Working Full Time - Mother Full Time

Charlene - posted on 11/14/2009 ( 39 moms have responded )

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I have 4 Children and work full time. Can't seem to find time for myself. Any ideas of things I can do just for me and how do I find the time (that will fit in my budget)?

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ZAHEERA - posted on 11/18/2009

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Hi Charlene,not sure if you want something tangible to hold on to. But I have just started something that I read in the PSYCHOLOGIES magazine. Between leaving work and getting home - find 5 min to breathe and unwind (I have bought a beautiful cd of millstreams and birds - and park around the corner before I get home, close my eyes and listen for a wee bit.)

The other thing I started doing is the MIND/BODY/OTHERS method. Before the day ends you need to do one thing for your mind ( I am reading short inspirational stories from Paulo Coelho, as I have no time to finish a full novel), one thing for your body (bubble bath, facial mask, soak my feet) and one thing special for someone else (sometimes I will make the kids something special 2 put in their lunch, sometimes I give a friend a call, or sent someone a text msg out of the blue, help someone, rub my hubbys back or put his pjs out, or even I answer/comment on different blogs) I FIND IT JUST CREATES A FEELING THAT I HAVE ACCOMPLISHED MORE THAN JUST WORK & KIDS FOR THE DAY.

and something which I hope to start soon is : waking up early every Sun before the kids and hubby awake, and drive to the beach on my own and watch the waves and sunrise....and just feel absolutely at peace with doing absolutely NOTHING!
You are not alone, dear!

Kim - posted on 11/18/2009

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Quoting Jessica:

Try reading a book and having a cup of tea once the kids go to bed. Books are free at the library and tea is cheap! You could also take a bubble bath or have a friend watch your kids so you can go shopping by yourself.


I lead a book discussion group and we meet once a month after reading a book. We all bring food and drink of the month...and truly enjoy each other's company. The night out once a month is doable with organization and scheduling, and the book can be free from the library...we only read books which can be purchased for $15 or less. My groups has 7 members and all but 1 are moms so we can all relate to each other...it's a blast and something we all really look forward to!

[deleted account]

I'm sorry that I really don't have any good ideas, but please realize that you sound like a wonderful mother. The fact that you are so focused on giving your family all of you (selflessly through working full-time and just bringing this question up) is quite commendable. But of course, giving yourself a manicure or a bubble bath every once in a while can definitely lift one's spirit. Stay strong, we need more mothers like you.

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39 Comments

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Lawanda - posted on 12/20/2009

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Hello what i do with my 5yr old is when she is in school or go with her grandmother for the day i find thats when i can get things done like errands or just a little downtime to myself are your children school age?

Tracey - posted on 12/19/2009

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Well.. I am mom to 3 full time, 15, 13, 10 ( at home) and 2 stepsons, 9 and 7, that are parttime. My husband and I both work full time (M-F, 8-5ish).. I think we have a great balance of work/home/ me time. We have a hard fast rule of family dinner aroumd the table where we share our day and the kids all share about their day. Following that is quick clean up and getting prepared for the next day. ( kids get clothes ready, backpacks packed, papers signed etc). We have STRICT bed times and "quiet times" where the kids have to retreat to their room to wind down for the night-- older ones get to stay up later, etc. But they all have a set time that they are getting quiet and settling down. This leaves a couple of hours every night for me time or me and hubby time. I REFUSE to clean/do laundry, etc. during this time. It is my time to renew, relax, or sometimes go to bed early. Sometimes me and my husband watch a movie together, etc. On weekends we have family time, family movies, etc, but I keep that couple of hours during the week at night sacred for myself. I try my hardest to NOT take kids shopping with me so that I can relax and wander the aisles, maybe get my nails done, etc. My husband is very encouraging this way and we make sure each other has some down time with no kids. Although- I have to say on the weekends, its all about the kids :) Its a good balance.

Kristi - posted on 12/19/2009

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After attending an awesome workshop for women, I learned to take at least 10 minutes to myself each day alone and in quiet. Honestly, I can't say that I have committed to it every day, but it is great advice. You have to make the time to nurture yourself so that you have the energy to give to others.

