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I am home alone for a few days. D is off at a work conference for the rest of the week, and left me to hold down the fort. While I certainly miss him, there are perks to alone time — something we haven’t had much of since we moved in together.

So, to remind myself of why a little peace, quiet and autonomy can be a good thing, here are some of the biggest benefits:

Dinner is simple. Before marriage, dinner was oftentimes whatever I felt like. Didn’t want to bother cooking that chicken breast? I’d have a sweet potato with some greens and call it dinner. Home late and starving? A little pasta and sauce would do the trick. But D, he’s into square meals. He wants a main dish, a starch* and 1-2 vegetables. When I think that a pork chop with broccoli sounds great, he insists on rice. So, on nights when I’m alone, I can go back to those quick and dirty dinners (and maybe I eat them in front of the TV instead of at the table).

I can watch my shows. These would include anything on Bravo, HGTV ad nauseum, a little TLC or MTV when the mood strikes, and okay, some QVC (it’s nice background noise when I’m doing things like, say, blogging). We only have one TV, and limited time after dinner to watch it, so we tend to only watch benign programming that we both can agree on. Plus some Downton Abbey and The Wire on DVD. My shows rarely make an appearance, as D is not the biggest fan (understatement).

Late bedtime. This is a positive and a negative. I am the night owl, while D is the type to fall asleep on the couch at 10 p.m. We usually split the difference, and since I like going to bed at the same time as him, he ensures I get a solid 7 hours of sleep. Left to my own devices, I’ll certainly push my bedtime back — and pay for it with dark circles in the morning. BUT I tend to be very productive from the hour of 11-12.

Tackle that to-do list. Since we’re only home for about 2 waking hours after work/commute/gym, we like to make the most of it by talking and spending time with each other. This is great for a happy marriage, but not so great for to-do lists. With him gone, I feel less guilty focusing on a few wayward tasks that need to get done. (Ok, ok, it’s also possible I just tell myself this to justify not tackling the to-do list the rest of the time.)

*We have an ongoing debate around the roles of sweet potato and corn. I say sweet potatoes are vegetables and corn is a starch; he argues the opposite. Thoughts?

What’s the biggest perk about nights alone for you? I’ll be more than ready to have my company back this weekend, but I have to admit controlling the remote is pretty nice!