Monday, May 11, 2015

Wake up, little snoozers! (Do You Snooze?)


 HANK PHILLLIPPI RYAN:  People always ask all of us—how do you do it? When do you sleep? And I say—whoa. Whenever I can. I love sleep, and I am very careful about it. It’s not the sleeping part that’s the problem. It’s the getting up.  And in order to delay it as long as I can, for some reason, instead of setting the alarm to wake me up at the latest moment possible, I set it for eighteen minutes earlier so I can have two snoozes.

So. The alarm goes off. (Sixties music, sorry to say. And I have counted that I can turn it off in five notes.) I whap the snooze, and burrow down for nine more minutes. It goes off again. I whap it again, And then get nine more lovely minutes. It goes off again, I get up. I’m happy to be in the day, don’t get me wrong . But those 18 minutes are so lovely.

I guess I am somehow fooling myself, that I get to sneak this lovely extra sleep time, And it kind of gets me used to the idea of waking up. And the bed seems especially cozy right then.

My husband thinks I am NUTS. Set the alarm for the right time! he says. You’ll sleep better for the 18 minutes.

Well, that’s not how I do it.

Reds, are you snoozers?

RHYS BOWEN:  I'm not a snoozer. When I wake up, I'm wide awake.  One of the best things about being a writer is not having to get up to commute each day. But when I have to travel, which is quite often, and I know I have to get up at five, I wake up every half hour all night, just to make sure my alarm clock is working properly and I haven't overslept.

HANK: Oh, I do that too Rhys. EVERY hour. Amazing.

RHYS: And one of the pitfalls of being a writer is that I wake up at two a.m. and have an idea that has to be jotted down. So then I'm up, awake and my brain is racing.

But as for setting clocks ahead, John keeps the microwave set about 12 minutes so that we'll always leave the house at the right time. Crazy, right?


HANK: Oh, not crazy. At least, um, I agree. My clocks are all fast too. (Except for the computerized ones, which is confusing.) Jonathan says--why don't you set them for the right time? Why do you have to trick yourself, and do subtraction and addition? Shrugging. It just works for me.

JULIA SPENCER-FLEMING: I'm with Rhys; when I'm up, I'm up. I'd rather sleep until the last possible minute and then bolt out of bed. My youngest, who has to catch a school bus at 6:45am, is like you, Hank. I can hear her alarm go off at 5:50. Then 6:00. Then 6:10. She finally arises around 6:15. Drives me nuts. Wouldn't it be better to get that last 25 minutes uninterrupted? She says no.

Also? I'd rather be blasted awake than have one of those woosh-woosh white noise machines or the gradually increasing mellow music. I want to hear Steve Inskeep and Renée Montagne giving me the news or a recent pop hit blaring away (obviously, I have a clock radio. Probably an antique by now, what with everyone docking their Ipods instead.)

I do think one of life's great luxuries is settling down for a nap and NOT having to set an alarm. Some little niggle of anxiety in the back of my head turns off and I get the best sleep under those circumstances!


HALLIE EPHRON: Alarm clock? I rarely use one unless I have to get up for an early trip to the airport. I just wake up. Usually at around 6 or 6:30, 7 at the latest. And when I'm up, I'm up.

I'm a champion napper. I lie down for just a quickie (20 minutes is perfect), wake up refreshed. Not good if I end up sleeping for over an hour then I have a terrible time waking up and have trouble sleeping that night.


LUCY BURDETTE: Here is a picture of my alarm clock and snooze button, all in one. He starts when it gets light with a soft purr that gets louder the longer we sleep. And if that doesn't do it, he starts patting my cheek with his paw. Very sweet, but utterly annoying:).

HANK: Oh, so cute.  My Leon would do that too. After he knocked stuff off the dresser, to see if that would wake me.When I pretended to stay asleep, he'd knock over the wastebasket. Then he'd paw may face. It was hilarious.


DEBORAH CROMBIE:  Lucy, how adorable. I usually get a big dog nose in my face:-) I am not a snoozer. I don't usually set an alarm because I wake up pretty much the same time every day (not as early as Hallie!) and when I'm awake, I'm awake. When I do have to set an alarm I use my phone and one of nature/birdsong/gradual wake up things, but usually wake up before the alarm goes off. My husband is a snoozer. Fortunately I am almost always up first so don't have to listen to it! So annoying, beep beep beep beep...

