Connecting With Your Kids
As a mom, I want to make that parent connection important in my children’s lives.
In the world we live, there seems to be a more need for parents to make that bonding time more important.
I have to admit that with our oldest two that I didn’t have that parent connection with them as I do with our youngest two.
Yes, I homeschooled them and we were with each other all the time but we were always just doing our own thing.
It is my job as a parent to making that relationship important and strong.
I have good relationships with our two oldest but it defiantly could have been better.
Parents need to understand that it’s a full circle when you take that time to spend with your kids.
When they are young, this is how they learn to bond and form relationships.
Babies and toddlers learn the importance of that parent connection.
This helps them learn the basics of forming relationships. You want that time to be a positive experience.
Our youngest two were born with special medical needs so I have definitely been more present in their lives more.
But I have noticed that the older they get, that time spent together is getting smaller.
I’ve gotten into the trap of constantly working when we have any downtime.
I feel guilty for that, so I just let them have free reign on the electronics.
I noticed that I’m getting into the same pattern as I did with our oldest. Don’t want to make the same mistakes again.
So how do we stay connected with our children when everyone is attached to technology?
We all live busy lives and to be honest I’m tired!
Well, guess what it’s all about balance and priorities. Guess what those dishes, laundry, emails, and those text messages are not going anywhere.
Sit down, have a family meeting, and get some ideas from your children.
Let them give you suggestions of what things they would they like to do as a family.
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Ideas On How To Make That Parent Connection
- Go to your kid’s favorite place to eat.
- Fix a family favorite meal together.
- Exercise together. We walk together several times a week.
- Have a mom and daughter at home beauty day.
- Read a childhood favorite book out loud.
- Go to yard sales. My kids love looking at other people’s junk.
- Plant a vegetable garden or container bed.
- Have a movie night with fun themed food to fit the movie. My kids love it!
- Make homemade playdough.
- Go to storytime at your local library.
- Have a picnic. A family favorite here!
- Game night. Also family favorite. Were also very competitive.
- Have a Lake Day or go to the public pool. Remember mom’s, kids don’t care what you look like in a bathing suit!
- Make your own pizza bar.
- Volunteer as a family.
- Go on a nature walk.
- Create a scavenger hunt.
- Build a birdhouse
- Go bowling. Love bowling with the family!
- Use Groupon to find a family activity everybody will enjoy.
- Eat out where there is a kid eat free night.
- Let your child pick out craft items from the dollar store and make a craft.
- Teach your kids how to bake cookies.
- Build a fort out of sheets or cardboard boxes.
- Have a family-friendly Netflix binge on a rainy day.
- Go to a museum.
- You can make a free craft at Lowes during a free kid event.
- Play outside in the water sprinkler.
- Play video games together.
- Go to a farmers market.
- Teach and do a hobby together.
- Roast marshmallows and have a smores party.
- Go to an orchard and pick your own fruit or vegetables
- Put a puzzle together. We do this by putting it together on a card table, so we can choose a larger one, and work on it for several days.
- Catch lightning bugs.
- Have a campout in the backyard.
- Fly a kite
- Draw pictures and games with chalk on the sidewalk or driveway.
- Let your kids pick out and decorate for the holidays with things from the dollar tree. My kids love this!
- Paint rocks to look like bugs, faces, or anything that inspires them.
Creating Traditions To Build A Strong Connection
Having family traditions for me is important. We don’t have a whole lot of them, but the ones we do have, my kids will remember forever.
Maybe they will continue them with their families when they grow up.
I read somewhere but please don’t quote me on this, “having family routines and rituals create marital satisfaction, gives kids a sense of personal identity, builds stronger relationships, and is good for children’s health.”
Our family routines and traditions are pretty simple. I think it is better that way so nobody loses interest or they feel like a chore to keep up.
For example, I think “Elf On The Shelf” is super cute but all the work to come up with bigger and better ideas, year after year, seems exhausting to me.
That’s my opinion so don’t get mad or offended. I do think it’s cute.
Here are some traditions we do in our family:
- We like to have Taco Tuesday. Or some form of Mexican food on Tuesdays.
- We always make cookies and hot chocolate and watch The Polar Express during Christmas time.
- We always do an advent calendar during Christmas time.
- Instead of a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, we like to do themed food instead. Examples: Finger Food, Mexican, Italian, Chinese
- We do a thing called “Five Days Of Christmas.” The kids have a special stocking that we put a dollar item in each night leading up to Christmas eve. This helps greatly with the anticipation and they look forward to seeing what’s in their stockings each morning.
This is just a few that we have and hopefully, it will lead to some ideas for your family.
Making That Parent Connection Before It’s Too Late
Earlier I was telling you about how I regret not spending the time I wish I would have with our two older girls.
Well, and that I was seeing the same pattern beginning with our younger two.
I’m here to tell you that you can get back on track. If you can recognize that the time you spend as a family doesn’t seem to be very intentional.
I have listed ideas on the activities you can do with your children to make that parent connection.
Shared a few traditions with you on what our family does together to make memories.
But do we as parents pay enough attention to the daily things our kids do or are interested in?
It’s the distraction and conditioning of the busyness of our lives. We are so attached to technology that we fall into the trap of being un-intentional parents.
Our children need us, even though sometimes they don’t show it.
It’s easier when they are younger because they usually come to us for everything.
Kids notice things and if you seem to be busy all the time they will start going to others for help or just to talk.
Don’t get me wrong it’s good for our kids to have trusted people to turn to and even peers but you want to create that nurturing a connection with your children, so they know they will be heard.
If you make time for them first, it creates that parent connection that they are important and you are making time for them.
I know that I want to be the biggest influence is our kid’s lives. I’m sure most parents would agree with that.
It’s never too late to turn those bad habits around and start spending time as a family.
When you are spending time together make sure you are clear on what the rules are.
The biggest one in our house is NO TECHNOLOGY when it doesn’t require a TV for movies or playing a video game. I don’t want my kids to lose the value of spending time as a family.
I want them to know that I will always have time for them and I am interested in every aspect of their lives.
My hope is that have learned that the parent connection is so important no matter how old your child is.
That you can re-connect and build a strong bond with your child and as a family.
I’ve got a few other posts that also relate to the child-parent connection here.
I really hope some of these tips help. I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment or you can also sign up for my email and I’ll send you some free printables!
Domestic Engineer Mom