Hi, Sanjay and Natasha here 👋🏾
Story-time everyone 😌... Yepp, that's how the past 9-months have us feeling over here. We will never forget the day the "Lockdown" was announced; what an unknown statement to hear.
At this point, COVID-19 Lockdowns are starting to feel pretty normal, which is not good nonetheless.
The holidays have begun and Toronto, along with the rest of the Ontario province, is going into quarantine once more until approximately mid-January. Quarantine has made us even more of a routine family, and don't get us wrong — we've always been on a routine for the most part — BUT it's been amplified. For many people, trying to learn a routine is a dark art. It’s mysterious, and even dare say intimidating, for some. Well, we hope that our breakdown may help you throughout the holidays while quarantining with family and/or self-isolation.
2020 Christmas Movie Watchlist
It's hot cocoa (or now hot chocolate bomb) season. The kids are ready to watch some of their holiday faves and sip some hot chocolate with marshmallows.
Here is our holiday family movies to watch while being on lockdown:
- Home Alone
- The Grinch [Netflix]
- This Christmas [Netflix]
- A Christmas Carol [Disney+]
- Frozen [Disney+]
- The Perfect Holiday [Netflix]
- Almost Christmas
- The Best Man Holiday [Netflix]
- Friday After Next
- The Last Holiday
Work From Home Routine
To be frank, it has been a challenge to work from home and balance family life, but we're constantly tweaking our process to make it easier for the kids and ourselves. Isolation has definitely brought us closer as a whole family and we're so grateful for that. Well, since we like to share our actionable steps, here is our Work From Home Routine during Quarantine…
Morning & Afternoon Routine
- 7:00 AM — Wake up (have a cold shower or splash face w/ cold water) & brush teeth
- 7:30 AM — Read/Study (read or listen to a: book, podcast or the stock market) & prepare breakfast
- 8:00 AM — Eat breakfast together (usually yogurt & cereal with fruit) and watch Spider-Man on Disney+
- 9:00 AM — Kids start virtual school (or in-home preschool for little miss)
- 10:15 AM — Break/Recess
- 11:45 AM — Family Lunch Time
- 2:00 PM — Break/Recess
- 2:45 PM — School ends, play starts (we encourage some playtime alone without any gadgets so they can be creatively free)
- 5:00 PM — Family Dinner Time (we like to use this time to debrief as a family and talk about our day)
- 6:00 PM — Bath time *Bedtime routine starts*
- 6:30 PM — TV time
- 8:00 PM — Story time (this is where we fit in family reading*)
- 8:30 PM — Kids'* Bed time (aka our Work time where we'll have laptop time together to work on some stuff)
- 10:00 PM — Our* Bed time (we shower and turndown for the evening, usually turning on our fav show for the time being, and debrief as a couple)
*PRO HUSTL TIP: A night routine is super beneficial for kids to learn time management and planning at a young age. For more on our night routine, check out this family reading blog post (link).
We're excited to say that we're now on Season 6 of Naruto 😏 & since it's winter, snuggle up time has gotten even cozier ☺️.
The beautiful thing about this routine is that it has forced us to create a system for communication between meetings, breaks and lunches (which the kids have done an amazing job adjusting to). This is definitely a commitment to keep way beyond COVID isolation; a better way to make sense of our days and apply it.
Now it’s your turn.
Here are 5 ways to work-family routine into your own home:
- Consistent bedtime: Make sure everyone is getting enough sleep (that includes you). Set boundaries for when work stops and relaxation starts.
- Set examples: If the adults in your household are organized, it'll condition the kids to be more organized too. Remember to prepare the night before, like choosing clothing the night before, and getting your child(ren) to help.
- Get up before your kids: Set an alarm at least 15-30 min before they wake up. Doing this set the organizational tone for the morning.
- Display a lunch/break schedule: This boosts their morale and allows them to be a little more accountable for their own time (it also helps you keep track so you're not caught by surprise during your day).
- Make a daily productivity chart: Make repeated daily tasks more automated and gain back some mental real estate. Examples...
- Brush teeth
- Wash face
- Take vitamins
- Get dressed
- Eat breakfast
- Drink water
Pro Hustl Tip: Get your children involved in the planning and maintaining the routine. This creates a sense of accountability and trust for them. For example, Amir (7) manages his own time for his break and lunch, whereas Ariah (3) basically copies everything her big brother does, which turn out to be like the "each one, teach one" method.
Christmas Songs for the 2020 Holiday
We’re in the midst of the holidays with music blasting from YouTube, Spotify, or Apple Music playlists. Haven’t had the time to make one yet? Don’t worry, we’re here to hold you down. So here are 10 of our favourite black christmas songs we picked this month to power you through the hustle:
- "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" (Luther Vandross)
- “Let It Snow" (Boyz II Men)
- "This Christmas" (Chris Brown)
- "The Christmas Song" (Toni Braxton)
- "Do You Hear What I Hear" (Whitney Houston)
- "The Mistletoe And Me" (Isaac Heyes)
- "Rockin' Robin" (Jackson 5)
- "Sleigh Ride" (TLC)
- "What Christmas Means to Me" (Stevie Wonder)
- "When Christmas Comes" (Mariah Carey & John Legend)
Our Quote for the Month:
"Self-love has very little to do with how you feel about your outer self. It’s about accepting all of yourself.” — Tyra Banks
It's good to remember that you're not alone, even in these crazy times when it feels like you are. Being mindful of your mental health while self-isolating or family-isolating is an important factor we want to urge every and anyone to take into account. If you have family and friends that live alone, make sure to check in on them every now and then; when you genuinely help others, it will come back to you in abundance.
Being mindful of your mental health makes the difference between taking care of one of your most prized possessions, your mind. While working from home remember to practice self-care, mindfulness and simply enjoy others around you. It's also a great time to really spend time with yourself, intentionally, and get to know yourself. Have you stopped to check in what truly makes you happy? Keep note of that during these times.
What's your Quarantine (self-isolating or family-isolating) routine like? How are you practicing mindfulness and self-care?
Anyways, later days and let’s keep getting sh*t done, together!