Learned the hard way that I couldn't sleep in after becoming a mom. I remember once sleeping in (an accident) and waking to find Kiddo (about age four): 1) eating chocolate chips 2) watching LAW AND ORDER, and 3) using scissors (!) to cut the hair off one of his handmade puppets. Disaster on so many levels.

Now f I don't get up, our older male cat, Xander, will walk on my head (so very subtle) until I move. Lola, the younger female cat, will watch him do this until I get up, then run ahead in excitement and almost trip me before I get out the bedroom door.

Thank goodness for coffee.

HANK: Susan, I say that EVERY DAY! (And aw, I had a Lola!)
So, Reds, how about you? Are you a snoozer or a sleeper?   Why? And has anyone tried to change you?


And let's give a prize to a random commenter--how about an ARC of WHAT YOU SEE! (I'll have it soon…!) 

59 comments:

  1. I snooze; the alarm goes off and I hit the snooze bar [several times] so I can delay getting up until the last possible second. On the other hand, John sets the alarm and gets up. No snoozing time for him but I think there's something deliciously decadent about snuggling in for those few "extra" minutes . . . .

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  2. I'm with Hallie-- I never use an alarm clock except as insurance if I have to make a flight or an early appointment. I wake up by myself, often around four or five a.m., and when I'm up, I'm up-- until those early mornings hit me, usually right after lunch.

    Then, one of the best things about working at home is that if I am thoroughly wiped, I don't have to find the break room; my choice is the bed or the couch, with favorite pillows and throws-- and a little doggie to cuddle with. Most naps are brief, but if I'm really tired, they can be as long as necessary.

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  3. When I was still working, I was a snoozer and oh how I loved those snoozing minutes. Now that I'm not working, but Donald (also a snoozer) still is, oh how I hate those snoozing minutes. Every time the music comes on (yes - old clock radio here), I think "why won't he just GET UP!" I love getting up early. Early mornings are, to me, the best part of the day, but I want to get up when my internal alarm says, oh so gently, "and now, it is time to get up, sweetie."

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  4. No snoozing! I wake up, fully charged and, apparently, obnoxiously energetic, according to my husband--the champion snoozer. I sneak out of our room, go to my office, and never hear the many, many times he hits that snooze button. What invariably wakes him up is a call from work.

    20 minute power nap--can't live without it.

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  5. I'm with Ramona and Hallie - especially on the (apparently) obnoxiously energetic (and overly cheerful, I hear) part. And power naps! I'm a little groggy this morning, though, because all night I dreamt about trying to figure out if I should become an Uber driver. Interviewing other drivers, thinking about it...sheesh, it was exhausting.

    No cats allowed in the bedrooms in our house, though. That would be a disaster.

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  6. I'm with Rhys--wake up every time I turn over, practically, if there's something I need to do the next morning. Terrified the alarm won't go off. When I do sleep, it's always with some heightened sense of consciousness that won't shut off--this started, I believe, when I found myself caring for two infants: What if they wake up? What if they are sick/wet/cold/hungry/turned on their stomachs????? With no morning deadline. I would normally wake about 7-7:30, no snoozes!

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  7. funny dream Edith! I think driving for a living would be a nightmare job for me...Uber or not!

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  8. Love all these fellow morning people. I can appreciate how obnoxious we seem to mates who are night owls. I think my husband uses the crossword puzzle to bury himself in in the morning so I won't chatter away at him until his coffee has kicked in.

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  9. Oh, you morning people--I envy you!

    Sometimes.

    But at 9pm, I am still going strong, and do some of my best writing after 10 pm. While YOU are sound asleep!

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  10. I use three clocks, one of which has the snooze function. Need I say more??!!

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  11. ANd on the weekends, I never use an alarm clock. But I am--BANG-awake to 7. (And then snooze.)

    If I tell my brain: "I need to wake up at 6:30", then I will. Or I'll nap and say--I need to wake up at 4:30 ANd I do. . HOW does that work? How does it know? And what baffles me most--what clock is it using?

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  12. And of COURSE we have the morning people now. It's early!

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  13. I am a snoozer! You're right - somehow at that moment the bed is the MOST COMFORTABLE PLACE ON EARTH and I've never felt SO COZY!

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  14. No snoozing for me! If I know I have to get up at a certain time, I wake up several times but don't open my eyes. Then my eyes fly open, I look at the clock and it's one minute before the alarm is set to go off.

    Going to bed is glorious. Staying in bed is painful. All my joints scream at me to get up right away so I can stretch.

    I think I need a better bed.

