I think I mention ‘me time‘ around 10 times a year and am always focussing on how to find the time, trying to arrange a babysitter or working out how to balance it all but what if you could have ‘me time’ around the kids? What if you found that time during the daily routine and without having the stress of feeling guilty for it? Well, you can! Yep, I have learnt that life cannot always be organised, that illnesses crop up and ruin plans and that trying to plan in that time solely for me usually never actually happens so I have had to come up with other ways of taking care of myself whilst taking care of my boys. Here are my 7 parenting hacks for squeezing in some ‘me time’.
It’s well known for parents to be drinking cold tea and coffee but there is no way I am starting my day without a hot cuppa! So what do I do? Make sure you make the children their brekkie first. Get them their drinks, set up any snacks they may also like, set up the TV with their favourite show/film. Check they are all happy and then quietly sneak into the kitchen to make your own breakfast and hot drink. Silently sit on the other sofa/chair without making eye contact (important point, do not let them know you are there!) and enjoy your tea in peace. You may even be able to pick up a book for a bit and start the day with a bit of escapism. Imagine that!
Want to soak those feet, relax and give your tootsies some TLC? Easy. Run the kids a bath, pop them in, roll up your trousers and soak your feet in there too. The kids even enjoy washing them sometimes! If your children love a long bath you’ll even get time to moisturise them and maybe add a lick of nail varnish.
Mud pack? Kids? Do it together!! Even if you only pop a smear of it across their nose, it will make them laugh, you can pretend to be the Hulk (more so than usual) and you get your face mask whilst spending quality time with the littles. Take some funny photos, get some cucumber on your eyes and pop some sensual music on in a darkened room. It will do all of you the world of good to chill out and your ‘me time’ doesn’t come at any cost to your wallet or to your family time.
Trying to exercise when you have children is tough, isn’t it? That was always my ‘me time’ but since becoming a Mum of two it has gradually all gone out of the window. Now you could be super organised and set your alarm for stupid-o-clock in the morning in order to rise before the kids to do your daily yoga but who wants to do that when you are already so tired? Instead, you have a few options. If you still get the break due to naptime, use this hour or so to get your exercise in. Otherwise, you could try getting them involved with you. This will work ok if they are old enough but my 2 year old won’t have any of this so, what I need to do is set up an activity space. He loves baskets, putting things in and out of something, puzzles, noisy toys, Duplo and so on so I can set up all of these favourite things to keep him entertained and enjoy a workout inside my own home. I have some ideas for a toddler box in this post here.
You want to do something new and different with your hair but you just don’t have the time to experiment. Yep, know that feeling! This hack will depend on the ages and abilities of your children but if they know how to plait hair, you are in luck! Let your kiddies sit and plait your hair as evenly as they can. Hopefully, this will also be quite relaxing (as long as they don’t tug!). Then leave the plaits in overnight, carefully remove them in the morning and allow the curls to drop. You may end up with some gorgeous new tresses all thanks to the kids.
When was the last time you managed a bath alone? Doesn’t happen often, does it? And if yours are anything like mine they seem to manage to sniff you out, undress in a flash and pop themselves in with you no matter how many times you say no! To make a bath more enjoyable even if the little people join you, first remove every bath toy from their sight. Hide them away in a cupboard, take them all out of the bathroom if needs be. If they can’t see them they won’t want them. Purchase some fun bath bombs from Lush and let your kids choose which ones to use. At least this way they are entertained and you still get to have your soak and your skin gets a little TLC. Even giving them the bar of soap can keep them occupied for absolutely ages and you may even get your back washed too!
Sunday Morning Lay In
These may seem like they are long gone but I have a hack here that you are going to love! I use their Dad to get my lay in. Oh, yes, I pull no punches when it comes to getting a bit of ‘me time’ these days. I have 2 boys and one is obsessed with computer games. This means he usually wants his Dad up at the weekends to play a two-player game with him. So, I promise him he can play his favourite game on a Sunday and that Dad will do this with him. Once both kids bother him for long enough, he gets up, takes them both downstairs and I get to snuggle in bed for a bit longer. I’ve even been known to sneak down and make a cuppa, take it back up to bed and read for another hour. It may sound mean but I am with my children 7 days a week, I deserve that break every now and then!
Go on, tell me what parenting hacks you use in order to get some more ‘me time’ I’d love to learn some more!!
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