Vanessa - posted on 11/21/2009

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To give myself a break most of the time i spend time in the shower,(it's the only room i can have in private.) Other times i hang out with other moms who just want a break from home and we go window shopping or just go to a friends house and have a pot luck kind of thing

Wendy - posted on 11/20/2009

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Steal time for yourself whenever the opportunity presents itself. For example, tonight, everyone is in bed so I decided to hop on the computer. I know I sometimes feel overwhelmed being a mom and a wife and not having that time for being me, but every few months or so I get together with my girlfriends and we go out to lunch or potluck at one of our homes. I bring my older daughter to the library one night a week. While I may be keeping one eye on her during storytime and crafts, it gives me the opportunity to chat with people, take out a book (for reading before everyone is up or again after they are in bed), or just sit and relax for about an hour. It's the little things that get me by...

Diana - posted on 11/20/2009

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my husband goes to breakfast on sundays with our son and our father in law (nothing fancy) tehn they hang out or do a few errands. IT gives me time to sleep in or lounge around or read a book tak ea peaceful shower or go tobreakfast w/friends. and itg ives th e boys tiem to hang out. O rmy husband will wathc our son on a weekend day while I go get my hair cut or do other things. Or my mom will watch him fo ran hour or two. Hope this helps

[deleted account]

You just have to find time for you. If you don't look after you well, you can't look after them well.

Joyce - posted on 11/20/2009

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spend just an hour at the hair dresser .at least you will feel u are working and reaping the benifits

Jessica - posted on 11/20/2009

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Take at least one night a week and make it yours. Once your kids are in bed relax, take a bath, read a book, do something that you have wanted to do for a while. If your house is a mess--leave it, it will be there tomorrow. I work full time and come home and take care of my 1 year old and when he is off to bed usually I clean and cook and by that time there is no time by the end of the night for me. Life is too short not to enjoy it and so what your house is a mess for 1 day a week!

Julie - posted on 11/19/2009

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Take a walk during your lunch break at work but make it count! Get your IPOD and a cup of tea or coffee and take a stroll around outside. The air will refresh you; you can relax and enjoy your music and solitude. Another thing I do (I have 2 little girls) when my husband travels...we have girls "read in" night. Everyone gets in the pajamas and climbs into my bed with their book and me with a magazine and we cuddle and read quietly. It's remarkable how the quiet togetherness allows you "alone time" while being with your children.

Stephanie - posted on 11/19/2009

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you could always see if a friend or family member would be willing to take them for a while

Kinko - posted on 11/19/2009

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Hi Charlene,
I have a great respect for you.
I have 10 month old son and I work 2 days in a week now but will go back to work full-time in January.
Things are not too easy for me but, compared to you, I have to get things done a lot more!!!!

We usually spend Sunday as an unit but my husband takes care of our son in the afternoon if I wish, and I go to spa or foot massage for an hour.
It's only an hour but it gives me a peace of mind.

I would suggest you to try.

We also have a babysitter take care of our son and go out for dinner sometimes.

I hope this helps...;)

Marla - posted on 11/19/2009

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I felt torn in so many ways. How could I be a good mom, wife, friend to others and still give myself priority to charge my batteries.

The company that I work with is hiring. It is legit!
There are NO parties involved, NO MLM, NO selling, and NO huge investment!!

It changed my life and I enjoy helping others do the same thing. We're a happier family now with less stress and worries.

For more info please message me and I'll send you more info!

~Marla

Heather - posted on 11/19/2009

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I have to give you a lot of credit, I have a 7 month old and and work full time and I feel so rundown. I couldn't imagine working full time with 4. You are an amazing woman!

Susie - posted on 11/19/2009

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I am a mom of 4 kids and I also work full time. I have a hard time having me time even on the drive home. I am a 1st grade teacher and my 4 kids go to school with me and then home again. I am having great difficulty having me time too. I really appreciate all of your ideas. My question is how do I get quality time with my husband?

