How do you find time to read?

Amber - posted on 10/22/2011 ( 123 moms have responded )

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I bought a book about 5 months ago and I have not had time to finish the first chapter. I love to read but I cannever find the time. When I told my husband about it he laughed and said "honey your never gonna read again, at least not something that is not a childrens book." I have tried to read while my youngest is taking a nap, but I can't focus because I start thinking about all of the other more productive things I could / should be getting done. After both kids go to bed I finish all the other stuff around the house that I couldnt do in the day and then I'm so tired I have to force myself to take a shower.

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I read in bed for a little while right before I fall asleep. That's about the only time.

Maybe you could listen to audiobooks while you do chores?

Lisa - posted on 10/25/2011

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I read while my kids are playing. I read at night before I go to bed. If we sit down to watch television/movie after dinner, I read during the movie. I take a book with me everywhere so if I'm sitting somewhere I can pull out my book and read. It takes some getting used to especially since before kids I could read for 2-3 hours at a time if I wanted but like everything else, you find little spurts of time.

Lyn - posted on 11/01/2011

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I'm not trying to be rude, but if you have the time to read all of our comments, you have the time to read your book. Alternate days - one day checking FB and emails, the other day reading your book.

Lyn - posted on 10/30/2011

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I read in the bath, on the toilet, while cooking dinner [spoon in one hand, book in the other]; and on the bus and train. When my little girl was a baby I read while breastfeeding and at night I read her "mummy's book" before she started wanting material more suitable for a child.
So,
1. Take a bath instead of a shower and take your book with you.
2. Once the kids are in bed, set a timer for 20 minutes. That's "your time". The average person reads about 40 pages of a novel in 20 minutes, so assuming your book is the average length [320 pages], you'll have that book finished in 8 days.
3. Instigate "DEAR" time once or twice a week at your house. This stands for "Drop Everything And Read". The TV goes off, the radio goes off, the computer goes off, the telephone goes off. The books come out and EVERY member of the household sits down to read. They can read anything they like - comics, car magazines, recipe books, picture books, backs of cereal packets, ANYTHING. But it has to be sustained, silent reading for 10-20 minutes [you pick the length of time]. Assuming you choose 10 minutes twice a week, that's another 20 minutes for you and another 40 pages read, meaning that novel will be finished in 7 days! Setting a timer means you don't have to feel guilty about taking time out to do something you enjoy.
3. Reading IS productive. Especially if it's in front of your children. You're their role model. I'm a teacher and I can tell you first-hand that kids who see their parents take enjoyment from reading tend to want to read more themselves. Good luck!

Janelle - posted on 10/28/2011

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my cousin loads books on her ipod and listens to them while she does other stuff.

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Sarah - posted on 02/17/2012

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Take a naptime for yourself now & then and read. Trust me! It is totally productive to have some grown-up thought time. Carving out time for yourself now & then will make it that much easier to do everything else.



Audiobooks are awesome too & your local library should have plenty. You can listen to them while you walk the LO's in a stroller or with one earbud in while the kids play on their own.

Jocelyn - posted on 02/16/2012

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I have 5 children and I read all the time! It just depends...I can read 1-3 books a week. I read when waiting to pick up kids, I read before bed, I read throughout the day. (I also read fast).



It's "me" time. I don't worry about the house being sparkly clean anymore. With 5 kids I could scrub all day and still need to do it again tomorrow! Don't get me wrong, the house is picked up but it's lived in!



Even if you read one book at a time once a month, to find "me time". Let some things go, they will be there later and there is always another project! :P

Yolanda - posted on 02/15/2012

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I bought a book dis month "think like a man act like a woman" i didnt really get time to get into it but its really good. when its time to wind down i watch t.v. or wash clothes, cause it be so quiet thats why. lol. but i use to read like it wasnt nothing, its kinda hard to keep up with it but it take time.

Yolanda - posted on 02/15/2012

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I bought a book dis month "think like a man act like a woman" i didnt really get time to get into it but its really good. when its time to wind down i watch t.v. or wash clothes, cause it be so quiet thats why. lol. but i use to read like it wasnt nothing, its kinda hard to keep up with it but it take time.

Mrs. - posted on 02/08/2012

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By NOT having a television!



My whole family reads in the evenings on the couch instead of zoning out on the HELL-a- Vision.



