When I Read: A Log

The last week has been pretty typical, schedule wise, so I decided to keep a log of what, when, and where I read. I think I did this several years ago, but definitely not recently. I think the main takeaway anyone can get from this is that if it's important to you, you'll find time. I am a busy teacher, mom, wife, and friend, but reading every single day is something I make happen, so that I feel like myself. 

I also have to point out that I basically do not watch TV; during this whole week I watched less than an hour and a half (one hour of Fargo with Scott and a half an hour of This is Us). It's not that I don't like to watch things, but I rarely have time to sit down for a full 45 minutes to an hour to actually commit. When I do watch things it's usually just to relax with Scott; I very rarely will watch anything alone, and never do I turn the TV on for myself when it's Sawyer and I (we don't have satellite, so that's part of it). I honestly just don't like the extra noise; I am generally surrounded by chatty (but lovable) teenagers, so it's nice to have a quieter atmosphere at home. 

Here's the breakdown (and probably too much narrative):

Texts mentioned, and the abbreviations I'll use: 
A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah (ALWG)
A Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wild (DG)
Kafka by Robert Crumb (KF)
How to Win at Feminism by The Reductress (HWF)

Wednesday 1/18
11:45-12:05 KF- My friend usually joins me for the last ten or fifteen minutes of lunch (we get thirty-five minutes), so I have been spending the first bit reading while eating.
5:15-5:30 ALWG- While Sawyer happily played with his trains
6:50-7:05 DG- I am reading this on the Serial App, so I try to get in some time while I supervise Sawyer's bath, since he ignores me anyway
9:20-9:45 ALWG- After a run and right before bed

Time: 1 hour and fifteen minutes

Thursday 1/19
11:45-12:00 KF- During lunch 
8:05-8:15 DG- Under the crib while hanging out with Sawyer until he settled down a bit
9:25-9:50 DG/ALWG- Post hanging out with husband and before bed

Time: 50 minutes

Friday 1/20
7:30-8:00 KF- I technically am off (as in not my prep period; I am contractually not bound to work first period since I teach a very late class on Modays, but because of our daycare drop off time I end up at work anyway), and today I decided to read instead of work like normal, since I am caught up on grading and planning. 
11:50-12:00 KF- lunch
9:05-9:25 ALWG- in the bath 

Time: 1 hour

Saturday 1/21
2:20-2:40 ALWG- This was during Sawyer's nap, after I did some cleaning. Saturday is usually our day to do fun things, so I don't generally read a lot. This weekend we had friends over, other times we are off in Orange County, or whatever else we plan. 

Time: 20 minutes

Sunday 1/22 
7:34-7:45 ALWG- I got in a few pages while I ate my breakfast and Sawyer played.
3:00-4:00 ALWG- It was cold and rainy and I couldn't resist curling up on couch with my favorite blanket while Sawyer napped.
8:10-8:20 DG- Under the crib, sneaky-like

Time: 1 hour and 20 minutes

Monday 1/23
5:50-6:10 KF- I decided to read a book instead of blogs while I ate my breakfast before waking up Sawyer
7:50-8:10 KF- I busted my butt grading essays all weekend, so I spent some more of my off period reading
11:45-12:05 KF- Lunch
8:10-8:20 DG- Under crib
9:30-9:45 ALWD- After run and before bed

Time: 1 hour and 25 minutes (this is really surprising because I am at work really late on Mondays)

Tuesday 1/24
11:45-12:15 HWF- My friend had stuff to do during lunch, so I read 
5:20-5:45 ALWD- While Sawyer played with trains
6:50-7:00 DG- While Sawyer was playing in the bath 

Time: 1 hour 

Total time: 7 hours and 10 minutes

- I miss reading in larger chunks, but I make it work
- Having books for different times is good for me... right now. Depending on what I am reading this doesn't always work, but a classic on my phone, a graphic novel at work, and a normal piece of prose for longer periods did the trick (I am also listening to an audiobook from my ride from work to daycare, but I don't count that as reading)
- I think I do a good job of playing with my son, but I also like him to see me partake in my own hobbies, like reading
- Taking some time to read during my lunch as been a really nice reward for working super hard and efficiently during my prep period, and often during my off period
- Not all weeks are like this; I was bringing my A game. Right now, a few days later I feel like my game has been graded to a C-. 


  1. You do a lot better than me lately. I am not sure why, but I seem to be struggling with reading lately. And, I am sure you are not worthy of a C-. We just tend to be too hard on ourselves and expect too much. :)

  2. I miss reading in larger chunks too and I'm not always the best at sneaking in 10 or 15 minutes here and there like you have. The longest stretches of reading I usually do now are audiobooks when I listen doing housework, etc. I did make myself just sit and relax and read a print book during little man's nap last weekend and it was so wonderful -- I really need to do that more often. And I think it's great you read with Sawyer plays. My son is still not the best at independent play, but I think it's important that kids do that. I get lucky sometimes and it does work much better if I'm in the room reading than if I'm nearby but not in the room -- and I definitely can't be on my phone or all he wants is the phone!

  3. Wow, this is awesome! I think you're judging yourself too harshly; 7+ hours seems pretty good to me! Even the sheer act of recording all this information seems like a pretty stellar effort. :)

  4. Given your busy lifestyle, you make a great effort to read, even in little snippets. I tend to read in larger chunks as I find I can commit and connect to the story more. This was a really interesting post, and I feel like it probably took a good amount of effort to log!

  5. Like you, I read in little bits and pieces throughout the day - the most would be half an hour at a time. I might try keeping a log next week and see what emerges!

  6. I just loved this!
    I can relate - after teaching teens all day I seek a quiet environment at home and the TV is something that can really feel bothersome. I find lately I would much rather read then put the telly on - as long as I read before 9 ish as I fall asleep! I wake up at 5:15 each morning to meditate and read before work ( this only happened once my son moved to uni! ) and I find it a lovely way to start my day - and of course check some book blogs like yours. You do very well considering all the marking you have ( English!! ) and a wee boy - and you still work out as well so kudos to you!

  7. I love that you stuck with tracking your reading time. I'm sure I'd do good for 1-2 days but I'd definitely forget to log it afterwards...though I am really interested in seeing when/where I read.

  8. I think it's great you fit in reading into your busy schedule! People always ask me how I find the time to read so much and like you, I just make the time. I have no more hours in my day than anyone else. I also agree that it's important that Sully sees me reading during the day. Sometimes he plays or sometimes he reads his own books beside me. Sometimes he demands I stop reading my book and read him his book lol. I don't ever have the TV on during the day, either to watch or for background noise either, so that makes it easier to fit in reading too I think. And yes, 7+ hours is really great considering how jam packed your days are! I have to ask though - what's with the reading under the crib?! LOL! Is that so Sawyer will fall asleep?