Taking One-on-One Time With the Kids

One of the things we like to do is take time with each child to do something special. This last weekend DH (DearHusband) and I had to go to a formal work event. For Friday Family Time (yes, we kind of consider it a proper noun), we sat down as a whole family to watch part of one of our favorite movie sagas-The Lord of the Rings. BabyGirl is a little young for most of the movie, so we let her watch the party scene in the Shire and up to Bilbo’s leaving the party. I then read several books to her in her room before tucking her into bed, and rejoining the family.

The next day she and her dad took Acroboy with them to get doughnuts. It’s a Saturday thing they do every now and then. Sometimes it’s just BabyGirl or Acroboy, and sometimes it’s both of them with their dad talking and spending time together. BabyGirl loves bringing home doughnuts for the rest of us.

Later that day Princess Ballerina and I went for our first Mommy-Daughter mani-pedi date at a local salon. It was a chance to talk a little, relax and feel pampered.

We know we have a large family. That was our choice and not the children’s. DH and I feel it is our responsibility to make sure each child gets quality time with us. We have a running list for each child and we get to them as often as we can. Sometimes life gets crazy and no one gets a kid date for a few months, but we keep coming back to it.

Spending time with the kids doesn’t always mean something big. I learned a long time ago when I go to pick up any of my children from school or an activity, to turn off the radio and listen. We don’t always have earth-shattering, amazing conversations (more often than not I get a few grunts). But every now and then we have a conversation that goes deeper into the things they’ve been pondering. I treasure those, and it’s my job to make sure we have the space to talk.

Mind you, if we’re both in the mood for music, we will turn the radio back on and sing and dance in our seats. If I can get a child to laugh by doing something slightly goofy, it’s a win. We’ve made good memories.

Just like it’s important for couples to keep courting after marriage (it helps with feelings of connection), it is important to connect with our children.

Some of the kid dates we’ve had or are planning:

  • Bowling
  • Ballet tickets
  • Gourmet cupcake date
  • Concert (typically classical)
  • Museum time
  • American Girl Doll Bistro
  • Go cart racing
  • Mini-golf
  • Full golf
  • Bounce house park
  • Chuck E Cheese
  • Doughnuts
  • Lunch/dinner date
  • Baking and decorating baked items
  • Making a special craft
  • Toy store (where they can pick up something $10 or less)
  • Playing game of child’s choice
  • Video game tournament

The ideas range from simple to needing more time and money. Whatever you choose to do, I wish you luck.

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