There is only as many hours in a day and parents are often feeling spread too thin with too many things to do at work, home or with other obligations. And then there are kids who can hardly wait for mommy and daddy to come home to spend some time playing with them!
We have all been at the point – struggling to find the time to do it all. However, it’s important to keep kids on top of our priority list and spend some time daily to connect through play, specially with young children. Here we share several ideas how to spend quality time with your kids and keep connection. After all, we don’t want to come to a point where our kids are all grown up and we wonder how and when it happened and where have we been!
I try to find at least 10-15 minutes every hour to take a break from chores, work, etc and just do whatever my boys want to do. If that’s playing trains, great. Reading books? Sure. For that time I set a timer and disconnect myself from everything else.
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Quality time depends a lot on when you really are in a position to connect with your child. I feel it depends on the parent. I connect with my children through doing things with them like crafting or cooking. My husband on the other hand, likes to take them for long drives or read to them at bedtime. They like to cuddle in bed with him with a silly funny story. With me, they love getting a chance to help with dinner.
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Our quality time is meal times. We always eat together with no distractions from televisions or phones. It is a great time to chat about the day and talk about play ideas for the next.
author at The Adventures of Meemoo and Pook. Follow Gemma on Facebook and Pinterest
When you’re really busy and you have a million things on your to-do list, there’s a temptation to try to get them done when you’re with the kids. But they just get fed up as you aren’t really paying them attention. So no phones, no iPads or other gadgets. Actually be with them and spend that allocated time with them.
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Try to ‘schedule’ quality time if you’re really busy. Make it part of their routine, so you have some unhurried time together, whether at bedtime, or before dinner – whatever works for your family. Talk a lot during your time together, and try to do something your child actually enjoys.
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Even as a stay at home mom I struggle with finding time and energy to really get that deep connection quality time with my son. I recently created some “connection coupons” that I have been using on a daily basis with my son. They list a bunch of activities my son likes to do with me and my husband, and each day he chooses 1 for us to do together. During that time, I really focus on following his lead in our play, and keeping my mind fully in the present with him!
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We always have family quality time, our hard part is one on one quality time. With four girls and a husband I find it hard to fit them all in for one on one time but I do try to give it to each and everyone of them. For our personal quality time I take a class with them in their interest, we spend a day out together doing something of their interest, or it could be as simple as sitting down reading a book or playing a video game together. I try really hard to give them all a special piece of me.
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We’ve moved around a lot as a family, and that has caused extra attention needs in my children. Something that I have found that really helps them feel like they are getting their attention needs met, and fits in with a busy schedule is “15 minutes of fame“. I spend 15 min. with each child, doing whatever they want to do, and talk to them about life.
author at Mommy Crusader and her Knights and Ladies.
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Even when we are totally over our heads with daily chores to complete after day at work, we do one thing daily to connect with our kids: we spend 10-15 minutes daily with giggles, tickling and just playing silly. It makes kids laugh a lot and it helps us too to relieve some daily stresses. After all it is said for a reason: Laughter is the best medicine!
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Mihaela runs Best Toys 4 Toddlers blog and loves to come up with new ideas how to use old toys her 2 daughters keep leaving on the floor to slip over. She loves them despite the fact that they call her mommy few hundred times a day, and it makes her nuts.