If you’re like me, it’s easy to get sucked in to computer activities, household tasks, and a number of other things that all mean that when the kids ask me something, I might say, “Just a minute.” Worse yet, now that they’re older and can get sucked into some of those same distractions, they might not even notice that I’m distracted.
It’s good, however, to find time to really intentionally spend time together, even if it still involves some of those distracting things. Somehow, it’s a little different when you’re partaking in them together.
For today’s post, I decided to focus on things that were both easy to do and didn’t take planning or huge chunks of time. Not that I’m opposed to spending large chunks of quality time with my kids. But, sometimes busy days can make that difficult. It doesn’t mean that you still can’t find time to spend together in a meaningful way though.
Easy Ways to Spend Fun, Quality Time with Your Children
1. Take a walk or bike ride. For us, walks are better if we want to be sure to have time to visit with one another, while bike rides are better when we all just need to get rid of some pent up energy. We still get to spend time together on bike rides, but it does often make visiting a little more difficult.
2. Have some one-on-one time at a restaurant or coffee house. If I really want a chance to connect with the kids in this kind of setting, I find that it is more effective if I have just one child with me at a time.
3. Play a video game together. Quality together time isn’t all about time to talk. Sometimes, it’s about shouting at each other and at the television as one person races past another on a video game. Of course, they aren’t angry shouts. They are usually the kinds of shouts that make us all laugh afterward.
4. Bake a treat or a meal together. If the child that you’re spending time with is not adept at cooking or baking, it is best to pick a simple recipe. (I like this brownie recipe because it’s an easy recipe with such delicious results.)
5. Play a card game or a short board game. Remind your kids that not every game needs to be plugged in or have a battery.
6. Take turns having a beauty spa. This one probably won’t work if you have only boys, but it’s one that Molly and I have fun with. She has her “Tea Cup Spa” and we take turns being the spa client and the spa worker. The client gets a massage, their hair brushed, lotions, and all kinds of other fun delights. Then, we switch roles.
7. Garden together. There can be a fine line between spending nice time together and making the kids do chores. But, if you have a child who enjoys garden work (even if it’s just to go out and do some of the picking), it can be a great bonding time to spend together.
8. Do a family read aloud. We have shared many wonderful evenings all sitting around the living room as I read from books. Not only does it force us to slow down and be more intentional with our time, but it also gives us fun discussion topics for later.
9. Play with their favorite toys with them. My kids are basically getting past this point. However, I can remember taking time occasionally to pretend with Littlest Pet Shop and drive around pretend towns with Matchbox cars.
10. Just talk. It’s amazing the things that can come up when you just take the time to talk to your children. I’m not talking about a sentence here or there, but instead an intentional, “Hey – come sit down with me. What was your favorite thing that happened this week?” kind of thing.