2020 Monthly Challenges: January

Back in 2018, I started “monthly challenges.” I found that a few months into the New Year, I found it hard to always keep my “resolutions” in mind and by February, I was disillusioned. So, I decided to start monthly challenges, where each month, I’d pick something to work on. You can find a recap of those monthly challenges here (it ranged from flossing everyday to switching from paper towels to microfiber cloths to reduce my paper usage.) 31 days or less, I found, was the sweet spot for making small changes. If the changes made my life easier or made me a better person,

And now, they’re back! I’m committing to a full year (12 months!) of monthly challenges. The key? At the end of each month, I decide what the next month’s challenge will be. I do this so that the challenges reflect what I really need to work on in that moment. Setting a full year of challenges ahead of time isn’t realistic for me, because my life is a whirlwind and each month, life happens and I need to focus on something else.

January Monthly Challenge

Start my days at 6am

Before I had my first baby, I made a yearly resolution to be that person who wakes up early and works out. I loved the 6am alarm and was always focused and energized on the days I worked out before the sun came up. After having Luca, between swollen breasts full of morning milk and the absolute exhaustion of new mom life, I gave up on the morning workouts. Now, after having Roma, she sleeps in our room, so I keep making the excuse that it would be too hard to set an alarm and get out of bed with her there.

I really liked waking up at 6am because I feel like before the day started, I had already checked off a big part of my day! Now, it’s a bit trickier to get to that morning workout, but regardless, I’m committing to early mornings starting at 6am. I’ll either get to the gym OR I’ll check off something on my to-do list (work or personal) so that by the time my work day does start, I don’t feel guilty about taking 45 minutes-1 hour for a workout, because I’ve started my day earlier and already “worked.”

I encourage you to either make your own monthly challenges this year or follow along with mine! Who’s with me? Leave a comment with your monthly challenge and let’s keep ourselves accountable!

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Stacey Erdelsky says:
Please add me to your email list to notify me of your new posts. I initially followed you on Instagram a few years ago and then kind of took a break from social media. Excited to see your new posts, recipes, hear about the babes and yes I too have made the resolution to start my day early
Meaghan says:
Stacey! I went ahead and subscribed you. We're excited to have you back!
AP says:
Hey Ali - have been a fan of Inspiralized for years and have loved following along with your journey. One thing on alarms, when I got an Apple Watch I learned that you can set an alarm on your watch only so that it vibrates on your wrist (silently) when it’s time to wake up. I’ve used it to set reminders where I don’t want to disturb those around me and it could be useful as you try to navigate a sleeping baby in the same room!
Meaghan says:
Great tip! Thank you for sharing!
Yasss girl, I’m with you! January I’m doing a hot yoga challenge - 10 classes within a month. I also already have two regular monthly challenges: Meatless February and sober October. I just need to figure out the other months lol
Meaghan says:
That's so fantastic! Keep up the great work!
Anonymous says:
Sweetie, do not set challenges for your self that are too hard to accomplish, especially in the beginning. Set yourself up to win, not to fail. Making them easier in the beginning gives you the confidence to set a bit harder challenges later on. Always set yourself up to win. I am sure you do that with your children. Setting them tasks you know that they CAN do and that they will like and build confidence in themselves and that they get a lot of praise for. Don't do anything less for yourself. start smaller. I am a very old lady, I had a stroke 2 years ago and I still find it difficult using my left hand. I used to work at data entry all day long. Now I have to work to hit the correct keys. I work at it every day. I do not expect too much from myself so I always feel good about my progress. Bless you, and I hope you can find a way to boost your little ones immune system so she doesn't catch every bug her brother brings home.

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cauliflower and carrot masala, totally normal meal on thanksgiving eve, right? 😅🥄

tomorrow we’re going to my BIL’s to hang out with Lu’s side of the family, and I’m excited to see everyone (it’s been YEARS!) and have the kids spend time with their cousins, aunts and uncles 🙏🏼

for the curry, simmer cauliflower, carrots, a jar of @mayakaimalfoods, and 2 cups of @bonafideprovisions veggie broth in a large pot for 20 minutes or until thickened to your preference. add cooked lentils, stir, and serve with jasmine rice, chutney and toasted naan. easy 30 minute meal 👏🏼 not exactly thanksgiving-friendly, but worth a share!

safe travels today and tomorrow and wishing everyone a safe and happy thanksgiving 🦃 I’m so grateful for you

rio and sol are 10 weeks old today! 👶🏻👶🏻 10 weeks! 2.5 months! let's chat.⁣ 🙏🏼

rio is much like luca. he loves to be held and needs more touch or movement to fall back asleep. he loves to stare at things in a serious way, especially high-contrast art for babies, so I love reading him books while I hold him (he's the best snuggler.)⁣

sol is my chill boy. he's a good sleeper. he smiles and loves to talk. he's squealing and making his goo-goo-ga-ga sounds all the time, I love chatting with him. he's a bit more like roma as a baby, a bit more independent. he makes the funniest faces and serves up the grimaces like luca used to.⁣

what's funny about twins is that just when you think you know their personality differences, they change - they'll swap. 🤷🏻‍♀️ and to tell them physically apart, there are two key differences:⁣
⏺ rio has a wider head and sol has a more narrow, round forehead⁣
⏺ rio weighs a full pound more than sol⁣

and yes, I have mixed them up a few times! I've been carrying one around, talking to them by name, and then all of a sudden, when I go to pick the other one up, I realize I mixed them up! 😱when they're not together or you're not looking at them straight on, it can be confusing! one of my favorite games is texting my family photos of them and saying, "who's who?!" they get it right 50% of the time, ha!⁣

so far, having twins is just so cool. it's so cool that there are two of them and they are identical! every week that goes by, their personalities shine and I am having so much fun getting to know them - and getting twice the cuddles. and yes, they do sometimes cry at the same exact time, but you just have to pause, gather yourself, and get your soothing game on.⁣ 💪🏼

I have to say, while having newborn twins and 2 other older kids at the same time has its challenges, I give a LOT of credit to those who have twins as their first baby experience - I can't imagine going into this not knowing what I already knew about raising babies. talk about overwhelming! 🤯 all moms are crushing it, but especially those first time moms with multiples - woop! bless you. 👏🏼 #identicaltwinboys #identicaltwins #monoditwins #twinmom #twinboys