Actually without TV , you will find you have alot of time to do alot of great things! Nobody gets to the end of their life and says, "gee if only I had seen more sitcoms"

Eschelle - posted on 02/08/2012

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Audiobooks... get audiobooks only way i've finished a book and absorbed the whole thing since High school. In fact I got threw the Hunger Games trilogy in four days thanks to audiobooks. They're awesome i love them!

Pamela - posted on 02/08/2012

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My Nook goes everywhere with me and so does my Android phone with a Nook app on it. Whenever I am at doctor or dentist or waiting to pick up one of the kids or just have a free moment, my Nook Tablet is in my hand! ( using it write now!)I take it the bathroom with me. It charges right beside the bed when I sleep! I love it! Busy Moms have to do whatever they can to find "me" time and maintain sanity!

Emma - posted on 12/07/2011

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I leave my book by the toilet and pick it up whenever I go... I also have books in there for the little ones .I've got a 2 and 3 year old....

Shea - posted on 12/06/2011

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Three words....take a bath! I feel your pain Amber...I am the same way....even when I do have down time, I think about all the stuff that needs cleaning, laundered etc. But it is SO important for you (and everyone else)to get that me time. It recharges you, your can sink into your thoughts, & the bubbles...and get your head back in the game from being tired, overrun, and stressed. It is the ONLY time I read...and my husband knows, when I say bath, I want no disturbances, he can handle our daughter, so I can have me time. Even as a mother, when you revolved around everything and not the other way around, you MUST have you time. Best of luck :)

Krystyna - posted on 12/01/2011

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Thankfully, I dont really enjoy reading. However, when I do want to read the paper or favorite magazine, I sit down for a few quiet moments after everyone has gone to sleep to enjoy the silence . Sometimes you just have to let all that other "stuff" be as it is and do something you enjoy for yourself!

Crystal - posted on 11/28/2011

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Kristie - posted on 11/28/2011

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I make the time to read...life is too short, sure sometimes my morning dishes will sit until after dinner, or I skip a day of vacuuming, but I always try to make time, even if only an hour or two to read or whatever I choose. I also read in the tub, so that gives me time too.

Zuri - posted on 11/23/2011

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well i notice that if i dont want to go totally nuts with three boys (ages 4, 2 1/2, and 5 1/2 months) running around all day me time is a must!! so i make it a point to do so!! i started waking up my kids extra early and do alot of activities with them that will wear them out but not me as much, so by the time there ready for bed i still have time to clean up shower and read a few chapters before bed. also i told my husband that he needs to get on daddy duty alot more often.. happy wife happy life lol good luck!!

Catherine - posted on 11/22/2011

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Wrong answer by your hubby. He should take over finishing all the other stuff around the house that you couldn't get done earlier part at least once a week. That way you have your time to do with what you please.

Kim - posted on 11/14/2011

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I have been putting audio books on my i-pod. I listen to them whenever I have the time...on the treadmill, folding clothes, cooking. That way I can keep busy and still listen to a good story.

Bernadette - posted on 11/14/2011

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I usually read while I'm breast feeding my son at night, and then continue for a while after he goes into bed, and I read until I'm ready to go to sleep. This only works for me until I get to about halfway through the book though, because after that I just keep reading and end up getting no sleep. And then want to keep reading it during the day too. I really have to avoid really good books because once I get fully wrapped up in one I find it hard to do anything else. So I don't read all that often, actually...

Jenn - posted on 11/11/2011

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I am the biggest bookworm EVER...I am always in the middle of a book. I usually read while the kids are sleeping or while i am eating. Seriously people think i am a weirdo but i cannot enjoy a meal unless i have my book beside the plate and i am reading at the same time, lol. It doesnt taste as good i swear lol. It probably leads to me overeating a bit though since i am kinda on autopilot when i am really into the book. Idk, as i child i can remember my mom always reading at the kitchen table while she ate, and she definitly passed her love of literature on to me. And i hope i pass it on to my children as well. Gimme the book over the movie anyday!

Sal - posted on 11/11/2011

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In bed at night.... Or if the book is great just about anywhere I can fit in 2 minuites i have been known to take the kids to the park just so I can read and not feel bad about not doing jobs and the kids are happy... And when my hubby is on night shift I read for way way too long St night sometimes I will be still reading when he gets off at 1 or 3 am

Miranda - posted on 11/11/2011

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I totally understand. I'm in the same position. I do try when she is napping but it doesn't work too well, the minute she moves and bumps the book she wakes up LoL and at the end of day I'm just too tired physically and mentally to try. :-) I'm hoping when she is older it will get a little easier. I try taking it to doc appts and such but most of the time my husband is reading his book while I watch her..... ect....

