Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Parents University--Finding Personal Time

Kat is once again hosting Parent's University--don't forget to hop over to her site to read more ideas or add your own!
I'm really anxious to see what everyone else has to say on this subject, as I struggle with this one too. However, I do have one great tip for finding personal time, and it's free and easy to do:
Put the kids to bed early!
My kids (all three!) go to bed at 7:30 p.m. every night of the week. There are certainly exceptions, like when we have friends or family over, but we do try to get them in bed around the same time as much as possible. They do tend to get up early (6:30 a.m. most days) but they don't sleep in any later even when they do stay up late (a phenomenon that makes no sense to me!). I do tend to be a morning person, so it works out well for me.
This is the best way I have found to have time to myself. After the kids are in bed, I can do whatever I choose. Some evenings Sam and I will sit down and watch a movie or the news together, or even eat ice-cream without the kids. Other nights I'll use the time to read something fun or take a hot and relaxing bath. Still other nights I actually use the time for cleaning the house--how sad is that? But I do enjoy a clean house, and I'd rather get the house cleaning done at night and have more time during the day to play with my kids!
I do find that when I take the time to do something that I enjoy (that doesn't involve the kids!), I am a much better mom to my children.
How about you? What do you do to find personal time in this crazy, busy world of parenting?


The Secret Life of Kat said...

Wow. You're a fast post writer Lisa!

Great tip!

~Just A Thought Ginger said...

That is exactly how we raised our girls. The day was full, but come 7:30PM the night was ours to relax and unwind.

Now at this point in life I am very spoiled and everyday I have "me" time.

Heidi Jo said...

i love this concept. really i do. but i have a daddy in the house who already feels like his time with the kids is too limited in comparision to mine. i have to pull him out of their rooms at 9:00and say--enough already, they need to sleep.

i don't know how to counter-balance the need for our own quiet time with his need to spend some serious quality time with the kids.

also, is this your summer routine as well?

Beth said...

Hire babysitters and go to dinner without them—my favorite way to get a break!

michelle f said...

Not finding much p. time lately...thanks for your sweet comment and prayers!

My kids go to bed at 7:30 as well...even Skyler and she is 8 years old. I'm finished by then and so are they!

Grace said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Grace said...

This is the very thing I’m struggling with, hence why I decided to cut back on blogging. My children go to bed at 7:30p, no later than 7:45. I try not to do too many or if any chores throughout the day so I can spend time with my children. I try to be in bed by 10:30p and decided this after getting sick so much these past couple of months. I need sleep, that’s the plain and simple truth. So with chores after the children are in bed and making time for my husband, ME time can be very hard to accomplish. I love to exercise and haven’t since we moved (being sick & moving has made it impossible). I would like to find time to get back into that routine soon. I also want to find time to read more, at least 4 or 5 times during a week. This may be unrealistic considering my chores take a good part of my night up. However, I like a clean house and things seem to run more smoothly when things are organized.

Three children have definitely made things a lot busier around here. I find it really hard to give each of them my undivided attention because it never failures one of the other children need me or both will. So we are non-stop, and this makes for very exhausted parents come around 8p!

My youngest son has been rebelling against his naps. Since we have moved, he’s not napping. I have to go in there about every 20-30 minutes to remind him to take a nap. Obviously, this makes it very difficult to complete task during naptime.

Bottom line, how I make sense of this or there lack of “ME time” by realizing that my children will not be young forever. They grow up SO quickly. Soon they will have their own friends, hobbies, life and I can promise you that I will be missing these days that I speak of now! So I pray and embrace what life is because one day I will have so much ME time that I won’t know what to do. Okay, maybe I will know what to do, but you get my point.

Just Mom said...

I do the same thing you do. It really does help in finding that "personal time."

brickmomma said...

Early bedtimes are a great idea. We just aren't that consistent around here. And it never fails...I am ready for bed, no matter WHEN they go to sleep!

Deborah Granick said...

I have personal time during Elisha's nap and after he goes to bed ( 7pm ) or when my mother watches him for a date night :) I am past my due date for our second little boy- any day now I cant believe it I am sooo excited!!!

MCK Mama said...

I've written about this on my blog before, too. I am with my kids nearly every second of the day. At bedtime (7 for Cullen, 7:30 for Maisie and 7:45 for Kieran) it's MY time...alone or with my husband..until 11 or midnight. I love it!