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  15. Julia, if you're an antique we're right there with you. Our alarm goes off at 5:30 every morning. But the radio, not the alarm. So no snooze. Husband gets out of bed around six. I know when the music turns off, it's 6:30 and my turn in the shower.

    I hate it. Hate mornings. Then I have to commute... Ugh.

    Hank, I'm with you. I do my best work in the afternoons/evenings. When no one is at home, I can write until midnight. Then go to bed, get a nice eight hours sleep, and wake up ready to go at 8am.

    Unfortunately, the pattern I've fallen into lately is going to bed at 10 (because I need my eight hours), then I can't fall asleep for two hours and I only get six hours of sleep a night. It doesn't make for a pretty morning.

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  16. mmgage, you are so right. It is the coziest!

    Sandra, the best thing. I really think it does make a difference.

    AH, so interesting Mary. SO what wakes you up---is the silence!i

    Do you ever dream about what's on the radio? Sometimes what they're saying and what's in my dream all run together. Or I dream that I'm getting up.

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  17. Hello fellow morning people! It's comforting to know I am not alone. I wake up very early - between 5 and 6 and am thinking before my feet hit the floor. Alarm clock? Only when I need to be at the airport and then I set the iPhone to the harp sound. My brain is in full gear during the first few hours. I always tell my night students, if I taught at 6:00 a.m. instead of 6:00 p.m., you'd see how brilliant I really am! Brain dead by then, unfortunately.

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  18. I have a friend who kept late nights and had convinced her cat to let her sleep. One day she was wondering what time it was and thought it was safe to peep out through barely open eyelids. It was too early, so she prepared to go back to sleep.
    Suddenly, a paw pushed at her eyelid.
    The cat had seen her eye was open and she was, therefore, fair game! It was get up time!

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  19. Hank, yes. Music and news will weave themselves into that not-quite-awake/not-quite-dreaming state. It makes for some very interesting thoughts. =)

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  20. I have to snooze as well. I somehow feel cheated if I don't get those extra 18 minutes of "sleep" in. I can't explain it either.

    I also love to nap. Like Hallie says, just a good 20 minutes and I'm refreshed for the second half of the day. Don't nearly get to do that often enough - for some reason, the frown upon that at the office.

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  21. I used to be a snoozer. Would hit the snooze button at least twice. The last few year I've had my clock set about 5 minutes ahead (sadly it loses time & often ends up 5 minutes behind before I notice). I have talk radio (a host I actually like) wake me up. I can get caught up in the subject of the day & be in bed for 1/2 an hour sometimes, but usually I'm up within minutes of when the radio comes on. I am looking forward to retirement & only setting the alarm when I have to get up for special occasions or appointments.

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  22. Kristopher, when I still had the day job (with a cubicle), I perfected the CAR power nap. Reclined the front seat, looked at the time, took off my glasses. Bingo, asleep. Sit up exactly fifteen minutes later, reverse steps, head back to the office refreshed. And if I didn't do that, I'd be nodding off in said cubicle all afternoon. Got a little dicey in the winter, but that's what wool blankets are for.

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  23. I'm not a snoozer or alarm clock person, which is good because those rare times I do have to set an alarm, I usually sit bolt upright and yelp when It goes off.

    Thank goodness for those gradual alarms now.

    My husband is a snoozer, but I'm up and doing something when his alarm is going off. I think most couples have a snoozer and non snoozer. . .


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  24. I'm with Hank. I can "tell" my body when to wake up and it usually works. If it is for some important thing-like a flight-I will set an alarm but NO SNOOZE. I've always been a night owl even when I worked at 6 a.m. I am trying to move to a more "normal" life (whatever THAT is) so am going to bed a little earlier and getting up earlier. I usually make appointments in the mornings to force myself to get up! Because left to my own devices I will sleep away my life!!!

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  25. All this talk of snoozing is making me think of Downton Abbey — silent servants would pull open the curtains and set down your to a and breakfast on a tray on your bed... Sounds a little intrusive to me -- but the thought of coffee in bed is deliciously decadent.

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  26. This works pretty well, not foolproof so I still set an alarm if I absolutely have to be somewhere at a certain time -- but I tell myself when I go to sleep when I want to get up, and I wake up about 10-15 minutes before that time. Take a peek at the clock out of one eye and think, oh boy, I don't have to get up for 15 whole minutes. Makes me happy. Not sure if I actually back asleep but I feel like I have somehow beaten the clock and am ready to get up.

    Now I wish I could learn the 20 minute nap because the hour nap makes me sluggish and just want to go to bed for keeps.