Miranda - posted on 11/11/2011

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I totally understand. I'm in the same position. I do try when she is napping but it doesn't work too well, the minute she moves and bumps the book she wakes up LoL and at the end of day I'm just too tired physically and mentally to try. :-) I'm hoping when she is older it will get a little easier. I try taking it to doc appts and such but most of the time my husband is reading his book while I watch her..... ect....

Summer - posted on 11/09/2011

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im an avid reader im also an author....i read when my daughter naps or is off playing, thqts whn i write too. i tend to do most readin or writing after hubb7 gets home. its kind of my defuse for the day..... or after she goes to bed

Rachael - posted on 11/09/2011

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I have a three year old yr old boy who bounds about with endless energy and "look at me's....But when i take him to a local lagoon, beach, park, and set up a rug under a tree with snacks and some outdoor toys walah i have "me and my book" time :)

Rebecca - posted on 11/07/2011

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I read in the bathtub when I tell my husband that I am going to go and take a bath. It gives you a time and space to yourself. If you were to say something like I'm going to go read....they would wonder why you would just stop doing everything to do that at night. Strike tactifully :) It gives you time away from your little one and gives you some time to do what you want. Other than that, my husband is pretty okay with me reading on the couch in the living room. He keeps an ear out for our little one who plays in his room most nights. It's nice!

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I read before I go to bed. No more then a chapter (no matter how compelling!) and at least 1 page. It also helps me turn my brain off at night and I sleep better.

Steffi - posted on 11/06/2011

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I read while taking a bath, while my son is playing independently....and sometimes during his nap or after he goes to bed.....I also slack on my chores sometimes to read (tee-hee) or i pick a day where all i'm doing is laundry so i can read so much in between folding and changing over laundry

EHChgo - posted on 11/06/2011

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I usually fall asleep reading, but hate to admit it but the bathroom! Occasionally I can take a bath and I read there too and waiting rooms for doc appointments

Michelle - posted on 11/05/2011

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My children all go to bed about 7pm (although my eldest 2 are allowed to read in bed until 8pm). I used to carry on with all the housework, etc that needed doing and found I wasn't finishing until near midnight then was unable to sleep, therefore making it harder to get up in the mornings and being rushed in getting my eldest 2 to school on time. Now I've changed my whole routine. I get what I can get done during the day while my eldest 2 are at school, normally in half hour slots. I spend time doing something with my baby, then leave her playing happily by herself for a little while so I can do something (obviously keeping an eye on her at the same time), then give her more one on one time, etc. Sometimes she tries to help me. For instance, when I was doing the washing the other day she happily amused herself with a ping pong ball and the washing basket! I constantly talk to her while I'm doing stuff so she doesn't feel like she's been left alone. Of course she also has a 2 hour nap during the day and I can get loads done then. Once my eldest 2 are home they play with my baby while I get dinner cooked and clear the dishes after. Then we all spend some time together before bedtime. Once they are in bed I may finish off a couple of things but, generally, it has now become "me" time to enable myself to relax before bed. When I go to bed I read for a little while as that sends me off to sleep now. I've only been doing this for a few months - I collect first edition Stephen King hard back books and have about 5 that i've not read yet but now I'm able to start catching up :-)

Amanda - posted on 11/04/2011

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I honestly schedule time in to read. Sometimes I will go long stretches without being able to read, but overall reading is one of the things I love to do. The housework will always be there tomorrow! I don't know how old your children are, but you can always try sneaking time in the bathroom too, especially if dad is home.

Shauna - posted on 11/03/2011

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Oh man I read all the time! I have even read my son's entire 2 hr nap before I heard him stirring and looked at the clock and was like oops I could've gotten a lot more done...ha so I would just say during naps and before you go to bed. You could always have your husband watch the kids while you go to a bookstore and grab a coffee (or tea!) and sit and read.

Jenna - posted on 11/03/2011

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I'm able to read too while my kids are playing with each other, but that's because they keep each other occupied. They are close enough in age and old enough to not need my attention so much. Right now, though, with this pregnancy, I'm very sick and reading a book makes me nauseated, so I probably won't be reading much again until I'm past the bad nausea stage, which is another couple of months. I wasn't able to read as much when my kids were younger. But I think it's like anything else--if it's important, you'll find a way.

I'm asking my husband for a Kindle for Christmas so I can download books and read wherever I am, like waiting for appointments, etc.

