects (depending on what the day is). The boys wake up from naps around 4:45PM and typically take a little water and a small snack. I’ll “shut down” for the evening at 5PM and focus on family from that time moving forward. 

I start dinner prep around 5:30pm depending on what I make. We always eat dinner at 6:30PM and I always try to make some sort of a home cooked meal. The boys will be offered what we have, but sometimes I’ll also throw a little mac & cheese on their plates so that they do have some food. 

After dinner I take a couple of minutes to look at my to do list from the day and look at what I need to do for the next day. This usually only takes about 5-10 minutes. Then, I’ll spend some time with family in our living room, either playing or watching a show together. It’s always very relaxed and just hanging out. We don’t do much unless we need to. The boys don’t go to bed until 9PM, so we usually have a good amount of time. We used to take walks every now and then, but we don’t really anymore. I’d like to start doing that again, maybe when it cools down a little. 

We start prepping the boys for bedtime around 8:30PM, if it is bath night my husband will give them baths while I help out with the kitchen cleanup from dinner. Kitchen clean up goes in between me and my  husband. Some nights I do it, some nights he does it. Either way, I will not go to bed with a messy kitchen. If I do, it sets my next morning off badly. We also clean up our living room at this time. We try to involve the boys as much as possible with clean up and have them help out. 

Once bath time and clean up have been done, I will head into our bedroom to handle my nighttime things. I will clean the makeup off my face, wash my face, change into my pajamas. I also pick out my outfit for the next day. This takes one less thing off my mind for the next morning.

As soon as I am done with this it is time for the boys to go to bed. I handle Andrew, hubs handles Colton. On weeknights we head to bed after they go to bed. I’ll sit in bed and read my book for about an hour and a half. I try to be laying down to sleep by 10:30PM. This gives me anywhere from 7-8 hours of sleep at night. Weekends we will typically watch a movie or catch up on some TV in our living room before heading to bed.

That is how my evenings go! A lot more relaxed and much more go with the flow than my morning routine. Do you have some sort of a routine for your evenings?

My Evening Routine

Good afternoon everyone and Happy Monday! I hope that this week is getting off to a great start for you! It’s been fantastic here in our home as my nearest and dearest friend is in town visiting for a couple of days. It’s already been a whirlwind of a couple days and I can’t wait to see how the next couple days go!

Today I’m excited to share a little glimpse into my evening routine. You can find my morning routine HERE and while I get a lot done in the mornings and have some “me” time, I feel like my evenings are where the real relaxation is. It’s a great time for us to spend together as a family and when we get to just enjoy the coziness that is our home.

I work from home and then once I’m done with work, I typically do my daily chores around the house. I consider my day “over” around 4:00-4:30pm. At this time our little man is typically waking up from his nap, so I’ll get him out of the crib and we will enjoy a little bit of time together in the living room. I’ll grab his leftover milk out of the fridge and we just relax for about 30-45 minutes with a little TV or playing on the floor.

Around 5:15-5:30pm I start on dinner. I make home made dinners every night, except for a Friday or Saturday night, when we either do something easy or order in for our date night. Because I am making dinner almost completely (and completely in some cases) from scratch it can take upwards of an hour to cook. I enjoy cooking and typically during this time, my husband will arrive home from work. I try to clean as I go, rinsing out dishes and doing what needs to be done.

Dinner time is typically around 6:30pm in our home and we like to sit around the table and just chat about our days. This is our time to catch up with each other and just chat. After dinner, I’ll get the kitchen and dining room cleaned up and my husband will either play with our little man in the living room or head down and do homework. One way or the other we will all end up on the floor in the living room playing until it is little man’s bed time.

We start getting little man ready for bed at around 8:30pm and my husband actually handles bed time for the most part. While he is getting little man ready for bed, I am taking my make up off and washing my face. I occasionally change into my pajamas at this time, but more than likely not. Once little man is in bed, we either catch up on some television or read in our living room until we are ready to go to bed. This is the time that we get to just relax and spend a little one on one time with each other, without little man.

So that is what our evening looks like! What is your evening routine like?