Inside:Learn simple steps that’ll transform your kid’s daily routines into fun rituals you’ll both enjoy. It’s the best way to sneak in quality time with kids!
Imagine for a second that you’re not a morning person.
You’ve hit snooze on your phone 7 times already. You squint at the screen and realize it’s already 7:45!
In a tizzy, you whirl around the house barking orders at your kid to get ready for school.
You grab your toddler out of her bed and contemplate forgoing her diaper change until after you get back from school drop-off.
You slap together a lunch, pull your hair into a ponytail and wonder if someone could smell your morning breath if they got too close.
As you race out the door, you wonder why daily life has to be so chaotic, so monotonous and so unfulfilling.
But here’s the secret:
Life doesn’t have to be that way.
You can easily transform those boring daily activities into fun and meaningful rituals with your kids.
Don’t scoff – it’s true!
What’s the catch?
There really isn’t a catch.
Ok, it will take a shift in your perspective, a little planning, and some trial and error.
But isn’t it worth at least that much to transform your day and your life?
So now that you’re with me, I suppose you’re wondering, what exactly are we talking about here?
Well, let me break it down for you. I’ve identified 3 areas you can overhaul in order to have more fun with your kids and create lasting memories.
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3 Easy Ways To Sneak In Quality Time With Kids
1. Naptime & Bedtime Routines:
Many moms are guilty of trying to get the kids to bed as quick as possible (this was me, yesterday). I don’t blame them; some days you can’t wait another second to have your alone time. But why not create a fun routine that makes your kids look forward to sleep instead of trying to fight against it?
But why not create a fun routine that makes your kids look forward to sleep instead of trying to fight against it?
At my house, I have a couple of tricks I use to get my kids to bed with minimal opposition.
Nap time for my toddler is a great example.
When he was right around 2 years old, he started to resist taking a nap. There was no way on the planet that I was going to let him skip it, so I had to start thinking creatively. Over time, I created a short routine (about 5 minutes) that makes him excited to get in bed (no seriously, this is amazing).
When it’s time for nap, I tell him so and say “ready to race?”. Then I grab the two stuffed animals he sleeps with and I “race” up the stairs with him, right on his heels. It’s close every day, but somehow he always manages to beat me 😉
Then, once I get him in his room, I put him in his crib and sing him a short song while stroking his arm or cheek. Once the song is over, he asks for a hug and we spend a minute or two with him in a death lock around my neck while I struggle to get away.
Finally, I give him one last kiss on the cheek and tell him to remind his stuffed animals it’s time for bed.
That’s it. Really.
And you know what? There are only about 1-2 times a month (if that much) he cries when I put him down for nap time. It kinda blows my mind.
Takeaway: Find what’s fun for your children and incorporate it into their bedtime or naptime routine. Read them their favorite story, sing them songs, rock them in a chair or have a nightly tickle fest. Whatever will get them to be excited about the routine is your goal.
2. Meal Time:
Eating food is another daily activity everyone needs to do, so it’s the perfect opportunity to connect with your kiddos.
Dinner time is the meal I like to emphasize since the whole family is able to be there, but you could choose any (or all) meals of the day.
One of my favorite things to do is to get the whole family talking. And, with my kindergartener, the classic, “what did you learn in school today?” question is somehow always answered with one-word.
Not exactly what I had in mind.
Instead, I try to get him talking about things he loves like his friends, Pokemon, video games, Pokemon or did I mention, Pokemon?
We also recently began using table topics for kids and have been loving it. It’s a simple card with a question directed towards kids that everyone gets to answer. They have questions like, “what would be a really good flavor for toothpaste?” or “what makes you feel better when you’re sick?”. They’re ideal for getting a reluctant talker going.
Besides having a good conversation, we also have weekly meals the kids get to pick so they look forward to dinner time. So far, breakfast for dinner and chicken tacos have been the most popular choices.
Takeaway: Let your kids’ voices be heard (even if they aren’t old enough to talk)! Have them pick one day a week to have their choice of dinner. Talk about things your child enjoys. For younger kids, let them pick out their favorite dinnerware or napkins. Try anything that allows your child to express themselves.
3. Driving Time:
Inevitably, you’ll spend time with your kids in the car. Whether you have errands you need to finish, doctors appointments to go to, or you’re dropping your kids off at school, driving is an easy way to connect with them.
In my house, or should I say car, we love rocking out to some good tunes. Lately, it’s been the Trolls soundtrack. On repeat. For hours. (Yes, that’s how much I love them.) We turn up the sound, sing along and have a mini dance party on the way to school most mornings.
If music isn’t your thing, you can play a car game instead. My family likes playing twenty questions or ispy. When it’s just me and Mr. Toddler, I ask him if he can find things like cows or cars that look like Lightning Mcqueen. Sometimes we simply take turns making silly noises at each other.
Takeaway: Music, car games or some old fashioned silliness are fun ways to pass the time while doing daily driving. Use this time when they can’t escape you to strengthen your relationship.
These suggestions aren’t life-shattering news. They’re simple. They’re straightforward.
And they’re exactly what you need to transform your days from unfulfilling to meaningful in no time flat.
So, what do ya say?
In the comments below, tell me, what’s one area of your daily routine you’re going to work on making more meaningful?