Guest blogger Laura Thornquist of www.mydallasmommy.com shares tips on how to survive and celebrate back-to-school season with some much needed me time! 

Our kiddos are heading back to school! Are you cheering or crying? Our neighborhood has a “Tears or Cheers” luncheon every year on the first day of school. Some celebrate, some cry! Me? Whoopee!!!! Either way, many of us are going to have a little bit of breathing room and can maybe enjoy lunch with our friends! In fact this year, I’m going to work on finding a bit more “me” time. At least we know we have SOME free hours while the kids are at school… before the events and activities take over the evening hours, right?


Going out to eat is one of them.

And since savings is what MyDFWMommy is all about, we are here to save you a few $$$’s at some of your favorite local restaurants! Before making a lunch date, make sure and check out Restaurant.com. They have lots of local restaurants offering GREAT deals.

I’m loving this deal for Palio’s Grapevine (1000 Texan Trail 
Grapevine, TX 76051
 Phone: (817) 328-0777) for me and my friends … a few hours out on the patio catching up and eating great food! Not only do they have free Wi-Fi (great for checking in on Foursquare or Facebook!), it’s also BYOB if you plan on having an adult beverage. If you’re in the  Dallas area head on out to Grapevine and check out it out!

Other ways to find “ME” time?

1) Schedule a treat for yourself once a month. A day out with the girls or with your hubby, go see a movie, play golf…whatever you enjoy… DO it!

2) Buy Tickets in Advance. Sports, theater, concerts you would enjoy, that way when you have the tickets already in hand, it will force you to make it happen!

3) Join a Group: bible study, savings group, gardening group, book club, quilting circle, biking/walking/running… whatever suits your fancy.

4) Exercise: This is my favorite “me” time… I have a work out partner so I get social hour AND try stay in shape! Find a gym that offers childcare so that you can take a yoga class, do some strength training, or even work with a personal trainer.

5) Waiting in the Car: Take advantage of waiting in the car while picking up kids. Read a book, write or play your favorite game on your tablet!

6) Volunteer: You make a difference for others, you escape work and personal worries, and you grow as a person.

7) Organize “Mom’s Morning Out” Circle. If you have a friend or group of friends, you could arrange to share babysitting services a few times a month so that others in the group get some time alone.

8) Babysitters. Make a plan to have a babysitter that you trust watch your children once a month or once a week so that you can get some time for yourself, with girlfriends or with your significant other.

9) Plan dinners and eating out in advance, so you can schedule some down time. Organize your calendar and plan out your week on Sunday nights… which gives you time to schedule “me” time in advance!

We hope you take some more “me” time for YOU!  And, when it includes food, take advantage of Restaurant.com where you can get savings ALL of the time. Back to school can also mean “back to busy” with all of the fall activities, so this is also a great option when you can’t cook at home! Using Restaurant.com will guarantee you instant savings on a whim!

Do you have special back-to-school traditions or “me” time routines? We’d love to hear about them!

Besides running MyDFWMommy, Laura Thornquist is a wife, mother to two children, 14 and 7, and holds two other jobs.  After being hugely impacted by the economy in late 2008 with job losses and transfers she discovered a new frugal way of living. After learning valuable coupon strategies she has become hooked on “frugality”! It has changed her life and she is forever grateful.