My Morning Rhythm

My Morning Routine - The Calm Collective

image by Meg McMillin

Wearing: New York State of Mind tee | Frayed ankle jeans | Bracelets

Home: Rug (9×12) | Chair | Coffee Table | Buddha | Round Gold Mirror

Hump Day is upon us and I actually cannot believe it’s still raining here in Chicago. Honestly I don’t hate it, as I find it insanely soothing (I live on the top floor so I can hear it coming down on the roof – cozy), but a couple more days of this and I just may start to go a little stir crazy ;)  Or maybe I already have since I’ve developed this new found obsession with Instagram stories. It’s like coloring for adults.  Anyone else?

So today I thought it would be fun to do an updated version of my morning routine – especially because I’ve been really, really vibing with it.  Now in order to tell you about my morning routine, I also need to insert a bit of news to all of you ;) It involves a man… who I started dating a few months ago… and who I absolutely adore.  So there you have it. Life is super,  super sweet.

Now the reason I’m telling you this other than the plain fact that I just wanted to ;) is because he’s a huge part of the reason my morning routine has changed. I certainly didn’t want to tell you guys what I’ve been doing without giving credit where credit is due – so, you get it.  Shall we begin?

First of all, if you don’t have the Echo, I really can’t recommend it enough. I didn’t think it was necessary until I was at Chris’ place and he had one.  You can use her for so many things, but two of my favorites are playing music on command (the Alexa has an insane speaker while the Echo Dot is just okay) and setting my morning alarm.  As you can see in the above photo, she lives in the living room (imagine that), while my bedroom is on the opposite side of the loft. Every evening when I crawl into bed I say: “Alexa: set an alarm for 7:30am” and she’ll repeat it back to you to ensure she heard right.  When it goes off in the morning, it’s a gentle tune, but enough to wake me out of sleep.  All you have to do is say, “Alexa: alarm off” – and then to keep me awake, I immediately have her play either my Flash News (daily debriefing on what’s happening in the world) &/or music (most recently, this playlist) * Remember that credit I was talking bout?  Yeah, I stole this whole morning flow from Chris ;) 

Then we move onto natural light.  It may sound super cheesy, but I love this part of my day. Opening my blinds and seeing what it’s like outside on my balcony is a highlight with the amazing view I’ve been given (and one I never take for granted). If it’s not terribly chilly (fortunately we’re seeing Spring-like weather!), I’ll leave the door open to get some fresh air coming through.

Then, my favorite part. I recently replaced my espresso maker (don’t worry – still have it!) with this programable coffee maker, which has sadly changed how much I love my mornings. I have such a coffee addiction it’s almost impressive. Every night before going to bed, I set it to start brewing at 7:15. By the time I wake up at 7:30 my entire loft smells like strong coffee, and I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love that. More than the smell of bacon.. (Though it’s almost a tie. Almost.)

I’ll head to the kitchen for a big glass of water, my coffee with a tiny bit of non-dairy creamer (hazelnut or vanilla for the win) and crawl back into bed.  I immediately reach for my Five Minute Journal and start jotting down what I’m grateful for, my intentions for the day and any daily affirmations I have for myself.  It’s such a healthy way to a) start using your brain for the day, and b) to show yourself some serious love before the day has even begun. I try to never miss this step, no matter how busy I am.

Once that’s done, I’ll grab my computer and either start writing (I’m the most creative in the morning) or work on any projects that I have through The Calm Collective or Cassandra Photo (editing, blogging shoots, etc) I try to avoid email until I’m well caffeinated ;)  That just seems like the best idea for everyone involved #hellotypos. After a couple of refills on the coffee, I head into my TCC email to address any collaborations, and move right on in to my CP email to make sure any upcoming photo shoots I have lined up are in tact, and that my clients aren’t waiting on anything from me.

Then, it’s time to EAT! Breakfast for me was always mandatory, but I was always pretty uninspired. Maybe a scrambled egg with some salsa here and there, a bowl of cereal, some fruit.. nothing special. (except for this recent creation!) But since dating Chris (a whiz in the kitchen) I’ve gotten hooked on big, hearty breakfasts.  They really do jump start my day in a whole different way.  The usual line up is fresh bacon (yum), a couple of eggs over easy, an English muffin, 1/2 an avocado with hot sauce (obviously) & some salsa, and either some fruit or maybe some sautéed kale. BOOM.

(if I’m working out that day, this is when that happens. I have a gym in my building, so I’ll do that (BBG for the win, win, win) or head to SoulCycle for a class)

Once I’m fed (and exercised) I can actually function and have real human interaction, so I start the getting ready process. I almost never blow dry my hair, so I’ll shower first to ensure it’s got some time to air dry (nothing like your hair turning into literal ICE during the winter. Yeah, that’s happened more times than I care to admit.)  Then I throw on some simple makeup (that update is coming soon!), lather up with this lotion (one of my favorites), and ask Alexa what the weather is for the day to start getting dressed.

Then, the day begins.  It can involve anything from working from home answering emails, writing this blog, editing photo shoots or hosting little creative meetings, or heading out to Soho to work amongst other creatives.  Some days I decide to have “self care” days and tuck my computer away, binge watch a TV show (this is my current addiction) or maybe get the errands done that I’ve been putting off for days. I feel so insanely lucky to live a life of flexibility and creativity – and I try hard to never, ever take it for granted.

So there you have it. My current morning routine now that I’m nestled back in my favorite city ;)  Hope you all have the best day, and that you’re all doing something that you love (and drinking plenty of coffee)  x

PS: I’ve decided to start the AMA series back up (Ask Me Anything), so any questions you have – feel free to email them over at!



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