Maria - posted on 11/03/2011

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I am in the same situation. I have a 7 month old son and a 4 year old daughter. Life can be busy sometimes. Recently I went to the public library and found the most amazing thing. Its called a PLAYAWAY. Its books on MP3 and all you need is a AAA battery and your own headphones. I read, or get read to while i do dishes and laundry. Two birds with one stone so to speak. Its great.

Beth - posted on 11/02/2011

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I set a timer, and read the first 15 minutes of the naps, then I get up and do what needs to be done, I try to finish up everything before bed, if its not done by 9pm, it gets left till morning and its the first thing done the next day, that way I can relax and read a little before bed, or spend time with my husband, I also listen to audio books, and I do carry my book with me to, you never know, a few minutes can pop up and read a few pages.
You'll read again, you just have to squeeze it in between your day stuff, and it might take a little longer to finish a book, but think of it this way, if your kids see you reading, they might one day be readers themselves.

Alleah - posted on 11/02/2011

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My hubby is really great about making me go lay down or have a bath with a good book, when I get too stressed out. The bathroom is a great place to keep whatever book you're working on at the moment because that's usually the only place moms get any privacy at all! Just be sure to keep it above the high tide line/ splash zone from the kids bathtime, :P

Jill - posted on 11/02/2011

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i got hooked on several series of books when my preschooler was just a toddler. my motivation to finish those books is hauling ass to the kitchen, laundry, and whatever i had to do, got it done and fast. then i'd put on a cartoon and snuggle with my child while i read and she watched tv. the books were so good that it was easy to tune out the tv. then when she was done watching tv, she'd get up, go play with something and i kept reading. so yeah, after that, the housework was completely neglected for a month until i finished the series. then i hauled ass again and got all the housework done and got hooked on the next book. my DD watched a lot of tv at that time. my hubby was not very happy with me for a while, but it was a short-lived phase for me. but it worked. i was so excited about the books that as soon as i got the kids to bed, i got my shower right away and ran downstairs to start reading. instead of snuggling with my girls before bed, i was cleaning up from neglecting clean up all day from reading. yeah, so terrible! but the books were so good, it was worth it! :)

have you tried audio books? you'll find little tricks that will work. i usually have a laundry day and that day i only did laundry. so i would read inbetween loads. i even asked my neighbor if she wanted my DD for a play date at her house for an hour or two. yeah, again, terrible! but i always repaid the favor. :) good luck in getting your book read.

Nina - posted on 11/02/2011

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Take a break to read even if its 10 minutes. If you don't you will end up snapping at your husband or child. You need me time!

Susan - posted on 11/02/2011

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Set aside 30 min while your sweet baby naps. 30 min of me time isn't selfish. You need to rest and take care of you too bc the only one taking care of mama is mama. You might feel self-conscious at first, but you'll start seeing a happier you very soon. I take 30 when I can (during nap time or when hubby comes home - and he doen't get home until about 9:30 at night). You deserve the rest mama!!!

Karen - posted on 11/01/2011

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I haven't read all of the comments on here, so maybe someone said it already, but read your book to your kids. My son is also 5 months, nearly 5.5. I know it might sound crazy, but it's what I do sometimes. Instead of always reading the children's books to my son, I will sometimes pull out something I enjoy and read it to him instead. Sometimes it will be a novel, other times it will be short stories or poetry that I enjoy. I may only get to read a chapter or so before he loses interest, but at least it's something. I still read his children's books to him since he likes the pictures, but I think the important thing is the reading itself to your child. My son just enjoys hearing my voice and the cadance of reading out loud, also the rhythm of poetry seems to really hold his attention (hence why so many children's books rhyme). Sometimes he joins in and starts to babble along or blow raspberries, when he does, I just read to myself and he continues as I turn the page as though he is now reading to me. He really enjoys this time no matter what I am reading. Now, of course when he gets older and begins to understand language better, I will have to shift a bit since the books I read are of course, not age appropriate, I read a lot of Dean Koontz, but at least right now, I don't think it matters what the words are, as long as he is hearing them.

Juleen - posted on 11/01/2011

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I read every nite before i go to sleep. Its like escaping into another world for a while. I know you're tired but even 10 or 15 mins a night mite help. It totally relaxes me & helps me forget the stresses of the day. Also once a week I take a really really long bath & all i do is relax and read. We all need our time to ourselves. We're not just mothers we're also people.

Katie - posted on 11/01/2011

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I get my husband to watch the kids on Fri. nights after work and I head to the bubble bath, book in hand. Sometimes I stay in the tub for an hour, sometimes 3 or 4.

