Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

Today’s blog post is submitted by our summer contributor, Nicole Kalita.

This past weekend, a good friend invited myself and a few other girlfriends to a cabin in the Mt. Hood Wilderness.  It was beautiful and a much needed break.  As I was sitting on the porch that faced the creek, I was reminded how important is to take breaks from the hustle & bustle of the family.  Parents who take time for themselves find that they are less stressed, feel more relaxed, better able to handle situations with their children, have a happier marriage, and are better role models for their children.   And I do feel all of these benefits today, but the very best thing about taking time away from my children is the excitement of coming home – the hugs, the smiles, and the kisses from my munchkins that I missed so much!

Self care can be done by yourself, with your partner, or even with your children.   When was the last time you took some time for yourself?  Some ideas of activities you can do for self care are: 

  • Take a longer shower than normal
  • Taking a few extra minutes in the morning to make yourself feel really “pulled together”
  • Plucking your eye brows without interruptions
  • Going to the grocery store by yourself and taking an extra lap or two before paying and heading home
  • Going on a date with your partner
  • Have a candle lit dinner or dessert with your partner AFTER the kids are tucked into bed
  • Go for a walk.  If you need to take your kids, put them in a stroller or have them ride their bike ahead of you
  • Exercise
  • Read a book
  • Laugh
  • Have sex
  • Have a family dance night
  • Go out with your friends for a couple hours
  • Play a computer/Nintendo/Play Station/Xbox game
  • Go shopping for something
  • Go shopping for NOTHING
  • Visit the library and enjoy the peace as you look for the right book
  • Go to a movie
  • Call/text a friend
  • Schedule a play date with a friend who has children of similar age.  While the kids are playing, sit with your friend an chat while sipping tea.

Nicole Kalita is a mother of two young boys. She has a degree in Human Development and Family Sciences and has been working with families for 11 years. Currently she teaches the Live & Learn With Your Baby and Live & Learn With Your Toddler & Two Year Old in Albany, Oregon through Linn-Benton Community College.