Things you can do to spend quality time with your kids
One of the most challenging things about parenthood is finding the time to spend quality time with your kids.
Quality time is the time you spend with your kids that gives both them and you a real satisfaction of being together. Doing special things that are out of the normal daily routines you are in. For so many families, both parents have to work and for single parent families it’s even harder because you are doing the job of three people; being both mom and dad and employee; it’s hard to fit in those special times in such a busy world.
Spending quality time with your kids doesn’t mean you have to go somewhere special; you can have some excellent quality time at home. Some examples might be:
- Have a board game night planned every week
- Rent a movie and order in pizza once a week
- Play a video game with your kids that they enjoy
- Let your kids help you cook a meal and let them choose what they want to cook
- Have a picnic in your backyard
- Pitch a tent in your backyard and sleep outside with them
- Have a craft day or night; make something together
These are but a few examples of things you can do right at home that can mean a great deal of difference in your child’s life. It shows them you are interested in what they think and do. They want you to be a part of their little worlds and sometimes you have to grow down to get to that level.
Other activities you can do for quality time with your kids
You should at least once a month take your kids somewhere special that they really enjoy doing. Some of the greatest moments in your child’s life are sharing those new experiences with you. There are a lot of things in the world your kids have yet to discover; you should find new and exciting things for them to experience. Here are a few examples:
- Take them to a museum
- Take them to a state or national park
- Take them camping
- Take them to an aquarium or wild life park
- Take them horseback riding
There are so many things you can do that are affordable and are easily accessed. The trick is finding the time but you should not use that as an excuse for not doing these things. Make the time; schedule them in advance and stick to your word. There is nothing more disappointing to a child than being let down by their parents who promised they would go or do something and the parent cancels out due to work or other types of excuses. Your kids come first and they need to know that is how you feel.
When you have a tight budget
Most of the things you can do at home costs very little and is easily affordable. Overnight trips and other activities that involve cost issues, you can begin saving for those each month. Put away a certain amount of money from each paycheck to go towards those special events. You might not be able to do them every month; maybe every three months, but if you plan ahead, you can save the money and afford the expense.
A trick I learned when I was raising my children as a single parent was to put all my pocket change in a jar every day. I never used my change when buying something; I always broke another bill. I easily save $30 a month doing this; it is a proven method to save money for special things.
You can also go online and look for coupons and discounts for different events; there are a lot of good deals out there if you take the time to look for them.
Lack of energy
It is understandable that after putting in long days work and then have to spend several hours more taking care of the needs of your children that you can get completely drained. There are solutions to this if you can work them out with your employer. Many employers offer personal time, floating holidays, sick leave, and vacation time. Plan ahead and use these paid times off to your advantage. Schedule with your employer half days, using half of a vacation day and then use the other half some other time. Plan your vacation times around special events so you can be sure to be a part of that with your children. I never took all my vacation days at one time; I would spread them out throughout the year to give me long weekends and more time and energy to spend with my kids. You work hard for those times off so use them to your advantage.
If you have planned a movie night, game night, or video game night with your kids, show them how excited you are about it; remind them that it’s going to be so much fun playing the game or watching the movie. If they see how excited you are about it, they will get excited about it too and will make future special evenings even better.
Showing your kids that you are involved and excited to be involved in their lives is probably the most important aspect of being a parent. These are the god memories they will have as they grow up and become adults and have children of their own. They will pass on this type of relationship with their own kids and will have you to thank for that. Quality time with your children is far more important than just the quantity of time you spend with them. They have to see that you are involved and care about being involved in their lives; it means the world of difference as they grow up into mature adults.