Lexi - posted on 11/01/2011

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Oy! I feel your pain! I'm a big reader and have had a heck of a time fitting books into the day since my first son was born. He's two now. I can't say I've read much over the past two years, but I've managed to fit in a book every month or two. (Partly that's because I've also not had much money to buy new books.) I have allowed myself time to read after my son went to bed, during naps, or when my husband watched him so I could take a long bath. I felt stressed and frustrated about the other stuff that needed done for awhile, then I just said "screw it!" I deserve some me time ya know? If I don't take a few minutes to relax and enjoy something that is just for me, then eventually I will be too stressed to be as good of a wife and mom. We have to take care of ourselves. hubby and I set up a scheduled weekly "mommy time" so that even if my week was insane and I had no time to myself, at least on that one day I would have several hours to do whatever I wanted, uninterrupted. My 2nd son is four weeks old now and I've been losing my mind settling into the whole new scheme of things. I've had a new book sitting here that I bought to take to the hospital with me and I've managed to get through the first chapter only. The kids never nap at the same time and our sleep schedules have been totally out of whack at night too so we haven't had any time when they are both asleep. I hit my limit a few days ago. Me and both kids have been sick and I was so tired, stressed and grumpy that I yelled at my husband the minute he walked in the door from work. I told him that I was taking a bath and a nap and he wasn't going to see me for two hours and him and the kids better not bother me at all. lol I was one cranky fed up momma. I got clean, read that first chapter of my book, rested in bed and came out feeling much more sane and human.



Oh and books on cd are awesome for in the car or listening to in the house. That way you can still get stuff done while the kids are napping but also get some "reading" in. Not quite as relaxing but you still get to enjoy the story at least.

Erinn - posted on 11/01/2011

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I tend to bring what ever I'm reading (book or Kindle) with me where ever I go. I also read a bit while eating breakfast, a page or two just before I go to sleep, or anytime during the day that I have some time to myself. Where there is a will there is a way. You might want to share bedtime duties with your husband, make him read the children's bedtime story at night (special daddy time is always a plus) and then you get a few minutes to read for yourself. Remember, parents are supposed to read to their children for 15 minutes every day. So that should end up being 15 minutes for you to read your book too.

Rebecca - posted on 11/01/2011

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My kids are in school do sometimes I read then. My husband sometimes travels for work so when the kids do to bed, I'll clean up & go to bed, too, and read. Waiting for Tae Kwon Do class or swimming class I can get a few chapters in.

Zee - posted on 11/01/2011

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PS I can't read before bed because if the book is good I won't want to put it down. I've been known to stay very very very late. :)

Zee - posted on 11/01/2011

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I don't think I could not read. These days I try to read lighter books because I get too absorbed and then the house goes to pot. Not sure how old your kids are but I used to read while I breastfed, while they napped, and then I'd make their lunch feed them and see to their needs first, then I'd tell them it's mommy's time so I'd set them up with either a show or an activity and then I'd make my lunch and read. I spend the entire day with them so I figure it's okay to take "me" time once in a while.

Sabrina - posted on 11/01/2011

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I am always reading at least 4 books at a time. I keep a book & a highlighter in the bathroom, another next to my bed, another in the car and another in my purse. When I'm on the potty, nursing, sitting in traffic or waiting on my appointments I always have one in reach! It usually (depending on the book and how in depth it is since I only read educational books) takes me about 6-8 weeks to finish a book... I strive for 5-10 pages a day, but don't always get that.

Ellyn - posted on 11/01/2011

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I take a bath every night before I go to bed and I read in there so long as I have a book. I also try reading while my 20 month old plays during the day. Occasionally on a weekend I'll tell my husband to watch our daughter and I shut myself up in our bedroom for uninterrupted reading.

Thing is, I love reading. I spend plenty of time with my daughter but I'd rather house chores not get done than not read until she's older. Not reading just isn't an option for me.

Amy - posted on 11/01/2011

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I love reading too. I made a habit of reading every night before I go to bed no matter what time it is and now I can't go to be w/out a book! I do lots of stuff around the house after they go to bed too, try quitting an hour earlier (there will always be housework) and give that time to yourself to read. Good luck!

Michele - posted on 11/01/2011

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I started to force myself to go to bed a half an hour earlier than I normally would so I have the time to read (which is what helps me unwind) it's important we find time to do these little things for ourselves even if it means leaving the dishes till the morning :)

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