Tina - posted on 11/19/2009

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When my children were young I made it a point to condition them to be in bed (every night) between 8 and 8:30PM. This carried on up until they where in high school and then bedtime was upgraded to 9:30. With the kids in bed at a reasonable hour each evening you have more time for yourself.

Katelyn - posted on 11/19/2009

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I am a single mother who goes to school full time and works as well. I only have one child that is 4 mons old. I completely agree with Cathryn, a nice bubble bath in the dark with some candles is a very relaxing way to relieve that everyday stress!

[deleted account]

I have 4 children ( 2yrs, 5 yrs, 10 yrs. & a 12 yr. old ) also like you & I work FT but finding time for us mothers can get pretty hard. I know exactly how you're feeling. I usually get my "free time" when my kids are @ school. I would take my youngest child to my mother's house for a couple hrs.& then I would go out to the mall & just shop around & buy whatever I need that's important. Another idea is wait until they're all in bed & enjoy a cup of tea while you watch a movie or just go online & chat with your friends. Good luck.

Comfort - posted on 11/18/2009

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Always involved them and encourage them to look out for each other and look out for their mom.. Mine Always wants to fix my nails for me when she was 8yrs and always watch out for little bros until now.. My 6yrs always informed me mom go and relax lets do some things for you, they involved their little bro in their plays when they are playing with their friends. They always want to know what happened at my work daily and I always work 40hrs/wk. If i call to find out about how their day was at school and if they eat before i got home or picked them up frm the baby sitter, they always aasked me too, if i have something to eat and how is work.

Tanya - posted on 11/18/2009

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I have 4 children and work full time myself. My job is physically demanding and I'm outside in the elements year round, so I'm especially pooped out during the summer. I need the time away from my family and work to recharge myself and maintain my balance so I schedule time for myself w/ scrapbooking friends every two weeks. Sometimes I may not be up to going but I still go cuz i recognize that I need to value myself. It works for me. You could look for groups in your area (either thru the library, church, local bookstores, etc.) to join that may either be free or have minimal costs. I found a few friends through www.meetup.com, which finds groups in your area that hosts get togethers (hence, the meetup, lol). Good luck!

Zakeana - posted on 11/18/2009

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Good Greif - I have one really good kid, in-laws close by who help lots and work full time and i feel i have no time - i can't even imagine how you are coping!!

My in laws are really saviours - they take my son at least once a month on a saturday, keep him over night and give him back sunday after feeding us dinner. That gives me saturday to grocery shop without baby, clean the house, make some food for the week and have a "date" with my hubby...as well as a sleep in on Sunday, a full sunday breakfast - including crossword!, and a bit of a shop or get my hair done or a massage.

If possible find yourself some good relatives, close by who will love and spoil your kids for 24-36 hours and go spoil yourself!!

Good luck

[deleted account]

My me time is on Sunday when I go grocery shopping for 2 hours. I also go for a facial/massage after work once a month for 1 hr (husband cooks and take care of the kids until I am back). My husband will let me sleep in on Sat. morning until 8am.

You didn't mention a husband. He or the grandparents can take over for a couple hours.

Hayley - posted on 11/18/2009

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Hello Charlene i felt i just had to reply as i too am a working mum of 4. mine are 11, 8, 5 and 3. I am also a parent governor and I run the local youth club. I am also studying my degree and am in year 3 of 5 with the OU. Metime is so important with the busy lives we lead make sure u find something. If its one night a week visit a girl friend for a chick or hot baths n massage, swimming although that its the budget? i enjoy taking photos so i tend to walk my dog (free, good exercise) and ideal for taking pictures! be kind to yourself otherwise u will be useless to them. good luck and proud of u xxx

[deleted account]

can you do something during your lunch break? i like to do my "me" shopping during lunch, or go for a jog/walk, or just relax and surf the net.

Michelle - posted on 11/18/2009

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Take a day off from work and do everything you wanna do. Go shoe shopping, a spa day or whatever you like to do. It's not easy to be a mom with a full time job. I feel the same way sometimes.

