One of the most important things you can ever do for your kids is to spend time with them. Sure, they like toys and food and going to exciting places, but what kids love more than anything else is your undivided attention. Kids are never too old to want to spend time with their parents. They crave your attention, even if they don’t show it and it’s also important to their development and your relationship to spend the time together.
Many parents find this easier when the kids are little, but as they grow up, they run out of ideas of things to do with them. Other parents are opposite and may struggle to find ways to bond with their younger kids but get along great with kids that are older. If you’re one or the other, or somewhere in between we have some ideas to help you out.
Here are some tips on how to spend more time with your kids:
- Go for a walk – This is so simple, requires no special skills or tools, and you can do it anywhere. You might make it a daily part of your routine and it’s a great time to talk and learn more about your child’s life. The best part is – you can walk anywhere! Go to the mall and walk around and do window shopping, or just walk around your own neighborhood.
- Make dinner together – Someone has to make dinner, right? You could prepare dinner together and spend that time talking and bonding while also teaching your child a great skill. You can also let your child help with the shopping, the prep, and the meal planning.
- Take your child along to run errands – Letting your children come along when you do things you have to do already like paying bills, picking up groceries, or other errands is a good way to squeeze in more time together. Take this time to talk and to listen.
- Make one-on-one time – If you have more than one child, it’s also important that you spend alone time with each one individually. You can do this with the tips above but mixing up which child you take, or you can split the children between parents and take turns. There are many ways to do this, but one-on-one time is very important.
- Join them in the things they love – Does your kid like to ride bikes or play ball? Do they have a hobby they spend a lot of time doing each day? Why not join them? This is a great way to get more time together, while they’re already doing the things they love. It’s not that hard just to take an interest, and then volunteer a bit of your time.
- Take them somewhere fun or new – It can be an afternoon trip, or something as simple as a new store or ice cream shop you’ve never been to, but make a plan to go there together and experience it for the first time. You might even find a new favorite hangout spot.
- Volunteer at school – Another way to spend more time with your kids is to volunteer with their school. PTO/PTA are always looking for new people to join and your children’s school may have some other opportunities for volunteering as well.
- Do chores together – Chores always have to be done and typically, families will pitch in and do them together. A great way to spend time with your kids while also teaching them by example, is to do the chores together. This is a great way to make sure you get some time together each day. There will always be chores that need done, so this guarantees you get time with each other.
- Start a hobby together – Another great way to spend more time with your kids is to take up a hobby together. Decide on something new you both want to learn and then do it together. Buy models you can put together at home, take up painting, or enroll in a class together. These are just a few ideas to get you started.
- Commit – One of the most important things to know about spending more time with your kids is that you have to commit to it. It doesn’t matter so much what you’re doing – just that you do it.
One of the biggest problems parents face is a lack of time. You may feel like you just have no time to spare when it comes to life, but your kids are growing up quickly right before your eyes and if you miss out on this time, you’ll never get it back. So, find the time, make the time, and do whatever you need to do to cherish these moments while you still have them. You won’t be sorry that you did!