Hoi Yee: I should not hit the snooze button – because if I press it once, then I press it again, and again, and again…

When I do spring up after the first ring, I always experience a wave of achievement for getting up really quickly!  I feel that I already have control over my world.

I love mornings when I am able to go through my documents and schedule, and write out each “actionable” item.  Instead of ‘try to get to dentist this week’, I text the clinic with two suggested times.  Instead of writing fish or chicken for my son’s meals, I select a healthy menu complete with vegetable sides.  Instead of “I’ll see you at dinner”, I purchase movie tickets on-line for a date-night with my husband.

I love my personal mornings when reading a single chapter in a book has the power to inspire me to take on anything.  Or paging through an Asian travel magazine and noting down towns to visit and accommodations for our next vacation.  Or reading through the property magazine dreaming of an early retirement. 

On these gorgeous mornings when I jump up at the first sound of the alarm, the world is so much more beautiful.

Julia: The Hawaiian ring tone drrrings.  I hit the snooze button.  10 minutes later the Hawaiian skirts are on the move again.  “Lights on!” says my husband, and I cover my eyes against the glare.  Teeth brushed in a daze, he takes the puppy for a walk, while I shuffle through the sitting room, gathering up cups from the night before.  In the kitchen, I pour porridge and milk into a saucepan, fill the kettle and set out a tray for us each.  I like our trays to look lovely – because, in a funny way, that gesture says, “I love you.”  Then I usually throw clothes into the washing machine, so there’s a soothing rumble in the background.

The front door opens.  My husband is back, looking awake now.  The puppy begins chasing a favorite toy, or the tail of the older dog.  Richard goes off to shower, shave and put on a suit.  Meanwhile, the kettle’s boiled and I make tea, pour orange juice into a jug, serve the porridge.  Breakfast is ready.  My husband switches on the television, and we watch the 8:00 News as we eat.  If the images on the screen are too gruesome, I just stare into my bowl, “Tell me when it’s OK to look!”  “It’s OK now,” he’ll say – when he remembers.  A quick kiss and he leaves for the office.

The puppy, exhausted by the walk and play, flops down onto the floor.  I switch the News to mute, stack the bowls and cups into the dishwasher and turn it on.  The house is quiet but for the soft hum of machines.  Now, it is my time.