Stosha - posted on 11/18/2009

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I'm some what in the same situation. But I don't have 4 children I only have one and it's my first of course but at the same time I work full time, and a full time mother. I go to work in the morning from either 5:30am-1:30 or 7-3 or 7-6 and then I come home clean, do laundry, cook dinner and tend to my daughter. My husband is in the Navy so that is pretty much self explanitory. But I need a day to myself and I to as well don't know what to do and that will fit my budget too.

Comfort - posted on 11/17/2009

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Do things togethere. The trick is involved them with what u are doing. If they are at the age that can call u at work, encourage them to call u so you can speak with them. Encourage them to have interest in ur work. ur days off do things together.

Natalie - posted on 11/17/2009

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Hats off to you! I am always worn out due to working full time but I only have the one! So I think you're amazing! I do relax in the bath with bubbles and maybe the odd glass of wine. My daughter also goes dancing at the weekend for an hour and a half so I get to go shopping! but I guess it would be harder with 3?

Brooke - posted on 11/17/2009

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Take the moments you have to yourself (driving to work after dropping them at daycare/school if that is what you do in the a.m. and before getting them after work is over) and have a great CD that you listen to in the car that relaxes you. Take time once they are in bed for you time - books and magazines are great, find a favorite guilty pleasure - like watching a cheezy comedy on TV that is on when they go to bed and make it a must for your evening. I have 2 boys, 3 dogs and a full time job and those are some of the things I do to 'unwind'. You have to unwind between things for your brain or you will loose your patience (and your mind) a lot faster. I always make a cup of coffee at work (which is free - not sure if it is for you) to have for my drive home (no phone on the way - blasting my favorite music) so that when I get my kids, I have had a half hour of me time. If you aren't a music fan, try books on CD or whatever you are interested in.

Marian - posted on 11/17/2009

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Wow...I have the same problem but only have my 3 year old son. It is difficult to find the extra time...I usually get up before my son does and try to do things or have an hour to myself for a cup of coffee or something. But obviously we need more than that! What are your hours?

Jessica - posted on 11/17/2009

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Try reading a book and having a cup of tea once the kids go to bed. Books are free at the library and tea is cheap! You could also take a bubble bath or have a friend watch your kids so you can go shopping by yourself.

Karen - posted on 11/17/2009

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You must be amazingly organized to have 4 kids and work full time. I barely could do it with one. That is really two full time jobs! I find that getting up before anyone else, having a quiet few moments alone (except for the cats) and a cup of coffee or tea before the daily ruckus starts is all I have time for. But it helps. And if anyone gets up before I get this this brief bit of time and quiet I feel a little cheated. But of course I love my family and share the time. Do try to find at least one hour to even just get out of the house by yourself at least once or twice a week. Even if it is just to wander around your favorite store or take a walk around your neighborhood. It's good "Time Out" for adults.

Dawn - posted on 11/17/2009

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I wish I knew. If I did, I would share the secret. I can't even imagine what it is like for you. I only have one and it's hard enough..

Krissi - posted on 11/16/2009

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Work at home! I wanted to be at home with my kids and still have a career. I wanted the freedom and flexibility to do both. Now I have that! I have 3 kids and I educate families on having safer and healthier homes. I also train people to do what I do so they CAN stay home and still have a rewarding career.

Please let me know if you would like more information. It was the BEST decision I ever made!

Sincerely,

Krissi Bylsma
krissibylsma@yahoo.com
http://www.my3kids1st.com

Cathryn - posted on 11/14/2009

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Taking time for youself. When the children are in bed lock your bathroom door light candles all around your tub use vanilla jasmine aromatherapy bath wash from bath, body wash. This has helped me to be relaxed and feel new in body and mind. Have a cup of Good Earth tea ( jasmine) this too is very relaxing and you will have a good night sleep. I have three children and a husband and I can say this helps me to have a me time in the bathroom. Praying and singing to the Lord to gain wisdom for the next busy day with work family and home. Be encourage it will get better ")

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