After posting about how claiming you don’t have time to read dismisses the choice you made that led you there on Sunday and then reading about everyone’s busy lives on Friday, I am back with a question for you all:
How do YOU make the time to read?
Do you get hours before the sun? Do you sneak a few pages here and there? Do you rely on audiobooks?
On Friday, I learned that my choice to sleep until 7am every morning (I love me some sleep) means that many of you are up an hour or two before me and that you actually find time to read/blog/relax before work. This seems incredible to me. I have no concept of a leisurely morning.
This makes me wonder what everyone else’s secret is. So, go ahead, share. I won’t tell.
It has always bothered me when I hear this phrase or its variations. When you are a reader, people often say this to you with an air of importance. Like you are living a life of leisure that allows for reading while they are busy with real life.
The reality is that we are all busy with real life and we all prioritize different things. People who say, “I don’t have time to read” are really saying, “I choose not to read with my free time.”
I have less time for reading now than I once did, but that’s because I chose to have kids and prioritize parenting over reading. It isn’t because “I don’t have time to read.” And I could still read plenty if I chose to. My kid goes to bed by 7:30 and I don’t go to bed until 10:30. That’s 21 hours each week that I could be reading. Just because I’d rather sit on the couch and watch Friends reruns with my husband at the end of the day doesn’t grant me the right to say “I don’t have time to read” to someone who doesn’t make that same choice as me.
Would I have more time to read if I were a stay at home mom? Probably not, unless I prioritized reading over other things like, say, showering or having clean dishes or preparing activities to do with my kid. Would I have more time to read if I didn’t have a toddler? Not exactly. I might have more opportunities to read, but I would still be sacrificing other activities in order to do so.
I often feel like I don’t have time to read. But I know plenty of working moms who read a ton. They just don’t watch Friends reruns all night. It’s that simple.
It’s okay if you are the person who is making time to read or if you are the person who isn’t. Neither person is better.
The simple fact is that we all have the exact same hours in the day. Saying “I don’t have time to read” to someone who makes the time to read is, at best, inaccurate, and, at worst, insulting.
A few photos of Evan and his buddies from Saturday’s trip to Dinosaur World for a birthday party. I think Evan had fun.
I didn’t mean to come back from a break and then immediately go another. Whoops. 2015 does not seem to be any less busy than 2014 so far, so we’ll see how this blogging thing goes. Does life just get busier and busier and busier? It seems like it.
Anyway, I finished my first and second books of 2015. Betsy and the Great World in print and Her Fearful Symmetry on audio. I started Grasshopper Jungle in print but there is no way I can finish it before my book club meeting tomorrow night so I think I may put it down in favor of something I’ve picked out on my own. Brutal Youth perhaps? Or the one review copy I have laying around from when I still thought requesting books was a good idea? I am debating my next audio. Her Fearful Symmetry took me ages (well, months, at least) to get through so I want to make sure I choose wisely.
I’ve got a lazy day at home, after a fun/busy day not at home yesterday, so I might be able to read a few lines. On Wednesday I am heading to Tallahassee sans famille for a meeting for a few days. Perhaps I can get some reading done then.
What are you all reading?
In January of 2005, right after Ben and I got married, I decided to read Anna Karenina. While I was reading that Russian chunkster, Ben read 8 books. He then challenged me to “catch up” to him, so we started actually tracking the books we read. This became an ongoing competition and it means that we can actually tally the number of books we’ve read in our entire ten years of marriage. As I was thinking about whether or not that would be an interesting post, I started thinking about other marriage statistics I could share. It became a fun task for us to think back and try to remember everything we have done together. I hope you enjoy reading this at least a little bit because we had a lot of fun compiling it.
- Books Read: 1079 (Michelle – 507/Ben – 572)
This means that Ben averages just over a book a week and I average just under a book a week. Of course, these averages are rapidly falling, but that’s pretty impressive, right?
- States Visited: 21
- Countries Visited: 10
- Homes Lived In: 4
- Months Lived Apart: 17.5
- Cars Owned: 3
- Pets: 2 (plus temporary custody of another)
- Kids: 1.4?
- Surgeries: 2 (Both Ben. Both ACL reconstruction.)
- Jobs: 18 (Michelle – 7/Ben – 11)
- Degrees Obtained: 2 (Michelle – JD/Ben – MA)
- Tweets: 76,953 (Michelle – 76,200/Ben – 753)
- Races: 12 (Michelle – 10/Ben – 6)(ran 4 together)
- Concerts Attended Together: 10 (This seems low and is based entirely on Ben’s ticket albums. We must have lost a lot of tickets along the way.)
