Guilty pleasures at naptime

August 21, 2014

Being a mother is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world. However, when you're on-duty 24 hours a day, it can be hard to fit in even a little quality "me-time." The biggest opportunity to do something for yourself is when your kids take their afternoon nap. If you're a little lost in the silence of naptime, check out these fun suggestions that will have you wishing they'd sleep a little longer.

What moms say
A forum on CircleOfMoms asked real mommies what they usually do when their children settle in for a nap. The responses varied from self-pampering to cleaning to everything in between. Here are some of the most popular responses:

  • Catch up on sleep
  • Cleaning, laundry and other "mom-duties"
  • Take an hour to read
  • Window shop on the Internet
  • Check in with friends via social media
  • Put on a face mask and take a bath
  • Binge on favorite television shows
  • Fit in some exercise, whether it's running on the treadmill, yoga or a few sets of crunches

Moms seem to agree that quiet time is an opportunity to indulge in whatever makes you happy - sappy soap operas, filling up your online shopping cart or giving yourself a mani-pedi. If you're looking to switch things up a little, here are a few more fun ideas for when baby's asleep.

Find an artistic outlet
You've probably seen the viral pictures of the boy who naps with his puppy every day (could they be any cuter?). Like so many other moms, his ingenious mother channeled her free time into an art project. Whatever your medium is - paint, photography, sketching - get back into a habit of creating during your quiet time. Don't worry if you're not the next Monet. Art is just a fun way to blow off steam and let your brain relax.

Write about it
There are hundreds of moms out there who are having quality alone time while their kids nap. Why not connect with them through a blog? Mommy-blogs are fun way to let out your concerns, share your baby's biggest moments and get parenting advice from people who have been in the same situations. If you're not the best with computers, blog hosts like Wordpress and Google's Blogger are easy to navigate. Even first time bloggers can create something beautiful.

Try a new recipe
Cooking for the whole family can suppress some of your more exotic tastes. Once a week during naptime, whip up a new recipe that the kids would stick out their tongues at. Whether it's Brussels sprouts and prosciutto skewers as an afternoon snack or chocolate-amaretti peaches for dessert, engage your wild culinary side.

Plan a naptime date
Modern Parents Messy Kids blogged an awesome plan for a romantic naptime date on the weekend. If you find yourself too tired to bond with your significant other after the kids go to bed, shift your quality time to the middle of the day. Pull together some delicious finger foods and crack open a nice bottle of wine. When your kids go down for a nap, put out a nice tablecloth and light some candles. You and your spouse can rendezvous for a special hour-long date - no babysitter required!

No matter what your method is for relaxation, make sure you're doing a little bit for yourself each day. Any kid would prefer to have a stress-free, happy mom over a perfectly clean house. If you turn naptime into "me-time," you'll be ready to take on the rest of the day and be the best mom ever.

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