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How to carve out a little quiet time

Jen Klein is a New England-based technical writer and mother of three. When she isn't asking her kids to stop bickering, "caramelizing" the dinner or actively ignoring the dust bunnies under the couch, she enjoys knitting, gardening, pho...

A breather amid the busy-ness

You've taken care of so many others in these last crazy few weeks. You've made sure there's food, gifts, decorations and love. It's been noisy and crazy-busy. You probably are more than a little tired. Have you made time to make it a special holiday for yourself?

A breather amid the busy-ness

I'm not talking anything grand and over the top. I'm talking five to thirty minutes of quiet, possibly alone time to get in your own head and reflect.

When a moment presents itself

A couple of days ago, my husband took the kids sledding. There was a fresh coat of snow and much fun to be had at the local sledding hill. Part of me wanted to go, too, but a greater part of me wanted some quiet in the house. I claimed that I needed to finish some holiday baking (true) and sent them off. However, I did not spend the entire time fussing in the kitchen.

Instead, before I even got back to the baking, I turned on the Christmas tree lights, turned on some favorite Christmas music, poured myself a cup of eggnog and sat on the couch. I breathed deeply. I did not think about lists or all that needed to be done. I just enjoyed the quiet.

Taking those few moments made the baking and the rest of the day's to-doing even more calm and enjoyable. It made a difference.

creative ways to take moment

There are so many ways to find these moments of reflective time. Even a trip to the grocery store to pick up a forgotten ingredient can be a time for a detour down a pretty street to see the lights. Maybe it's taking the dog for a walk or a slightly longer shower than usual. Maybe it's getting to the pick up line at school just a few minutes early and listening to music. Maybe it's claiming that you need to pick up one last gift and going to the park instead to feed the ducks. Maybe it's just about anything that gives you a moment to breathe.

Even better, plan time alone and/or away in these final days. Maybe it's treating yourself to a pedicure or a favorite coffee drink and a scone in a local cafe. Maybe it's deciding not to fore-go the daily sudoku puzzle even if it is a busy time.

Taking just a few minutes for yourself can have a profound impact on your holiday. It can help you recharge and remember that the holiday is for you, too.

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