Moms Talk Q&A: Where and How Do You Make Time For You?
A Patch Mom shares her secret "me" havens.
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Today's Moms Talk focuses on the importance of finding "me" time. Grab some coffee and read today's Parenting 2.0 column on the subject.
Here, a Dunedin Mom on our Patch Mom Council shares her ideas for good places to have time to yourself. The rest of the council will be checking in periodically to give advice and discuss today's subject with readers.
Katherine Shirer is a mother of two. Here are her thoughts on today's subject:
Moms are incredibly busy these days, and any "Me Time" is extremely limited. Moms also have little time to take care of themselves, so personal time is often used to promote our own health and wellness. Here are some great ways for Dunedin moms to spend that smidgen of "Me Time":
Walk. Take a nice stroll or fast walk on the beach at Honeymoon Island. My sister and I do this regularly, and it's my all-time favorite way to spend my personal time. Since the weather in Dunedin is so fabulous, this is something you can do year 'round, and regardless of season, it's always gorgeous out on Honeymoon Island. If we are out there on a weekday morning, we joke that it's our own private tropical island. The water is blue, the sun is shining, and it feels deserted if you come early enough. Just this year, we have encountered all sorts of incredible shows of nature: six dolphins in the shallow water feeding on fish, swimming circles around a pair of women standing up to their waists in water; literally thousands of jellyfish in the water from one end of the beach to the other; and huge flocks of beautiful birds. The experience transports you from the hum drum of your everyday routine to another place altogether, and takes your mind off your worries. Admission: $4/person (by car), $2/person (by foot, bike, or by car with someone holding a yearly pass), or $8/vehicle (2 to 8 people). Yearly passes are an affordable choice for those who visit the park often.
Pamper yourself. We've heard the best pedicure in town can be found at Awaken Salon. Gina, the owner (and a mom herself), has created an oasis on Broadway, right near downtown: a peaceful environment, quiet music, no harsh scents, and it's private (just two chairs). You are served a beverage as part of your service and treated to a leg and foot massage and heated neck pillow. More than just a step above the average pedicure, for a small addition in price: $28.
Swim. Laps at the Highlander Pool, next to the Dunedin Community Center. There is nothing more mesmerizing than swimming laps. I find it's a great way to decompress and zone out, and take care of myself at the same time. Being underwater for a period of time drowns out all sounds and is very relaxing; it's like a time of solitude out in public. And swimming outdoors under the Florida sun is pretty awesome, and you don't overheat in the process. The pool is now open April through September, so we have to wait a little more than another month for the pleasure again. (Admission: $3.75 or $2.50 with your Rec card.) In the meantime, I swim indoors at the Long Center. It is another great facility, near the corner of Sunset Point Road and Belcher in Clearwater.
Sleep. The most under-rated activity of all time. It's not easy to use your precious personal time to sleep, but there's nothing as refreshing as a good nap. I find that lots of moms don't get enough sleep, and I really feel that it's impacting our physical and mental health. Research shows that getting less than 8 to 9 hours of sleep at night correlates to higher body weight and BMI. And if you're under slept, you have a shorter fuse and don't function well mentally, not a good combination when you're dealing with kids. So bite the bullet and use those precious minutes for a nice nap.
Laugh a little. Sometimes the best anecdote to a long day is a little laughter. I like the sitcom Modern Family, which I watch on hulu.com at my convenience, usually late at night after the kids are asleep. It is a hysterical take on modern parents and how they deal with their kids. It gets me thinking about parenting in another way and makes me feel more at liberty to laugh at my own travails. Overall, a good chuckle.