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  27. Night owl. Night owl. Night owl. And either my dog or cat acts as an alarm. Must unpleasant. But I wouldn't trade either one for the world.

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  28. My alarm has an automatic snooze. On for one minute off for five. I always tell myself when I go to sleep that I will not snooze but instead I will get up and going immediately. And then I snooze. I just can't get going in the morning.

    Do you think it has anything to do with how late I stay up at night? No, that couldn't be it.

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  29. I am a snoozer. I have always used the snooze button. I love to stay up late and I do not like mornings. I feel like I am getting extra sleep with the snooze even though it is disrupted sleep.

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  30. Ah, yes, Jody, the fiddling with the time is kind of fraught. Although there's nothing like that moment when you get the time BACK-like, whoa! I'm not late! I forgot!

    So funny that we can fool ourselves!

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  31. Debi, I agree--setting stuff up in the morning is SUCH a good technique. But whenever I have to get up early, I ALWAYS worry about it the night before, and start getting "tired" much earlier than usual.

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  32. Aw, the animal awakenings..you just can;t get better than that. Annoying, maybe... but to be so loved!

    MArk, no, that's not it. :-)

    RAchel, I'm with you! It's the BEST.

    ANd Edith, I am haunted by that dream.

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  33. Grandma Cootie, yes, that is so lovely! HOW do our brains figure that out?

    And Susan, coffee in bed is AWESOME. Agreed. Sometime in hotels, I have breakfast room service. And I adore it.

    Jill, maybe that's it! But hmmm..how does THAT work? (I've trained Jonathan to be a snoozer!)

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  34. Hank, the time fiddling thing is so funny. I don't set clocks fast, but I will tell myself I have to leave for appointments, airport, etc., a certain amount of time before I really have to leave, and then I might almost be on time:-) Fooling myself, but I know I always try to do too many things in too little time, so that seems to work. Silly, isn't it?

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  35. I am one of those people who didn't use an alarm and got up on time until I got my fitbit. Now I need that little vibrating thing going on to get me out of bed. Once I am up though - I am UP. I do dearly love to nap, about 45 minutes is enough to give me energy for a sixteen hour day.

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  36. Yes, I do, too, Debs! If I really have to leave at 5, I'll put on my schedule 4:30 departure. I'd MUCH rather be early. I think it works perfectly. Anything we can do to fool, er, I mean organize ourselves, right?

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  37. So, FitBit. I am tempted! Anyone else have one? Kait, do you like it??

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  38. Like Rhys, I'm awake, and hitting the snooze button only means I'm lying there, waiting for it to buzz. Usually I end up turning it off, midway between hitting it and the buzzer. But that doesn't mean I'm a morning person, Hank, because I'm a total night owl. It just means that the anticipation keeps me awake.

    We used to keep our clocks ahead (and when I say "we", I mean me, the official clock keeper), and it drove my husband nuts--he never knew exactly what time it was. Now we have atomic clocks in the bedrooms that self-adjust to the actual time, and both our cars, as well as our cell phones, all give us the exact time. In a way it's comforting, but in another way it's maddening to realize you are ten minutes late. Again.

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  39. Happy 29th anniversary, Kaye and Don!

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  40. I have trouble sleeping. I wake up all the time. My alarm clock is set to the radio, unless it accidentally gets turned to the buzzer (don't like that). I don't know anything about iPod alarms or those modern things. I'm usually a night owl and can stay up all night (especially if I sleep all day!).

    Rhys's comment about travel reminded me of the time that I was in Columbus with my mother and we overslept so we got to the zoo late and didn't get to see everything.

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  41. I am not a snoozer. But, my daughter is. Three different alarms and an hour later, she gets up. The worst part is that the alarms go off foooorreeeeeverrrrr..... :-)

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  42. Yes, KAren, I agree it's "comforting" (perfect word) to know the real time.

    And now I'm thinking about that. Isn't that a hilarious thing to say??

    And yes, Julie, someone else's alarms are SO annoying!

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  43. MIchelle F--whenever I stay up really late, I'm so zonked and confused the next day! When I push it into, say, 2 am? BIG mistake.

    But midnight? Can do. And usually do!

    And I just had to verify ice cream--which I got WRONG, so they gave me sushi. BIZARRE!