- Sporting Events Attended Together: 44 (That’s a lot of Tigers games.)
- Plays/Musicals Attended Together: 6
And then of course there are all of the uncountable things, like the number of times we’ve laughed, the number of times we’ve cried, or the number of hours we’ve spent on the couch watching Netflix.
It’s been quite the adventure so far…
Let’s talk about resolutions. I made a bunch last year. I kept some of them, I broke some of them, and I half did some of them.
I counted calories until I fit back into my skinny jeans. I drank more water, but I could always do better. I fell off the wagon with respect to diet coke. I seem to do better with allowing myself one once in awhile. I ran my first 10k, but I was awful about getting to yoga. I am not debt free but I am definitely on a much better plan toward getting there than I was a year ago (we paid off nearly half of our consumer debt between August and December). And I am really terrible at photo-a-day prompts.
This year, I have less lofty goals.
I’d just like to have a healthy pregnancy and welcome home a new baby. I’d like a natural, out-of-hospital birth and I’d like to exclusively breastfeed again (with a little more ease than last time, hopefully).
I want to keep working the debt free plan, but I recognize that the new baby (with his delivery and daycare costs) makes it more likely that 2016 is the year we hit our first goal of knocking out all of the non-student loan/non-mortgage debt. But as long as those credit cards stay locked up, I’m happy.
I want to eat healthy and exercise, but with a baby coming mid-year, I have no actual goals for these.
I want to read again and get back into the blogging world. I miss you guys.
And, finally, I want to be more present. I want to put my phone away more and step back from behind the camera once in awhile. When I’m with my family, I want to be fully with them. When I’m at work, I want to be fully at work. I’ll make time for wasting time, but I want to do it more consciously – does that make sense?
So that’s all I have for 2015. I know it will be a year of joy and love and sleepless nights. And I’m ready for it.
I’m a little late, but here are a few Halloween photos for you. I don’t have any official E-posed-in-his-pirate-costume photos but I snapped a few photos while he was out trick or treating with a friend. He had a blast and loved the concept. He especially loved answering our door when the older kids came once we were home. The only problem now is that he doesn’t understand why Halloween is over.
In October, I read:
- All Fall Down by Jennifer Weiner
- A Briefer History of Time by Stephen Hawking
- Runaways Vol. 4: True Believers
- Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
At the moment, I am reading Rooms by Lauren Oliver and listening to Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger.
This month I reviewed Girls in White Dresses; shared how and why I am getting out of debt; where books have made me want to visit; and shared photos from the pumpkin patch.
How was your October?
I am back after an involuntary blogging leave caused by my amazing ability of killing every macbook charger that finds its way into my life. Of course, I go missing all of the time, so maybe you didn’t notice.
Life, of course, goes on even when computers do not. Yesterday, we went to the Festival of Reading, saw RL Stine and Aasaf Mandvi, and wandered around St. Pete a bit. Today I am participating in a 4-hour Yogathon to benefit The Children’s Heart Foundation.
As for reading, it’s been a little slow-going. I just finished Anna Dressed in Blood and now I am reading Rooms and listening to Her Fearful Symmetry. Apparently I am embracing the ghost stories this October.
Anyway, I have nothing scheduled for this week, but hopefully I’ll pop in with a post or two.
Popping in for a Top Ten Tuesday post today. These are the top ten places books have made me want to visit (whether fictional or real).
I am still waiting for my letter. I don’t care if I’m 31.
I’m crediting Jeri-Smith Ready for this one.
I’m just gong to go hang out with Dorothy Parker, Ernest Hemingway, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. Don’t mind me.
I’m going to go looking for Mr. Darcy. But I’ll settle for Colin Firth.
Too many boarding school books to give any single one credit for this dream.
I’ve always wanted to go to Ireland, but Edward Rutherford made me want to go to pre-St. Patrick Ireland.
Deep Valley, Minnesota
Betsy-Tacy makes turn-of-the-century Minnesota seems warm and inviting.
The Hundred Acre Wood
One of my very first literary travel dreams. It has never faded.
The Book World
I don’t necessarily want to risk my life as often as Thursday Next, but I wouldn’t mind hanging out with some literary characters (probably not Hamlet).
I’ve got a thing for Russian classics. But I also have a thing for warmth, so maybe not.
Where would you like to visit?