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I have a love/hate relationship with night shifts. On one hand, it’s hard to do dinner, bathtime, and bedtime routines all by myself and it can get lonely. On the other hand, I definitely enjoy my alone time… and there’s something to be said for having the bed all to yourself.
One reason I have to enjoy night shifts is that I have a lot of hobbies to take up that time. I enjoy Netflix as much as the next person, but at some point, I run out of shows I’m interested in.
If you’re struggling to make the most of night shifts right now, here are some ideas for hobbies to get you started!
Have you ever wanted to knit, crochet, or cross stitch? Take advantage of the time you have alone and learn!
This is my favorite. I learned to knit when I was 12 years old. My sister taught me some of the basics, then I bought this book to teach me the rest:
Now, when I want to learn new techniques, I usually look it up on YouTube.
One great thing about learning a craft like this is that, if you plan ahead, it’s a great way to save on Christmas presents. For instance, when I was pregnant with Ace and J was in the academy, I made a bunch of these guys for our family Christmas presents.
They’re family snowman ornaments. The front left one with the snowmen with yellow and gray accessories was for a friend of mine with twin boys, and the front right one was for my Grandma and Grandpa. The figure in front is their Shih-tzu.
They were a little time consuming, but they were simple, and everyone loved them. Best of all? I spent under $10 to make all of them, including the gift boxes I made from scrapbook paper. Talk about a budget-friendly gift.
This is also a great way to guilt-freely catch up on some of your favorite shows and accomplish something at the same time. It might not be that way when you first learn, but now that I’ve done it for over 10 years, I hardly have to look at what I’m doing.
Okay, so this one may not necessarily qualify as a “hobby”, but it’s a great use of time. I know there are nights where my husband won’t be home that I use to catch up on work.
There are a lot of jobs you can do from home now. There are phone or internet chat customer service jobs, of course, but there’s also medical transcription (which is one of my side hustles), direct sales (another of my side hustles), teaching or tutoring online, or website testing, to name a few.
Of course, my favorite stay-at-home job is blogging. I’m not a big-time blogger yet, but judging by the income reports posted by others, there’s definitely money to be made if you writing is something you enjoy. I may write a post on this in the future, but there’s lots of information out there if this is something you’re interested in.
When’s the last time you got lost in a good book? I know it’s been a while for me, between working, keeping the Squish alive, and, you know, basic hygiene and trying to feed myself (and maybe even exercise). Phew. Needless to say, reading sometimes gets put on the backburner.
Use the time that your husband is at work to read. Maybe you can run a bath and read there, or just curl up in bed with one.
If you have a library nearby, make use of it! You can either stop in to find a book, or many now allow you to check out e-books or audiobooks through their website.
Have you tried some of the new coloring books out there for adults? This is kind of “trendy” but I love it. I spend so much time in a frenzy during the day trying to get things done, so forcing myself to sit and focus on coloring tiny details of my coloring book is meditative.
I love the artwork in this particular one. Being near the ocean is one of my favorite things… so of course, I live in a landlocked state. Go figure. But coloring in the sea animals reminds me of home a little, which is nice for the days that homesickness sets in.
Piggybacking on this idea, you could also use the time to start an art journal. I absolutely love mine!
This is something I’d eventually like to do! I had actually saved about $200 towards a beginner violin. But then unexpected bills came up and I decided it could wait. I would still really like to learn, though.
Even if you have kids at home and can’t wake them up, there are ways around this. You can buy an electronic version of whatever instrument you’d like to play. That way, you can turn down the volume or use an amp with headphones.
If you prefer an acoustic instrument, you could try using a practice mute.
Push comes to shove, I suppose you could also practice outside. I know that’s where I was relegated as a kid when I had to practice my saxophone. It’s not the most comfortable necessarily, but it works in a pinch.
These are just a few ideas of things you can do during night shifts, but there’s definitely more. So with that being said, what’s your favorite hobby? (whether your husband works nights or not!)
I’m a twenty-something LEO wife and stay-at-home mom to a one-year-old little boy. I enjoy writing, reading, taking my son for walks and runs in the stroller, and crafting. My goal is for Love and Blues to be a resource for first responders and their families. I write about marriage and family topics, as well as about the quirks that come with being married to a man in law enforcement, firefighting, or emergency medical services.
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