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  44. My perfect alarm clock began with music and switched to an alarm after 5-10 minutes, allowing a gradual waking up. I added a second clock after a power failure had me waking up only a half hour before I was supposed to teach my first period (7:25 am) class. I made it, WW breakfast sandwich in hand . . . not well put-together, but dressed.
    My final week of teaching, I stood before my first period class, raised my fist in the air, and vowed, "As God is my witness, I'll never set my alarm for 5 a.m. again." They clapped.
    Alarms are later and less frequent these days, and I have so much more time for reading. ;-)

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  45. Snoozer, same as you Hank, two nine-minute intervals that feel like sweet, stolen sleep. Logic dictates otherwise, but I am not logical in those first few moments of consciousness.

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  46. Oh, power failure, Mary. The FEAR! SO awful and frazzling to be late.

    And Brenda, yes, logic has nothing to do with it. Just ask Jonathan, who is baffled by the whole thing. But
    you and me, sister.

    And this time I had to verify with Cake. Nailed it.

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  47. Rushing out to a speech! Back soon..

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  48. Coming in late today, but then I often run late, and these days I sleep late, too. Of course, when I stay up until 3 or 3:30 to read (thank you Susan Elia MacNeal for the past few nights), then I need that extra sleep. Since, I'm on Susan's fourth book in the Maggie Hope series, maybe I will be able to get to sleep by 2.

    I am both a snoozer and a ready riser. When I'm just at home with no pressing engagements the next day, I hit the snooze a couple of times. I do set the alarm ahead of when I really want to get up because the added minutes that I'm aware of getting on snooze feel so luxurious. However, when I travel, I'm up-and-at-em on the first peep of the alarm. Rhys and Hank, I'm with you two on not getting much sleep when I have to be up for travel early.

    I do have one alarm that is my favorite and to which I always immediately respond. When my five-year-old granddaughter spends the night, she sleeps with me, and she usually wakes up first and rolls over and touches my face with her sweet little hand and says, "Good morning Grammy" in a precious little sing-song voice.

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  49. When I have to get up with an alarm, I am a snoozer. I need to be brought slowly into the light. But since I am retired, I do not need the alarm every day. Since I am a "night owl" I can ease into morning with only the husband and dog interrupting and rushing me into morning.

    Bettyjo.English@gmail.com

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  50. When I have to get up with an alarm, I am a snoozer. I need to be brought slowly into the light. But since I am retired, I do not need the alarm every day. Since I am a "night owl" I can ease into morning with only the husband and dog interrupting and rushing me into morning.

    Bettyjo.English@gmail.com

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  51. I just retired--today was my first non-work work day! But for many years I set my alarm for 5:25 a.m. and snoozed for a lovely 9 minutes until 5:34. I wouldn't have had it any other way--those 9 minutes were so sweet! This morning I had breakfast with my husband at 6:15, went back to bed to read, then snoozed till 8:00. Heaven!

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  52. I'm a snoozer. It feels so good to hit the snooze alarm a couple of times. If I absolutely, positively have to be up early for an appointment, a flight, something important, I have a horrible time getting to sleep the night before.

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  53. I automatically wake up at 6 am, stay in bed for about ten more minutes before getting up.

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  54. MArgie! AMAZING! We are standing and cheering--and so thrilled you shared it with all of us! Hurray Hurrray Hurray!

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  55. PAt D--exactly. What is the deal about that? I guess we all are just a little--reliable. It's a good thing.

    BJ--that sounds lovely. xxix

    Mary-so your brain is set. Perfect.

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  56. Kendall wakes me up. It's part of his routine in helping me. If I start to daydream or fall asleep sitting on the edge of the bed, he pokes me with his nose. Kendall is the best.

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  57. Been meaning to check back in with you wild and crazy crime writers, and it looks like I found the perfect day: I love sleep. Life has been too busy lately, and I miss my sleep!

    Rarely do I have a hard time falling to sleep -- but waking up is an issue almost every day. Still, my alarm (which happens to be early-riser hubby's kisses, lucky me!) kicks in at 6 AM, even on the weekends.

    I'm all with Hank on this one - I'll ask Stefano to call me 20 minutes earlier so I can snooze before finally rising. (The dogs and cats make damn sure my snooze isn't longer than 20 minutes.) And the dreams that come on in that half-sleep half-awake state always stick with me more than those from the wee hours.

    What I love most of all about those extra minutes is the indulgence factor. Silly as it sounds, it almost feels like I'm manufacturing time!

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  58. Exactly, Kathleen! It is--extra special time.

    See you all tomorrow--it's a WONDERFUL guest. One little word: WOOF!

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  59. I am not a snoozer, but briefly shared a dorm room with one. Needless to say, that didn't last long!! Thankfully, I have never had to live with one since! lol

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