Twenty years later, he stared at the young man and woman standing before him. They were both familiar and yet, strange. They were his children and the familial bond was there, but there was no real relationship because he suddenly realized that he had never taken the time to get to know them.
Spend time with them now
That is the story of many people out there. As parents we are so busy trying to provide for our children, trying to meet the daily challenges life thrusts on us that we often forget to really spend time with our kids. When they grow older, children will appreciate and even be grateful that you provided for them, but what sticks will stand out for them in their minds is how much quality time you spent with them.
Children can find joy in the simplest of things and most parents find it difficult to relate to that mostly because we are so stressed and the demands our society places on us makes us feel like we have to act old and mature all the time. If you really want to get the best out of your children, you need to come to their level every now and then, and these ideas will help you bond and connect with them in a way that will live on in their minds for a very long time. We know that you don’t want your children to grow up and miss out on having fun with you. Here are some tips.
Read with them
When it’s time to tuck your children into bed, pull out a story book and read them a bedtime story. Instead of reading it in a normal voice, create a new silly voice for each character. Of course, in the process of reading you may accidentally (or on purpose) talk in a female voice when the character is a male. Exaggerate the voices and your children will get the giggles. Once they start to giggle set the book down and tickle them to get them laughing harder. If you can get them settled down they should fall right to sleep and with a smile on their face.
You don’t have to wait till bed time to read to your kids; you should schedule reading time into your day. If you are a working parent, how about setting aside time every weekend to read with your children.
Teach them to cook
Set aside some time to have some fun teaching your children to cook. Find an easy recipe where your children can do most of the work. Don’t worry about the mess they make because it will clean. Invariably the children will get more flour or other ingredients on themselves. Take pictures of them, mess and all, so you have something to remember the day of fun.
Play video games together
Plan a day to play video games with them. If you have a computer console where more than one person can play at a time, find games which you can play together. Don’t be surprised if your kids whoop up on you, though, since they have had more experience playing these games.
Play outside together
If it’s nice outdoors, go outside and play with them. Toss a ball or play hopscotch. Think of games you played as a child. If you had fun playing them it’s a good chance your children will have fun, too.
Imagine things with them
Build a fort in your living room using the cushions from the furniture, pillow and blankets. Help your children use their imagination as you play with them. Does your child have a teddy bear that can walk the plank or a doll that can be held in a castle tower? If you use your imagination your child will try to do the same thing.
After you’ve taken time to play and have fun with your child, don’t forget to do things which are fun for you. You need time to regenerate yourself. You may find you’re more relaxed and less cranky if you have fun with your children. It’s even possible you’ll be less cranky and more fun with your partner, too.