Can You Really Fit Leisure Time Around Your Kids?

One for the guys. In today’s post I am talking about leisure time – Can you really fit it in when you have kids?

Kids can be fun and it’s really great to spend time with them, but sometimes you just need some ‘Man’ Time – some leisure time to engage in to relieve your everyday worries.

I’ve been most recently gifted with an Xbox One from my partner. She handed it to me as an early birthday present about three weeks ago and I’ve been playing on it almost daily.

I don’t however play on it and cut out the kids – seems too vulgar to do. Time usually flies by during the day and I don’t seem to have any especially when the kids return from school. My ‘Me’ time lies later in the day when the kids have been put to bed.

I may be cruel to my partner and zone out into my ‘Me’ time when we’re winding down for bed, but once I’m in that bed, she has my full attention (so she can’t really complain).

I guess organising and productiveness is key to fitting in everything during the day you need to do. I am currently reading a book about time management, and it’s informed me of ways I can fit more into my day.

One good suggestion I read about was to create a time diary – writing down what you must do during the day into time-slots and keeping to it. Brilliant idea!

But I have kids, and when you have kids, nothing goes to plan even if you plan down to the last minute! I go about my tasks in order of importance, and if I do complete all my tasks during the day, I feel accomplished and then reward myself with a game of Forza later that night – keeps me motivated, happy and focussed.

Not sure how everyone else does it, but I know someone who has 2 kids, a full-time job and still manages to fit in time for the gym too. Absolutely amazing! Whereas I feel like I’m stuck in a snow storm trudging through snow as deep as a car looking for a snow plough to clear my way (I’m not a tall guy either).

There’s a balance between leisure time, work and spending time with your family. It’s hard to maintain, more so the more kids you have. It also doesn’t feel right to bung all the kids on my partner and leave to do my own things without her (bribes help, but you didn’t hear that from me shhh).

During the summer holidays (when the sun actually comes out for a bit) it’s nice to go out with the kids onto the beach and spend some quality time with them. Bit of a workout itself just getting the kids out the door, but once we get to the beach, we can actually have a fun run-about and collapse 5 minutes later in exhaustion (alright guys, I’m out of shape, but I blame Winter!). It’s a good way of incorporating exercise into your day if you were going to do it anyway and still spend time with your little troublemakers.

Reading a book when the kids are about is very challenging. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried it, but basically it goes like this:

Read first line of page

(in the background) ‘Roarrrrrr, I’m coming to get you’

Read second line of page

BANG! ‘Daddy, DADDY! Faithy hurt me’

‘No Wyatt! You hurt me first!’

Put book down, get up off chair and repeatedly bang your head against the wall until the kids waltz away.

You can see where the problems arise when the kids are present. Book reading, again I leave to later that day, usually around bed time when I’m settling down. It’s always between playing on the Xbox or reading a book (most of the time it’s the Xbox that wins, but I have my days where I just fancy reading a book.


I’d like to know what you do in your leisure time. How you manage to fit it in around the kids and whether you’ve found a good work/play/family-time balance. I’d love to hear it in the comments section below!  


If you liked this blog post, you can check out more daddy blogs here!




Author: Liam Plimley

Dad of 4. Happily cohabiting with my partner. Have a background in Video and Film Production.

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