By Tracy Clayton
“Listen earnestly to anything your children want to tell you, no matter what. If you don’t listen eagerly to the little stuff when they are little, they won’t tell you the big stuff when they are big, because to them all of it has always been big stuff.” Catherine M. Wallace
Parents can be very busy trying to keep the house in order and provide enough money to bring food to the table. In all that mess, they often can’t find enough time to spend with their kids. And even when they do find it, they can’t seem to enjoy it because they’re constantly distracted. But kids grow up, and one day, you might regret that you didn’t enjoy the little things with them. Here is how to cherish that time and enjoy it even more.
1. Learn alongside them
Adults often think that their age means they gathered all the knowledge they need and that there is nothing they could ever learn from someone younger than them. However, this is far from being true. There are so many things you can discover together with your children. Especially because they still nurture the childlike curiosity and ask questions you would never ask, because you take some things for granted.
2. Feel free to be goofy
Spending time with your kids doesn’t mean that you always have to show off your authority and maturity. On the contrary, you should feel free to release all your inner goofiness and have some fun! Laughing, letting loose and even making fun of yourself will not compromise your authority, it will only make your kids feel good and more confident, and bring you closer together.
3. Work on interesting projects
Kids, even the youngest ones, can be motivated to participate in some project they will consider fun and engaging. And you can also make it educational. For example, they can help you grow a plant, water it and nurture it, and learn about the important role of plants on our planet.
4. Be creative together
Nurturing creativity in young children is one of the most important tasks of parents and educators. All the best early childhood training programs put an emphasis on this role. That’s why it wouldn’t hurt to attend a course and discover the best way to foster creativity in the young ones. Encourage thinking outside the box, be open to their ideas (even if they’re downright silly), appreciate creative attempts and don’t be too stiff with the rules (it is always better to teach values).
5. Educate through play
If you think that a child will learn better via boring definitions and endless tasks, you are wrong. Children get the best and most permanent knowledge through play. That’s a good thing for you too, because you can enjoy playing with them. For that, you can use a range of games, puzzles, toys and materials.
6. Enjoy getting to know your children
Each child has a unique personality and getting to know them individually will help you get close to them and be a better parent because you will discover their talents, potentials, and desires. During your quality time, you will have immense fun, because children have an unparalleled ability to make one laugh and be happy.
7. Help them help you
Sometimes, it’s really hard to find enough time to spend with your little ones, especially when you are overwhelmed with chores. However, you can look at these chores as an opportunity to hang out with your kids. Grocery shopping can be a fun time, washing the dishes together or preparing cookies can turn into wonderful memories, and so on.
8. Minimize the distractions
If the kids constantly see you on the phone or staring at the TV when you need to be with them, they will feel as if they are not important to you. Since you know that is not true, you should minimize the number of distractions. Turn off the TV and the computer, and if your phone is necessary for work, put it in your pocket on vibration mode.
Kids grow up fast and you cannot make up for the time you didn’t spend with them. Do your best to cherish all of your moments together and they will know how to appreciate it.
About the Author:
Tracey Clayton is a full-time mom of three girls. She feels she knows a thing or two about raising happy, healthy and confident kids. She’s also passionate about traveling, fashion and healthy living. Her motto is: “Live the life you love, love the life you live. Find her on Facebook.