What’s the one thing that we can’t get back? We certainly chase it, every single day, but what seems to elude us? We can always make more money, so that’s not it, the simple answer is Time. This is the one thing that we simply cannot get back. That fountain of youth needs to be found ASAP, but until then we do what we can. We figure out ways to spend more time with those we love, especially the children that look up to us and need us. Which is why we are going to talk about a few ways to spend more time with our kids.
This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link.
If you don’t have time to read the entire article, feel free to download this list here, it contains a list of things we can do and a handy calendar to plug it in:
As parents there is never enough time. We never get enough sleep, we never get enough alone time, or even play time with the kids. Click To Tweet I cannot tell you how many times that my children have acted like clowns because they wanted our attention. It took me many years; many many meltdowns in public places for me to figure out that they were doing whatever they thought would work to get my attention.
I have found that, in particular, my middle son Caleb seems to feel the most left out. For whatever reason he uses whatever he can in his arsenal to get my attention, whether it works or not. This used to come down to me yelling at him, putting him in timeout or even resulting to other disciplinary measures. However, as he has gotten older I have come to realize that usually these meltdowns come after he has repeatedly asked me for attention or tried to get a word in, and for some reason he’s shut down. Now, I try to ensure that he gets a chance to speak, a chance to be a part of whatever is going on.
So the first rule here is to simply allow your child the ability to be a part of whatever you have going on. This will speak volumes to them because they see that you care about what they have to say.
When I pick my son up from Daycare after a long day, he will run up to me and jump in my arms and hug me tight. This used to bother me because, well he’s heavy, and I’m exhausted and the last thing I want is for a child to be hanging of me. It took me stepping outside of my comfort zone to realize why he was doing that. He is genuinely happy to see me. Think about it, how many other people can say that they are genuinely happy to see you? I can’t really find one, not one, and I work with a lot of people. Regardless when I figured this out, it is now a bright spot to my day. I can have the worst day, been yelled at, hurt myself and him running up to me and giving me this big hug, just makes it all go away.
So with that one, the second rule to remember is to appreciate the innocence that is your baby. When they ask you a million questions, don’t shut them down, enjoy that they want to be with you and be a part of your life. Remember at this point, your their hero…
It is interesting to note that they want to be a part of your life, because you’re like well they are my child, they are a part of my life, but at the end of the day, how much are they? When my husband comes home from work, he simply wants to sit on the couch and just veg. I cannot count how many times I have watched my boys try to get his attention, just to be told to be quiet or go sit down, and to see their faces fall, it breaks my heart. He is working on it, and it does take time to break a habit, but we have to ensure that our children are an important part of our day.
With that, the third rule is to ensure that you spend quality time with them. This can be something as simple as getting on the floor and reading them a book, or doing a puzzle, these is something that can be done in 20 minutes or hours, depending upon you, but please take the time.
As a mom, I end up doing all the chores, something that is the bane of my existence because somehow I have become the maid, (check it out here: When did I become the Maid?),regardless, one thing all of my children like to help with is cooking. I honestly think that sometimes my children are bloodhounds and can smell when I am at certain points in the cooking process and just appear by my side asking to help. I won’t lie, I do get a bit weird when they are standing next to the stove, but generally speaking they know by now to not appear on that side. Children, at least mine, love to help and when they are done with whatever the task is, they are so proud of themselves, which makes for a much better evening. We will be at dinner and Caleb will remind everyone that he made the Mac N Cheese, and to see his face light up, it speaks volumes.
This leads us to the next point, let them help. Children love to get messy, and well cooking can be, so let them help. They love to be a part of something bigger and helping make dinner is just one thing that can bring that sparkle to the eye. It doesn’t matter that having them help might take a bit longer, but it’s so worth it.
Have you ever bought a piece of furniture or have something break at home? If so, did the little ones become glued to your side, asking a million questions or asking to help? This happens to me on a regular basis and at first it was annoying, but I began to step back and look at it from a different perspective. The minute I showed them how to fix it or build it, and then handed them the tool, the simple look on their face was pure amazement. I think the first time I did it; Caleb looked at me like I was crazy, like uh mom are you nuts. But now, he loves to be a part of my projects, or taking the screw out of a toy to put new batteries in. Seriously, I love it; I love him helping me, regardless of how long it takes because again, they become so proud of it.
This brings us to let them help you fix it. Let them help you build it. Oh I just thought of the movie A field of dreams with Kevin Costner, where he says if you build it, they will come. Wow, that’s interesting, however it is true. If you begin to put something together that requires tools, these kids will flock to you like you are food to a starving dog, its nuts.
Have you ever gone on a simple walk with your children? It can be to anywhere, or nowhere, but something that you do together, just for the hell of it. It’s easy to get in the car and drive somewhere, but taking the time to get out the stroller or walk to the park with your toddler will allow you to have that alone time to talk about anything. Imagination is something that children are brimming with, and they are so willing to share and show that all you have to do is give them a gentle nudge. Speaking of the park though, how many times have pushed your child on the swing? Did they love it, and ask to go higher or giggle with glee? This is simple fun and kids lap it up, they love that you’re spending time with them. A lot of times our children can see how busy we are, and for you to take the time out of your day to play with them, that’s gold to children.
This time, remember to take the little moments and run with them. Grab their hand and take them on a journey, this can be a simple 5-10 minute walk, but for them, it’s a journey with mom or dad and that makes it special. Children love the park and it’s easy to simply sit on the bench and watch or play on your phone, but be a part of that experience.
The phone can wait, bills can wait, (well for a time), cleaning can wait, but they are only small for a fraction of time. It’s gone so fast, and you never get it back. Take the time, make the time, and enjoy the innocence that children bring. Enjoy that imagination of a 5 year old. Enjoy that hug every day, because too soon, they won’t want to hug you.
Time is the one thing that we cannot get back, it is the one thing we chase and it will continue to elude us. When we stop and enjoy the little things in life, we find that time doesn’t always matter, it’s the memories made, and it’s the time we take to spend with each other that matters.